I frequently get unsolicited calls from financial advisors telling me they can offer me a free portfolio review and if I retain their services, they virtually guarantee me riches rivalling those of Warren Buffett. I am sure this ultimate wizard of wealth exists but I for one would not know how to spot this person.
Though they sound convincing, I have thought about the matter carefully and have come up with a list of ten tell tale clues that might just help identify this ulitmate in financial advisors. Readers can test themselves to determine whether they would recognize this guru if they stumbled across him or her behind a Financial Post, by honestly completing the following quiz.
A. When looking for that mystical advisor, you will try to spot him:
1. walking on Wall Street discussing the stock market;
2. walking on Bay Street waving a Globe and Mail;
3. walking on Lake Ontario.
B. In trying to assess the advisor’s experience and credentials, you will want someone:
1. who has worked in a large brokerage house;
2. who has worked in a not so large brokerage house;
3. who has worked in the land of Oz.
C. Some times the name can be a good clue. In scanning your list of potentially right sages, you would want one working at a firm called:
1. Edward Jones Canada;
2. Scotia McLeod;
3. Nostradamus Financial.
D. In listening to a series of financial gurus speaking at a seminar, you are most impressed by the one who tells you:
1. of the imminent bear market;
2. of the imminent bull market;
3. of the imminent market of fishes and loaves.
E. You would get most excited if your advisor would drop by your office in the middle of the day and:
1. buy you lunch;
2. mix you a martini;
3. wash your feet.
F. You prefer an advisor who whenever he shakes your hand:
1. squeezes it like a vice;
2. calls you Marilyn;
3. reads your palm.
G . The advisor you are most apt to obey is the one who would tell you to:
1. bring him a cheque;
2. bring him your umbrella;
3. bring him a great big pumpkin.
H. You are most likely to vest your confidence in an advisor who:
1. rides around in a Cadillac;
2. rides around in a smart car;
3. rides around inside a whale.
I. The sage’s geographical origin might offer some clue about his ability to predict the future. You would lend a special close ear to someone who was:
1) born and raised in New York;
2 born and raised in Las Vegas;
3) born and raised in Delphi
J. You prefer to deal with a financial analyst who:
1. wears a three piece suit;
2. wears a Tweed hat and Birkenstock shoes;
3. wears stars and moons on his conical hat.
If you answered numbers l or 2 to any of the above questions, then you may as well stay with your own advisor. If you answered number 3 to all of the above, then congratulations. You'll spot him when the Messiah arrives. Meanwhile hang on to your Tweed hat.
Author- Poutine on the Orient Express: An Irreverent Look at Travel
and Birth, Death, and Other Trivialities: A Humourous Philosophical Look at the Human Condition