Annuities: Just Say No.
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You don’t need their product. You don’t even need to know why their specific product is bad. Just say no.

Purchasing an Annuity was My 42-Year Financial Mistake
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You don’t need to know why an annuity is a bad deal to say no.

Be Relentless About Turning Off Marketing
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By being relentless about turning off marketing, you protect your finances from the poor decisions that advertising inspires.

Review: USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express Credit Card
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This is a fairly easy way to receive a 5% reward for my gasoline purchases but it does require that you have a family member who served in the military.

Low Fees Correlate with Simple Disclosures
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We think keeping expenses low is an important part of the investing process.

Review: SavorOne Credit Card by Capital One
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Once set up, the extra rewards may be worth the extra effort.

Don’t Pay The Price of Structured Products Despite Principle Protection
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Given the purposeful complexity and limitations to structured products we suggest you avoid them.

Radio: Elder Abuse Scams
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On Tuesday, May 10, 2021, David John Marotta appeared on Radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show with Rob Schilling to talk about Elder Abuse Scams and how to protect yourself.

Some Financial Planners Are Not Like The Others
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I recommend the NAPFA search tool and suggest you avoid the CFP Board’s search tool until they change how they do their searches.

Should I Invest In The Harry Dent Sector Fund in Australia?
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We would suggest not listening to Dent’s commentary or investing in his fund.

Systemic Barriers to Racial Diversity in Financial Planning
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All of these factors contribute to the low inclusion of people of color among those holding the CFP® certification.

Review: Bank of America Credit Card
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Recently, I signed up for the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards credit card offering a $200 online cash rewards bonus and 3% cash back in the category of your choice.

Seven Elder Abuse Scams and How to Protect Yourself
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Here are the most common elder scams and how to prevent them.

Case Study: Anthony Diaz Hid Within FINRA for 15 Years
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Anthony Diaz was convicted on seven counts of wire fraud and four counts of mail fraud for investing in illiquid assets.

Sixteen Problems with the Eat-What-You-Kill Model
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The culture of many commission-based firms makes it a poor environment both for employees and clients. Don’t take a chance with your retirement.

How to Avoid Scams
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It is difficult to know which sites to trust, but it is easy to know that someone is violating one of the eight safeguarding your money standards or can’t answer the ten questions to ask a financial advisor.

Troubles With 401(k) Plans Run By Salespeople
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The worst cause of employer stress is the fact that there exist many financial salespeople who offer plans which benefit themselves at excessive cost to the employer and their employees.

SEC Still Allows ‘Advisor’ Confusion
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Avoid allowing the firm that has custody of your assets to also give you advice.

Avoid UBS Group As Your Financial Advisor
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Consumers often presume that an advisor associated with a large commission-based brokerage firm will have a team of managers supervising their advisor. This is a misconception.

How to Avoid Being Swindled By Elder Fraud
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As fiduciaries, we are on your side to ensure that your goals are met. Protecting you from elder fraud is just one of the many services we can offer as a part of comprehensive financial planning.

Merrill Lynch Is A Terrible Choice
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They admit that they do not rebalance, have been subject to lawsuits claiming they are predatory, and are held to a relaxed standard designed specifically for them.

Misuse Of The Term ‘Rebalance’
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That is not what anyone means by the term “rebalancing.” The misuse of the term on Investment News was glaring.

Seven States Sue The SEC To Vacate Regulation ‘Best Interest’
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At stake is if the SEC is allowed to redefine what the phrase “best interest” means to make it mean something less than your actual real-world best interests.

False Prophets Claim to Have Accurately Predicted Each Crisis
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Already the COVID-19 predictions have started to come in. Do not be deceived by them. Do not be afraid of them.

Harry Dent Has Another Prediction; Should I Follow His Advice?
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We would suggest not listening to Dent’s commentary.

Lessons from Medicine: Expense is Harm
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If you weren’t spending your money on useless treatment, you could enrich your life in other ways, retire earlier, or be richer.

Lessons from Medicine: Reporting Can Lie
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There is an incentive to lie when your methodology is bad.

Lessons from Medicine: “Doing Something” Is Often Worse
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Even if all four of these sentimental or pragmatic justifications are true, doing the wrong thing is still worse than doing nothing.

Lessons from Medicine: Compensation Matters
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“It is, of course, hard to get people in any profession to do the right thing when they’re paid to do the wrong thing.”

Spam Analysis: “The Last Republican President” Warning
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This pitch is made by Bill Shaw of Stansberry Research, the same group that brought you the perennial “Reclusive Millionaire Warns” spam article. Don’t be gullible.

Beware Sloppy Retirement Advice
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There are at least seven major mistakes in this advice by Wells Fargo Asset Management.

Nice is Different Than Good (Financial Lessons from Into the Woods)
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Nice is different from good. You want a good financial planner not just a nice one.

Spam Analysis: The “Protect Your Income” Pitch of Immediate Annuities
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Understanding the most powerful sales techniques doesn’t change the fact that they tend to work.

Avoid the Christian Financial Planners Directory
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I cannot imagine any consumer who, if they understood how such a select list of advisers was actually compiled, would use this list. Why limit yourself only to firms willing to pay a referral service to endorse them?

Many Websites Are Merely Side Hustles
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Be on your guard to avoid wasting money following the advice of an article written to maximize revenue.

Four Possible Consequences of Regulation Best Interest
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These are four possible consequences of Regulation Best Interest.

Six Ways Regulation Best Interest Falls Short of a Fiduciary Standard
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The SEC is allowing financial professionals to hide in a lower legal requirement, not meet a fiduciary standard, and call it “Best Interest.”

SEC Regulation Best Interest Does Not Have Your Best Interests At Heart
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On June 5th, 2019, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) released their final draft of Reg BI, or “Best Interest” as it is called.

Avoid Dave Ramsey’s Referral Services
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Rumors suggest that the network’s vetting is a five minute process where you are told the fees are about $1,000 a month.

Spam Analysis: The “Reclusive Millionaire Warns” Article
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The title is “Reclusive Millionaire Warns: ‘Get Out of Cash Now.’ ” Assuming you take the bait, the article and accompanying video uses all the psychological tricks. It takes a long time before what they are selling is revealed.

Avoid Advisors Paid for Cross-Selling
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Cross-Selling is when a financial institution incentivizes their employees to sell or recommend financial products and services that increase the financial institution’s profits. The practice is as commonplace as it is fraught with conflicts of interest.

Seventy-Nine Advisers Admit to Breach of Fiduciary Duty
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SEC announced that 79 investment adviser firms will return more than $125 million to clients after self-reporting violations of the Advisers Act.

Know Your Fund Expense Ratios
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The expense ratio charged by your funds matters more than you may realize.

Disclosures Are Not Sufficient To Fulfill The Fiduciary Duty
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Disclosures are always necessary but rarely sufficient to fulfill fiduciary obligations.

Ameriprise Pay-To-Play Funds Are Poorly Ranked By Morningstar
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If you own these fund families with your Ameriprise Advisor, perhaps you should consider switching to a fee-only financial advisor.

Brokers Sell Products Not Advice
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Brokers tell investors they’re trusted advisors, and then tell the courts they’re just sales people.

A Case Study in a Misleading Annuity Sales Advertisement
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In addition to all of the other reasons people hate annuities, seemingly fraudulent advertising and sales techniques is a major factor.

SEC Leaves 61% of Registered Representatives Exempt From Its Adviser Rules
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This is called “regulatory capture” and is quite common in government regulatory agencies such as the SEC.

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