Client Portals

Wall Street gets a bad rap2 min read

Dec 24, 2013 - Max Osbon ( 4 mins to read)

It’s easy to blame the monolithic brands of Wall Street for selling us products poorly suited to our needs, or charging fees that empty our pockets to fill their own. It’s easy to blame them for enticing us with hot stock tips, slick hedge funds, exclusive private equity issues, and once-in-a-lifetime IPOs, none of which may be right for us.Wolf-1

But isn’t this the same kind of blame often aimed at McDonalds for making us fat?

Like it or not, many of the most successful businesses in the world reach that status by selling us products we don’t really need, or services we can’t afford. Our stores are full of products that underwhelm, wrapped in packaging that overpromises and supported by ad campaigns that get us to say yes when common sense would say no. Americans are such good consumers we even buy things we don’t want.

Advertising doesn’t help. Relentless ad campaigns condition us to crave foods that make us obese and diabetic. We wait in line for the opportunity to fight over toys our kids will quickly forget. We envy our neighbors when they buy the most gigantic and expensive TV known to man.

Get beyond the blame

Sure, it’s easy to blame the sellers, but is it fair? We should all understand that even the most famous firms in the financial industry and good, decent people who work there may not have our best interests in mind.

We should not forget that iconic Wall Street names must generate many millions of dollars each year just to pay for ad campaigns, lush headquarters, well-appointed satellite locations and multiple layers of management…and that customers ultimately foot that bill.

We should recognize that many products – including proprietary offerings on which brokers may earn enhanced commissions – may be designed specifically to benefit the sellers at the peril of buyers.

Of course, this is all just normal business. Sellers sell and buyers buy. Ultimately there’s no point in blaming Wall Street or anyone else. We’re responsible for our own actions and decisions and the consequences they produce.

Follow the money

In the investment world taking responsibility means learning about service providers, products, and investment strategies before saying yes. It means asking questions of providers about how they are compensated and by whom. It means picking providers based on facts, not just name recognition.

We welcome your questions about the Osbon Captial fee-only, index-only, ETF-only business model. We work every day to improve our offering and control costs. And as registered investment advisors, we are bound by a strict legal requirement to always put client interests first.
Give us a call at 617-217-2772 – we’d love to hear what’s on your mind


delivered to your inbox


This communication may include forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements (including words such as “believe,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “may,” “will,” “should,” and “expect”). Although we believe that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, we can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Various factors could cause actual results or performance to differ materially from those discussed in such forward-looking statements.”

“Historical performance is not indicative of future results. The investment return will fluctuate with market conditions.

Past performance is not indicative of any specific investment or future results. Views regarding the economy, securities markets or other specialized areas, like all predictors of future events, cannot be guaranteed to be accurate and may result in economic loss to the investor.

Investment strategies, philosophies, allocations and holdings are subject to change without prior notice.

This communication is intended to provide general information only and should not be construed as an offer of specifically tailored individualized advice.

While the Adviser believes the outside data sources cited to be credible, it has not independently verified the correctness of any of their inputs or calculations and, therefore, does not warranty the accuracy of any third-party sources or information.

Adviser does not endorse the statements, services or performance of any third-party vendor.

Unless stated otherwise, any mention of specific securities or investments is for hypothetical and illustrative purposes only. Adviser’s clients may or may not hold the securities discussed in their portfolios. Adviser makes no representations that any of the securities discussed have been or will be profitable.

Any IPO alerts are purely informational and should not be construed as recommendations to invest.

Adviser is not licensed to provide and does not provide legal, tax or accounting advice to clients. Advice of qualified counsel or accountant should be sought to address any specific situation requiring assistance from such licensed individuals.

Any case studies or hypothetical client profiles are for demonstration purposes only. They illustrate the breadth and depth of the many clients we represent at various life stages. Any similarities to actual Adviser’s clients past or present are strictly coincidental. Individual advice and results will vary based on each client’s circumstances, objectives and prevailing economic conditions.