Michael Cox [mykhail]
What is your professional position? What responsibility do you have in your work?
A Financial Advisor for the middle class. Help families become properly protected, debt free, and financially independent. Also to further the expansion of our company by opening more offices.
Which has your career path been like? How would you summarize your experience in the financial arena?
Until 2 yrs ago my financial expertise was limited to almost none. As soon as I started working for Primerica my experience / training has brought me to a whole new level. I can safely advise clients of the majority of their concerns, those that I can't advise on I have people working with me that can.
Is there a link to a website or social network site where we can see something more about you or your business?
How do you develop an investment strategy? What factors must one keep in mind for this?
With the confidential, customized, and complimentary Financial Needs Analysis that we provide each of our clients we can assist them in getting on the right track for investing. Majority of the funds we provide have a high rate of return (in comparison to the banks). We provide a custom plan for each client and invest their money in the plans they want based on their comfort levels/knowledge. We educate each of our clients on "how money works" and from there they can make a better, more informed decision. Each person is different and each plan is different.
What is that your clients value most about your services?
1) Free Financial Needs Analysis
2) Inexpensive products
3) The right advice on which products to use
4) Our education before sales approach
5) Our phenomenal business opportunity
6) Unique products
7) Keep it simple enough that anyone can understand it
8) The dead money we find in areas they are overspending in
9) The truth
10) The fact we come to the client and they don't have to come to us
How do you determine the amount of risk a client is really willing to take?
During our analysis of the clients needs we have a risk factor questionnaire that will determine their level of comfort in investing. Mutual fund licensed reps can assist the clients in picking the right products that suit their wants/comfort/needs. Life Licensed reps will assist their clients in either a) sending them to a mutual fund licensed rep or b) will place the client in a segregated fund that out performs most mutual funds and has all the right benefits that the client is looking for.
Is it important to include a personal aspect to the relationship with a client?
The personal touch is something we pride ourselves on. We, unlike most financial institutions, prefer to do our presentations/advising at the kitchen table. We go to the clients home where they are most comfortable.
How do you negotiate your compensation?
Compensation is preset by the company and based on your own performance. Basically if you work hard you get compensated for it.
What are the most frequent errors that people make when investing?
Going to the bank, investing in money markets, not getting a double digit rate of return, choosing the wrong funds, taking their money out when the news says "omg the sky is falling". They should be buying more when the markets are down because everything is on sale at this point. Buy low, sell high right?
There are people that prefer to invest in things that can be touched, like houses, art, gold, etc. Is this a bad idea?
Investing in things like this make it difficult should you need the money. Liquidity is a plus with mutual funds or segregated funds.
What percentage of income should a 30 year old professional invest for the future?
That would depend on the amount they can afford and the amount they think they need for retirement. With a customized plan it can vary from person to person.
How is personal economics taught? At what age should children learn to handle their own budgets?
Unfortunately our school systems neglects to teach us a lot about how money works. We all know that pi is 3.14 but not many know that 72 divided by your interest rate will tell you the approx amount of years it will take a lump sum of money to double. How credit cards work? Why interest rate on a mortgage is not what you should be searching for but rather what rate you pay off your mortgage. Children should be taught these life lessons in junior high at the latest. 25$ / month for 65 years = approx $20,000 but at 10% that works out to about 2.5 million. How much better off would your child be at retirement with 2.5 million for a measly $25/month?
How secure are banks and government guarantees on deposits?
If your GIC or other guaranteed investment is making less than inflation (3% usually) then its pretty darn secure, unfortunately your investment is constantly losing money. Probably should look into finding something with 8-12% rate of return.
Are there any well-known millionaires that you admire for the way they have made their fortunes?
Art Williams. Founded our company back in 1977 and built an empire from a small 84 person company to a legacy that licences 50% of all new agents in the life insurance industry, and has more than 100,000 licensed agents now. We are the largest financial services marketing organization in North America. PRI on the NYSE.
Where do you seek counsel and information when working on something bordering on illegality?
Our company has very strict compliance guidelines, any problems of this nature can be dealt with our head office.
Which are the most trustworthy and objective market information sources that you rely on?
No one can predict what will happen to the markets, but there are experts that handle our mutual funds/segregated funds that I trust will be better able to predict the future investment needs than I. AGF is my primary source in Canada.
All of our client data is completely confidential. Privacy is a huge deal and not one to be taken lightly by our agents.
How do you see your future in the long term? Where is your career headed?
Within the next 1-2 years I will be running my own branch location making at least $100,000 / year net. My career is headed for greatness.
Do you have a handy saying or a relevant expression on the subject of money?
98% of the people who have life insurance have the wrong kind. 21% of people don't even have any. Buy term and invest the difference.