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(Salon)   Why the 401(k) is a just a big con   (salon.com) divider line 239
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5320 clicks; posted to Business » on 16 Jun 2014 at 1:40 PM (5 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-06-16 11:34:18 AM
It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.
 
2014-06-16 11:38:12 AM
This may very well have been written by someone in a third world shiathole that never heard of a 401K until last Thursday.
 
2014-06-16 11:47:52 AM
401(k) tend to be invested in mutual funds and those are controlled by the 1%ers.  People think they get their best returns by "investing in tech stocks" but tech stocks are only a gable that the stock price goes up and the only "investors" where the ones who bought the stock on an IPO (or reissue).  So you have millions of people who have invested in a ponzi scheme of prices never going down that will have to extract their money from the system but there isn't any way for large groups to do that.

While the ageing generation keeps being told there are more of them, in many Western countries, this year will be the 1st where the gen-x and gen-y voters outnumber the baby boomers.  Society isn't going to collapse but I'm wondering what will happen when the old folks get hungry and the new generation say "you had you chance"
 
2014-06-16 12:25:20 PM
Karen Ferguson who was then, as she is now, the head of the Pension Rights Center, warned in an op-ed published in the New York Times, "Rank-and-file workers have nothing to spare from their paychecks to put into a voluntary plan."

Where do these people think pension funds are invested?  Underneath somebody's mattress?
img.fark.net
 
2014-06-16 12:28:24 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


Milton Friedman is dead and still won't sleep with you.
 
2014-06-16 12:40:11 PM
401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.
 
2014-06-16 12:42:17 PM

Fark It: Karen Ferguson who was then, as she is now, the head of the Pension Rights Center, warned in an op-ed published in the New York Times, "Rank-and-file workers have nothing to spare from their paychecks to put into a voluntary plan."

Where do these people think pension funds are invested?  Underneath somebody's mattress?


The big problem is falling real wages.  Pensions had the advantage of not being money out of personal pockets.  It's less how the money is invested and more who foots the bill (and, yes, I realize that theoretically the price of the pension came out of salaries, but when pensions disappeared, we all didn't suddenly get salary increases).
 
2014-06-16 12:43:30 PM

spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.


True to a point. You also need to outpace the tax benefits if you go your own way.
 
2014-06-16 12:45:12 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


Wow, and at the very top of the thread too!  you'll get a lot of bites for that one.

/unless you're being serious, in which case, Lolwut?
 
2014-06-16 12:46:49 PM

spman: you need to be proactive with your investments.


True.  But, accepting legalized gambling as the primary means of funding 30 years of retirement is one of the dumbest decisions that the American public has ever made.

And our current retirement state shows it.
 
2014-06-16 12:50:36 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


While there is certainly an element of that, that's not really what the article is saying.  What it's saying is that the financial services industry is a racket, without any real regard for whether these sorts of investment vehicles are working for the population as a whole.  And the honest truth is, they're not. It's not a function of personal responsibility.  Even dedicated savers and investors are failing to meet their retirement goals in huge numbers. That's a public policy problem that will affect everyone.

Personally, I've long since abandoned putting money into these sorts of investments in favour of those that capitalize on this sentiment.  Why invest in mutual funds when you can own a piece of the companies raking profits off of those that think that they're still a good idea?  Saving alone is a mugs game- the rate of return is lucky to outstrip the rate of inflation.  That leaves the masses to purchase products that have the possibility of meeting those return requirements.  Over the last 25 years, the only way that that happens is if the entry and exit to the markets is carefully managed to benefit from the bubbles but avoid the crashes.  That's a dangerous game that by its very design everyone cannot win at.

I used to want to win the lottery, now I want to run it- that's where the real money is.
 
2014-06-16 12:56:17 PM

Grand_Moff_Joseph: legalized gambling


No.

The Stock Market has been a long run sure thing since it began and has outpaced all other investments.
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2014-06-16 01:12:57 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


Ah, yes I'm sure Glen Beck or someone like told you that's what TFA said so you must be right.
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2014-06-16 01:14:48 PM

spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.


Of course, you also have to learn to be a financial advisor and have plenty of spare time to do all that, which might be difficult if you work for a living.
 
2014-06-16 01:15:42 PM

vpb: spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.

Of course, you also have to learn to be a financial advisor and have plenty of spare time to do all that, which might be difficult if you work for a living.


It's your money. Make time.
 
