Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights a scary new trend for advisors to be aware of: thieves who impersonate clients and/or hack into their accounts to try to get you to wire money out to the thief’s account. From there, we look at a mixture of articles, from a review of the recent upgrades to wealth management software eMoney Advisor, to a call by Bob Veres for new 21st century regulation (and what it might look like), to some good practical tips on how to get more value from networking events with the right questions to ask, and how advisors can start using Pinterest (the latest social media site that is exploding in popularity). We also look at some technical articles on the resurgence of reverse mortgages, and the latest from Wade Pfau in the Journal of Financial Planning on how valuation-based tactical asset allocation can increase safe withdrawal rates and reduce required savings by accumulators. We finish with a review by John Mauldin of the latest jobs report, an interesting blog from the Harvard Business Review about how you should focus on your accomplishments and not your affiliations, and an interview with yours-truly in the Journal of Financial Planning on a wide range of financial planning and professional topics. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights recently announced changes from the CFP Board regarding the experience requirement and the consequences of a bankruptcy for certificants, and three ‘warning’ articles to take note of: one about the crowd funding solicitations your clients will likely receive in the coming year(s) as a result of the new JOBS act; a second about problems arising in the ETN/ETF marketplace that suggest more due diligence may be in order; and the third about an annuity agent who was thrown in jail for selling an annuity to a senior who was later deemed incompetent due to dementia, raising serious questions for all advisors about the standard of care for determining whether a client is competent before working with them. From there, we look at three interesting studies hitting the news this week: the first was a research study by NBER that suggested most ‘advisors’ are not giving advice in the interests of their clients; the second found that "fee-based" is actually a negative term in the minds of most consumers and may be eroding consumer trust; and the third suggesting that a uniform fiduciary standard for brokers may not increase the cost of advice for lower income individuals or shift the industry to focus on the affluent, despite many claims to the contrary. From there, we look at two blog posts: one about how using video on your website may be easier (and cheaper) than most people believe, and another that makes the good point that just because someone offers investment insights in the financial media does not mean they’re giving advice – and we need to stop confusing the two. We finish with a striking write-up of a recent study released by the BLS looking at consumer spending over the past century, and exploring the challenging question: if our country has gotten so much richer, why do so many feel poor and struggle these days? Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights a new analytical tool from Morningstar that can apparently help you to benchmark your (AUM) fees against the industry, an interesting perspective on what really makes clients refer you (hint: it’s about what’s in it for them, not for you), and a look at how easy it is to build a website these days (yet how many advisors still haven’t done so). We also look at an article about how to have difficult conversations with clients, and two industry trends articles about Hartford’s departure from the variable annuity space, and Prudential’s departure from the long-term care insurance market (with Genworth stepping up to fill the void). We finish with an article about fixed income strategies that advisors are using in today’s marketplace, a look at how the term financial planner is being misused around the world and what the Financial Planning Standards Board has to say about it, and a lighter look from the Harvard Business Review at two lists you should maintain every day – what you will focus on doing, and what you will commit to ignoring – to enhance your productivity and success. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights some recent activity regarding fiduciary, from an surprising alignment between NAPFA, the FPA, and FSI against the latest Department of Labor proposals on fiduciary, to an article exploring how wirehouses may already be shifting their brokers towards fiduciary, and a profile of a former broker who suggests that the wirehouse model (at least in its current form) will be dead by the end of the decade. From there, we look at a review by Bill Winterberg of the latest iPad, along with how mobile apps are evolving in the RIA marketplace. On the investment front, there’s an interesting new type of annuity that may be coming soon, which would allow advisors to attach an income guarantee to an investment account without tying up the entire account itself inside the annuity, an interesting article by Larry Swedroe suggesting that "buy what you know" is actually not a good investment strategy, and a striking look at the Wall Street meltdown in the financial crisis suggesting that the SEC’s change in net capital limits for broker/dealers in 2004 may not have actually been to blame. We wrap up with a warning from Hussman that an army of angry Aunt Minnies may be signaling a market peak and the onset of a new bear market, and a much lighter piece pointing out that you can lose so much productivity by working long weeks that you’d be better off cutting back to 40 hours. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights an interesting article about the benefits and risks of exchange-traded notes, and two new articles about retirement spending and how to consider more flexible retirement spending plans. We also look at two striking investment pieces, one from Morningstar Advisor that highlights upcoming research about how the rise of index trading may be increasing the correlation of markets and reducing the benefits of diversification, and Mauldin’s weekly update suggesting that Greece’s restructuring deal is not the end of the European debt crisis. We wrap up with a nice article from Bob Veres about what it takes to be a successful financial planner, some tips from a recent Harvard Business Review blog about how to make yourself more focused and productive to reduce feelings of burnout, and the big media news of the week – the very public resignation of a Goldman Sachs executive director named Greg Smith, suggesting that the company has lost its moral bearing. