Slightly unscrupulous investment pros

W2R

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Jan 11, 2007
Messages
47,580
Location
New Orleans
I have started getting distributions from my inheritance, which quite honestly I never expected and never figured into any ER plan (until recently when I started making three plans to cover various possible net worths upon ER).

One distribution was via a check, which will clear on Wednesday. So, I am in the unexpected, though nice position of having a ridiculously large checking account balance for a few days, until it clears and I can wire it to Vanguard.

So last night, I got a phone call and the following conversation ensued:

Investment guy: "I'm calling from xyz bank."
me: "Thanks, but I'm not interested in a loan or credit card and someone else called me about that yesterday."

Investment guy: "Actually, we are calling you because we always call when a bank balance has changed so drastically in such a short time. We'd like to schedule an appointment to talk to you about investing through us."
me: "No thanks, I plan to wire everything to Vanguard later this week."

Investment guy: "Who is your financial advisor, if I may ask?"
me: "Nobody, I plan to invest online through Vanguard"

Investment guy: (sarcastic tone) "And how has that worked for you in the past?"
me: "I will avoid paying fees to an advisor."

Investment guy: "I'll send you my card and when you want to set up an appointment, give me a call."
me: "uh huh - - don't bother - - bye"

Now the thing that I think is slightly unscrupulous is that he has my bank records in front of him, apparently, so he knows perfectly well that I haven't uploaded much at all to Vanguard until last summer when the market started tanking. (Up through 2006 I was paying off my house and didn't have much to invest outside of retirement funds).

I think he is trying to prey on my insecurity, find a chink and insert himself into my financial planning. I can't help but think that a man would not have been pressured like I was, though maybe I'm wrong about that. :mad:

Even if I wanted a financial planner, I wouldn't choose one from my bank that called me on the phone like that.

And yes, it works!! Even though logic tells me that I am an intelligent person who is reading and learning as fast as I can, and I CAN do this myself, I don't really know that for a fact at this point and it is easy to feel really, really timid about it.

Still, I think that my present investment plan (45% equities, 55% fixed, equities in broad index funds and Wellesley) will work better for me than putting it all in a Vanguard retirement mutual fund, and even that would probably be at least as good as what this guy might offer. Probably. :p
 
Usually in this case, I try to sell my investing advice to the caller. Do you think they get annoyed?

Once while in the bank, they tried to upsell me on a HELOC. I was mildly interested if I could get a good rate. In talking to the loan officer, it turns out that she didn't even own a home because she had to sell hers to make ends meet.
 
Washington Mutual (not a small place) did the same to me. And I gave them the same brush-off Want2retire did hers. Creepy.
 
Washington Mutual (not a small place) did the same to me. And I gave them the same brush-off Want2retire did hers. Creepy.

Well at least it's not just me!!! Definitely creepy. This was also a very large bank, but not Washington Mutual.
 
Investment guy: "I'm calling from xyz bank."
me: "Thanks, but I'm not interested in a loan or credit card and someone else called me about that yesterday."

Investment guy: "Actually, we are calling you because we always call when a bank balance has changed so drastically in such a short time. We'd like to schedule an appointment to talk to you about investing through us."

Standard policy of banks who have investment reps on site..........


"No thanks, I plan to wire everything to Vanguard later this week."

Good answer............:D

Investment guy:
"Who is your financial advisor, if I may ask?"[.quote]

Amateur............:rolleyes:

"Nobody, I plan to invest online through Vanguard"

He's not listening..........;)

Investment guy:
(sarcastic tone) "And how has that worked for you in the past?"
me: "I will avoid paying fees to an advisor."

This guy must be new..........

Investment guy:
"I'll send you my card and when you want to set up an appointment, give me a call."
me: "uh huh - - don't bother - - bye"

Not a good way to keep bank customers happy.

Now the thing that I think is slightly unscrupulous is that he has my bank records in front of him, apparently, so he knows perfectly well that I haven't uploaded much at all to Vanguard until last summer when the market started tanking. (Up through 2006 I was paying off my house and didn't have much to invest outside of retirement funds).

If he's working for the bank, he has access to your bank records the same as a teller, banker, or customer service rep. The bank gives the rep access because he is part of the bank.

I think he is trying to prey on my insecurity, find a chink and insert himself into my financial planning. I can't help but think that a man would not have been pressured like I was, though maybe I'm wrong about that. :mad:

All bank customers are treated equally, how about the wife that says: "My husband handles all of that stuff"............

Even if I wanted a financial planner, I wouldn't choose one from my bank that called me on the phone like that.

Banks rank last on the scale of folks that use advisors, only around 13% of all people that use advisors use banks as their main advisor.

And yes, it works!! Even though logic tells me that I am an intelligent person who is reading and learning as fast as I can, and I CAN do this myself, I don't really know that for a fact at this point and it is easy to feel really, really timid about it.

