• Why is it so difficult to expect that people selling us investment products will put our interests first?
  • Is the person who gives you advice on your portfolio and retirement account a “registered investment adviser” or a “broker-dealer”?
  • Ask those giving you investment advice, sales pitches or specific retirement-plan suggestions if they are acting under a fiduciary standard of care.
  • Insist that advisers offering specific investments inform you of any conflicts of interest related to their recommendations and disclose any commissions, referral fees or other compensation they would receive from selling you a financial product.
  • Don’t be afraid to be impolite—always ask what an investment will cost, both in commissions and in built-in expenses such as fund expenses.

Read Karen Blumenthal’s article from the Wall Street Journal and be an informed investor:

Getting Going: Should You Trust Your Financial Adviser? - WSJ.com

Getting Going: Should You Trust Your Financial Adviser? http://online.wsj.comRegistered investment advisor or broker-dealer? The distinction is lost on most investors even though the two operate under very different standards.