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights an array of industry practice management articles, leading off with a new discussion of "super ensemble" firms – the emerging regionally dominant wealth management firms with $5 billion or more of AUM that are challenging both small local firms and big institutional competitors. We also look at articles about the quickening pace of consolidation, the rising trend of large firms hiring career changers to replace retiring advisors as there aren’t enough young people entering the industry, a prediction that flat fees will soon replace AUM as the primary method of advisor compensation, and a look at a new advisor firm offering from a Wharton professor seeking to provide a client-centric platform for new advisors to build their businesses. We finish with a good article from economist Gregory Mankiw in the New York Times about what carried interest really is and why it’s so hard to figure out how to tax it, an intriguing look at the risks that western civilization faces from which it must emerge or face a risk of collapse, and a fascinating look at how the popular 60/40 portfolio may actually be far more risky than we commonly believe. Enjoy the reading!Read More…
Enjoy the current installment of “weekend reading for financial planners” – this week’s edition highlights an intriguing analysis from Morningstar’s new number crunching on investor returns, finding that investors may not actually be chasing hot mutual funds nearly as much as previously believed, along with the latest contribution by Miccolis and Goodman to the Journal of Financial Planning, this time focused on the problems with measuring correlation. From there, we look at a few industry articles, from the possibility that FINRA may open up BrokerCheck data to private vendors to better get information to investors, to Mark Tibergien suggesting how to determine which parts of your firm you should or should not outsource. On the investment side, the focus turns to PIMCO’s launch of an actively-managed ETF version of their flagship PIMCO Total Return fund, a primer on how the Euro breakup might go (it’s not as bad as the media makes it out to be), and the latest quarterly letter from Grantham. We also look at two interesting recent articles from the New York Times, one by Robert Shiller on how high IQ investors actually invest differently, and another discussing how companies study shopper habits to market more effectively, and conclude with a quick review of the latest US News and World Report “Best Jobs in 2012” ranking which lists Financial Adviser at #23. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights a study from the Journal of Financial Planning suggesting that proactive use of reverse mortgages can actually increase sustainable retirement income, two practice management articles about focusing on organic growth in your business and documenting your office procedures (including the fact that often you, the planner, are the greatest roadblock to that process). We also highlight an interesting piece from the Wall Street Journal suggesting that investors may now be investing so much in index funds that markets really are becoming less efficient and more correlated, a fascinating interview with Woody Brock suggesting that there’s a difference between "good deficits" and "bad deficits" for government spending, and an adaptation of the upcoming annual shareholder letter from Warren Buffett in Fortune magazine that highlights why investing in stocks is so much more productive than investing in bonds or gold for the long run. We wrap up with three somewhat offbeat articles, one about how governments could use our behavioral finance irrational tendencies to help be better citizens (and have fun doing it!), a second that questions whether we are all really as busy as we think and claim we are, and a final article that highlights Pinterest, the latest emerging "social network" site that is growing like wildfire (with 73 million users already) and that you’ll probably hear more about in the coming year. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights an interesting discussion by Morningstar about the challenges of evaluating tactical investment managers, an article by Bob Veres with tips on resources when starting a practice and outsourcing solutions, and an article by Joel Bruckenstein about a new integrated cloud solution for advisory firms. We also highlight some compliance-related articles for RIAs tying to the slew of new rules and regulations impacting investment advisors this year thanks to Dodd-Frank, a summary of the Rydex|SGI AdvisorBenchmarking study, and some tips to deal with the tax treatment of client investments in gold. We wrap up with Mauldin’s weekly investment article – this week continuing his discussion of the decisions facing the US and how much impact the president and elections do or don’t have on the outcome, an intriguing look from Oaktree Capital chairman Howard Marks at the challenging realities of assessing performance records, and a piece by Moshe Milevsky about "Gompertz’ Law" and the mathematics of mortality assumptions. Enjoy the reading!
Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" – this week’s edition highlights an interesting interview with Geoff Davey of FinaMetrica about risk tolerance, some practice management issues on how economies of scale impact the client experience and moving your technology to the cloud, and a few articles exploring the big recent news from the Department of Labor regarding both finalized rules on 401(k) fee disclosure and new proposed rules about how (primarily immediate and longevity) annuities might be integrated into qualified plans. There’s also an interesting look by John Mauldin at some of the economic difficulties and choices the US faces in the coming years, and a fascinating look at the problems the US faces (and some of the causes that got us to where we are) by the brilliant Woody Brock. We finish with a controversial article by Blaine Aiken of Fi360 suggesting that advisors aren’t true professionals because they need a code of professional conduct similar to accountants, and a lighter piece by Angie Herbers about why a lack of confidence is not a career death knell but simply a challenge to overcome. Enjoy the reading!