Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performance]

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Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performance]

Postby TheExMexican » Fri Mar 29, 2013 2:19 pm

Hello fellow Bogleheads. I am mostly a lurker, but once again I need some help, so I am turning to y'all:

My wife and I had been working with an 'independent' Ameriprise financial advisor for the last 10 years or so. We were actually quite satisfied with the advice and the performance of our investments (exceeding every benchmark I can think of by a couple of percentage points). Our advisor retired last year, and sold his customers to a younger guy in the same office. The new guy is definitely less of an 'advisor' and more of an 'investment manager'.

During our last meeting, I raised two points, and I was not at all satisfied with his answers. I am very certain that "I'm right and he is wrong", but it would be very helpful if some more wiser folks here could chime in...

1. We are in a wrap account with an asset-based fee, paying 0.75%. Given the size of our portfolio, I asked him to lower it to 0.5% (which we had agreed to with our old advisor upon hitting a level of assets under management). He went into a detailed presentation about the different classes of mutual fund shares (front load, deferred load, but never mentioning no-load). He said that by having our funds in the wrap account, we pay no front-end or deferred loads (which I know is true), and we also do not pay the fund's management fee, but only his fee (the 0.75%). This last part really threw me off. "Do you mean to tell me that we are paying a lower expense ratio than what is listed in the prospectus for the class of shares we own?" I even pulled out an old prospectus for a bond fund, pointed to the 0.8% "Management Fee" and asked "do you mean to tell me we are not paying this 0.8% on this fund? His answer "Yes". At this point I was still very confused, so I asked "So, if I looked at the performance of this fund over the years, the performance of the shares in my account would be better than what is listed in the prospectus for the same class of share over the same time period" ...."Yes"

I just cannot get this through my head. If I understand mutual funds correctly, the management fee is just part of the fund's expenses, and it reduces the performance of the fund's shares. If you own 100 shares of ABCDX at JoesBrokerage.com and I own 100 shares of ABCDX in my fancy Ameriprise account, will they not always have the same NAV and therefore the same percentage growth/decline over time? ...maybe you had to pay more for your 100 shares because of the 5.25% sales charge, but once we own the same number of shares, they don't change value based on who owns them!

I asked him to provide me something in writing explaning this, and he said he would forward something to me....it's only been a few days, but I am extremely curious to see what he'll send.

Maybe he was trying to say that without being in the wrap account I just could not have bought that class of shares without the 5.25% front end fee? -- My wife was with me the whole time, and we just can't figure out if he was just not explaining himself well, if he was outright lying, or if he just doesn't understand how a mutual fund's expenses affect the NAV (I don't know which one is worse) ...of course, I could just be wrong, too...

2. The second point was about mutual fund performance. I noticed one fund he had suggested last year has performed poorly over the last 3, 5 and 10 year period (according to the prospectus). The fund is JCMAX. During our meeting, he brought up the fund performance screen in his Ameriprise website (which is different from what I have access to). According to Ameriprise, JCMAX has outperformed the 'midcap' benchmark for the last 3, 5 and 10 years. In addition, it shows it is near the top rated funds for its category with Morningstar. We did this exercise with two or three funds I had looked at, where according to the prospectus it had under-performed the benchmark (clearly defined in the prospectus), but according to the Ameriprise 'research' website, it had over-performed their nebulous benchmark (i.e., website performance numbers match the prospectus, but the benchmark numbers do not). By nebulous I mean they don't call out a specific index (for example "Russell Mid-Cap Index"), but rather say something like "Real Estate", or "Large Cap", etc. He could not really explain what the actual benchmark was or why it was different than what the mutual fund company itself publishes in the prospectus.

I will admit I am not an expert in finance, but I am an engineer and I know all about comparing expected, measured and published specifications. Is it unreasonable to think that if a mutual fund whose objective is to invest in mid-cap companies is underperforming the Russell Mid-Cap index, it kind of [stinks --admin LadyGeek]? (even if Morningstar thinks it's a great fund?)

Again, looking at our account's historical performance, I can honestly say that our old advisor deserved every penny we paid him, but I am not so sure about the new guy. Am I being overly paranoid, or is it time to move on?

