The Investment Scientist

Beware of Financial Advisor Awards

Posted on: May 3, 2017

This morning I got an email informing me that I was identified to receive “The Five Star Wealth Manager” award.
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Am I super excited about this recognition?


This is not the first time I’ve gotten this type of email. In the past, I have received similar emails from both strangers and people claiming to represent well-recognized publications like Barron’s and Forbes. They all told me that they wanted to recognize me as the best wealth manager/financial advisor/financial planner in the country, or in my state, or in my city, or ever born.

I was naive enough to give them a call at first, only to find out they knew nothing about my practice, and they asked nothing about how well I serve my clients, all they asked for was money.

I refused them of course, since honesty is what I hold dear, and they would repeatedly come back with lower prices since they thought I was just haggling with them. Apparently, there are plenty of  financial advisors out there who are not beyond buying recognition as long as the price is right.

I wish I could be as funny as Allan Roth, a fellow financial advisor and tireless advocate for ethical financial practice. He submitted his dog, Max Tailwager, and got back a beautifully made plaque with the inscription “Max Tailwager, America’s Top Financial Planners.”

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Schedule a Discovery review with me, or get my white paper for free: The Informed Investor: 5 Key Concepts for Financial Success.

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Michael Zhuang is principal of MZ Capital, a fee-only independent advisory firm based in Washington, DC.


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