The Difference Between a Fiduciary Adviser and a Broker/Agent/Salesperson

Shark SuitFrom experience, I know that most people do not understand the differences between a fiduciary adviser and a broker/insurance agent/salesperson.The average person would say they ALL sell financial products and charge commissions.The reality is actually far different. In my opinion, it is crucial for the general public to understand the differences and what it means to your financial future.

Fortunately, one of my business partners, Scott Simon has written a recent column on the subject where he nails it. Scott has been writing for Morningstar for more than ten years on fiduciary matters, but this column really hit home for me. He does a great job of dissecting the differences between the various adviser types and why it matters.

Scott’s column focuses on a retirement plan sponsor and her obvious confusion about the various types of advisers. Scott writes a sharp and brilliant letter to the plan sponsor in his column outlining in detail why it is important for everyone to know the difference and how it impacts their employees.

If I could, I would make this letter by Scott mandatory reading for every employer/plan sponsor in the United States. It provides a clear understanding of why they should care. Please feel free to share this post with anyone you know.

Here is a link to Scott’s most recent column for Morningstar.

Enjoy the week!




Gary Allen on Business – Sunday, January 18, 2015 Broadcast – Podcast Now Available

Gamble InvestmentsThe Value of Good Advice

On this program, I cover several topics of interest to investors. Often it is so easy to lose your way due to the constant barrage of information about money and finance. All to often, others will feed off of our personal fears as well as our greed. The result of this dangerous mixture is often a poor investment experience. We try to make investing more approachable and less daunting. Ultimately, the money is yours and you should be in control. Too often, people blindly respond to a good sales pitch and fail to become an informed consumer.

The cartoon above is one of my favorites. Unfortunately, I think many people feel this way when they work with an advisor. It does not have to be that way. Common sense along with some basic information should help to overcome this problem. Investing is something very different from gambling or speculation. Hopefully, we can help you with that. This week we highlight the following for you:

Segment One – The Value of Good Advice

Segment Two – The Blue Chip Blues vs. Diversification Rules

Segment Three – Beware the Slick Salespeople Selling Despair And Fear

Segment Four – Living With Uncertainty

As always, I hope you enjoy the program and thank you for listening! – Gary