It is time for 21st century investing, with the necessary legal protections for America’s IRA’s. Ban mandatory arbitration, and give IRA’s a private right of action.   The photo is from the SEC’s historical files on self-regulation in the securities industry.  Not much has changed since this photo was taken as a recent report reveals.SEC Historical Society Photo on Industry Self-regualtion

Retirement investors must pay attention to this recent study:  Industry-run FINRA Arbritrator Pool Panels Lack Diversity and Fails to Detect and Communicate Biases.

This study underscores how disastrous the situation is for every IRA investor.  There are over $6 trillion dollars in America’s IRA accounts.  Securities laws are breached day in and day out costing retirement investors cumulatively billions through poor performance and high, excessive fees from conflicted intermediaries–investment product salesmen, calling themselves “advisors”, to distribute their investment products.

You can read more at our retirement investor advocate Blog,

An IRA, opened up in a brokerage account, has absolutely no legal recourse.  “You have no right of private action” in your IRA and you are also subject to mandatory arbitration  Both these two legal issues must change and adapt to the reality of today–Americans’ retirement savings are all they have–  they deserve 21st century legal protection to go with their life savings.

Almost every IRA is in a brokerage account and is subject to mandatory arbitration before FINRA, which is Wall Street.  They hear your claim and you can bet the arbitrators will not rule in your favor.

University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management Professor Akshay Rao stated in this report:  “It is my opinion the process is illusory and especially harms claimant investors.”

Do not hold your breath for Congress to do anything with Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) sponsored bill the “Investor Choice Act of 2013″.

What Should a Retirement Investor Do for Protection Against this Unfair Legal System?

You have but one choice if you want the best returns at the lowest cost.  Use Not On My Nickel’s benchmarking platform and new cloud-based interactive tools to go directly to the best performing and least expensive SEC money managers.  You eliminate the salesmen and the brokerage account, the only safe option for your retirement assets in this dangerous retirement investing marketplace.

You will save yourself a minimum of $155,000, according to this study and have piece of mind, through less risk.  (See Part II of this Blog Post.)

Learn How to Go Direct and Eliminate A Brokerage Account, FINRA, for Your IRA

You do not have to open up an IRA with a brokerage firm. You do not have to go through FINRA’s kangaroo court and conflicted intermediaries.

We show you how to protect your life savings from the flawed brokerage account system and their self-regulator, FINRA.  You do have an alternative and we will show you how to do it.

Join our 21st century way of investing.  We do not rely on costly, archaic distribution systems that the retirement industry is determined to push, to support their bottom line, which just reduces your nest egg.

We use technology to enable your retirement assets–to go direct to the best, at the least cost.  You need to decide for yourself with our transparency, tools and platform —on active or passive. Not On My Nickel does not sell any investment product or give investment advice.  We are 100% independent.  Not On My Nickel Seven Criteria

With our tools and benchmarking platform, the Consumer Reports of America’s top money managers (passive or active), you are in charge and empowered to make an informed decision, for the very first time.

Take a look at our seven criteria, to the right, for a money manager to make it to the Not On My Nickel benchmarking platform.  Every Not On My Nickel manager is required to file holdings and performance to the Securities and Exchange Commission, on a regular basis. We urge you to only access money managers that do so.  Your financial advisor does not file their performance with the SEC, on what investments they select for you and neither do new “robo advisors”.  That is too great a risk to take with your life savings to not be able to look at an audited history of a minimum of five year performance, after all fees.

Your nest egg will no longer be in one of the 8000 poorly performing mutual funds.  Low cost does not mean better. Get all the facts before you invest. Poorly performing new robo advisor passive strategies carry great risks, interest rate, currency and political risks —and these firms may be trading your retirement assets in dark pools, that reduces your returns, but gives them trading income on your nickel.

Email us to get on the list to access our platform and cloud based interactive tools first!

You may also want to ask your employer to give you access to our interactive tools and benchmarking educational platform for your 401k.


Is the financial industry a scam? Dilbert, Scott Adams, wrote on his Blog last Thursday, “How to Make More Money in Stocks”,

“So my suggestion for permanently lifting the value of the stock market to new sustainably high price-earnings ratios is to pass a law making it illegal to offer financial services without disclosing the truth – that they are mostly a waste of your time.”

Josh Brown and Dilbert on CNBC 8814CNBC hosted Scott Adams  yesterday to discuss his position that financial advisors and the industry are a scam.  Josh Brown, (he calls himself the “Reformed Broker”) and went from being a broker to being a “money manager”, took issue with Dilbert’s critique of financial advisors.  Josh and Scott Adams are pictured to the left.