Thanks for the advice, especially if you read all the way down here! :happy

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby mptfan » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:08 pm

You are not being paranoid, it is time to move on. You will eventually learn that arguing with the Ameriprise guy is futile because it is difficult to convince a man of something if his livelihood depends on not being convinced. Move on and don't look back.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby Skinut » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:45 pm

I believe Warren Buffet said something along the lines of, don't buy something you don't understand...

A former Ameriprise client myself, I sat in your chair and looked at the charts on the screen and never fully understood the performance numbers or the fees.

Fast forward 1 year, I've read many pages on this site, The Bogleheads Guide to Investing, and built my own asset allocation spreadsheet. My portfolio is now balanced, I have a plan, and I'm paying 0.16% on average vs. 1% or more with Ameriprise...

I hope you see the light
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby hoppy08520 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 4:02 pm

If you're smart, you'll update your post title to Yet another FORMER Ameriprise customer... :)

Maybe your former salesman was better than some of the examples we've seen on this site, but when I read threads like this recent one, I would run from Ameriprise. Based on the many threads I've seen here, they'll say anything to keep you (and your money).
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby retiredjg » Fri Mar 29, 2013 4:34 pm

There may be some confusion about what the fees are that you were talking about. You mentioned a "management fee" but it sounds like you are referring to an expense ratio.

As far as I know, the expense ratio is always accounted for on a daily basis before the "new" net asset value is calculated. I don't see any way for a mutual fund expense ratio to be waived. It just does not seem possible. But I've been wrong before... :wink: Maybe they have the stocks in some kind of trust and there is no ER, just the AUM wrap fee. But if that is the case, I don't think there is a ticker.

I wouldn't just assume that the advisor was lying to you. It's possible you two were talking apples and oranges. Perhaps if you told us the exact fund and the exact fees you were discussing, it would be easier to help.

As another former Ameriprise investor, I'd encourage you to look around and see what might be better. Ideally, you could manage your own investments - it's not hard once you learn a few things. Or if you really feel the need for an advisor, It can be done cheaper. And you can find an advisor that uses index funds instead of the actively managed funds. There is no reason to pay both a wrap fee based on AUM in addition to loads, high expense ratios, 12b-1 fees, etc.

Besides, it doesn't sound like you and this new advisor are bonding well. Unless you are in a small town, there should be other Ameriprise people to use. Not that I'm suggesting that, but if you really want to remain there, you should be with someone you are comfortable with.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby lawman3966 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:33 pm

No doubt, the fees are complex, but not in the way that technology or science are.

They're complicated because the vendor wants them to be, since any resulting confusion works to the benefit of a vendor that is extracting money from you in numerous underhanded ways. It seems a waste of time to work toward deciphering something someone else worked to render indecipherable. Aside from the difficulty of the project, there is the other factor of you and your financial company working against one another.

Investing in low-fee index funds provides the dual advantage of (a) having a straightforward fee structure that will take one second to understand; and (b) a fund company that works with you rather than against you.

As other posters have stated, it's time to move on to a company that doesn't spend its time trying conceal information and deceive you.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby Alskar » Fri Mar 29, 2013 6:05 pm

TheExMexican wrote:My wife and I had been working with an 'independent' Ameriprise financial advisor for the last 10 years or so. We were actually quite satisfied with the advice and the performance of our investments (exceeding every benchmark I can think of by a couple of percentage points). Our advisor retired last year, and sold his customers to a younger guy in the same office. The new guy is definitely less of an 'advisor' and more of an 'investment manager'.

You have my condolences. My father and my brother are with Ameriprise. I have received their pitch a number of times. I will answer your specific questions with generalities:

First: Your former and current Ameriprise managers are broker/dealers. The name "advisor" has no legal meaning. Broker/Dealers are regulated by FINRA (http://www.finra.org/). Broker/Dealers have no fiduciary duty to you whatsoever. The investments they suggest just need to be "appropriate" which has been interpreted by the SEC very loosely. Selling a 90 year-old an expensive variable annuity is "appropriate", but probably not in his or or her best interest. Do not fall into the trap of thinking your Ameriprise broker/dealer is on your side. He or she is NOT on your side.

