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an article in the NYT about annuity pitch steak dinner
Old 12-01-2018, 05:54 AM   #1
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an article in the NYT about annuity pitch steak dinner

I enjoyed reading this article. The content will not surprise anybody here.

"We went to a steak dinner annuity pitch. The salesman wasn't pleased".

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/30/y...ness&smtyp=cur
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:12 AM   #2
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Not really news to me, but it's a great reminder about these scams.

And I don't use the word "scam" lightly. Early on in my retirement planning, I did go to one of those dinners. I also followed up with the "financial planner" (insurance salesman) who presented it. The red flags were flying high by now, but I was determined to see it through, and give him a real chance. It was clear by then all he wanted to do was sell annuities, and the numbers just didn't add up for most of his suggestions.

So I challenged him to one very specific task, to structure an annuity to replace a specific income stream for my wife, should I die first. I gave him all the personal and financial information he asked for. That was probably a very risky thing to do, security-wise.

He did his homework. He managed to structure a laddered annuity scheme which would just about match my original plan. But he couldn't beat it. He also couldn't explain why I should make a significant and very complicated change just to get the same result. I knew, of course, that it made very good sense for HIM, in the form of fat commissions.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:34 AM   #3
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That's a well done article.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:44 AM   #4
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They go after young naive first time investors as well. DH/me fell prey to a whole life policy and an annuity that cost us. I'm grateful to Bob Brinker and his radio show. We learned about "shark attacks" and got smart pretty quick. That's where we learned about VG.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:53 AM   #5
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The thing me and DW wonder is whether or not we can just go there and eat and leave. They’re always at a very nice restaurant and while we know we wouldn’t get their finest meal, we’re pretty sure it wouldn’t be bad.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:57 AM   #6
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It used to rare for me to receive these dinner offers. However, I moved early this year and have received about 25 of them this year! I wonder what data source they used to pick up my name - property purchaser, new drivers license, new bank account? I have no intention of ever attending one of the dinners.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:59 AM   #7
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It used to rare for me to receive these dinner offers. However, I moved early this year and have received about 25 of them this year! I wonder what data source they used to pick up my name - property purchaser, new drivers license, new bank account? I have no intention of ever attending one of the dinners.
From my experience it's mostly based on your zip code.
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Old 12-01-2018, 11:56 AM   #8
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The thing me and DW wonder is whether or not we can just go there and eat and leave. They’re always at a very nice restaurant and while we know we wouldn’t get their finest meal, we’re pretty sure it wouldn’t be bad.
You are expected to hear the pitch for the cost of the dinner. Sometimes they do not bring out the entree until after the presentation.

I have been to 5 or 6 so I guess I am an experienced plate licker as they call people that just attend for the food. Food and entertainment while you eat....why not...

Almost Zero pressure to sign up for a "free" (except your time) retirement analysis.

Actually the food is sometimes first rate (e.g. Steak (Filet Mignon) at Ruth Chris's including wine appetizer and desert).
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Old 12-01-2018, 12:10 PM   #9
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You are expected to hear the pitch for the cost of the dinner. Sometimes they do not bring out the entree until after the presentation.

I have been to 5 or 6 so I guess I am an experienced plate licker as they call people that just attend for the food. Food and entertainment while you eat....why not...

Almost Zero pressure to sign up for a "free" (except your time) retirement analysis.

Actually the food is sometimes first rate (e.g. Steak (Filet Mignon) at Ruth Chris's including wine appetizer and desert).

I usually bug my wife to go to Ruth Chris's for the meal but she hate having to sit for a presentation. Me? I'm cheap enough that an hour of my life is worth a decent steak. . .
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Old 12-01-2018, 01:38 PM   #10
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I've been to a couple of these pitches. Sounds like everyone does the same pitch. The first time I heard the pitch I couldn't figure out what the gimmick was until I got home. Now I see it as an opportunity to try out a nice restaurant in the neighborhood on someone else's nickel.
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Old 12-01-2018, 02:08 PM   #11
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I got ne for a breakfast meeting this week. Maybe they are selling low rated annuities?
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Old 12-01-2018, 02:46 PM   #12
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"Plate licker." I love adding new phrases to my vocabulary!

We also did that for a vacation time-share presentation. Part of the fun is trying to figure out the angle the pitch is taking, and what the scam or ruse is. Like "financial planners" are really "insurance salesmen." In the case of the time-share, it was actually some sort of scheme (forget the details) which amounted to the same thing, but they kept insisting that it wasn't a time-share they were selling.

I like to crunch the numbers and figure out exactly why it wouldn't be such a great deal for me. Sure, if it ever worked out, I guess I'd buy whatever they're selling, so I don't think of it as dishonest. At least, it's not ME who's dishonest.

