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Old 10-14-2010, 11:06 AM   #1
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I've Arrived! ;^)

I must be doing something right—I just got my first-ever invite to a "Complimentary Lunch" to hear about the "Seven Retirement Challenges" and the "Reasons to Consider a Roth IRA Conversion". Guess this makes it official, I now have enough money to make it worth a planner's while to try to siphon some of it off. I'd have to take vacation time to go to the seminar, and it doesn't seem worthwhile since I've already done the only Roth Conversion I'm able to at this time. I can't convert any of my other tax-deferred money until after I retire, and by then the big advantage of being able to split the tax payment between two years will probably be gone.

This invite comes from Lodestar Wealth Management (Timothy P. Ozog, President), and offers securities and advisory services through PlanMember Securities Corporation, a registered broker/dealer. Just out of curiosity, are any of these names familiar to E-R members?
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:11 AM   #2
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He's registered with FINRA as of 2008. Lots of experience, no?
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:11 AM   #3
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:14 AM   #4
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Lonestar - wasn't there a tv show about them just on...?

joke - show was canceled, but about a con artist.
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:19 AM   #5
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8th retirement challenge; not putting on weight from attending free seminars
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:32 AM   #6
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Heck, if he's buying dinner, can I attend?
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:41 AM   #7
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He's registered with FINRA as of 2008. Lots of experience, no?
Experience at taking my money, no thanks.
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:54 AM   #8
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That free dinner just could be the most expensive meal, by far, that you've ever eaten.
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Old 10-14-2010, 12:15 PM   #9
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LOL - yes they try to make you feel important while...hoping to get at your money. Ive been hounded by Fisher Investments....(Ken Fisher). Never met the guy...and his "people"...wanted to come visit me in my home to discuss investments and Fisher strategies....etc.
First mistake would have been letting them come see me.
Second mistake would have been to give them my money.
The words "Trusted Advisor" come to mind.
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Old 10-14-2010, 01:20 PM   #10
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LOL - yes they try to make you feel important while...hoping to get at your money. Ive been hounded by Fisher Investments....(Ken Fisher).
The owner of the company I work for has been courted by this clown (or his minions) for years. They came and did a pitch to us and promised us too good to be true returns and boasted of outperforming the S&P 500, etc. But they failed to disclose any real info on what they do or how they do it, other than "proprietary asset management and trading strategies" that increase your alpha and reduce your beta. In other words, it sounds sophisticated enough that a novice investor would KNOW these guys knew what is up.
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Old 10-14-2010, 01:56 PM   #11
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During dot com frenzy I was in a hotel for a technical conference that was hosting one of these seminars. The technical conference was so boring I followed the free drinks and wandered in. The groundlings were lapping up the most incredible crap I had ever heard. But they were serving Remy Martin so I listened to the nonsense. In the later discussion I asked my usual question. If you have a system for beating the market why dont you just borrow the money and keep the profits instead of plying retail customers with good cognac?

His answer, no joke was essentially "we make it up on volume" he claimed that by bundling investors they achieved economies of scale in beating the market.

