Advertisement
investing

The Skinny on Fat Investing Costs

Do you know how much you're paying to invest your money? Several factors are pushing prices down for consumers, so savvy retirement savers have options.

Recently, a new client joined my practice and her investing costs dropped by almost 70%. She was paying far too much for a big, old brand name with their fancy suits and high-rise office space. Her accountant finally convinced her that the “value” she was receiving was not worth the cost.

She’s not the only investor coming to this realization. As you may already know, the financial services industry is undergoing a massive reinvention as technology and government involvement are forcing narrowed margins. Transparency is causing “fee compression,” where costs to the consumer are coming down, but expenses for financial professionals are increasing, reducing gross profit. With shrinking income and increased regulatory costs, broker-dealers and advisers must decide what to do with their businesses. Some are adjusting willingly, but others are digging their heels in. Some insurance and investment companies are reducing costs by reducing the number of investments they offer. Financial advisers are deciding to cut segments of their less-profitable clients.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The reality is that the industry has long operated with a set of rules and expectations that I do not think hold true any longer. The seismic shift created by technology has plunged transaction costs, and the average investor can access mind-boggling piles of information. The speed at which innovative and useful investment products can be crafted and brought to market has increased dramatically. (Don’t forget, only 50 years ago you had stocks, bonds, whole life insurance and a few mutual funds. Look at the options now!) And the expectations of consumers continue to shift, often to the unreasonable, in all parts of life.

Are investors reaping the benefits of these changes yet? Possibly, but there are some challenges as some costs aren’t as easy to pull out as others. Here is a quick overview of the costs of investing:

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

Please note that these costs are each independent of one another. You can pay high transactional costs and get no relationship (not ideal). You can also pay modest relational costs and receive innovative products. Or you may choose to forgo the relational costs in the name of the lowest transactional costs. You get to decide what makes sense for your situation and your expectations.

However, please let me be abundantly clear — there is a cost to relationship. You want highly qualified, high-character people handling your money. And those folks will not work for free, at your job or in the financial industry. But do not resign yourself to believe the only way that you can get relationship is to pay exorbitant fees.

Here are a couple of ideas you might use to find an adviser who is right for you:

About the Author

Andy Burdsall, Investment Adviser

President, Riverbend Financial Group

Andy Burdsall is the president of Riverbend Financial Group in Jeffersonville, Ind., a firm that focuses on income creation and legacy planning for its clients. He is a Registered Principal with Securities America, Inc. and an insurance professional.

Advertisement

Most Popular

HSAs Get Even Better
Financial Planning

HSAs Get Even Better

Workers have more options with flexible spending accounts, too.
July 2, 2020
2020 Stock Market Holidays and Bond Market Holidays
Markets

2020 Stock Market Holidays and Bond Market Holidays

Is the market open today? Take a look at which holidays the stock markets and bond markets take off in 2020.
July 1, 2020
Find a Great Place to Retire
happy retirement

Find a Great Place to Retire

Our cities provide plenty of space to spread out without skimping on health care or other amenities.
July 2, 2020

Recommended

3 Municipal Bond Funds for Rich, Tax-Friendly Yields
Investing for Income

3 Municipal Bond Funds for Rich, Tax-Friendly Yields

Municipal bond funds allow you to enjoy the benefits of tax-exempt income. By investing CEFs, you can sweeten the pot even further.
July 2, 2020
Find a Great Place to Retire
happy retirement

Find a Great Place to Retire

Our cities provide plenty of space to spread out without skimping on health care or other amenities.
July 2, 2020
Searching for the Perfect Place to Retire
Empty Nesters

Searching for the Perfect Place to Retire

We home in on two places with less traffic and lower costs. 
July 2, 2020
10 Stocks to Invest in the Health Care Revolution
healthcare stocks

10 Stocks to Invest in the Health Care Revolution

These companies are fighting disease and improving our standard of care.
July 2, 2020