Not On My Nickel believes there is value in professional money management, strictly with the very few money managers that meet our strict seven criteria, detailed below. Not On My Nickel Criteria for Money Manager Selection

Josh Brown is not “reformed” since he does the same thing he did when he was a broker, he sells product without any accountability at Ritholtz Wealth Management.  Dilbert’s argument is sound.  “Financial advisors” such as Josh Brown throw together a few things and call themselves “wealth managers”, with no published performance measurement standards or benchmarks.

Josh may be good at social media, but he has yet to show any value that he has added, after all fees, on his website, at Ritholtz Wealth Management.  Before one selects a manager, review the NOMN checklist to the left.  In this instance, based on our seven criteria, CNBC regular, The Reformed Broker, who sparred with Dilbert, fails to deliver (1) a minimum of five years published performance against an agreed upon benchmark on his website or with the SEC, (2) fails to detail portfolio turnover and trading costs and thus (3) an operating philosophy that clients come first.  Clients have no idea what value they are receiving for money management, after all fees.

As the retirement investor advocate, The Derivative Project, recently wrote, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has warned about fiduciary lapses in managed accounts and the failure to provide benchmarks and performance. Yes performance reporting and benchmarks matter.  The GAO has called the Department of Labor to task for not mandating performance and benchmarks for firms such as Ritholtz Wealth Management that seek to manage retirement assets in 401k plans. Without SEC-filed performance reporting, yes, the industry is a scam, that media is actively promoting to the detriment of every retirement investor.

Not On My Nickel subscriber’s know the danger of no benchmarks and performance, which we have written on many times.  The media has allowed the scam, that Dilbert describes, to perpetuate as we have detailed here:

Can You Trust Bloomberg’s Financial Reporting?

Public Radio’s Chris Farrell Shills for Wall Street – Financial Engines

Time to Uber Your Retirement Portfolio

McGraw Hill Financial/Education published the Reformed Broker’s two books, Backstage Wall Street and Clash of the Financial Pundits.  McGraw is owned by Apollo Global Management LLC, a private equity fund, that also owns S&P.  No surprise that Josh and his partner, Barry Ritholtz, who writes for Bloomberg, are now actively pushing passive investments, on CNBC and at Bloomberg, as this Tweet from McGraw yesterday, indicates:

McGraw Hill Financial and S&P

Why would one ever hire a “money manager” without five year’s performance history?  Probably because CNBC endorses and promotes them, without any financials and performance reporting, to back them up.  Passive investing, with an additional advice fee, is indeed a scam, as you are guaranteed to underperform the index. It matters which passive funds are chosen and how they are managed.  Why go with an unproven management style, unknown performance, guaranteed below the index, when there are excellent, but very few, active managers, that outperform the index, after all fees for over 15 years?

The “investing revolution” that Wall Street is promoting, such as in this McGraw Hill Financial Tweet, is a scam and not in the best interest of retirement investors. McGraw Hill’s unit, S&P is still being investigated for their conflicts in ratings during the financial crisis, as this July 23rd Press Release describes: S&P’s July 22, 2014 Wells Notice from the SEC.  The trust is gone, one must see the hard facts, in terms of published performance.

However, NOMN disagrees with Dilbert.  There are a few money managers that have withstood the test of time and deliver excellent value to retirement investors. There is a genuine societal need for professional money managers.  There are a few that add value.  There need to be more.

End the Wall Street created “learned helplessness” and dependency on conflicted “advisors”. Simply cut out the noise and allow free markets to take over, where retirement investors have the tools and transparency to access the best passive or active portfolio manager—on the first independent, non-conflicted soon- to – be released retirement platform, Not On My Nickel.

End the Wall Street-created “passive revolution” nonsense.  

(1) With passively managed accounts, there is no accountability for performance.  Wall Street does not file any returns with the SEC for their new “passive” investing revolution.  Chances are the retirement investor is losing more, than in the old model, one simply does not know.  Frauds and Ponzi schemes are proliferating at record rates in retirement accounts due to lack of performance reporting at the SEC.

(2) Wall Street is pushing trillions of dollars of retirement assets into dark pools, detracting from investor returns through poor trade execution and taking the daily trading revenue on retirement ETFs, for their own account and not passing the savings on to the retirement investor.

(3) Earning fee income on the $10 trillion dollar retirement account, where firms such as Wealthfront, Betterment, Ritholtz Wealth Management slap an assets under management fee on a few passive investments and head to the Hamptons, without a worry on investment selection, is hardly revolutionary.

