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...the empirical evidence shows that people on the whole tend to do better WITH advisors.

Curious on this. Would you say that the empirical evidence you are referring to is more historical than present and results from the fact that most people did not know any better?

It seems like more people are becoming educated on their finances and learning how to manage it for themselves because they're finding it's not that difficult. I'm sure there will always be those who do not want to deal with it and refer to a financial advisor.

What's unfortunate is places such as Amex whose financial advisor piece of the business is growing (Amex finance advisors generated $6.2 billion last year, $121 million of which was solely for financial plans and advise according to WSJ). The financial advisors are trained to maintain what is known as their respective TWP ratio (pronounced "TWIP") or Total Weighted Production which is a ratio of total Amex products sold vs. overall products. One that doesn't have a high TWP is reprimanded or let go. (From Class Action lawsuit filed by Attorney Jon Drucker)

Despite who might do better is the question, "Do people go to financial advisor because they think they can do better?" or "Do people go to financial advisors because they don't know any better?"

Some obvisously go because they don't want to deal with their finances and perhaps just don't have the time. Certainly nothing wrong with that as long as they know and understand the fees associated with the service.


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