Second: I can pretty much guarantee you that your former broker/dealer did not "regularly exceed every benchmark you can think of". You have been bamboozled. Ameriprise broker/dealers are trained to compare their performance against the pure benchmark which does not include dividend return. They also don't include the tax consequences of their frequent trading. Some don't even including trading costs. Allan Roth has done a large number of articles on the ways that "advisors" show they "beat the market". See his website to read more: http://www.daretobedull.com. Read Burton Malkiel's "A Random Walk Down Wall Street". Take Allan Roth up on his offer of a free 1 hour consultation. As an engineer I say to you, a fellow engineer, I had no idea how corrupt the financial services industry was until I got educated.

Third: Are you sure you're only paying 0.75% of Assets Under Management (AuM) to Ameriprise? They typically are more like 2% of AuM.

I recommend that you do some reading and have a free consultation with Allan Roth before you do ANYTHING with your money. Good luck!
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby roymeo » Fri Mar 29, 2013 6:14 pm

#1: I've gotten that sort of response from someone before (representing our company's 401k plan where the company said they were picking up 'all the expenses') who didn't really understand what it was that was being discussed. You are correct that there aren't mutual funds sitting out there that have a separate ER fee sitting on the side for someone else to pick up. He's probably not "lying" to you; he's probably misinformed.

#2: Is this even a question? I mean, do you really have any question at all after what you witnessed? I searched JCMAX and the first paid link https://www.jpmorganfunds.com/cm/Satellite?pagename=jpmfVanityWrapper&UserFriendlyURL=fundoverview&cusip=4812A2660&s_kwcid=TC|24516|jcmax||S|p|9594379738&gclid=CKyQ-Pf3orYCFSRxQgodf2EAyg to the JPMorgan site tells me this fund:
Invests primarily in equity securities of mid-cap companies with market capitalizations equal to those within the universe of the Russell Midcap Index.
and that the performance for 1,3,5,and 10 years is below that of the Russell Midcap Index, though above the "Lipper Mid-Cap Core Funds Index" which is an index of fund performance, I assume.

So JPMorgan says what the proper benchmark is. You already know this.

I bet the little charts you saw ALSO neglected to reduce the performance by the wrap 0.75% amount as well as comparing the performance to something dubious.

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby Dale_G » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:00 pm

You are correct to be suspicious of anything this Ameriprise rep tells you. He is either misinformed, comparing apples with grapes, or just dancing around the issues. Because of the wrap, you may or may not be paying loads, but you are definitely paying the er of the funds in addition to the wrap fee. The fact that he denies this is a big fat red flag.

My advice, hang around the Bogleheads site for a while longer and then cut yourself loose.

I should note that most Bogleheads indirectly own stock in Ameriprise (NYSE symbol AMP) through Our Total Stock Market fund, yet we routinely advise most folks to pick up their sticks and invest on their own.

This doesn't mean that Ameriprise is a bad company. They may actually help some people who are totally clueless. But you are not clueless anymore. It is time to move on.

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby Shilo777 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:01 pm

Hello ExMex…. My husband and I are the most recent “bad” examples of what can happen in an Ameriprise portfolio. We are in the process of gathering information about our accounts and getting ready to make the jump to Vanguard.

Both of your questions are issues we have just recently discussed with our Ameriprise Financial Advisor. We are also in a wrap account with an asset-based fee, paying .85%. When we finally started asking questions about our accounts, we were told that Front Load and 12b1 fees were waived when our Mutual Funds were purchased. When we asked if there were other expenses we were told “no”. We left that meeting feeling a little better. Then we went home, continued studying, and learned a new term, “expense ratio”. During our next contact with them we asked about “expense ratio” fees. Finally, we were told “Oh, yes, there are expense ratio fees.” Those fees are not waived. We have added up the expense ratio fees we pay on our Mutual Funds and it’s almost $7,000 a year.

