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Old 11-22-2014, 06:26 PM   #21
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They come in the US mail with our name and address. Not sure how I got on "the list". We get 2-3 invites/year. We've never attended one so I guess I'll see if it is worth the effort...............
Ditto. I get at least a couple "invitations" per month, though I've never gone to one.
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Old 11-22-2014, 06:31 PM   #22
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I am not sure if his numbers are correct, but at Fidelity they charge a annual fee, AND put you in mutual finds. Double whack...

I get the dinner invites too. Not a bad gig, if you can get them.
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Old 11-22-2014, 07:51 PM   #23
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I think I would rather go to the dentist that the "free" meal. Sounds like it it right up there with timeshare freebie pitches.
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:33 PM   #24
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I am not sure if his numbers are correct, but at Fidelity they charge a annual fee, AND put you in mutual finds. Double whack...

I get the dinner invites too. Not a bad gig, if you can get them.
Hey, on those fees, E.C. "Ned" Johnson III, just wants what is best for everyone, starting with the company first, then the Investor somewhere down the line.
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Old 11-22-2014, 09:39 PM   #25
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Same spiel my mom's broker used as a hail Mary as we moved her account to Fidelity. Their management fee was outrageous, but no transaction fees were charged. And man, did they trade like crazy. Drove my mom nuts receiving monthly statements with 10 pages of transactions all the time. Funny enough, now that I think about it, she also frequently had a few cents of trading fees sprinkled in, so that 1.4% management fee might have hidden fees as well.


Admin and management fees are included in the published mutual fund ER's. But there are things like trading expenses and notional bid/ask "costs" that are not necessarily included. I was moving into Fidelity's Spartan Advantage index funds, so not much going on there.


With index funds it is easy to find any "hidden" costs, just look at how closely it tracks the index, which is called the tracking error. All the big index funds that I've looked at follow their index (which is calculated without any costs included) very closely. Roughly just the ER below the index performance. Vanguard even played some tricks and made up some of their ER drag. Hidden benefits!


Unless you go with a really high-turnover fund, I don't think non-ER costs are a significant fraction of the published ER. The performance of any mutual fund is reported net of all costs, hidden or not, so if you like the performance numbers the hidden costs are not too bad.
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Old 11-22-2014, 11:32 PM   #26
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I award three Pinocchios. Run.
Thank You, Travelover!
That was my first laugh of the day... and it's 11:30 PM, so I almost went without.
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Old 11-23-2014, 05:27 AM   #27
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We get the dinner invitations 2-3 times a year in the mail. Since they usually are for the better area restaurants, we've gone to a number of them. Ten years ago, it would be an excellent group dinner (filet mignon, anyone?) with wine, and unlimited coffee refills, in exchange for a moderately interesting, broad-brush discussion of investments, retirement, inflation, etc. Nothing this group doesn't already know. There has never been a hard sales pitch, although they do follow-up to see if you want a personal consultation.

In recent years, the quality of the dinners has gone down dramatically: the cheapest prix-fixe menu offered by the restaurant, no wine, and sometimes no coffee or only one small cup. Then again, maybe we've turned down all the higher-rolling offers and are only hearing from the small fry now.

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How do you find these free dinners? I never get invited to those but I get junk mail for financial newsletters all the time.
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Old 11-23-2014, 05:32 AM   #28
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We get a few invitations per year that come out of the woodwork and there are several that come on the radio. The only ones I've been to are offered by Fidelity (free box lunch) and a management firm affiliated with Penfed (no freebie). These are geared to novice investors that are not comfortable with DIY, except Fido does offer some seminars for active traders. I have a pretty high tolerance for BS and generally find these pitches entertaining, but I doubt it is worth the time and gas unless I went with a freind and DW won't go.....she would feel pressured and uncomfortable.

After attending several Fido seminars, I do get the feeling that all roads lead to purchasing an annuity.
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Old 11-23-2014, 07:08 AM   #29
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Man, what a tough crowd!

Yes indeed and we aren't even talking about annuities !

