SEC’s White: Robo advice has broad potential

November, 15 2016 | Prashant Mehta


WASHINGTON — Robo advice gained a strong voice of support from SEC Chairwoman Mary Jo White, who said it has the potential to offer retail investors “broader and more affordable access to our markets.”

Addressing the SEC’s first ever fintech forum, White said that the regulatory body was focused on treating robo advisers as RIAs. The commission is examining them based on their ability to uphold their fiduciary duty, how they safeguard client information and how they design compliance programs.

“Consistent with our mission, we have been considering how these so-called robo advisers — as registered investment advisers — meet their fiduciary and other obligations under the Advisers Act,” she said. “In particular, we are looking at how advisers that provide investment advice with limited, if any, human interaction provide appropriate disclosures so that their clients understand their services and obtain information to support their duty to provide suitable advice.”

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