An elderly couple looks out at the ocean as they sit on a park bench in La Jolla, California

U.S. weakens retirement advice rule, responding to industry

An elderly couple looks out at the ocean as they sit on a park bench in La Jolla, CaliforniaBy Suzanne Barlyn and Lisa Lambert WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A new U.S. rule aimed at protecting retirement savers from profit-hungry brokers turned out to be much weaker than an initial proposal after the Obama administration bowed to pressure from the financial services industry. The rule, announced by the Department of Labor on Wednesday, sets a so-called fiduciary standard for financial brokers who sell retirement products, requiring them to put clients’ best interests ahead of their bottom line. The language is tougher than an existing rule that only requires brokers to ensure products are “suitable.” However, the Labor Department did compromise with the industry on a range of provisions.

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