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Exemptions for 401(k) investment advice become final


WASHINGTON—Department of Labor rules spelling out permissible scenarios for giving investment advice to 401(k) and individual retirement account participants without violating prohibited transaction rules are now final.

The exemptions, first announced Oct. 27, allow for providing investment advice under one of two scenarios: through the use of a computer model certified as unbiased, or through an adviser compensated on a “level fee” that does not change based on investment choices.

The final rule became effective Tuesday after a 60-day comment period, a DOL spokesman confirmed.

“This rule is designed to simplify and bring transparency to the exemption application process,” Phyllis C. Borzi, assistant secretary of labor for the Employee Benefits Security Administration, said in an October statement announcing publication of the final rule in the Oct. 27 edition of the Federal Register.

The final rule is on the U.S. Government Office Printing Office's website.

Hazel Bradford is a reporter for Pensions & Investments, a sister publication of Business Insurance.