New Department of Labor (DOL) rules and your retirement

We're committed to a higher standard for retirement

We view the Department of Labor Fiduciary Rule as a positive step for the industry and great news for investors. We support it wholeheartedly. Hear from our leaders and financial advisors what it means for you. Transcript of video (PDF)

Understanding the fiduciary ruling

Earlier this year, the Department of Labor introduced a new rule that holds all financial advisors to a fiduciary standard when they provide investment advice to clients regarding their retirement accounts. The ruling will require that when advisors provide investment advice regarding these accounts, it must not be compromised by that advisor's personal financial interests.
This is good news. And we support this new ruling wholeheartedly. In fact, we were first among our peers to do so. Retirement is a special time with a lot of thought and planning behind it. That's why we do everything we can to help our clients reach their goals.

A commitment to investing in you

For years, we've been making significant investments that align with the spirit of the rule. When you work with an advisor, you benefit from an investment advisory program that delivers an investment strategy designed to meet your specific needs.
So when you sit at the table with a Merrill Edge Financial Solutions Advisor™ or invest with us online, you can be sure that you're getting guidance designed to help you achieve your goals. And you also get the unique benefit of the insights of Merrill Lynch.

The choices you deserve

Before the rule is implemented on April 10, 2017, we will be introducing new, simplified investment choices.
You'll have the opportunity to meet with an advisor and agree to a fair, transparent fee before we begin working with you. This fee is not contingent upon any recommendations, and we will not collect commissions for any of these accounts. It is a simple, straightforward way to work.
Coming in 2017, you'll also have access to new services like Merrill Edge Guided Investing1, 2 — an online investment advisory program that combines the best of online investing with a professionally managed portfolio by Merrill Lynch.
We believe we are honoring the spirit of the new rules — not looking for ways to get around them. And, as always, we will put your interest first to help you achieve what matters most to you.
We'll always put our client's best interest first.

Today's Merrill empowers every type of investor

At Merrill Lynch and Merrill Edge, you don't have to choose between an online broker and a personal advisor.
We give you the freedom to invest on your own terms with as much guidance as you need. You'll always have access to a variety of tools, guidance and support, and can evolve the way you invest to fit your changing needs.
Online investing & trading
Put your investing ideas into action with step-by-step guidance, easy-to-use tools, award-winning research3 and a fair, transparent fee.
Guided investing
Pursue your investing goals online with a low-cost portfolio, built and managed by the investment professionals at Merrill Lynch.
Work with an advisor
Meet with a licensed financial advisor to develop an action plan built around your financial goals and plan for what matters to you.

Have specialized wealth management needs?

Work with a Merrill Lynch Financial Advisor or a team of U.S. Trust wealth management specialists
to help grow, preserve and manage your wealth.
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1 Merrill Lynch Chief Investment Office (CIO) develops the investment strategies for Merrill Edge Guided Investing, including providing its recommendations of ETFs and related asset allocations. Managed Account Advisors LLC (MAA), Merrill Lynch's affiliate, is the overlay portfolio manager responsible for implementing the Merrill Edge Guided Investing strategies for client accounts, including facilitating the purchase & sale of ETFs in client accounts and updating account asset allocations when the CIO's recommendations change while also implementing any applicable individual client or firm restriction(s).

2 There is an annual fee of 0.45% based on the assets held in the account. This fee is charged monthly in advance.

3 Institutional Investor magazine announced BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research as the Top Global Research Firm for 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 based on surveys held throughout the year. The magazine creates rankings of the top research analysts in a wide variety of specializations, drawn from the choices of portfolio managers and other investment professionals at more than 1,000 firms. For more information about this award, go to