93 percent of Americans believe financial advisors who give retirement advice should be legally required to put their clients’ interests first, according to a new survey from Financial Engines, an RIA in Sunnyvale, Calif. And more than half of those surveyed believe that all advisors are already held to a fiduciary standard. 61 percent of Americans don’t know the difference between a financial advisor who is a fiduciary and one who is not, but that is down from 66 percent last year. Only half of investors who work with an advisor are certain that their advisor is a fiduciary, while nearly four in 10 (38 percent) don’t know if their advisor is or not. “While the debate over the conflict of interest rule has raised consumer awareness about this important standard, investors must still be careful to demand advisors that act in the sole best interests of their clients,” said Christopher Jones, chief investment officer at Financial Engines. The study, conducted by ORC International, was based on a survey of 1,025 adults ages 18 and older.
Gold has always been the go-to "safe haven" for investors who are convinced the global world order and its reliance on fiat currency is about to come crashing down. Recent global tensions in Syria, North Korea and Europe have only bolstered what some will pay for the shiny rock; yet, there are limits. According to Oppenheimer's Ari Wald on CNBC, gold starts to meet "resistance" at $1,350 an ounce. The metal did surpass that price briefly last summer before falling again. As of Tuesday afternoon, it was valued at $1,293.90 an ounce. That doesn't mean that gold is a bad investment for speculators. Stacey Gilbert, head of derivative strategy at Susquehanna, calls it a sound one, according to CNBC, especially with political volatility driving investors away from the stock market. However, the best way to play it is in the options market, not buying the rock outright, she said.
High-Production Team Leaves Wells Fargo for Raymond James
A team of experienced financial advisors in Huntsville, Ala., left Wells Fargo for Raymond James' independent-employee channel, Advisor Select. The team of three and some associates were overseeing $700 million in clients assets and had approximately $3.8 million in production. They cited in a statement the culture of Raymond James and the control they were maintaining of their practice among reasons for the move.