August 28, 2010
I only now understand the difference between true advisors and brokers after being badly ripped off by a Merrill Lynch broker who convinced me to buy several "in-house" brand mutual funds and a variable annuity. After watching them do poorly in an up market period, I found a real advisor who charged by the hour and he showed me the ridiculous sales fees and 12b-1 fees I was paying as well as the fact that the Merrill funds were all rated 1 or 2 stars by independent Morningstar and that 5 of the funds all held the same stocks so I wasn't even close to being diversified as the broker said I was. My new advisor also showed me how to move my overpriced annuity to Vanguard which is saving me a small fortune (many times what I paid him for his help). The ethical differences between an advisor and a broker is unbelievable. Brokers are just salesmen are just as slimy as the typical used car salesman.
Thanks for caring. Allan Reid RN