The proposed Department of Labor(DOL) fiduciary standards have been delayed, but I’m still a proponent, as is my Broker/Dealer, LPL Financial.
Essentially, this means that you must do what is best for your client first, not yourself. This is what I have always done ie., all investment options are discussed before any buying decisions are made. This is being a professional.
LPL Financial is the country’s largest independent Broker/Dealer(as reported by Financial Planning magazine, June 1996-2017, based on total revenue), which means they have no proprietary products(so I have no special incentives), so the client has freedom of choice in selecting their investment products.
One misconception people have, is that if their investment has low expenses(this is the most important factor), it will perform better.
Rarely do low expenses translate into better performance results (management is most important), just as past performance does not guarantee future performance. I focus on performance instead of expenses.
My process and technique is personal and tailored to your goals. After the financial crisis of ’08-’09, I changed the way I do business. I do not always follow the traditional asset allocation model, so as to put monies in non-performing assets, just to follow the text book.
I am extremely hands on. I meet with my advisory clients 3 times each year. The review meeting is essential and that is where my process really comes into play. My emphasis is on retirement planning. I promote education and service.
* Asset allocation does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss.