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If a GPS can fail, so can fintech

I recently read an article from the Philadelphia Inquirer about an 18-wheeler that drove several miles down the pedestrian-only Boardwalk in Atlantic City. The driver was following instructions of his onboard navigation system which had the boardwalk designated as a street. After passing several stunned onlookers, the driver found himself stranded and his tractor trailer…

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What we can learn from Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods

For the past 20 years, organic food grocer Whole Foods has rethought the way consumers shop for groceries and brought the farmers’ market to neighborhoods all over the country. While pricey, it succeeded in a crowded sector, and grew in a small niche market into a nationally dominant position, becoming part of the American fabric…

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6 Rules to Becoming an Indispensable Advisor in 2020

Robo-advisors, phone apps, and easy access to a plethora of information on the internet has put the traditional role of the human advisor on the verge of being obsolete. Clients now have significantly cheaper ways of obtaining the goal-based financial planning and money management they desire. Soon, they may even get those things for free,…

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Vanguard to seize wealth management industry with its digital platform

Robo-advisors have been around for over a decade, and throughout that time we’ve been hearing that they are a threat to established independent wealth advisors. While they might have attracted a lot of industry coverage, most robos have gathered a relatively small amount of market share over 10 years. Yet in two short years, Vanguard…

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What financial advisers can learn from Amazon

What happens when geography stops being an important buying criteria? Recently my phone’s storage chip malfunctioned. Unfortunately, I had a full afternoon of meetings and an early morning flight the next day. Thanks to Amazon, I had a new chip in my mailbox by the time I arrived home a couple of hours later that…

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How technology will alter the role of human advisers in wealth management

A small group of us spent a recent afternoon with the chief evangelist at Singularity University in Silicon Valley. The campus is fittingly housed on a NASA site under the shadow of a huge unused hangar once used to store blimps. Their classrooms contain every variety of technological gadget you might imagine, from 3D printers…

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The 361-Day Challenge

Generally, advisers meet clients two to four times a year to engage, build trust, instill confidence, help solve problems and ultimately, earn the fees clients pay us. That means clients pay roughly $2,500 per meeting based on their annual fee. The overarching question is, in this age of “information at our fingertips,” are we doing…

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Winners and Losers of the Murky DOL Fiduciary Rule Implementation

There’s plenty of speculation as to what will happen with the implementation of the Department of Labor rule that holds advisers for retirement plan participants to the fiduciary standard. Whether the rule is delayed, amended or implemented, only time will tell. In the meantime, let’s discuss the new uncertainty and its impact on the wealth…

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Time for financial advisers to reimagine their offices

A slew of articles in several media outlets from CNN to TechCrunch have recently highlighted a medical disruptor called Forward that opened its first “doctor’s office” in San Francisco in mid-January. I think it holds an important perspective into what is in store for all of us and how our offices operate. The flagship location…

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The Presidential Wave: The People Have Spoken

The U.S. Presidential election turned a lot of heads worldwide. For the first time in modern history, the U.S. elected a commander in chief with no political experience, little of the support traditionally given to the candidate of a major party and none of the big money from business interests. This happening in the same…

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