Financial Services Case Studies

Case Study 1: Financial Services Consolidation

An elderly couple in their 70’s was trying to streamline how they managed their investment portfolios.  Each month, they were receiving multiple brokerage statements, they had a trust to account for, and they were about to receive a substantial inheritance.  When asked about their investment strategy or fee structures for each account, they were not sure how to answer.

One of the first things Fergerson Financial addressed was the number of different accounts and brokers this couple was using.  Quite often, clients will pay more than they have to in brokerage or fund fees because they are not managing their assets efficiently.  Consolidating investments under a common strategy under one custodian makes the overall investment strategy more accountable and sometimes much more efficient.

The second step Fergerson Financial took was to understand this couple’s previous investment strategy.  Having different accounts with different brokers, they were not sure how each related to the other.  Rick Fergerson took a holistic approach and laid out the different accounts and labeled each according to risk.  He then prepared a strategic recommendation where all accounts would fit the couple’s risk tolerance as well as growth objectives – again, under one custodial account.  The couple finally understood where their money would be invested and the related risks and fees.  After completing all paperwork and ensuring all previous cost basis information was captured, the couple could now receive one statement for their investments.

Finally, the inheritance.  The couple received a substantial inheritance.  The funds they received allowed them to have more options with their investments than they previously had AND they wanted a little more liquidity.  Rick ensured they received a recommendation that allowed them to maintain liquidity, but invest in a more diversified portfolio.

Understanding your financial strategy is critical to your financial success.  Having an advisor that partners with you, understands your objectives, and communicates with you frequently is extremely important.

Case Study 2: Retirement Planning

A question often asked of financial advisors is how much money do I need in order to retire?  That was the case with Judy Smith (not her real name).  Her main concern centered around not knowing if the money she had invested was substantial enough to support her retiring early.

Judy was in her late 40’s, had approximately $500,000 in mutual fund and real estate investments (mostly income generating investments), $700,000 in 401k and IRA’s, and her home was paid for.  She was eligible to receive $1,500 a month in pension/social security benefits in ten years.

The first approach by Fergerson Financial was to determine Judy’s monthly living expenses.  Factoring all aspects of Judy’s life, including travel, health insurance, gifts, inflation, car expenses, etc, Rick Fergerson determined the monthly expense budget required.

The next approach was to determine a monthly income budget.  Factoring in a very conservative return on her investments, her future pension/social security, and the planned sale of investments, Rick determined Judy’s realistic monthly income.

Rick presented his findings to Judy and she decided that current investment goals would not meet her retirement goals and she committed to working another five years.  Her revised strategy included increasing her retirement and savings contributions to meet her planned retirement target

Understanding your financial strategy is critical to your financial success.  Having an advisor that partners with you, understands your objectives, and communicates with you frequently is extremely important.

Case Study 3: Small Business Retirement Plan

A small business was searching for a financial advisor to manage their company retirement plan and to manage the owner’s personal investments. The business owner wanted an advisor with a fiduciary approach to the investment process and was not satisfied with the frequency of communication with his last advisor.

When dealing with small business retirement plans, there are many rules and regulations.  Not only is the business owner responsible from a fiduciary perspective, but the legal requirements are quite cumbersome and penalties can be substantial if compliance is not maintained.

Fergerson Financial’s approach was to understand the current retirement plan, its design and its investment strategy. After review and discussion with the business owner, not only was a new investment strategy presented, but also a communication plan to the staff.  Fergerson Financial established quarterly meetings with plan sponsor, ensured they understood their investment options, and conducted one on one meetings with plan participants.

Understanding your financial strategy is critical to your financial success.  Having an advisor that partners with you, understands your objectives, and communicates with you frequently is extremely important.

Fergerson Financial provides investment advisory services for individuals, families, trusts, businesses and retirement plans based on what is best for you, our client. 

 

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