It’s Time to Get Yourself a Financial Guardian     (26-Apr-2016 )



There are moments in life when you are offered two paths. The first is crooked but easy, the one most choose to follow... and the other may be a path less travelled, punctuated with cliffs and valleys: a path of honesty that very few want to follow.

The choice is yours...just like it was ours 15 years ago.

In the late 1990’s many companies entered the financial services sector to sell either insurance or mutual funds - but not many may have focused on the mandate to serve in the best interest of their clients.

PersonalFN was founded in 1999 fueled by the ambition of empowering Indian investors to make better investment decisions. Built on the cornerstone of honesty, integrity and competence, PersonalFN successfully guides investors in their journey to financial freedom in an unbiased and transparent manner.

Amidst the organized mis-selling by many players in the financial world, PersonalFN has spent over 15 years educating investors and has established a loyal following with the support of tens of thousands of valued readers like you. Yet in our interactions with the clients and readers, we have found one common dilemma...

Unethical Advice!
Now, there are people who – while driven to earn a quick buck - give in to ‘making it’ by adopting unethical means.

Here’s a case of one of our HNI clients, Mr Kanan (name changed) who had been actively taking advice from his bank relationship manager on money matters, which also included maximizing returns on money lying ideal in his premium banking account. Mr Kanan lost trust in his relationship manager when he realized that he was short of the money needed for his daughter’s higher education. This was something that Mr Kanan had planned 5 years in advance. However, the lack of knowledge about investing had forced him to place his trust in the hands of his relationship manager.

The relationship manager had suggested investment products without completing a risk profile of Mr Kanan and without fully understanding his investment objectives. Predictably, most of Mr Kanan’s investments were made in fancy NFO’s and ‘structured’ products which paid high commissions. Additionally, the relationship manager actively suggested churning the portfolio to ensure that the relationship manager kept earning more commission income and met his business targets.

The relationship manager convinced Mr Kanan that it was really important to get strong returns - and one way to ensure this was by shifting money in equity mutual funds that took excessive risk to generate higher returns. This was very unethical as the recommendations made by the relationship manager were driven by hefty commissions paid by the NFO factories. Moreover, some of Mr. Kanan’s investments were not in line with his investment objective and time horizon. Ideally, one’s savings should be allocated to those investment products which are in line with their risk appetite and time horizon. All these factors were clearly missing in Mr Kanan’s case–and that cost him a fortune.

Mr Kanan trusted the relationship manager and thought that the advice from his relationship manager would be good for him. But the huge losses suffered during a recent market downturn completely caught Mr. Kanan off guard!

There are many Mr Kanan-like stories in India – you read about them in the press or you hear about them from friends and family members.

This is not to say that unethical advice is given only by relationship managers working for a MNC bank. Vested advice may also come from mutual fund advisors / distributors, insurance agents, stock brokers, financial planners – or websites that are targeted towards those looking for alternatives. And it is also not true that all relationship managers are out to mis-represent their clients and only focus on the commissions paid by the manufacturers. But it is fair to say that investors need to be careful.

PersonalFN wants to solve your problem of finding a person you can trust. While there are many certifications and requirements set by regulators and industry bodies, it is unfortunate that many financial advisors have resorted to suspect practices while advising on personal finances. To curb such practices, PersonalFN is creating a group of individuals that are ethical and competent in their dealings with clients. And we will introduce this group of individuals to you!

There is a genuine demand from investors for authentic, independent, and unbiased advice on all aspects of personal finance.

PersonalFN has, in the past, launched various services backed by unbiased views and honest opinions.

And today, PersonalFN brings the first-of-its-kind exclusive endeavor that can get like-minded advisors and investment professionals together and place them at the forefront of the financial advisory industry.

PersonalFN is glad to launch www.CertifiedFinancialGuardian.com, an exclusive platform of advisors who want to become a financial “guardian” for lakhs of investors like you: investors who may have been misled and exploited by unethical advisors.

A Certified Financial Guardian will be a symbol of honesty and commitment towards the interests of investors and help build a long-lasting and trustworthy relationship between those who have the savings and need investment advice – and those who can offer it.

In an ocean of rampant disappointment and extreme distrust, a Certified Financial Guardian will be among the chosen FEW whom you can meet and place your faith in with a high level of confidence.

Do not forget, every investor needs a guardian today, so make sure you hire your Certified Financial Guardian.

If you are an investor and need a Certified Financial Guardian to contact you, please click here.

If you are interested in achieving the status of a Certified Financial Guardian and working towards giving your clients honest, professional, and competent advice, please click here.



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