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"They also have learned that this doesn't affect my recommendations to them. "

 

So, if someone wants to liquidate their investment account (from which you derive advisory fees) to pay off their mortgage and you advise them not to do this, they can be sure that there is no conflict of interest?

 

Come on, this is one of the most common conflicts that exists out there. It is routinely (and correctly) raised in this discussion. Why can't you just acknowledge that there are always conflicts in advisory relationships? No one can be totally pure without any motives for personal gain. Otherwise, you would have to work for free and we know you don't do that.

 

I do think it is ironic that the people who run this site criticize people for supposedly promoting their business here when it is they who are promoting their own business. I am not aware that CLJ ever mentioned his name or telephone number, yet Scott Dauenhauer vigorously promotes himself, his firm and his book on this site. I have never revealed my name or affiliation here and have been routinely criticized for promoting "myself" and my "firm", neither of which are known by any party on this site.

 

 

I've advised several clients to liquidate their holdings and pay off their mortgage. I even tell them that I have an inherent built in conflict when advising on such an issue and tell them where they can go to get a second opinion. Funny enough it leads to more business. If paying off the mortgage is the best route for the client - we do it. Lost revenue from that will be made up from the clients I get for referrals from happy clients for whom I work in their best interest.

 

I challenge you to find where I have said there are no conflicts in advisory relationships. Heck, I've gone as far as pointing out in my ADV that books that I've sold have been purchased by TIAA. I tell every client that I advise to use Pension 2 from CalSTRS that CalSTRS pays me for consulting business (though not for placing people in Pension 2). My book by the way is out of print and has been for sometime, I do however promote Dan's book.

 

I also challenge you to find posts where I have revealed my name, my firm or my website directly in a posting. You just did, but I didn't. I don't use these message boards to get business.

 

CLJ mentioned Lincoln in at least five posts and has admitted to being an employee. He didn't just mention them, he promoted them and he continues to do so.

 

You just have your facts wrong.

 

ScottyD

 

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"I even tell them that I have an inherent built in conflict when advising on such an issue and tell them where they can go to get a second opinion."

 

That's my point. Why are you criticizing others for having conflicts of interest when you have them yourself? People can always get a second opinion, we live in a free world.

 

To suggest that you and the other owner of this site are not promoting your business is really funny. If CLJ isn't providing his name and phone number, how is that any different than what you do here? You really need to take off your rose colored glasses.

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Intruder,

You say: "There are two possibilities for what you claim is investment advice:"

 

My response: What an outrageous statement but you started out as a troll and you continue as the resident troll around here. I am a participant, I make no money from any of this activity, not a pro, don't plan on becoming a pro and yet I am treated as if I am promoting myself as a pro. I am a retired teacher and if I say that I got investment advice from VG, IT IS NOT A CLAIM. What an insulting, arrogant, snotty, elitist remark. You call yourself a professional!@@#$%

 

You say: VG will act as an investment advisor/fiduciary if the client pays an investment management fee of .75% for the first $1M in addition to the fees charged by the funds. VG reps will be subject to the fiduciary rules under the investment advisor act. This type of of advice is not "free".

 

Response: We did not get any special privileges except that we are VG investors with the necessary resources to get this FREE advice. Of course we are paying for it out of the extremely low fees that the adviser recommended himself recommended at 14 bsp. Yes that's .14%. I think everybody else understands what I meant and what I said, except for you (Really, you did understand perfectly what I said but your questions are always to manipulate and push buttons). Pushing buttons is extremely immature. You need new material.

 

You said: VG will prepare a financial plan for its account holders for which it will waive the $1000 fee (i.e., it is free) if the client has more than $500,000 invested at VG. The financial plan will provide a recommended asset allocation based on information provided by the client and will include several funds in each asset category that the client can select. VG funds have low mgt fees of about 15 BP which is about what you are being charged. But VG is not giving "investment advice" as a fiduciary because the client is responsible for investment selection. If you read the fine print in the plan agreement you will find language where VG discloses that it is not a fiduciary.

 

Response: this is the same garbage as number 1. Get real. You are dealing with a savvy investor here who has years of fighting the 403b corrupt system and all of its laws, not some dimwit that you think the world is. I don't care if VG is not giving investment advice as a fiduciary. I care and know that VG is looking out for my best interests; thats enough. As a non professional and a retired teacher with most of my investments with VG, that’s fiduciary enough for me and I stand by what I said at the beginning that VG is a fiduciary. I believe the other savvy investors on this site will agree.

