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Americans 50+ Demand Protections From Financial Abuse

WASHINGTON–(ENEWSPF)–February 22, 2010.  As the Senate continues negotiations for a comprehensive and meaningful financial reform bill, AARP today releases a survey of Americans 50 and older showing overwhelming support for financial reforms and consumer protections among Republicans, Democrats and Independents.

“Older Americans, whose retirement nest eggs were decimated by the failure of an outdated and compromised financial regulatory system, overwhelmingly say they want reform,” said Nancy LeaMond, Executive Vice President at AARP.

“Americans 50+, regardless of party affiliation, want Congress to act so financial institutions are held accountable,” added LeaMond. “They want clear information so they can make better, more informed decisions and greater transparency about the financial products available to them. The Senate must act now to protect investors.”

The survey revealed broad agreement among Republicans, Democrats and Independents for a number of initiatives, including:
* Requiring banks to use plain language to explain the terms and conditions of loans, including mortgages, and credit card debt. (Republicans (98%), Democrats (95%), and Independents (96%).)
* Requiring companies that manage 401(k) retirement plans to explain the fees they charge to participants. (Republicans (93%), Democrats (94%), and Independents (92%).)
* Enabling consumers to check an investment advisor’s record to see whether they have had any prior violations or been charged with professional misconduct. (Republicans (95%), Democrats (89%), and Independents (95%).)
* Requiring investment companies to disclose the costs, risks and benefits of all the financial products they market and sell using plain language. (Republicans (91%), Democrats (91%), and Independents (95%).)
* Allowing states to enact consumer protection laws that are stronger than federal laws. (Republicans (68%), Democrats (67%), and Independents (66%).)
* Holding financial salespeople who engage in deceptive marketing practices accountable. (Republicans (92%), Democrats (89%), and Independents (90%).)
AARP has called for increasing consumer protections, including an agency that will work on behalf of consumers; creating common sense regulations that arm consumers with needed information; increasing accountability in the banking and financial industry; and, streamlining and unifying consumer protection efforts currently divided among seven agencies.

This survey further shows that Americans 50+, hit hardest by the economic downturn and facing depleted retirement accounts, are looking to the Senate to pass financial reforms that will protect their retirement security.

For a full copy of the survey visit http://www.aarp.org/research/surveys/money/consumers/fraud/articles/finprotect_10.html

For more information about investor protection and financial security visit www.aarp.org/money.

Source: aarp.org

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