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2013 Financial Planet Poll: Can Ethics Be Taught?

Focused Advice vs. Comprehensive Advice: Maybe the Answer is Both

By Phil Billingham, CFP

I’m a little confused and a little frustrated. Financial planners always debate whether focused advice or comprehensive advice is better. My question is: “Why do we have to pick one?”

The key question has to be: ‘What do consumers want?’, not ‘What do we think they need?’, or ‘What should we be providing?’. Come on! Which prospective client has ever approached us and said, “Can I have some focused/holistic/comprehensive advice, please?”

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Financial Planners: With Great Authority Comes Great Responsibility

Suresh Sadagopan CFP IndiaBy Suresh Sadagopan, CFP

Every financial services company talks about trust; they talk as if their client’s trust them as an infant would trust its mother. The trust that the child has on its parents is the ultimate trust. The child does not question anything. It knows that mommy dear will come running, if she as much as whimpers. She will check whether her baby is hungry or has wet her pants. Once her mom takes the baby in her cozy embrace, the infant is instantly comforted. Her mom does what is needed and the child knows that she would. That is trust – implicit trust!

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Missionaries vs. Mercenaries

By Mark DiGiovanni, CFP

I suspect that most of the writers and readers of Financial Planet are some of the best examples of the financial planning profession. You wouldn’t spend the time on this site if you weren’t looking to make yourself a better example of what it means to be a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER professional. That being the case, I may be preaching to the choir in this column. However, it has been my experience that the choir can send a very powerful message.

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Can Investment Fees From Financial Advisers Be Justified?

By Simon Hassan, CFP

Yes, no, and it depends.

Yes, if the fees or commissions are reasonable in relation to the value of the services they provide.

No, if the adviser (and let’s include the firm they work for here) is just ‘clipping the ticket’ – whether the ‘clip’ is taken as commission or fees. Particularly so where conflicts of interest exist (as when an adviser claims to be, or gives the impression of being independent when this is not really the case).

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Professional Ethics and Trust

By Daehong Kwon, CFP

One of the features that distinguishes the CFP designation the most from the other financial professionals or financial planners is the fact that we consider ‘ethics’ the most important virtue. It is true that ethics is one of the fundamental elements for every professional in the financial community, but it is rare that ‘ethics’ is prioritized on top of the values in a licensing process as it is in the case of “4E” required in the CFP certification requirement.

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Financial Trust: What Clients Are Really Looking For

Jae young Yang - CFP KoreaBy Jaeyoung Yang, CFP

Financial planning is planning for life. It can be done without any specific license. Note, however, that the performance of financial planning is dependent upon client who wants such services. Therefore, from whom does the client want the services? What kind of certificate of qualification would they want their planner to have? And from which organizations does the client want such services?

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Trust & Ethics: Keeping Financial Planners Honest

Mukesh Dedhia, CFP, IndiaBy Mukesh Dedhia, CFP

Trust! The word itself, gives you a sense of attachment. A belief that nothing will go wrong and even if it does then there is somebody to get you out of the trouble maze! For example, when a father throws his child up in the air, the child laughs his heart out, rather than fearing a fall. Why? Because there is a natural bond of trust between a child and parent. The child is sure, that, when it is with its’ parents, nothing can go wrong!

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