Posted by on Oct 20, 2019 in Articles & Advice, Blog, Columns, Featured |

Image Credit: Alex Nabaum



By Jason Zweig  |  Oct. 18, 2019 10:45 am ET


If you think your job is tough, try simplifying financial disclosures.

A new Securities and Exchange Commission rule requires brokers and financial advisers to describe their services, fees and conflicts of interest in “plain English” and a maximum of four pages.

But, as my dad used to say, nothing is harder than making something look easy. The SEC needed roughly 165,000 words and almost 170 pages in the Federal Register to specify how advisers and brokers should “reduce retail investor confusion.”

The new disclosure, called Form CRS, makes financial information simpler—but not simple enough. Investors don’t just need to learn what to ask, but why the answers matter.


To read the rest of the column:


For further reading:


Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor

Jason Zweig, The Devil’s Financial Dictionary

Jason Zweig, Your Money and Your Brain

Jason Zweig, The Little Book of Safe Money


Articles and other resources:

SEC report, “The Retail Market for Investment Advice

Rand Corp. report, “Investor Testing of Form CRS Relationship Summary

Dolly Chugh et al., “Bounded Ethicality as a Psychological Barrier to Recognizing Conflicts of Interest

Ellen Peters et al., “Bringing Meaning to Numbers: The Impact of Evaluative Categories on Decisions

Full Disclosure: Most Risks Hide in Plain Sight

Read This Extremely Important, Totally Incomprehensible, Completely Convoluted Information About Your Broker!

It’s Time for a Revolution in Investor Disclosures

Best Mutual Fund Disclosure Ever: ‘Don’t Come Crying to Us if We Lose All Your Money’

Full Disclosure: Is Your Adviser Hiding Something?

Would Fund Managers Work Better in the Dark?