23 Jul 2015

What the Financial Services Industry and Psychopaths Have in Common

At first glance, mentioning the financial service industry and psychopaths in the same sentence seems insulting, illogical and controversial, especially to financial professionals and investors who, for different reasons, must hold the financial industry in high esteem. Linking these two terms is especially sensitive since the common view is that psychopaths are

20 Jul 2015

Should Financial Advisors Criticize Capitalism?

Financial advisors today find themselves in a major ethical dilemma: Should they represent their own monetary interests before those of less-sophisticated clients? Or, should they mention, as history has repeatedly shown, that the larger financial system contains more built-in major risks that cannot be hedged and can destroy years of accumulated

12 Jul 2015

A Bad New Trend for Retirement

As the number of part-time workers continues, more workers are now becoming freelancers to make an income.  But this large shift comes at even larger price: freelancers do not get benefits, including the all-important 401(k) plan and its critical employer match. According to a CNBC report, over 53 million Americans

01 Jul 2015

Examining Why More Americans Are Considering Becoming Expatriates

“Our country! In her intercourse with foreign nations, may she always be in the right; but our country, right or wrong.” — Stephen Decatur, U.S. Navy captain, (1779-1820)   The United States may always be right, but sometimes people decide they want to watch the nation from another location. That

30 Jun 2015

How Neo-Conservatism Affects Investors and the Financial Services Industry

Very few industries are as blatantly anti-customer as the financial services industry. And for good reason. Basically, the financial service industry is bi-furcated into two very separate operations that, when they work together, are anti-consumer, while simultaneously being pro-banking and pro-corporate. In everyday life, too many individual investors are routinely

26 Jun 2015

The GOP’s War Against Retirees

As millions of Americans remain concerned about whether they will have enough money to fund their retirement, they can remain assured that the GOP is intent on making these post-working twilight years as difficult as possible. While retirement once had an appealing ring to it over 50 years ago, that

16 Jun 2015

What Ever Happened to Critical Financial Journalism?

Economic inequality, wage stagnation and too-big-to-fail bank dominance are all deservedly critical current topics in the developing presidential campaigns. But what about the role of economic propaganda that still dominates the news and has worked to quash any public education and criticism of the U.S. financial system? Most professional reporters

12 Jun 2015

What’s the Connection Between TBTF Bank Arrogance and the TPP?

At first glance, the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which was drafted by corporate lawyers and lobbyists, and the arrogance of the too-big-to-fail (TBTF) banks may seem like unrelated events. But what if this arrogance hinted at a building confidence that average people worldwide would now be more accountable to corporations

09 Jun 2015

With Friends Like These, Who Needs Enemies: Here Are the Public Enemies of Individual Investors

Being an individual investor today is tough. Not only do you have to suffer through increased market volatility, a low-return environment, worrying about job security and whether you will get a raise, but now there is another new source of concern: your financial services industry trade association. While the vast

09 Jun 2015

Banking with the Felons

If the media and financial services industry ever needed more evidence about why investor confidence in the financial system is so low, they do not have to look far. The U.S. Justice department today said that six banks will be forced to plead guilty to price fixing and anti-trust violations