2014-06-16 01:29:03 PM

R.A.Danny: Grand_Moff_Joseph: legalized gambling

No.

The Stock Market has been a long run sure thing since it began and has outpaced all other investments.


Tell that to the regular folks that were left holding the bag of crap un 2008 while Lehman got a BJ from the Fed.

Still, the basic core of investing is no different than craps. You bet your cash on a profit, and there is risk that you lose.
 
2014-06-16 01:33:16 PM

Grand_Moff_Joseph: LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.

Wow, and at the very top of the thread too!  you'll get a lot of bites for that one.

/unless you're being serious, in which case, Lolwut?


It's because you're stupid.  Let's just get that part out of the way.
 
2014-06-16 01:36:34 PM

Grand_Moff_Joseph: R.A.Danny: Grand_Moff_Joseph: legalized gambling

No.

The Stock Market has been a long run sure thing since it began and has outpaced all other investments.

Tell that to the regular folks that were left holding the bag of crap un 2008 while Lehman got a BJ from the Fed.

Still, the basic core of investing is no different than craps. You bet your cash on a profit, and there is risk that you lose.


Craps is 5% to the house. The Stock Market is 10,000% towards the investor since the Great Depression.
 
2014-06-16 01:37:04 PM

LordZorch: Grand_Moff_Joseph: LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.

Wow, and at the very top of the thread too!  you'll get a lot of bites for that one.

/unless you're being serious, in which case, Lolwut?

It's because you're stupid.  Let's just get that part out of the way.


Ok, then investing 101 with LordZoch is now open. Please regale us with all the things we are doing wrong.
 
2014-06-16 01:38:56 PM

R.A.Danny: Grand_Moff_Joseph: R.A.Danny: Grand_Moff_Joseph: legalized gambling

No.

The Stock Market has been a long run sure thing since it began and has outpaced all other investments.

Tell that to the regular folks that were left holding the bag of crap un 2008 while Lehman got a BJ from the Fed.

Still, the basic core of investing is no different than craps. You bet your cash on a profit, and there is risk that you lose.

Craps is 5% to the house. The Stock Market is 10,000% towards the investor since the Great Depression.


Agreed, but it can just as easily go the other way, as seen in 1929, the late 80s, 2001, and 2008.

The player does win often, but they're still playing the house. :)
 
2014-06-16 01:41:07 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


Both of these things can be true.  Clearly, Americans were too stupid to look after themselves.  They didn't save enough and it was their own damn fault, but that's not going to solve the problem.

These hordes of broke old people are going to have to be taken care of.  They will vote to get the money they need.

This could be seen coming, but people like you stood around screaming "personal responsibility" as if that was a solution.
 
2014-06-16 01:42:17 PM

vpb: spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.

Of course, you also have to learn to be a financial advisor and have plenty of spare time to do all that, which might be difficult if you work for a living.


You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.
 
2014-06-16 01:42:40 PM

Grand_Moff_Joseph: R.A.Danny: Grand_Moff_Joseph: R.A.Danny: Grand_Moff_Joseph: legalized gambling

No.

The Stock Market has been a long run sure thing since it began and has outpaced all other investments.

Tell that to the regular folks that were left holding the bag of crap un 2008 while Lehman got a BJ from the Fed.

Still, the basic core of investing is no different than craps. You bet your cash on a profit, and there is risk that you lose.

Craps is 5% to the house. The Stock Market is 10,000% towards the investor since the Great Depression.

Agreed, but it can just as easily go the other way, as seen in 1929, the late 80s, 2001, and 2008.

The player does win often, but they're still playing the house. :)


The house wins when the player wins in this case.
 
2014-06-16 01:45:12 PM
spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.
 
2014-06-16 01:48:39 PM

Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.


Yeah, but if you diversify, you are generally still going to win.

I do my due diligence though.
 
2014-06-16 01:48:57 PM

Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.


I've only been at it for about 4 or 5 years now. As long as you diversify, even if I fall behind on one investment, I'm usually sufficiently far ahead on another to more than make up the difference. Of course, I'm a small time player, I've only got a few grand in at any given time, but in recent memory I've done very well for example with both WWE and Domino's Pizza. Of course very well is relative to my overall financial position, but still.
 
2014-06-16 01:49:20 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


This is bait, isn't it?

Either way.  Seems you agree it's their fault.  You just disagree that the government should do anything about that?

Right-wing version:  "You're stupid.  Fark you, I got mine."
 