In regards to the performance of Ameriprise funds, we had a similar experience. Our advisor wanted to purchase more funds. They made suggestions and after researching, we made counter suggestions just to see what they would say. For whatever reason, the performance comparisons they made and quoted us from their Ameriprise website did not match the performance comparisons we had researched. The Ameriprise funds were supposed to be better. Go figure. :oops:

Wishing you the best!

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby gwrvmd » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:04 pm

Re: Mutual Fund expense fees. There is no way you can buy a mutual fund without paying a expense/management fee. NONE. Included in the expense ratio is things that CANNOT be waived: quarterly reports to the SEC, printing and distributing prospectuses and annual reports, paying custodial fees, having a Board of Directors, maintaining a record of investors, etc, etc.
You were either lied to or the rep is so financially illiterate he doesn't understand that....Gordon
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby dbr » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:10 pm

gwrvmd wrote:Re: Mutual Fund expense fees. There is no way you can buy a mutual fund without paying a expense/management fee. NONE. Included in the expense ratio is things that CANNOT be waived: quarterly reports to the SEC, printing and distributing prospectuses and annual reports, paying custodial fees, having a Board of Directors, maintaining a record of investors, etc, etc.
You were either lied to or the rep is so financially illiterate he doesn't understand that....Gordon


And, in addition, a mutual fund will have costs to buy and sell securities which are not reported in the ER. The more active the fund, the more these costs will be.

Also, one doesn't like to see anyone paying 0.75% AUM unless you really need the advisory service and you get advice and management that actually benefits you.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby Steelersfan » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:24 pm

And that JCMAX fund? It has an expense ratio of just at 1.25%.

In addition to your wrap fee.

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/pr?s=JCMAX+Profile

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby 4th and Inches » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:27 pm

I'm a former Ameriprise customer. Trust us that you need to get out of there. Get educated by reading the wiki and the reading list. It will take time, but will be worth it.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby pennstater2005 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:29 pm

My wife was with Ameriprise through her Simple IRA at work. Her boss switched companies to State Farm. We ran from them both. Still running from State Farm twice a year with a rollover into Vanguard :D
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer...

Postby petrico » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:49 pm

lawman3966 wrote:No doubt, the fees are complex, but not in the way that technology or science are.

They're complicated because the vendor wants them to be, since any resulting confusion works to the benefit of a vendor that is extracting money from you in numerous underhanded ways. It seems a waste of time to work toward deciphering something someone else worked to render indecipherable. Aside from the difficulty of the project, there is the other factor of you and your financial company working against one another.

Investing in low-fee index funds provides the dual advantage of (a) having a straightforward fee structure that will take one second to understand; and (b) a fund company that works with you rather than against you.

As other posters have stated, it's time to move on to a company that doesn't spend its time trying conceal information and deceive you.

This...

...is a beautiful post! As another former Ameriprise (aka "IDS", aka "American Express") customer, I'd say this about sums it up.

I had nothing whatsoever against my advisors. I simply became better educated and realized how idiotic it was to hand over so much of my hard earned savings to them.

Alskar wrote:I can pretty much guarantee you that your former broker/dealer did not "regularly exceed every benchmark you can think of". You have been bamboozled.

Alskar is probably correct.

I have now reduced my portfolio expense ratio to 0.13%, including a 0.10% third party administration fee in a 457 plan. So, if you could reduce your portfolio expense ratio to something similar, how much could you be saving every year?

I stopped contributing new money to IDS 15 to 20 years ago, and I finally pulled the last bit I had there in 2005. Without a doubt, that was one of the best financial decisions I have ever made.

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby MN Finance » Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:02 pm

As posted, the new advisor either lied or is totally incompetent. The only time an advisor would honestly say something inaccurate is if the client was asking ambiguous or only partially informed questions. From the sound of your post, you probably asked a very clear and informed question. It's pretty easy to tell when an investor asks a cloudy question and then receives an equally cloudy reply - this is not that case.

