Phil Cannella’s Three Questions To Ask Any Retirement Expert

On last week’s Crash Proof Retirement Show, Phil Cannella and co-host Joann Small had some very important advice for their listeners.

Phil and Joann accomplish their goals of educating consumers in or near retirement not only through The Crash Proof Retirement Show, but through educational events around the Philadelphia region and by hosting consumers each and every day at their headquarters in King of Prussia, Pa.

Last week, Phil Cannella highlighted the three things that any consumer in or near retirement must consider when making the decision to protect the nest egg they’ve spent a lifetime accumulating:

Is the person you’re dealing with giving you factual information?

This one should be easy, right? But unfortunately, every day we see headlines concerning another consumer—usually someone of retirement age—who’s been misled, defrauded or otherwise poorly represented by a financial advisor or another professional.

Do they have a fiduciary responsibility?

Even though authorities from Phil Cannella all the way to President Obama have advocated this requirement, Wall Street continues to fight the imposition of a fiduciary responsibility upon its professionals. A fiduciary responsibility, quite simple, is a professional obligation to act solely in the best interest of your clients.

It’s standard operating procedure in most prominent professions—teachers, lawyers, doctors and most certainly insurance professionals all operate under a fiduciary responsibility. In fact, it seems just about every professional does so—except Wall Street. The securities industry is instead held to a suitability standard, which means professionals must merely assure that the product in question is ‘suitable’ for a client’s goals. Can you imagine how loosely that can be interpreted?

As Phil Cannella is fond of saying, “without a fiduciary responsibility, how can you tell the difference between sound financial advice and a sales pitch?”

You can’t tell the difference. The conflicts of interest on Wall Street run rampant—do brokers work in the best interests of their clients? Or do they work in the best interest of the firms that hire them? And what about looking out for #1—are they simply concerned with earning the highest possible commission?

At Crash Proof Retirement, our educators are held to a fiduciary duty. Moreover, Phil Cannella has eliminated the conflict of interest that exists on Wall Street by hiring a salaried design team to custom-tailor your retirement strategy. Your best interest is our only interest.

Are they speaking clearly, or speaking above your understanding?

There’s no shame in admitting confusion about financial security and investing. With so many products and options at your disposal, it’s complicated to keep everything straight. That’s why an entire industry was created—so experts in the field might be able to help the rest of us navigate such a tricky and potentially dangerous landscape.

Unfortunately, some professionals will take advantage of an inexperienced client and tilt their presentation towards the product THEY want to sell for a boost in commission—rather than the one that would best benefit the client.

“When you are transparent as an advisor, you are giving the truth accurately and factually,” summarized Phil Cannella. “And now, your client can make an informed decision.”