June 30, 2008

Financial advisers preying on senior citizens

Question: I was at a presentation to senior citizens who have most of their funds invested in fixed income products (CD's). The presenter showed how our investments are taxed and we don't keep up with inflation. He scared the hell out of us. Then came the product he sells which was a fixed annuity that guarantees you get all the gains from the stock market and none of the losses. Is this real?

The Mole's Answer: This type of product - and the tactics used to sell it - are the proverbial pebble in my shoe. Steer clear of this annuity salesman, as he is preying on your emotions and selling some righteously nasty stuff. Let me first address his sales technique and then I'll tell you what he's selling.

Any financial sales person knows that the two most powerful motivators are fear and greed.