Obviously you pay the fund expense and the wrap fee, but not the loads. Your all in costs are between 1.5% - 2.0% typically for a firm like this. There are indeed cases where you can buy separately managed accounts and not pay the fund ER, but that's an entirely different arrangement and you'd know that if you had that.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby LadyGeek » Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:02 pm

Welcome. I'm also a former Ameriprise Client. First, remember that your advisor is acting as a fiduciary - you don't need his permission to move funds. When it's time to move out, do it yourself. Or, let the new company take care of it for you - Vanguard moves funds out of Ameriprise all the time (they did it for me).

You should understand the advisor's motivation. Take a look here: Client relationship guide, be sure to download the PDF. Appendix A lists mutual fund firms which provide financial incentives to promote their products. J.P. Morgan is on the list.

BTW, I retitled your thread.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby TheExMexican » Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:28 pm

Thanks to everyone who responded. I spent a lot of time on the Vanguard site today, and was happy to see that almost everything we have at Ameriprise can be transferred 'in-kind', so we can leave Ameriprise sooner rather than later, and then take our time deciding how best to handle the 'stinky' funds :happy

I do have one more question for those that left an Ameriprise wrap account:

We own some front-loaded funds which had their sales charge waived because of the wrap account. If these funds get moved to Vanguard, are there any fees to pay because of this? According to the Client Agreement document, I only see a $100 fee for the last account to be closed, plus 'other applicable fees'...Of course, the break-even period for any fee they charge is going to be very short, so I ask more out of curiosity than anything else...

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby tfb » Sun Mar 31, 2013 1:41 am

I'm curious why Ameriprise is so successful in getting clients. More reps for face-to-face contacts?
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby bottlecap » Sun Mar 31, 2013 8:57 am

tfb wrote:I'm curious why Ameriprise is so successful in getting clients. More reps for face-to-face contacts?


Advertising works.

ExMex, I would imagine that you will not have to pay those fees if you leave, but, then again, anything is possible. You'll have to decipher the agreement and then ask Ameriprise if there are any other fees. If they don't show up in the agreement, challenge them.

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby LadyGeek » Sun Mar 31, 2013 10:17 am

I would not ask Ameriprise, as it will get the advisor directly involved. Ameriprise has no incentive to give up this account, so you want to call Vanguard and let them "pull" the investments -they do this all the time. Then, contact the advisor and let him know you are terminating the relationship.

Here's the service cancellation form, which is found under Account service forms. Note that you can also request a refund, it's up to you: Cancellation and Refund Request form, along with the Cancellation and Refund Request Instructions

=========================
I was never charged anything other than an account termination fee. If those charges were waived, then that part is done and there's no reason for them to do anything further. If anything shows up beyond the termination fees, then go ahead and challenge it.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby Oddlot » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:27 pm

tfb wrote:I'm curious why Ameriprise is so successful in getting clients. More reps for face-to-face contacts?


I signed up with them strictly based on Tommy Lee Jones' charisma (just kidding).

Actually, I inherited them. Years ago I opened an account w/Olde discount brokers, which was bought out by HR Block, which in turn sold its brokerage to Ameriprise, and my account went along for the ride.

I just transferred my Ameriprise holdings to Vanguard and plan to migrate over to index funds as my core portfolio investments.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby Alskar » Fri Apr 05, 2013 6:49 pm

LadyGeek wrote:Welcome. I'm also a former Ameriprise Client. First, remember that your advisor is acting as a fiduciary - you don't need his permission to move funds. When it's time to move out, do it yourself. Or, let the new company take care of it for you - Vanguard moves funds out of Ameriprise all the time (they did it for me).

I think you must have meant to write "functionary". Ameriprise "advisors" are broker/dealers and as such have no fiduciary duty to their clients whatsoever.

To beat this dead horse some more:

When my mother passed away I inherited several 529 plans my parents started for their grandchildren (my sister's kids). The 529 plans were started by their Ameriprise "advisor". He put them in a 529 plan called "Tomorrow's Scholar" which is one of the options in Wisconsin. My parents lived in Colorado. My sister lives in California. So the choice of Tomorrow's Scholar smelled pretty fishy. At that time, Tomorrow's Scholar was run by Wells Fargo. It is now run by ING.

