Television Preachers come in all types. Some are preaching the Gospel. Some are preaching about a new product, gadget, or body lotion. Taken all together, the Gospel is good, and buying some of the other stuff won’t ruin your life. There are other preachers out there that CAN ruin your life. These are financial preachers. There is one out there who is ubiquitous. You can’t watch a financial news program, go to a financial website. or even just watch the news or soap operas. and he is there. Even gossip magazines are filled with his ads. The common theme is:
ANNUITIES ARE BAD! PUT ALL OF YOUR MONEY WITH US!
In most cases, what we read and see in television and internet advertising isn’t quite coordinated with the experience of consumers. In the case of this particular Television Preacher, the facts do not match up to the hype.
(1) He says ‘annuities are bad’ and spends enormous amounts of money on slick ‘investor briefs’ disparaging ALL annuities and insurance product.
TRUTH: He has over $60,000,000 of his own money invested as a stockholder in one of the biggest nationwide annuity companies. Hypocrisy? You be the Judge.
(2) A recent acquaintance of mine; a person whom I tried to make a client, recently moved all of his 1.3 Million to this company. The results were as follows:
a. Incompetence. The TV advertising company transferred an IRA annuity to a non-qualified stock account. The result: $150,000 tax problem for their new client.
Result: The TV Company is now in a lawsuit with their new client.
b. Immediate Stock Market losses. Because their client had his funds in both annuities and mutual funds, he was better protected from a stock market correction. The market crashed in August. The TV company’s’ new client was transferred out of annuities and in to individual stocks. The client lost over $200,000 in this correction, and as of this writing, had only made $60,000 back.
Result: The TV company’s’ new client has had his entire retirement plan ripped to shreds. The TV company’s new client, who is in his 60s will have to keep working instead of retiring like he planned.
My comment. This would NEVER have happened if this acquaintance had followed my advice. For two years he dithered. And then at the moment of decision, he blew it. This is something I can’t fix. His old advisor told him moving the money to the TV Financial Preacher was a fools’ errand. For once I agreed with a financial planner. Safety, protection, and GUARANTEES are fundamentals of preparing for retirement.
Note: if it sounds too good to be true, and makes you take the risk, it probably is too good to be true.