Saturday, January 11, 2020

Fisher Investments: Because Paternalism



What.  The Actual F.  Is happening in this ad?

Well, we see two middle-aged people sitting on stools like obedient children while a middle-aged white male stands behind them and a narrator tells us about the differences between money managers who "only call when they want you to buy something," and others who call you constantly to ask how you're doing, with the strong implication being that you should prefer a money manager who is constantly calling to shoot the breeze.

Then we are told that a lot of money managers try to put all their clients into "cookie cutter" investment fund portfolios, and this is bad and wrong- never mind that whole Safety in Numbers thing, and never mind that spreading money out among many, many different investment strategies just makes sense.  Fisher Investment choads don't do this- they "tailor" your investments to something that matches your specific goals.  Uh huh.  Because the goals of middle-aged people are so very different:

Some (lets call them Group A) want to invest their money in a way which allows them to comfortably retire when they are sick of working.

Others (lets call them Group B) have other ideas for their money....like....ok, turns out that the population of Group B is zero.  Unless you include all those imaginary guys from Life Insurance Commercials who are planning to die fairly young and leave everything to that vampire wife and kids....

And then we reach the end of this ad, where I get seriously triggered when the middle-aged money manager puts what I guess is supposed to be a reassuring hand on his client's shoulder.  Again, What. The Actual.  F.  Is that??  I get we are probably supposed to see this as a friendly gesture, kind of like "I'm with you all the way" or something.  But I read it more like "you're stupid with money, but don't worry, I'm your daddy, I love you, I'll take care of you, trust me."  That's weird but ok until that hand shows up.  If I were the client, I'd respond by telling that guy to take his hand off my g-d d--ned shoulder.  You're not my spouse, you're not my father, and you just crossed a line, creep.

Unless, of course, he takes my paltry monthly investments and turns them into a few million dollars.  Do that first, then we'll talk about broker-client privileges. Until then, I don't trust you to stand behind me while I sit on a stool because your track record of respecting boundaries really sucks.

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