When Pensions & Investments' reporters spoke with insiders late last year about the impact the then-incoming Trump administration would have on the money management industry, and sectors in which institutional investors put their money, many had theories. But most believed it was too early to tell.
With the administration hitting its first 100 days, P&I went back to our sources to gauge their opinions about President Donald Trump's policies.
Bottom line: There is some clarity now, but in general it is still uncertain.
Mr. Trump has scored points for tackling what many perceive as regulatory excess, demanding that regulators toss out two existing rules before they add a new one. In the first 100 days of his administration, his preferred weapons were 30 executive orders that directed, among other things, federal agencies to revisit everything from financial regulations to the fiduciary rule, and Congressional Review Act resolutions to nullify Obama-era rules from 2016, including a safe harbor for cities to create private-sector retirement initiatives.
Those reviews won't happen quickly at the Department of Labor and the Securities and Exchange Commission, with Alexander Acosta at the DOL just confirmed April 27 and nominee Jay Clayton at the SEC still waiting to be confirmed.
Aside from an early victory in getting Neil Gorsuch, his Supreme Court pick, seated, the president has yet to be tested on Capitol Hill on big-ticket items like tax reform and federal spending. Mr. Trump and congressional Republicans failed in early April to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
The president's proposal for tax reform, unveiled on the 97th day, offered few details beyond a flat 15% rate for companies and pass-through partnerships, and fewer rates and deductions for individuals, who would keep a tax break for retirement savings. It did not include a way to pay for tax reform, and did not address the tax advantages of companies sponsoring retirement plans.