Consumer Reports listed Tomorrow's Scholar as one of the worst 529 plans in the nation (http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/money/personal-investing/college-savings-plans/some-of-the-best-and-worst-529-plans/some-of-the-best-and-worst-529-plans.htm). I think that is putting it mildly. They charged a 5% front-end load on all contributions. There were an assortment of administrative fees that added up to 1.43% of AuM per year. On top of that were the 1.5-2.0% ER's. On top of that my parents Ameriprise "advisor" was charging them 2% to "manage" the 529 plan. When I did my research, I thought I must have made some mistake as this was totally ridiculous.

When I took over the 529 plans following my mother's death (they were in her name because my Dad expected to die first), I got the pitch from Ameriprise. My research was correct: All of those fees, including the 2% of AuM "management" (wrap) fee were being charged. When I started making noise, they couldn't process the paperwork to get me out of their hair fast enough.

I moved the money into the Utah state program (UESP). I send the statements to my Dad every quarter (he continues to make contributions). He thinks I'm a financial genius, but in reality, with a 8.43% (total fees on Tomorrow's Scholar) headwind it isn't really hard to trounce Tomorrow's Scholar.

My father and my brother continue to use the same Ameriprise "advisor". They remain convinced that their "advisor" "regularly beats the market" despite evidence to the contrary. I leave the room when they discuss the subject as continued cordial familial relationships are more important to me that being right about Ameriprise.

Now you folks have me wondering why my father and brother pay 2% of AuM to Ameriprise, when less than 1% seems more typical, even for Ameriprise.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby TheExMexican » Thu May 09, 2013 5:11 pm

I wanted to revive this thread with an update for anyone considering moving from Ameriprise to Vanguard.

After a lot of work-related travel, we finally decided to call it quits with Ameriprise and move to Vanguard. I used a lot of that travel time to read the "Boglehead's Guide" and "The Four Pillars". That, coupled with the events at the start of this thread, was more than enough to make the decision.

It took about 3 weeks from the day I mailed in the forms until the funds showed up at Vanguard. Out of all the funds we held at Ameriprise, we only had to liquidate one of them and move the money as cash.

We let Vanguard do all the work, and we never heard a peep out of our advisor, even though he lost a significant chunk of income (at least 'significant' to me!). I called his office to ask him to sell the one fund that would not transfer over, and his response was "Oh, we turned you in as customers when we saw the transfer request. You have to call the main office to get them to do that for you now". Fair enough.

We'll take our time selling our existing funds and getting to our desired asset allocation with low expense ratio funds, but for now I figured we just improved our returns by an instant and guaranteed 0.7%.

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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby EmergDoc » Thu May 09, 2013 5:27 pm

Welcome to the club. Most of us have moved money from somewhere to Vanguard at some point in our investing careers. I occasionally move money away from Vanguard, but not very often.
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby Winthorpe » Fri May 10, 2013 1:33 am

I am currently in the process of overseeing the transfer of my parents assets from Ameriprise to Vanguard. We are about half way done at this point. Vanguard was quick once they received the necessary notarized forms. A couple of variable annuities remain. I'll follow-up later with an update on how it all went.

I am so relieved that this is finally happening. We had to sit and watch this train wreck for years while waiting for a large var. annuity to mature so that they would not get hit with huge surrender charges.
Winthorpe
 
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Re: Yet another Ameriprise customer... [Wrap acc't, performa

Postby Winthorpe » Fri May 10, 2013 1:50 am

tfb wrote:I'm curious why Ameriprise is so successful in getting clients. More reps for face-to-face contacts?


Yes. I think this is part of their success. They also recruit clients/victims aggressively.

I think the Bogleheads are a very rare breed and that the vast majority of the American public is financially clueless.

A smooth talking, confident salesperson makes the average Joe feel secure handing his money over while remaining blissfully ignorant. This is what happened with my parents (see story above) until I convinced them there was a better way.

I have many colleagues who are intelligent six-figure earners who never seem to make decent financial decisions and who know very little about investing/personal finance in general. Many don't seem to care as long as the paychecks keep rolling in.

I think there will always be plenty of new clients for Ameriprise and the like.
Winthorpe
 
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