2014-06-16 01:50:47 PM
The only thing I got from the article is that the author believes people are too stupid to manage their own money.  While I am sympathetic to that argument - those of us who do spend a few minutes each week keep track of our money are doing just fine thank you very much.
 
2014-06-16 01:51:16 PM

clancifer: LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.

Milton Friedman is dead and still won't sleep with you.


Neither will Uncle Sam but the left sure does like sucking his dick at every opportunity even though he beats the shiat out of them.
 
2014-06-16 01:55:50 PM

R.A.Danny: Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.

Yeah, but if you diversify, you are generally still going to win.

I do my due diligence though.


Right, but you're going to make bad calls and run into unforseen events.  That's just how it goes.
 
2014-06-16 01:56:02 PM

sendtodave: You just disagree that the government should do anything about that?


Government should provide additional incentives for people to save their money.  But that is against their interests so they don't.  On the flip side - people should learn how to manage their own money better.  That requires education and a willingness to do that.

/another rant: the fact that my tax deferred contributions to my 401k is capped for 2014 at $17,500 is idiotic
 
2014-06-16 01:58:57 PM

spman: Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.

I've only been at it for about 4 or 5 years now. As long as you diversify, even if I fall behind on one investment, I'm usually sufficiently far ahead on another to more than make up the difference. Of course, I'm a small time player, I've only got a few grand in at any given time, but in recent memory I've done very well for example with both WWE and Domino's Pizza. Of course very well is relative to my overall financial position, but still.


The last 5 years have been a cakewalk.  Everyone is ahead overall - especially US small caps.  I have to warn you that the market will rotate sectors on you and it can do a lot of damage to your investments in a hurry.  You're going to run into some bad stocks.  That's not an accusation against your investing prowess.  It happens to everyone.
 
2014-06-16 02:01:11 PM

Rapmaster2000: R.A.Danny: Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.

Yeah, but if you diversify, you are generally still going to win.

I do my due diligence though.

Right, but you're going to make bad calls and run into unforseen events.  That's just how it goes.


I'm actually really good at finding those.
 
2014-06-16 02:01:24 PM

Grand_Moff_Joseph: Agreed, but it can just as easily go the other way, as seen in 1929, the late 80s, 2001, and 2008.

The player does win often, but they're still playing the house. :)


Which is why money you'll need in the next year should be in cash. For the extraordinarily lazy, they make funds for target retirement year that get progressively more conservative.
 
2014-06-16 02:02:54 PM
Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnd.
It's gone.
 
2014-06-16 02:06:06 PM

R.A.Danny: Rapmaster2000: R.A.Danny: Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.

Yeah, but if you diversify, you are generally still going to win.

I do my due diligence though.

Right, but you're going to make bad calls and run into unforseen events.  That's just how it goes.

I'm actually really good at finding those.


What I hate the most is when a stock is clearly undervalued from a financial standpoint, but it just won't move up.  Sometimes other investors have no faith in a stock's growth and even though it's undervalued it just won't move.  I've had stocks that just go sideways for months until I finally capitulate and move on.  It's very frustrating.
 
2014-06-16 02:06:20 PM

R.A.Danny: vpb: spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.

Of course, you also have to learn to be a financial advisor and have plenty of spare time to do all that, which might be difficult if you work for a living.

It's your money. Make time.


Look, I know basic math, and even some things beyond. I know how compound interest works, mathematically speaking. I read the quarterly summaries I get from MSSB, and I have no farking idea what 80% of it means. I see my balances, I see the effective earned-interest rates, and beyond that is 8-10 pages of...what? I have no farking clue.

I have a Bachelors', and I work 50-plus hours (some weeks) in IT partially BECAUSE I have no interest in what the carried interest from years 1-3 is, minus liabilities on the balance sheet going forward, subject to nineteen regulatory rules and jurisdictions, and payable only after sacrificing a goat to the Western Sun God on the half-birthday between my 62nd and 63rd birthdays.

I want to know that if I were to pay someone to manage that for me - so that I can focus elsewhere, like a proper market should operate - they're not managing it for their own best interest.

// not a problem specific to 401(k)s
// I like to think the IRA guy I talk to twice a year is making good decisions on my behalf, but I'd be naive to believe it
// how is that not a problem?
 
2014-06-16 02:07:03 PM
Um...why is my 401K a big con?
 
2014-06-16 02:07:19 PM

Rapmaster2000: spman: Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.

