Wednesday, July 24, 2013

5 Signs Your Financial Advisor May Cheat You

Finance (Photo credit: Tax Credits)
The revelations of Allen Stanford and Bernie Madoff made us to carefully think about our financial advisors. It is quite unimaginable that your financial advisor will cheat on you; in reality, he or she is really capable of doing such. Nevertheless, it is not safe to generalize that all financial advisors are cheaters because there are a bunch of them who are honest and hard working people too. As a financial investor, you would not want to learn your lessons the hard way. If you have hired a financial advisor, you have to understand that you are still responsible for your financial stability in the future. Before hiring the services of a financial advisor, you should be wary of the possible signs that your financial advisor may cheat on you and ruin your economic future. 

· The Big Spender - You may want to do a little background check regarding the lifestyle of the financial advisor that you wish to hire. It was revealed that financial advisor Bernie Madoff lives an extravagant lifestyle. He owns several properties all over the world and he does not mind spending thousands of money for private jets. This is the first sign that you should look out for.

· The Philanthropist – Aside from luxurious lifestyle, your financial advisor could be hiding behind the mask of a good-hearted philanthropist.  Again, Bernie Madoff gave huge amounts of money in several foundations and even gave a donation to the Democratic Party. On the other hand, Allen Stanford donated money to various universities. It is okay to help other people if your financial advisor is using his/her own money, but it is totally a different story if he/she is using your money to make him look like a generous person.

· The Excuser – If your financial advisor never seems to run out of excuses for not fulfilling your requests, this is not a good sign. If you requested for a simple fund statement and it took him/her a long time to provide it to you, this is surely a red flag. You are in big trouble if there is a delay in giving you money. Your financial advisor must be doing something behind your back and you will not be happy about it.
· The Magician – You have to remember that your financial advisor can do some magic to make your books look better. Your financial advisor can make the losses disappear and make your books appear as if everything is okay with your investments. It is better to do your own investigations and verify your returns. Looking at the percentage of the returns is not enough, you should be able to see how much money you have made with your financial investments. You should not get fooled with the returns shown in your books because a little magic can be done.

· The Business Person – There is nothing wrong if you financial advisor is a business person, but if it involves cloudy business practices then it is not a good sign too. Find out if immediate family members are the ones in-charge of bookkeeping because they can easily conceal the truth. Both Madoff and Stanford got their partners involved in the business as their respective bookkeepers and they also helped in the recruitment of new investors.

Sometimes it helps to be a little paranoid especially when it comes to financial investments. Some people may think that investors are stupid for not seeing the signs that their financial advisors are cheating on them. It is not a case of stupidity, these investors were too trusting and did not get themselves involved with their investments. They have left the responsibility of monitoring the investments in the hands of their financial advisors. Unfortunately, some financial advisors would take full advantage of the trust given to them and would use the money of their clients. Caution and involvement are the some of the things that you have to keep in mind when hiring financial advisors.

Irina Carter contributes towards Short Term Loans website. She loves covering business and finance news. She likes doing web development and web design.

1 comment:

  1. As a financial advisor I am the first one to agree that clients need to look for red flags that might indicate fraud. However I think you are missing the biggest red flag of all. If your advisor houses your money ANYWHERE other than with a 3rd party custodian (the likes of Schwab, TD, Fidelity, a major brokerage house, etc.) an individual should run not walk away from this relationship. You should insist on a 3rd party custodian that issues regular account statements and allows for online access to your account.


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