Nothing wrong with that. As an advisor, I would prefer that clients take an interest in their finances anyway. You can do it if you want to............:D

Still, I think that my present investment plan (45% equities, 55% fixed, equities in broad index funds and Wellesley) will work better for me than putting it all in a Vanguard retirement mutual fund, and even that would probably be at least as good as what this guy might offer. Probably. :p

Don't let that rep bug you. The next time he calls, request that you receive no further calls or solicitations. If he calls after that, call and speak with the branch manager, that will end it immediately........;)
 
Had the same thing happen to me when I came into some extra money and temporarily deposited it in my checking account while making final financial decisions. The bank invited me in to discuss financial options -- and since I was curious, I agreed. The "plan" they offered was beyond ridicious...a fund with an upfront fee of 5.75% and terrible results. I nearly laughed in the lady's face and when I asked if she sold a lot of those funds, she replied "well, yes, primarily to women after they divorce or the husband dies." (Another reason why women need to be more informed about their personal finances!!)

When I worked at a bank - eons ago -- the marketing department was there only to make sure the bank's logo was used correctly and to do some local advertising. Now, the banks have everyone doing new market sales. Anytime they see new money coming into an account, they pounce and hope to sell you something else from their portfolios.
 
About 5 or so years ago, a regulation (or law, I can't remember) was passed that allows all parts of a company to share a customer's info between themselves.
 
Wecome to the wonderful world of "cross-marketing." The big banks have been trying to do this for years. Some day they will get it right (maybe).
 
I knew a banker who got fired for calling folks that were getting too low of a rate on their savings accounts. The banker was upgrading their accounts to get higher interest rates, and got fired because she was "costing the bank money"...........

So, lots of strange stuff happens in banks.........
 
They way I handle calls like this is to politely say I'm not interested and ask them to not call again. I never discuss any specifics. I have found that if I give them information about my plans or give reasons why I don't want what ever it is they are selling, it only gets them going to explain why their service is better to overcome my objections and make a sale.
 
After a few bothersome calls from Washington Mutual, a gal called from there (nice gal, tho) who wanted me to invest some money in CD's. What I did--having been in sales well over 30 years--is to talk to her about everything BUT what she called about. She wasn't very experienced (I could tell), so this threw her pitch totally off. But we did have a pretty delightful chat about men and dating for awhile. Ha! They NEVER bothered me again!!!
 
Standard policy of banks who have investment reps on site..........

I had no idea, though that makes sense. Everybody wants a buck, and the scent of money is in the air, I suppose.

Good answer............:D
Amateur............:rolleyes:
He's not listening..........;)
This guy must be new..........
Not a good way to keep bank customers happy.

It's FASCINATING to hear what someone who knows about this stuff, thinks. I was really feeling timid and I'm sure that was apparent from my tone of voice.

All bank customers are treated equally, how about the wife that says: "My husband handles all of that stuff"............

True. No hubby to pass it off on, at the moment (but I still prefer being single!)

Nothing wrong with that. As an advisor, I would prefer that clients take an interest in their finances anyway. You can do it if you want to............:D

Thanks! That is encouraging. I am intelligent, mathematically literate, and have recently developed a great interest in learning to handle investments.

Don't let that rep bug you. The next time he calls, request that you receive no further calls or solicitations. If he calls after that, call and speak with the branch manager, that will end it immediately........;)

I hadn't thought about the possibility that he could call back. Thanks for the heads up. I'll definitely do that!
 
When I worked at a bank - eons ago -- the marketing department was there only to make sure the bank's logo was used correctly and to do some local advertising. Now, the banks have everyone doing new market sales. Anytime they see new money coming into an account, they pounce and hope to sell you something else from their portfolios.

That's what it seemed like! I suppose it must work sometimes or else they wouldn't try. Still, I feel like they are starting to beat down my door, so to speak. I guess I need to get used to this.
 
Wecome to the wonderful world of "cross-marketing." The big banks have been trying to do this for years. Some day they will get it right (maybe).

Maybe some day. This sure seemed (slightly) unscrupulous, to me. I wouldn't have cared so much if he hadn't had my bank records in front of him. It seemed like an invasion of privacy. Like FD pointed out, that's permitted since he is a bank employee.
 
They way I handle calls like this is to politely say I'm not interested and ask them to not call again. I never discuss any specifics. I have found that if I give them information about my plans or give reasons why I don't want what ever it is they are selling, it only gets them going to explain why their service is better to overcome my objections and make a sale.

That's probably what I should have done!

Or this!
After a few bothersome calls from Washington Mutual, a gal called from there (nice gal, tho) who wanted me to invest some money in CD's. What I did--having been in sales well over 30 years--is to talk to her about everything BUT what she called about. She wasn't very experienced (I could tell), so this threw her pitch totally off. But we did have a pretty delightful chat about men and dating for awhile. Ha! They NEVER bothered me again!!!
 
That's what it seemed like! I suppose it must work sometimes or else they wouldn't try. Still, I feel like they are starting to beat down my door, so to speak. I guess I need to get used to this.