Dilbert is correct-there is a scam— a fake, Wall Street created revolution….that pretends to be helping the retirement investor.

 Screen Shot 2013-10-07 at 10.15.57 AMWhat is the Number One Financial Mistake Women Make?

If women do not know the difference between using a financial advisor for (1) financial planning and (2) for the process on how to select an investment, chances are they will be sold products that do not suit their needs, pay fees in excess of what is necessary and limit the future performance of their nest egg.

Not On My Nickel assists women in understanding the difference between financial planning and investment selection.  We are here to help you understand why in most cases you will never want to pay a “financial advisor” an annual fee for assets under management and when to pay a financial planner.  It is imperative to have the tools and education to understand the difference.

Not On My Nickel is the first independent financial education service for women 

Not On My Nickel was developed to meet a gapping hole in the investment industry today.  We assist women in understanding the difference between hiring a “financial planner”  for overall financial planning and an “adviser” registered with the SEC who actually manages a portfolio of stocks and bonds.  There is a significant difference.  We explain why you most definitely want to unbundle these services to ensure you are not taken advantage of.

How is Not On My Nickel education service different from a financial advisor?

  1. Not On My Nickel believes in empowerment.  We do not provide advice. We believe in providing the services that give every women the confidence to make a financial decision and the tools to do so.  We focus on the tools and training to help you understand investment selection.  We help you understand how to Benchmark – an investment or an advisor.
  2. We show one how to avoid hidden advisor fees and excessive investment fees.
  3. We separate the “planning” and budgeting from the investment selection.  While you may want a “financial planner” to help you with a budget and an overall plan, we strongly encourage all women to go through Not On My Nickel’s education to understand how to select an investment and what investments are in your best interest, after all fees.  We show you how investment selection is different from the financial planning process and why you must know the difference to protect your nest egg

85 Broads Report On the Top Financial Mistakes Women make

At a recent financial panel provided by 85 Broads, the panel, linked to above, informed the group of women:

“The panel also acknowledged the sometimes-ridiculous complexity of the financial services industry….be it the characteristics of the different types of Financial Advisors, the features of products like annuities, or simply the difficulty in determining fees. While this type of complexity can be a deterrent, the panel urged the audience to find an Advisor with whom they are comfortable to guide them through this.”

Not On My Nickel cautions women, remember this panel is selling financial advice and investments.  It is in their interest to keep it complex and overwhelming. The first step and the biggest mistake most women make is not understanding how to use an “Advisor” and when and why you may or may not need one.

Not On My Nickel is the first service that helps you understand this “ridiculous complexity” from a neutral third party.  We are not an advisor.  We are not selling advice services or financial products. We do provide a second-opinion on what type of advisor you may need or even if you need one. We give women tools to understand how and when to use an advisor and the wisdom to know when not to.

The complexity in the financial services industry has been created by the industry to ensure you will be confused, overwhelmed and (1) pay more for the services of an advisor and (2) buy more expensive product from the advisor.

The first step is understanding what services you need and what services will add value in your situation.  85 Broads assumes everyone must must have an advisor.  Not On My Nickel gives you the tools to determine if their assumption is correct for your personal situation.

Not On My Nickel’s founder began her career in international banking and has over 30 years financial experience in all aspect of the markets today – whether that be in financial planning, insurance, retirement investing, investing a lump sum and the training and education of analyzing mutual fund fees, advisor fees, to complex financial products such as options (Series 4), over-the-counter derivatives and foreign exchange hedging.

Not On My Nickel’s founder believes one of the most important things for women in investing (and men for that matter) is to understand benchmarking and how to use it to judge all investment advice.  Understanding this simple process will provide the confidence in every investment decision and eliminate fraud and Ponzi schemes.

What Do We Provide?

Not On My Nickel provides hourly educational services to women:

  • Going through a divorce
  • Recently lost their spouse or partner
  • Recently inherited a lump sum or received a lump sum from an accident.
  • Want extra help in understanding how to manage their retirement nest egg, whether that be in a 401(K) or in an IRA.

We provide hourly education to help you make a decision to determine if you need an advisor, how to use the advisor and the tools and training to understand any investment selection.  We give you the confidence to believe any decision is the best decision at that point in time.  Not On My Nickel is not “Do It Your Self” from the standpoint of investment selection.  It is the new world order where you understand who is actually managing your money – the trusted fiduciary portfolio manager, who can provide you 5, 10, 15 years published performance that you can compare against a meaningful benchmark.  You have the confidence in your investment selection and know exactly where you money is going, how and why that investment is selected and exactly how much it costs.