Once again, the US equity markets have experienced a wild ride over the past couple of weeks. Here's what NOT to do: Why you shouldn't panic when stocks are getting slammed from CNBC. If you really get fearful, give us a call. That's our job!
As we write this blog post the afternoon of Monday, February 5, it’s been a very rough day for the US Market indexes. We believe this is the start of the markets returning to a more normal pattern, after an historic run-up in 2017, not a sign of significant economic concerns and for most investors, it’s nothing to worry about. We’ve written about market volatility several times in the past. To read our other takes on this phenomenon, read here and here and here. It’s important to remember a few things we consider investing Maxims here at nVest Advisors. We stick to them for the benefit of our clients, but they’re important to remember for all investors. When markets get spooky, here are four bedrock principles you should always remember.
Nearly every investment professional built their book of business by winning their client accounts away from another advisor or firm. It’s just how the business is done, unfortunately. If you have assets, we in the financial industry will all be in competition to be the manager of those assets. Whether it’s your bank or credit union, your insurance agent, a registered rep in a brokerage firm, or an independent firm like nVest Advisors, we’re all competing to earn and keep your business by offering a unique value proposition based on product, price, and service. Sometimes the competition for your dollars makes the agent or rep feel the need to use questionable, even unethical, tactics to try to win your business. In the process of earning new clients’ business and hearing how and why they were in the products they were sold, I’ve heard clients relay some real whoppers. I’ve also been in competitive situations where multiple companies are talking to the same pool of prospects, and have heard many of them first-hand. It’s fine, I suppose, to always put your product or service in the best possible light. Here at nVest Advisors, we have a company creed of Aggressive Honesty as a primary sales strategy. That means, we’re eager to be transparent and we proactively identify our own strengths and weaknesses to the best of our ability. Granted, not all firms believe you should always tell the client what they need to hear (rather than what they want to hear), but there needs to be a clear line where acceptable “spin” ends and deception begins. The bottom line is, every product, company, and yes, financial professional, has various pros and cons. Accentuating your strengths isn’t unethical. Handling objections isn’t unethical. Lying, whether by direct statement or by omission, most certainly is. As you talk with financial pros, all of whom want your business, here are a few (sadly) common sales tactics used by sketchy salesperson that should, at least, raise your suspicion. (And at worst, should have the agent or broker run out of the industry, in my opinion.)