3 Topics Finance Reporters Will Continue To Write About In 2017

Navigating the media landscape is often times difficult. There never seems to be a slow day in the news, especially considering the 24 hour news cycle and its coverage of all local, national and international happenings. In the world of media where every story development is dictated by breaking news, world events and as new publications emerge from the depths of the internet; how do you know what the hot topics will be?

 We spoke to a handful of reporters who cover topics regarding finance, investing and money, and found three themes they believe will dominate headlines for the foreseeable future.

 The Disruptor: Fintech Companies

The integration of finance and technology or fintech is changing the tainted stigma traditional financial institutions have carried for decades. New fintech companies are taking it upon themselves to change how investors and potential investors perceive the industry by breaking down the barriers-of-entry and making investing more relatable by removing industry jargon. A handful of automated investment apps marketed towards the normal everyday person have truly disrupted the industry by swooping up younger generations who are turning to algorithms instead of costly financial advisors to invest their money.

This switch from traditional investing through a brokerage to investing through an app is mind-blowing to generations older than Millennials. Generational attitudes toward investing and overall money will dominate headlines as the next generation under Millennials, Generation Z, is starting to flex their purchasing and investing powers.

More and more fintech companies are establishing themselves overnight with the goal of fixing common money problems ranging from investing to budgeting to payments and beyond. The integration of technology in every industry is newsworthy but in finance, an industry that’s so controversial already, the topic will surely continue to dominate the headlines.

DOL Fiduciary Rule

The Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Rule, the law that requires financial advisors to act in the best interest of their clients officially took effect June 9. The ruling was delayed by two months because President Trump requested that the DOL review the regulation one final time to ensure investor and retiree protection.

The Rule, which has been noted to protect against another financial crisis, will remain a hot-bottom topic as all financial advisory firms are complying with the complex set of regulations. Most advisories started implementing best practices early on when the DOL rule was still being discussed by conducting a level of transparency with investors and adopting diversified investment strategies.

Those companies who have been complying with the rule before it was mandated by the DOL earlier this month have not felt the earth fall from under their feet since many compliance teams have been holding firms to fiduciary standards for quite some time now. The media reporting on this issue will track how the regulation unfolds and how advisory firms integrate the new regulations into their existing books-of-business and how advisors handle the new changes.

Some of the bigger issues of the DOL’s Rule will be whether or not the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) will be involved in the process going forward. Supporters of the Rule are calling for more collaboration between the DOL and SEC to create a uniform definition of fiduciary enforced by both overseers. More to come.  

Trump, Trump, Trump

It seems to be that every time there’s a breaking news story from Washington D.C. the markets fluctuate. Pinning market movements to the administration’s every action is not entirely accurate, but how the markets have reacted to the Trump Administration will be a topic reporters will write about for years even after Trump leaves office.

Presidential actions and policies do impact investor decisions and in turn will make markets soar or fall. The market has seen groundbreaking performance during the first 100+ days of the Trump Administration. It has yet to be seen whether it will continue to ride high for the next three and a half years. Nevertheless, the media will continue to report on how the Trump Administration and market performance are correlated.