I've only been at it for about 4 or 5 years now. As long as you diversify, even if I fall behind on one investment, I'm usually sufficiently far ahead on another to more than make up the difference. Of course, I'm a small time player, I've only got a few grand in at any given time, but in recent memory I've done very well for example with both WWE and Domino's Pizza. Of course very well is relative to my overall financial position, but still.

The last 5 years have been a cakewalk.  Everyone is ahead overall - especially US small caps.  I have to warn you that the market will rotate sectors on you and it can do a lot of damage to your investments in a hurry.  You're going to run into some bad stocks.  That's not an accusation against your investing prowess.  It happens to everyone.


Oh absolutely, that's why even though I'm a buy and hold guy, I keep tabs on the market frequently, as well as on the news, so if I see something happening that's going to affect my sector, I know it's time to sell and move onto something else. Generally I stay away from volatility, and stick to the consistent earners, although I put a few hundred bucks to speculate into JD last month, and have been doing well so far.
 
2014-06-16 02:09:37 PM

spman: Rapmaster2000: spman:

You really don't. I don't know squat about finance beyond what I've learned from watching Jim Cramer every once in a while, I invest based on gut instincts, and have always come out ahead of where I would be if I just let my money sit in a savings account earning 0.48% interest.

I have to ask how long you've been at this.  As someone who has been investing for 20 years, I can assure you that there are going to be times where your gut instinct is going to get you less an 0.48% on a single investment if that gut instinct is equities.

I've only been at it for about 4 or 5 years now. As long as you diversify, even if I fall behind on one investment, I'm usually sufficiently far ahead on another to more than make up the difference. Of course, I'm a small time player, I've only got a few grand in at any given time, but in recent memory I've done very well for example with both WWE and Domino's Pizza. Of course very well is relative to my overall financial position, but still.


Everyone makes money in a bull market. It's the people who think that means they're smart that have problems in the long run.
 
2014-06-16 02:10:46 PM

Dr Dreidel: R.A.Danny: vpb: spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.

Of course, you also have to learn to be a financial advisor and have plenty of spare time to do all that, which might be difficult if you work for a living.

It's your money. Make time.

Look, I know basic math, and even some things beyond. I know how compound interest works, mathematically speaking. I read the quarterly summaries I get from MSSB, and I have no farking idea what 80% of it means. I see my balances, I see the effective earned-interest rates, and beyond that is 8-10 pages of...what? I have no farking clue.

I have a Bachelors', and I work 50-plus hours (some weeks) in IT partially BECAUSE I have no interest in what the carried interest from years 1-3 is, minus liabilities on the balance sheet going forward, subject to nineteen regulatory rules and jurisdictions, and payable only after sacrificing a goat to the Western Sun God on the half-birthday between my 62nd and 63rd birthdays.

I want to know that if I were to pay someone to manage that for me - so that I can focus elsewhere, like a proper market should operate - they're not managing it for their own best interest.

// not a problem specific to 401(k)s
// I like to think the IRA guy I talk to twice a year is making good decisions on my behalf, but I'd be naive to believe it
// how is that not a problem?


That IRA guy is a salesman.  He's just hustling products and taking a cut.  Ignore him and move the whole thing into VFINX.  You'll come out ahead of whatever he can do for you, especially when you include costs and fees.
 
2014-06-16 02:11:12 PM
SS is even more of a scam.
Forced to pay for something you'll never get to use.
 
2014-06-16 02:11:27 PM
It's all a gamble.  By definition, not everyone can win.  If you do, that is only because someone else had to lose.
 
2014-06-16 02:11:37 PM
The problem is, most people are spending their money now, trying to keep up with the Jones', and not saving for retirement. They're buying their new cars every 2-3 years, remodeling their kitchen simply because they've grown bored of the old cabinets, taking out home equity loans to buy a boat or in-ground pool and charging every impulse buy they come across on their Visa and Master Card.

You can either live life to it's fullest now, buying all the little niceties along the way, or you can sacrifice a little every day and live comfortably in your later years. It's really your choice.
 
2014-06-16 02:11:51 PM
rumpelstiltskin:
Everyone makes money in a bull market. It's the people who think that means they're smart that have problems in the long run.

I remember thinking I was smart.  That sucked.
 
2014-06-16 02:12:32 PM

LordZorch: It's Salon, so you have to take the massive progtard editorializing out and actually just look at the data.

Reality: you didn't save enough for retirement, and it's pretty much your own damn fault.