Like brewer said, the banks are TRYING to cross-market investment products. However, they have a long ways to go. The products the bank offers are ones they make the most money on, not what's in the best interest of the investor, mostly fixed and variable annuities and wrap products with total expenses of 2.00% a year and more. They don't want their reps to sell ETF's or offer discount stock brokerage, they don't make enough money on that.

In order to lure reps, the bank offers them total access to their deposit base...........
 
The old NBC in New Orleans now Chase in Slidell - mine was a really sexy sounding woman caller, got flyers in the mail, and curiously invites to seminar/dinners -??not connected to the bank but inerestingly in the same time frame?? - not that I was paranoid or anything. Also - when I talked 'born again Vanguard/index funds' I am a steely eyed rocket man and have studied this stuff - they didn't stop but switched to pushing CD's.

Not as bad up here in Missouri - got a big flurry after I took out a thirty year mortgage - retirement seminars. Coincidence.

You are not paranoid - if they 'really' are out to get you.

Saw the Sean Connery movie.

heh heh heh - :cool: It slows down after ER - but it never totally stops.
 
Maybe some day. This sure seemed (slightly) unscrupulous, to me. I wouldn't have cared so much if he hadn't had my bank records in front of him. It seemed like an invasion of privacy. Like FD pointed out, that's permitted since he is a bank employee.

Always assume that everyone at any financial institution you do business with has access to everything, including the details of your credit report. Didn't you read that tiny little annual privacy disclosure doc they sent with your statement? :rolleyes:

The banks see these leads as low hanging fruit, but have never really been effective at doing much wth them, as your experience demonstrates. For whatever reason, I think the brokerages have been a lot more effecctive at capturing deposits and lending business from their customers (Schwab bank, Etrade bank, etc.).
 
Maybe some day. This sure seemed (slightly) unscrupulous, to me. I wouldn't have cared so much if he hadn't had my bank records in front of him. It seemed like an invasion of privacy. Like FD pointed out, that's permitted since he is a bank employee.
Next time he calls, tell him you'd like to have his plan reviewed by a few of your investing buddies and have him post it here.

I think he'll figure it out quickly enough...

BTW, did you want an annuity with that?
 
The old NBC in New Orleans now Chase in Slidell - mine was a really sexy sounding woman caller, got flyers in the mail, and curiously invites to seminar/dinners -??not connected to the bank but inerestingly in the same time frame?? - not that I was paranoid or anything. Also - when I talked 'born again Vanguard/index funds' I am a steely eyed rocket man and have studied this stuff - they didn't stop but switched to pushing CD's.

Not as bad up here in Missouri - got a big flurry after I took out a thirty year mortgage - retirement seminars. Coincidence.

You are not paranoid - if they 'really' are out to get you.

Saw the Sean Connery movie.

heh heh heh - :cool: It slows down after ER - but it never totally stops.

At least it wasn't just because I am a woman (unless you really ARE a blonde teenager from Missoula! :2funny: ). I guess I didn't persuade him that I couldn't be budged from Vanguard because I didn't get the CD pitch, at all. Mine was a man who sounded like Perry Mason from the old TV show; deep, resonant, attractive sounding voice. Guess the sexy women call the guys and vice versa.

For the past five years or so I have received a lot of invitations to retirement seminars in the mail (usually to be held at a restaurant, often Don's, which is tempting) but I just toss them in the trash.
 
BTW, did you want an annuity with that?

With that? Usually that is the primary offering by the bank reps. More like, would you like a CD or ridiculously expensive mutual fund with your annuity? Have a pen with our logo on it.
 
With that? Usually that is the primary offering by the bank reps. More like, would you like a CD or ridiculously expensive mutual fund with your annuity? Have a pen with our logo on it.

LOL!!! You are all making me feel a lot better. I am probably a prime target because I am so inexperienced with investing and timid, as well as green. But maybe I know more than I realize. I know enough not to want any of those from my bank, not even the pen (I have plenty from other vendors).

With an inheritance comes all sorts of baggage that is making me feel more timid at the moment. I feel a responsibility not to let it slip through my fingers, since my family worked so hard for it. If I let my own money slip through my fingers, I'd just tighten the belt and I would never feel this timid in the first place. Also increasing one's net worth by several times is a different dynamic. Nice, but a little edgy.
 
"No thank you. I'm not interested"

"Please remove me from your marketing list"

"Please add me to your do not call list"

"If you call me again, I will be moving all of my business to the local credit union"

"Please transfer me to your bank manager"

One or more of those should get you the desired result. Never discuss what you plan to do with anything. Well-intentioned, but it just gives him another angle to attempt to sell with.
 
I felt similarly violated by my credit union.

I was getting a signature guarantee to move some cash from Fidelity to buy some Vanguard small / midcap funds. The clerk said he had to photocopy everything and left. When he returned he explained that the guys in the copy room were reviewing my investment choices and thought "now was a bad time" to be buying these funds.

I just laughed and left.

Little sh!t !!!
 
Back
Top Bottom