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If an investment looks too good to be true, then it probably is

As an Independent Financial Adviser with many years of experience I am often asked to exercise my psychic abilities. I’m asked to answer questions like “Where do you think the Global stock markets are going?”, or “a friend has been promised a 15% per annum return on their investment, what do you think?”

I believe these types of questions are asked, because for decades large Investment and Life Assurance Companies have supported mass marketing campaigns in the financial press. The financial press has therefore received enormous advertising revenues from these campaigns which in turn has seen the inevitable growth of the financial industry itself.

However, all these campaigns focus on one common premise which is finding the next ‘must have product’ or the next ‘must have fund’.

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This has created an investment market where by retail investors’ clamour for financial promises without too much investigation. Some even being ignoring the old maxim, “If it looks too good to be true, then it probably is”.

With all the broken promises and financial returns, that fall a long way short of the advertising, it’s not a surprise that potential investors are both disappointed and disillusioned with the investment markets. Quite often I have seen people scouring publications and the Internet, to see if they actually bought the ‘prime investment’ they (mistakenly) thought they already had.

For the financial press it makes sense to support these “sales campaigns” from the major investment houses, as it generates more advertising revenue. However, does it make sense for the investor?

The real problem is that finance publications earn revenue from predicting, the next best or worst shares, or financial sectors for the coming year. The retail public lap this up but can they afford the consequences if the financial publications get it wrong?

The plain truth is, giving investment advice boils down to making an almost psychic forecast. The publications are making a forecast, but have no more knowledge of the future than anyone else – you or I included. But how many publications would you sell boast a title like: “We have no idea what’s going to happen with your investment” or “buy our next issue and we offer you the same investments as last month”.

Investors have therefore grown up with the expectation that advisers like myself, (or the financial press) can look into a crystal ball and predict the future…..well we can’t. As the small print says “Investments can go down as well as up”. No one can accurately predict the future. What you do get from us is honest and informed advice, BUT there are no guarantees.

By Hannah Goldsmith – Goldsmith Invest

Tweet at @hannahGfs

Website : https://www.goldsmithfs.co.uk/

Linkedin – https://uk.linkedin.com/in/hannahgoldsmith

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