Help Finding an Advisor

Full disclosure disclaimer: This blog may seem self-serving, but it is the objective of our blogs to try to impart to our readers useful information pertaining to investing and this fits the bill.

The February-March 2012 issue of Worth magazine carried an article titled “The Search for Great Advice”. The byline read, “When picking a financial advisor, don’t just take a friend’s recommendation. Follow these rules instead.”

The article can be accessed here and we would encourage reading it.

If you cannot or do not read the article, the most important points raised, include:

An advisor should be willing to acknowledge a fiduciary obligation to the client, meaning the advisor must put the client’s interests ahead of his or her own. While some may find this strange, not all providers of investment advice are required to do this – instead, they may only have to fulfill a “suitability requirement” meaning the investment is just that, suitable. This is a far different standard than a fiduciary one.

Consider only advisors who are Registered Investment Advisors or Investment Advisor Representatives with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
A fee-based advisor is preferable to one that collects sales commissions on products sold.

As it relates to credentials, the best are the CFA, CFP®, CIMA and CPA/PFS.

All comments or questions are welcomed.