(Bloomberg Gadfly) — The Department of Labor rocked the brokerage world several months ago when it decreed that brokers must — horror of horrors — put their clients' interests ahead of their own.

The so-called fiduciary rule (which applies only to retirement accounts for now) is meant to address a longstanding problem. Brokers routinely recommend mutual funds to retirement savers as an easy way to broadly diversify their accounts. But unbeknownst to investors, in many cases the mutual fund companies pay brokers to sell those funds.

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