TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Jan. 31, 2017) - If Canadian investment advisors are truly committed to earning their clients' trust, they must be transparent about their own investments. Investment advisor and consumer advocate Adam Hennick aims to shake up his industry by challenging his colleagues nationwide to reveal their personal RRSP picks and rate of return to their clients. And he's ready to start with himself, committing to show his RRSP to any customer who asks.
"Before you invest with a professional, don't you need to know that your financial advisor has done well on the markets with their own money?" Asks Hennick. This may appear to be an obvious question, but Hennick argues that most Canadians are far too polite or intimidated to ask a financial advisor to see their RRSP returns … not that many advisors would offer.
In a 2016 Hennick Wealth Management survey, Canadians who used a financial advisor were asked if their advisor had ever shown or discussed what he or she invests in personally. Only 6% of respondents said they had a very good idea what their advisor was invested in and 20% knew about some of their advisor's investments. But the majority of respondents, 68%, were just too polite to ask.
Those results come as no surprise to Hennick, who believes Canadian investors are too tentative when it comes asking their money managers tough questions.
"Canadian investors need to be a lot less polite. If you are willing to ask a waiter what's best on the menu, why wouldn't you ask your financial advisor where they put their own money? If your advisor won't discuss their individual investments, at the very least find what kind of rate of return they are getting on their own portfolio, so you can be confident they will invest your money wisely."
Though Hennick acknowledges that not all an advisors' personal wealth is reflected in an RRSP, he still considers the advisors personal results to be very relevant in predicting whether your advisor will be successful with your money. Essentially, it confirms that they have been successful in their own investments. Ask to see their RRSP's and specifically look for the following:
- What is their rate of return, have they been consistently successful on the markets?
- What are they invested in? If your advisor is not investing in the same investments as his or her recommendations to you, why?
- Their immediate reaction … does the prospect of showing you their RRSP terrify your advisor?
Hennick says his clients will not be surprised by what they see in his RRSP because they are the same investments he recommends for them. It also means that Hennick has a vested interest in getting the best returns for his clients.
"What does it say to investors if we aren't willing to put our own money into the products we are recommending for their portfolios?" said Hennick. "Is the advisor recommending an investment because it is a good fit for client's needs, or to meet some sort of internal sales target?"
About the survey
Conducted by Environics Research Group, the online survey was conducted among 1,067 adults from Monday, June 27th - Thursday, June 30th, 2016. In order to qualify for this survey respondents had to be 18 years of age or older and reside in Canada. Of those interviewed, 389 adults stated that that they are currently working with a financial advisor.