Salon version: you're too stupid to look after yourself.  Here, let the government control all aspects of your life.


Eh, life happens.  Even the best laid plans can be ruined by a drunk driver.
 
2014-06-16 02:15:56 PM
This illustrates a lot of why I joined the industry.  There is a huge market out there for someone who is willing to make decent recommendations with the client's best interest in mind.  Don't be fooled though, I still stand to make a lot of money doing it, so it's not charity by any means.  I remembered growing up having an investment guy that our family used who was very good at keeping us from shooting ourselves in the foot.  I have an opportunity to do that now.  And yes, there's a lot of shady stuff that happens, but the guys who you see being modestly successful in the long run are the ones who make it a point to act in the client's best interest.

The increased public awareness of the shadiness in the industry is great for people like me.  I've had a number of times where I meet with someone, and my recommendation comes down to "you're in good shape, keep doing what you're doing."  Without fail, this blows people away and I hear something along the lines of "wow, my old advisor never once told me that, he always had another recommendation I needed to act on."  Unsurprisingly, these have turned into some of my best clients.

TL;DR: There are a lot of jackwagons in the industry, but we're not all bad, and there's actually money in doing it the right way.
 
2014-06-16 02:17:29 PM

stonicus: It's all a gamble.  By definition, not everyone can win.  If you do, that is only because someone else had to lose.


You really don't get it. Theoretically everyone can win. Not all business will succeed of course, but there is no odds type reason for that.
 
2014-06-16 02:19:43 PM

Dr Dreidel: R.A.Danny: vpb: spman: 401k's are worth it up to the point in which your employer will match, past that you'll get better long term returns investing in the stock market, as long as you pay attention and invest conservatively. The days of being able to put your money in a guaranteed interest account and letting it accrue are over, you need to be proactive with your investments.

Of course, you also have to learn to be a financial advisor and have plenty of spare time to do all that, which might be difficult if you work for a living.

It's your money. Make time.

Look, I know basic math, and even some things beyond. I know how compound interest works, mathematically speaking. I read the quarterly summaries I get from MSSB, and I have no farking idea what 80% of it means. I see my balances, I see the effective earned-interest rates, and beyond that is 8-10 pages of...what? I have no farking clue.

I have a Bachelors', and I work 50-plus hours (some weeks) in IT partially BECAUSE I have no interest in what the carried interest from years 1-3 is, minus liabilities on the balance sheet going forward, subject to nineteen regulatory rules and jurisdictions, and payable only after sacrificing a goat to the Western Sun God on the half-birthday between my 62nd and 63rd birthdays.

I want to know that if I were to pay someone to manage that for me - so that I can focus elsewhere, like a proper market should operate - they're not managing it for their own best interest.

// not a problem specific to 401(k)s
// I like to think the IRA guy I talk to twice a year is making good decisions on my behalf, but I'd be naive to believe it
// how is that not a problem?


I have been investing with Betterment to great success for several years. It's very much a "set it and forget it" approach where you invest the money, set your target goal, and they diversify your portfolio and periodically adjust your risk factor to keep it on track. My Roth IRA is up 16.1% over the last 12 months w/ only $46 in fees. I'm not suggesting it's the best platform out there hands down, but it's the best I personally have come across.
 
2014-06-16 02:20:05 PM

RangerTaylor: This illustrates a lot of why I joined the industry.  There is a huge market out there for someone who is willing to make decent recommendations with the client's best interest in mind.  Don't be fooled though, I still stand to make a lot of money doing it, so it's not charity by any means.  I remembered growing up having an investment guy that our family used who was very good at keeping us from shooting ourselves in the foot.  I have an opportunity to do that now.  And yes, there's a lot of shady stuff that happens, but the guys who you see being modestly successful in the long run are the ones who make it a point to act in the client's best interest.

The increased public awareness of the shadiness in the industry is great for people like me.  I've had a number of times where I meet with someone, and my recommendation comes down to "you're in good shape, keep doing what you're doing."  Without fail, this blows people away and I hear something along the lines of "wow, my old advisor never once told me that, he always had another recommendation I needed to act on."  Unsurprisingly, these have turned into some of my best clients.

TL;DR: There are a lot of jackwagons in the industry, but we're not all bad, and there's actually money in doing it the right way.


Bullshiat, you're just another scam artist like the rest of them.  Burn in hell money man!!

*I'm a CFP and I feel your pain*
 
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