What Are the Typical Responsibilities of a Financial Advisor?
A financial consultant or financial advisor is an individual who gives financial advice to potential customers based on his/her expertise and experience in the financial market. In most countries, financial advisers are required to complete certain training and obtain registration with a regulatory agency in order to give financial advice. They are also expected to undergo further training when it comes to financial products and new trends that may emerge in the market. This training and further education increases the chances that financial advisors will provide sound financial advice to their customers.
According to the law, financial advisors should at least have a four-year degree from an accredited university or college and pass the CFA exam. Furthermore, financial advisors can choose to get either a commission or a fee-based job depending on their personal preferences. Some prefer to work independently while others prefer to work for firms that work on a commission-based basis. Most firms however prefer financial advisors who are licensed or certified by a state agency such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The most important requirement is that financial advisors meet the fiduciary standard, which means they must follow the rules and guidelines set forth by the SEC to protect the interests of their clients. Financial advisers who are registered with the SEC face fewer conflicts of interest compared to those who are not registered.
Tax Planning and Fiduciary Standard. Financial advisers work with their clients to determine what is in their best interest, both financially and emotionally, and recommend investments accordingly. They assist their clients with tax planning, retirement planning, and asset protection, among other things. The goal of every financial advisor is to help their clients achieve their goals and prevent future losses. This means that a good financial advisor provides valuable and relevant information, develops investment strategies, and provides advice related to insurance, investments, estate planning, and tax planning.
Estate Planning and Retirement. Financial advisors also help their clients create financial goals, obtain funding, and create appropriate estate plan settlements, all while assisting them with goals and funding. Financial advisors can work with individuals, couples, or groups and can recommend individual solutions or group solutions depending on the goals, needs, and assets of their clients. An estate plan ensures that beneficiaries (children, relatives) will receive proper financial support in the event of the death of the primary owner.
Investment Management. Financial advisors also provide investment management services, which involve providing advice on how to increase returns, reduce risk, and protect wealth. Typical services include asset protection strategies, investment in low risk investments, tax planning, and securing funds through estate plans and trusts. Most fee-based financial advisors work with banks, brokerages, and independent investors. There are no commissions involved, so independent advisors generally charge less than investment banks, brokerages, and insurance companies.
Financial Advisor Business Model. Many financial advisors provide a wide range of investment products such as mutual funds, stock funds, bond funds, estate planning and investment vehicles such as tax lien certificates and mortgage notes. Some focus on one or two investment options, whereas others offer a full range of products for all of the most popular investment options. Regardless of what type of financial advisor business model an advisor works with, there is a need for someone to make money investing and providing advice. This need is usually fulfilled by commission pay outs to the advisors.