So I said, but the bigger a player, the more it is the market. Then he made claims that were so close to those we now think of as Madoff specials that I just laughed, filled my glass and went back to discussing mathematical risk models used in building safety
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Old 10-14-2010, 04:26 PM   #12
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Exactly Fuego...it's all "a secret". They wanted me to give them my money but would give me no "specific" information about how they invest...just that it is Ken Fishers method..etc. Kept saying what great returns they had etc. All the while touting...Ken Fishers "columnist" status at Forbes...etc. Well ..look who Madoff was and what he was in charge of in his hey day.
Good logical question Emeritus....hope others listened to the question and the answer and didn't get sucked in.
I still get a phone call and mailing or two each year from them. With caller id...I can simply ignore.
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Old 10-14-2010, 09:29 PM   #13
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I just got another invite to a couple different very nice steak houses in my area too.
I haven't gone to any yet and this is my 4th invite.
If I decide to eat on them?
What kind of contact info do you more experienced folks give them?
I'm thinking I'll say, I don't have a phone so e-mail me. And give an address I basically never look at? Is that the right thinking? I know I will never give any money to who ever they are.
I'm so tempted to eat on them but a little fearful too.
But I do know they could get blood from a turnip before getting money from me.
Yes, I'm that cautious and tight, and proud of it.
Steve
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Old 10-14-2010, 10:13 PM   #14
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I just got another invite to a couple different very nice steak houses in my area too.
I haven't gone to any yet and this is my 4th invite.
If I decide to eat on them?
What kind of contact info do you more experienced folks give them?
I'm thinking I'll say, I don't have a phone so e-mail me. And give an address I basically never look at? Is that the right thinking? I know I will never give any money to who ever they are.
I'm so tempted to eat on them but a little fearful too.
But I do know they could get blood from a turnip before getting money from me.
Yes, I'm that cautious and tight, and proud of it.
Steve
I always give them my personal attorney's name and tell them she advises me to never sign any brokerage contract with an arbitration clause.
If they have a contract without an arbitration clause Send it to her and when she approves, I'll consider it.
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Old 10-14-2010, 10:20 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevewc View Post
I just got another invite to a couple different very nice steak houses in my area too.
I haven't gone to any yet and this is my 4th invite.
If I decide to eat on them?
What kind of contact info do you more experienced folks give them?
I'm thinking I'll say, I don't have a phone so e-mail me. And give an address I basically never look at? Is that the right thinking? I know I will never give any money to who ever they are.
I'm so tempted to eat on them but a little fearful too.
But I do know they could get blood from a turnip before getting money from me.
Yes, I'm that cautious and tight, and proud of it.
Steve
If it was me...

I know that big steak dinners are bad for me, free or otherwise. So why would I put myself through a big sales pitch for something my body will regret next day.

On the other day, if they were offering a single malt tasting evening.....
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Old 10-14-2010, 10:21 PM   #16
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While there is nothing wrong with a "free" meal or drink, it does get to be something of a pain fending these people off. I tend to get 1-2 cold calls a month from various financial planners (often different people working at the same firm). (One of the disadvantages of being a lawyer - my name and contatc details are publically available to anyone who wants them.) While I say "no" to most of these callers, I do make the time to see at least one or 2 a year - it's an opportunity to get some updates on what is out there in terms of products etc. It also gives me an opportunity to practice saying "no" to people. It's not always a complete waste of time.
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Old 10-15-2010, 04:03 AM   #17
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The free lunch will not be worth that future aggravation of being a confirmed target!
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Old 10-15-2010, 01:33 PM   #18
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What kind of contact info do you more experienced folks give them?
You could always give them your boss' contact info.

Not, of course, that I would actually do anything like that to my father-in-law.
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Old 10-15-2010, 05:41 PM   #19
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The last two invitiations I received were for Todai. Rather than going myself, I sent my father-in-law. He never turns down a free meal, plus he doesn't speak English, so he could just focus on enjoying the food and treating the sales pitch as a background noise that he couldn't understand. Plus there was no danger of him signing any thing or agreeing to any deal.

As a side benefit, this has also improved our previously frosty relationship . He now thinks that I'm a nice a**hole, rather than just a plain old a**hole.
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Old 10-18-2010, 02:36 PM   #20
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Hi “sheehs1.” My name is Jake Gamble and I work as a Content Program Manager at Fisher Investments. I’ve been here 9 years and know quite a bit more about the firm than you do.

First, your complete mischaracterization of the sales process. If you had asked for our performance, it would have been given to you. Our sales process is very open and transparent. We have nothing to hide.

Second, you compare our firm to Bernie Madoff. That is just insulting to me as an employee and unacceptable as a reference and comparison to Ken Fisher. This shows your ignorance of what Fisher does as well as your ignorance of Bernie Madoff did. Bernie Madoff is an admitted criminal who stole client money in a Ponzi scheme. Ken Fisher detailed this in his 2009 book How to Smell a Rat. That book explains exactly how to know if a money manager might be able to steal from you. It was a New York Times best seller. You might consider reading it. You could learn a thing or two about this business.

As for touting Forbes to prospective clients…Hell yes we tout Forbes!!… Forbes is a very respectable publication and Ken’s writings date back over 26 years. That’s credibility. That’s transparency. Just like I’m being transparent, but you are hiding behind a pseudonym.

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