Firms Get Go-Ahead to Offer One-Stop Investment Service
Pensions & Investments (12/01) Vol. 29, No. 26 p.1; Anand, Vineeta

Financial services conglomerates no longer need to obtain clearance from the Department of Labor to offer plan participants one-stop investment management services. On Dec. 14, the Labor Department issued an advisory opinion that firms managing underlying investment options can offer investment advice, asset allocation, and money management, as long as the advice and allocation decisions are made by an independent financial expert. The Labor Department took up the issue at the request of SunAmerica Retirement Markets but decided to extend its interpretation of the firm's "managed accounts" program and federal pension laws to the rest of the industry. Some observers say the approach should help improve the investment returns of plan participants.

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