Bringing Value(s) to the Table
Values and value are two important concepts in delivering financial services and advice. I see some values changing in the marketplace of financial services and I’m not happy about it.
Remember the “devil’s in the details” warning we recollect from time to time? Well, today I’m thinking about the Charles Schwab Company’s latest offering of portfolios for free. That’s right free.
Ok readers, most of you know that no one can operate a business for free, so what’s the gimmick? Well in a blog from Wealthfront’s CEO Adam Nash, click here, we find some details about the new portfolio offering to see where the real profit is for Schwab and how the landmark company seems to have lost their way.
Not too long ago, one of our clients reported that one of the local Schwab representatives encouraged them to leave our advice situation and have them provide the service for a relatively low fee of ¬Ω of a percent. Now our client can add and it meant they would be paying more for less. They were also irritated that they would be pitched at all since I’m the one who recommended Schwab to custody their accounts.
Now I usually tell prospective clients that I have two biases, one for index funds and one for Vanguard. After posting the Wealthfront blog on twitter, I went to the Vanguard website to review their values, click here. Vanguard is still on solid ground, in my opinion.
And now I turn to the value of MainStreet Financial Planning, Inc. We are always on a search to help our clients achieve their goals in the most cost effective manner. In addition, and maybe even more valuable, is to help them recognize and avoid the shameless ego pitches, scams and “bait and switches” of the financial service world and avoid a major mistake that they may only recognize years later.
Hopefully today, we provided another example of a pitch to avoid.
To end on a happy note, we’re celebrating six years of a bull market. Most of our clients are ahead of schedule in saving for retirement and other goals. We’re always aware, however, that there is downside risk and looking for as much cushion as possible.
Sleep well. Your MainStreet team is ever watchful.