 

You say: Where does No3 make VG a fiduciary over a participant's account for investment advice? What language is there in the participant's agreement to open an account at VG where VG states that it will act a fiduciary?

 

Response: Once again, don't you read English?! It says it in their "VG's commitment to clients.”

 

You are the type of person who comes here, not looking at the forest or the trees, you are focused on the roots. It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. It is NEVER ever in a helping approach and your questions are always to us. I know you would never ask those questions you ask us to the powerful people who run the brokerage houses, venders, reps and sales people.

You bias for the industry who created the laws is soooooooooooo obvious and yet you will never see it.

Get a life.

 

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"I even tell them that I have an inherent built in conflict when advising on such an issue and tell them where they can go to get a second opinion."

 

That's my point. Why are you criticizing others for having conflicts of interest when you have them yourself? People can always get a second opinion, we live in a free world.

 

To suggest that you and the other owner of this site are not promoting your business is really funny. If CLJ isn't providing his name and phone number, how is that any different than what you do here? You really need to take off your rose colored glasses.

 

 

TR1982,

 

I never criticized for having conflicts of interest, though I think the types of conflicts make a big difference. If I'm paid to sell one product over another (which Lincoln does) I think that's a big conflict.

I mainly criticized the lack of fiduciary responsibility and the fact that a real fiduciary would not accept the conflicts that LI evidently sees as no problem.

 

CLJ mentioned Lincoln over and over and over - how is that not promoting his company?

 

Go ahead TR - find a post where I use my real name. I don't look for business here. If there is one, I'll have Dan remove my name.

 

ScottyD

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Lincoln is a big company. How is one unidentified advisor in a firm that has several thousand spread all over the country considered promoting your business? I don't see any real connection here.

 

I never knew you wrote a book or had an advisory business until I read posts on this site about that. Your name and business is not a secret here. I don't really have a problem with that, it's just that you accuse CLJ of promoting his own business here and he hasn't done anything you haven't done.

 

"Dan Otter is a father, husband, teacher, author, and operator of two websites that are designed to educate and empower, 403bwise.com and 457bwise.com. He also creates YourPlan.info portals — customized retirement plan information websites for school districts. Dan's first book, The 403(b) Wise Guide, which he co-wrote with planner Scott Dauenhauer, sold more than 10,000 copies and was described by John C. Bogle as "right on!" Dan has appeared on National Public Radio and has written on retirement issues for the Motley Fool website. He also speaks to schools and other organizations about the Teach and Retire Rich concepts outlined in this book."

 

I copy pasted this directly from this website.

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Much of this discussion boils down to how much a client should trust a salesman. CLJ believes that his reps are virtuous. I doubt that. I do not believe that his salesmen, or any other firm's salesmen, do anything other than promote their own interests.

 

Furthermore, this is not unique to salesmen. All (or at least most) of us promote our own interests, so we should not be surprised when financial reps do so. My quibble is that they deny it.

 

 

 

 

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Intruder,

You say: "There are two possibilities for what you claim is investment advice:"

 

My response: What an outrageous statement but you started out as a troll and you continue as the resident troll around here. I am a participant, I make no money from any of this activity, not a pro, don't plan on becoming a pro and yet I am treated as if I am promoting myself as a pro. I am a retired teacher and if I say that I got investment advice from VG, IT IS NOT A CLAIM. What an insulting, arrogant, snotty, elitist remark. You call yourself a professional!@@#$%

 

You say: VG will act as an investment advisor/fiduciary if the client pays an investment management fee of .75% for the first $1M in addition to the fees charged by the funds. VG reps will be subject to the fiduciary rules under the investment advisor act. This type of of advice is not "free".

 

Response: We did not get any special privileges except that we are VG investors with the necessary resources to get this FREE advice. Of course we are paying for it out of the extremely low fees that the adviser recommended himself recommended at 14 bsp. Yes that's .14%. I think everybody else understands what I meant and what I said, except for you (Really, you did understand perfectly what I said but your questions are always to manipulate and push buttons). Pushing buttons is extremely immature. You need new material.

 

You said: VG will prepare a financial plan for its account holders for which it will waive the $1000 fee (i.e., it is free) if the client has more than $500,000 invested at VG. The financial plan will provide a recommended asset allocation based on information provided by the client and will include several funds in each asset category that the client can select. VG funds have low mgt fees of about 15 BP which is about what you are being charged. But VG is not giving "investment advice" as a fiduciary because the client is responsible for investment selection. If you read the fine print in the plan agreement you will find language where VG discloses that it is not a fiduciary.

 

Response: this is the same garbage as number 1. Get real. You are dealing with a savvy investor here who has years of fighting the 403b corrupt system and all of its laws, not some dimwit that you think the world is. I don't care if VG is not giving investment advice as a fiduciary. I care and know that VG is looking out for my best interests; thats enough. As a non professional and a retired teacher with most of my investments with VG, that’s fiduciary enough for me and I stand by what I said at the beginning that VG is a fiduciary. I believe the other savvy investors on this site will agree.

 

You say: Where does No3 make VG a fiduciary over a participant's account for investment advice? What language is there in the participant's agreement to open an account at VG where VG states that it will act a fiduciary?

 

Response: Once again, don't you read English?! It says it in their "VG's commitment to clients.”

 

You are the type of person who comes here, not looking at the forest or the trees, you are focused on the roots. It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. It is NEVER ever in a helping approach and your questions are always to us. I know you would never ask those questions you ask us to the powerful people who run the brokerage houses, venders, reps and sales people.

You bias for the industry who created the laws is soooooooooooo obvious and yet you will never see it.

Get a life.

 

 

Steve:

 

The information that I posted on VG investment "advice" was provided by 2 VG reps this afternoon in separate phone calls. VG provides a free financial plan for all customers who have 500k in assets at VG ($250 if you have 100k). But VG does not represent that it is a fiduciary in preparing the plan. You can believe that VG is a fiducary if it makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside when you get your statements but that doesnt make VG a fiduciary for your investments.

 

All I did was provide two possible explainations for the services you received. Where did I say you were a pro or treat you as if you are promoting yourself as a pro? You are one weird dude.

 

I think you should take a chill pill and come back when you can express yourself without all of the pent up animus that you exhibit when your assumptions are questioned.

 

 

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Lincoln is a big company. How is one unidentified advisor in a firm that has several thousand spread all over the country considered promoting your business? I don't see any real connection here.

 

I never knew you wrote a book or had an advisory business until I read posts on this site about that. Your name and business is not a secret here. I don't really have a problem with that, it's just that you accuse CLJ of promoting his own business here and he hasn't done anything you haven't done.

 

"Dan Otter is a father, husband, teacher, author, and operator of two websites that are designed to educate and empower, 403bwise.com and 457bwise.com. He also creates YourPlan.info portals — customized retirement plan information websites for school districts. Dan's first book, The 403(b) Wise Guide, which he co-wrote with planner Scott Dauenhauer, sold more than 10,000 copies and was described by John C. Bogle as "right on!" Dan has appeared on National Public Radio and has written on retirement issues for the Motley Fool website. He also speaks to schools and other organizations about the Teach and Retire Rich concepts outlined in this book."

 

I copy pasted this directly from this website.

 

Actually we are a small firm. You may be thinking of Lincoln Financial Group. They are a big insuarnce conglomerate. We are just a small family owned broker dealer with no ties to any other company. We have been around since 1968. In fact we wrote one of the very first 403(b)7 accounts when they became available. All I really did was to let people know that there is a solution to the mutual fund issues out there. Was not trying to promote any business for myself. I am just shocked at how I have been attacked. I have not attacked anyone on this message board at all. I have had to defend myself plain and simple. I guess Iam supposed to just lay down and accept being referred to as a rip off and a moron etc. But I am the one that is not professional! Even through all of the attacks I never once questioned the way Scotty does business nor say anything about his firm in anyway. I do not believe in doing that. That is what I call un professional.

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CLJ17,

 

Dude, get it together. I am beginning to wonder if you are even employed in this industry. Your lack of professionalism, as I wrote in another post (below), on this board would be a major red flag if I were your employer.

---

 

The reason I am growing weary of your posting is your juvenile petulance (labeling a poster "the Pompous, Arrogant, Proud King of the 403bWise Boards"). If I was your firm or your supervisor, I would be highly concerned about your lack of professionalism. You strike me as a very poor representative for your company. Why can't you make a case for your model that isn't defensive and juvenile ("according to everyone on here I am an idiot" "You and your sidekicks treat me like I am an idiot" "You're right about everything and I know nothing and am completely wrong in everything I say. Man I wish I were like you. God Bless!")?

