Wall Street is the financial service industry that licenses thousands of firms and 675,000 stockbrokers, financial planners, and financial advisors. Wall Street is also an enigma. It pretends to be your friend, but it is really your adversary. You want to accumulate and preserve assets that help you achieve your financial goals. Wall Street wants to maximize the revenue that it generates from your assets.
We are frequently asked if Wall Street is rigged? Of course it is rigged. Too much power breeds corruption. Wall Street executives control the exchanges, the regulatory agencies, and the politicians who make the rules. Wall Street abuses its power when companies do what is best for them and damage the investors who depend on them.
Wall Street has a critical role in American society. Its advice and services impact when people retire, how they live during retirement, and their financial security late in life. However, Wall Street is notorious for predatory business practices that have damaged the U.S. economy and millions of investors who depend on it for competent, ethical advice and services.
Hundreds of headlines have documented Wall Street abuses.There have been criminals like Bernie Madoff and Allen Stanford who were highly regarded members of the Wall Street fraternity until their massive Ponzi schemes ran out of new money. Goldman Sachs, arguably the most respected name on Wall Street, was caught selling a $1 billion pool of toxic mortgages and betting against its success. And, don't forget JPMorgan. America's largest bank paid billion of dollars of fines in 2013 for "misconduct".
One hundred years ago Wall Street helped American companies raise equity and debt capital to fund their business operations. 60 years ago Wall Street firms conducted research and stockbrokers recommended the purchase and sale of securities. Back then stockbrokers were called Customers' Men because they represented the best interests of their clients. Stockbrokers were still highly regarded by their clients.
Today, Wall Street is a massive marketing machine that is dominated by a destructive sales culture that emphasizes the production of revenue versus helping clients achieve financial goals. Stockbrokers are held in the same low regard as other aggressive salesmen, for example life insurance agents and used car dealers.
You have to invest your assets in the securities markets. You need what Wall Street is selling. But, do not assume Wall Street companies and advisors are your friends. They are the source of a hidden problem that creates major risk and excess expense for you. And, the regulatory agencies are not much better. They are also controlled by Wall Street. Like it or not, you are solely responsible for protecting your financial interests.
We are not going to fix Wall Street. It is too big and powerful. But, we can expose Wall Street business practices that damage you. And, we can provide facts and insight that reduce your dependence on Wall Street. The more you know the better prepared you are to protect your financial interests.