Admittedly, I've only been a plate licker three times in my life, one time share, one "not a time share" and one "financial planner." But I have nothing against doing it.
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Old 12-01-2018, 03:59 PM   #13
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I go to them once in awhile and feel no guilt.
When I start speaking to them about some of the more involved subjects we discuss here, they back off.
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Old 12-01-2018, 08:48 PM   #14
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We went to one of these dinners recently for some type of attic insulation and fan systems. Nice enough dinner at a local restaurant. Then the presentation. Then forms so that we could all sign up for a free in-house estimate in the next couple days. While the rest of the 'invitees' filled out their forms, we just sat and ignored the form.

The presenter walked around the room and looked over everyone's form. When he saw that we hadn't written down a time or day when we would be available, he asked us about it nicely. Our response was that we weren't at all interested. Then he literally got right up in our faces and demanded to know why.......after a nice presentation AND a nice dinner, how could we be so rude not to at least give his company a chance. Well, if we had thought about it at all, his change in attitude would have definitely earned him a big NOT INTERESTED.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:59 PM   #15
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From my experience it's mostly based on your zip code.

Yay, based on my zip code, I sure I'm safe


Oops, saw one of these sharks slowly circling at church.
Index variable annunities or some such. Guy hoped to sell enough of this stuff to quit his day job. Sort of MLM (aka Amway), insurance scheme, and AUM financial advisor all rolled into one. It was "fun" though, he was brighter than I would have expected. It took a couple hours of reading here and elseware to fully understand the scheme (scam?). My stock picking buddie came to the same conclusion independently. It was fun in a strange way, while it lasted.


You guys did better, yet again than I did. You got steak, I got coffee and stale cookies.
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Old 12-01-2018, 10:39 PM   #16
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The thing me and DW wonder is whether or not we can just go there and eat and leave. They’re always at a very nice restaurant and while we know we wouldn’t get their finest meal, we’re pretty sure it wouldn’t be bad.
Took Mrs Scrapr to one...on Valentines day!!!

It was a scare fest. Trying to put fear in everyone. Our guy had that exact same graph. But at then end we did not sign up on the pass around sheet. We just got another one in the mail. I'm holding out for a better offer

The salesmen call the ones that don't sign up for an "in office" plate lickers.

Perhaps I need to print out the article and take to my next free dinner
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Old 12-03-2018, 06:19 AM   #17
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"Plate licker." I love adding new phrases to my vocabulary!

We also did that for a vacation time-share presentation. Part of the fun is trying to figure out the angle the pitch is taking, and what the scam or ruse is. Like "financial planners" are really "insurance salesmen." In the case of the time-share, it was actually some sort of scheme (forget the details) which amounted to the same thing, but they kept insisting that it wasn't a time-share they were selling.

I did the time share once a loooong time ago. It was around 1975. They gave me gas to get to the time share in NC, free meals, and stayed at the time share for 2 or 3 nights, and a free gift. We had to listen to a high pressure sales pitch. I came away with a video game to plug into my TV - Pong. Even in my mid 20s I knew better. It also helped that I didn't have any money.


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Old 12-03-2018, 10:43 AM   #18
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I see on Halaby’s website (Total Financial Solutions) that they are members of the “National Ethics Association.” Evidently, a ‘cease & refrain order’ is not a disqualifying event.

The NEA is owned by an insurance company.
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Old 12-03-2018, 11:40 AM   #19
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We get two or three invites a week. They all go straight to the recycle bin.
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Old 12-03-2018, 11:41 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by CaptTom View Post
"Plate licker." I love adding new phrases to my vocabulary!

We also did that for a vacation time-share presentation. Part of the fun is trying to figure out the angle the pitch is taking, and what the scam or ruse is. Like "financial planners" are really "insurance salesmen." In the case of the time-share, it was actually some sort of scheme (forget the details) which amounted to the same thing, but they kept insisting that it wasn't a time-share they were selling.

I like to crunch the numbers and figure out exactly why it wouldn't be such a great deal for me. Sure, if it ever worked out, I guess I'd buy whatever they're selling, so I don't think of it as dishonest. At least, it's not ME who's dishonest.

Admittedly, I've only been a plate licker three times in my life, one time share, one "not a time share" and one "financial planner." But I have nothing against doing it.
I own 5 timeshares and always get owners update, it drives them crazy when I ask "can't you buy them resale for a lot less"? Timeshare salesmen: "Oh we buy all those up so you will never get them for XX or tells some horror story about resale process"? I just say really I bought 5 resale and for about 10% of what you are asking and FYI there is one on ebay right now that will give me $300 and first years use free and your want $30,000 hmmmmm I think not....."
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