Financial Advisors under the microscope

January 25, 2012 | By | 1 Reply More

I recently finished reading Dan Solin’s The Smartest Portfolio You’ll Ever Own (2011), half of which is a damning indictment of most financial advisers. Solin makes a convincing case that those brokers who claim that they can pick stocks or time the market are selling unadulterated snake oil. In fact, avoid all of the following:

Buying individual stocks or bonds.
Actively managed mutual funds
Alternative investments
Variable annuities
Equity indexed annuities
Private equity deals
Principal-protected notes
Currency trading, and
Commodities trading.

Instead, Solin recommends the slow and steady historically documented growth associated with passively managed broad market index funds including many of the low-fee passively managed funds offered by Vanguard. Solin has ample shocking facts and figures to back up his claims and indictments, and he continues the attack on false claims and hidden fees here.


Category: Fraud, snake oil

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (1)

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  1. Erich Vieth says:

    Check out the new Frontline episode: “The Retirement Gamble” Facing Us All”

    Retirement is big business — and very profitable. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the more we save into the industry’s financial products, the more money they make in fees and commissions trading our hard-earned cash. And as long as they don’t run away with our money or invest it in a Ponzi scheme, they have little in the way of accountability to us when something goes wrong. And even then it can be hard to fight back.

    Big banks, brokerages, insurance companies and other financial service providers operate under something called a suitability standard — which says they don’t have to give you the best advice, just advice that isn’t too egregiously terrible.

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