 

Dan Otter

 

Dear Mr. Otter,

 

When I first posted on your message board you e-mailed me behind the scenes and explained to me how this board worked. I appreciate you for that. I gave you my word that I would reveal my relationship with my firm. I told you point blank all I wanted to do was help people. I did as you asked as I am a man of my word. You ask why can't I make a case for my model without being defensive and juvenile. How do you propose I can do that without being defensive when all that has happened is I have been attacked. My clients were humiliated by being called morons. I was called a rip off and dishonest to my clients. I am made to look like I know nothing about this whole industry. I know that you and Scotty are in on this whole 403(b) wise website and you make that clear. I would love to move beyond all this as I am not the one that started all of the hatefullness. All I did was to try and help someone and this is what I got in return. But yet you tell me that I am the one who is unprofessional and juvenile it is apparent that you are biased if you can't see how I have been treated. Others have that's for sure. I just haven't stood by and let others on here try and denegrate me and others like me. I will stand up for my values and integrity. God Bless!

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Lincoln is a big company. How is one unidentified advisor in a firm that has several thousand spread all over the country considered promoting your business? I don't see any real connection here.

 

I never knew you wrote a book or had an advisory business until I read posts on this site about that. Your name and business is not a secret here. I don't really have a problem with that, it's just that you accuse CLJ of promoting his own business here and he hasn't done anything you haven't done.

 

"Dan Otter is a father, husband, teacher, author, and operator of two websites that are designed to educate and empower, 403bwise.com and 457bwise.com. He also creates YourPlan.info portals — customized retirement plan information websites for school districts. Dan's first book, The 403(b) Wise Guide, which he co-wrote with planner Scott Dauenhauer, sold more than 10,000 copies and was described by John C. Bogle as "right on!" Dan has appeared on National Public Radio and has written on retirement issues for the Motley Fool website. He also speaks to schools and other organizations about the Teach and Retire Rich concepts outlined in this book."

 

I copy pasted this directly from this website.

 

 

The site and the message board are two separate things. I don't promote myself on the boards. I've never posted my name on this board and unless you really work hard to find out, most people aren't going to equate ScottyD (my board name) with my real name. Frequent posters might, but not someone looking for the occasional information.

 

It was an accusation by the way - he was actively promoting his company.

 

ScottyD

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I told you point blank all I wanted to do was help people.

 

Is this guy really serious? Honestly, Dan, are you just making this all up?

 

My clients were humiliated by being called morons.

 

Flash: Crisis counselors are now being dispatched to alleviate the pain and suffering.

 

I was called a rip off and dishonest to my clients.

 

Shocking, shocking.

 

I would love to move beyond all this ...

 

Again, crisis counselors are at the ready.

 

All I did was to try and help someone and this is what I got in return.

 

Flash: The LA Philharmonic is standing by to play Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony to soothe hurt feelings.

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"They also have learned that this doesn't affect my recommendations to them. "

 

So, if someone wants to liquidate their investment account (from which you derive advisory fees) to pay off their mortgage and you advise them not to do this, they can be sure that there is no conflict of interest?

 

Come on, this is one of the most common conflicts that exists out there. It is routinely (and correctly) raised in this discussion. Why can't you just acknowledge that there are always conflicts in advisory relationships? No one can be totally pure without any motives for personal gain. Otherwise, you would have to work for free and we know you don't do that.

 

I do think it is ironic that the people who run this site criticize people for supposedly promoting their business here when it is they who are promoting their own business. I am not aware that CLJ ever mentioned his name or telephone number, yet Scott Dauenhauer vigorously promotes himself, his firm and his book on this site. I have never revealed my name or affiliation here and have been routinely criticized for promoting "myself" and my "firm", neither of which are known by any party on this site.

 

 

I personally have no problem at all in how Scotty runs his practice or even if he promotes on here. I am sure that he has his clients best interest in mind and have never said otherwise. We all get paid to help people that is why we are in the professions that we are in. He sells his service and we sell ours. You are right when you say I have not posted any direct information about me nor will I. I am not here to attract any business. I cuurently work with over 400 school districts and have enough on my plate. When I stumbled on this message board I saw some concerns some folks had and wanted to try and help without attracting any business to myself. That is why I was "Ghost poster" or whatever I was called. Mr. Otter asked me to reveal who I was. Out of respect for the work he has done I agreed to do just that. But to be honest I really didn't want to so that I would not attract any business from here. That was not my intenet on posting. There seems to be some on here who have had bad experiences along the way. I am not happy about that because it tarnishes those of us who try and do right by people. Unfortunately we are all lumped together. It troubles me for others to not look at each individual person and give them the benefit of doubt.

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