It's nice though when you have a forum that lets people calls em az thays seez em.
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Old 11-23-2014, 08:08 AM   #30
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We get one of those dinner invitations at least monthly. Typically at an Olive Garden or the equivalent, no menu -- just "a gourmet meal" (i.e., eat what you're served).

We actually went to one a couple of years ago. Not again.
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Old 11-23-2014, 08:39 AM   #31
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The FP is correct when he says that the cost of the fund includes expenses other that the published ER. Some mutual funds have substantial trading costs and other related fees. That's further evidence to go with index mutual funds with inherently low trading expenses and no 12b fees. That's why I'm at Vanguard.

There's no way that the FP with his wrap fee will ever get his costs to be competitive with Vanguard index funds. He doesn't really have to. He just needs to convince enough people that he is the low cost equivalent whether he is or not (with he isn't). He also will not be statistically reliable to outperform index funds. If he was, why would he waste his time chasing your puny assets. Harvard and CALPERS would be bidding for his services.
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Old 11-23-2014, 08:42 AM   #32
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Yes indeed and we aren't even talking about annuities !
Annuities! AAAARRRRRGGGH.
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Old 11-23-2014, 09:38 AM   #33
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For me the bottom line is much more simplistic, if the product this guy is pushing so darn good why does he have to go out and hawk it to J.Q. Public ? Because he wants to see everybody get rich and prosper because it is such a good deal or is it for him to make a living and line his pockets. Not against anyone working to make a living but selling half truths and lies by omission is unethical in my pea brain way of thinking. That said the financial industry has more smoke, mirrors and snake oil salesmen than you can count. If you doubt that just watch American Greed or read the back pages of the WSJ about folks getting into other peoples cookie jars. Unfortunately P.T. Barnum's cliché is still as relevant today as it was back in the his day.
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Old 11-23-2014, 09:38 AM   #34
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We get dinner invites in the mail maybe 1-2 times per month. We go about every 3 months or so. I focus on the dinners held at well established restaurants.

This kind of marketing is based on several demographics. The FA has access to lists which may be based on a zip code and say, your number of kids.

If you're not getting invited, it's possible the FAs in your area just don't have turnover.
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Old 11-23-2014, 01:32 PM   #35
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How do you find these free dinners? I never get invited to those but I get junk mail for financial newsletters all the time.

All of the ones that I have attended over the last 10 years or so started with an advertisement/post card in the US mail. Call an 800 # and give them a tiny bit of data and you are in. Don't know how my name ever got on the "master list" but I have received an offer from the same company numerous times. They put on their "shows" at a nearby Outback. Free steak is free steak.
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Old 11-23-2014, 02:31 PM   #36
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Oh - and others' experience may vary, but only once did anyone try to pitch annuities. It was a complicated, long-term-care annuity thingy where you could somehow get your money back if you didn't die soon enough...or something. Memory decays!

Every other dinner has been hosted by financial advises looking for paying clients. I always wonder if they get any.

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Old 11-23-2014, 03:02 PM   #37
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Yes indeed and we aren't even talking about annuities !

It's nice though when you have a forum that lets people calls em az thays seez em.
You just had to bring up the A word
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Old 11-23-2014, 03:33 PM   #38
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Ditto. I get at least a couple "invitations" per month, though I've never gone to one.
I know now what my problem is. I gotta start opening the junk mail envelopes before I throw them out.
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Old 11-23-2014, 04:10 PM   #39
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I don't think the financial planner is stupid. He's smart & preying on the uninformed.

Get thee a book! and read it and read it again till you have internalized the information. You'll find a lot of recommendations in this forum, but I would start with Bogle's book. That's the only way you'll stay clear of people getting rich on your dime.
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Old 11-23-2014, 04:18 PM   #40
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In addition to free dinners for investors, Mr. A., having reached RMD age, now gets invitations to tour local geriatric storage institutions.

But, these outfits are cheapskates. "Light refreshments" are sometimes offered. We recently were offered a $50.00 gift certificate to a local restaurant, which would not even cover two a la carte entrees.

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