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For the retail investor in the United States, generally two options are available for seeking professional investment advice to reach their financial goals: hiring a broker-dealer or an investment adviser. Each entity is governed under separate regulatory schemes. With the recent financial collapse and the ensuing jump to regulation, there is a push to make a uniform standard for all investment recommendations—a fiduciary standard—that would be a one-size-fits-all reaction, leading to less access and higher costs for the smaller investor. Continued regulation of more disclosure and transparency in the investment sales process, stronger requirements of the investment sales person, proliferation of common sense education of the investing public in handling their own money, and swifter punishment under existing rules of bad actors should be the regulatory focus.



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