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Sun Dec 11, 2011, 12:54 AM

If you read this group in the old DU, you know I posted/answered a lot of questions. [View all]

Last edited Thu Feb 19, 2015, 07:51 PM - Edit history (2)

So I might as well start this by making a full confession and/or disclaimer.

For most of my adult life I have been an over-the-road tractor trailer driver. In 2006 I had an opportunity to change careers and joined AG Edwards & Sons, Which at the time was the 5th largest retail brokerage firm in the country and the largest based outside of NYC (St. Louis).

I studied for and passed the Series 7 general securities license exam and the Series 66 General State Law license exam (which allowed me to legally call myself a "Financial Advisor" ) and the Florida State Insurance exam for Life, Health and Variable Annuities. Those licenses allowed me to trade every security except Commodities and Futures. I "hit the street" in September of 2006. The Dow peaked exactly 12 months later!

AG Edwards was bought by Wachovia and Wachovia was bought by Wells Fargo. Things went from bad to worse and I lost my position with the firm in July, 2009, primarily due to the fact that my book of business wasn't deep enough to weather the downturn and by the end of 2008, no one wanted to talk to a broker about anything other than CD's. A retail broker with a small book can't make a living selling CD's.

The rules stipulate that if a registered representative leaves a firm and is not hired by another, any securities licenses held expire 24 months after the last day. So my licenses are expired. I am back in the trucking industry, hauling new cars primarily in the South Eastern US. (Edit, 2/19/2015 - I currently haul US Mail for a contracting firm. Got out of the car haul biz in September of 2013)

I say all this so that anyone I might respond to in this group can know that I do have some professional background in the securities industry. I am fairly well versed in how Mutual Funds work and are structured as well as how to analyze them, Bonds, Stocks, Exchange Traded Funds, Closed End Funds and have a working knowledge of Options, though Options are much like speaking French. If you don't use it, you get rusty and I am pretty rusty on a lot of that material. I am familiar with and know the differences between 401(k)'s, IRA's, Roth IRA's, 403(b)'s, 457 plans, and some estate planning strategies.

I am more than happy to answer sincere and serious questions regarding investing and securities as well as portfolio management and structure. I understand how to structure a portfolio to be either very aggressive or very conservative.

I will not, under ANY circumstances recommend a specific security for purchase. That is unethical in the utmost and even though I am under no threat from any regulatory authority, I think it is a rule worth following. If someone wanted to ask me whether I thought XYZ company was a good investment for example, my answer would be along the lines of providing resources you might not be aware of in order to make it easier for you to decide for yourself. At the very most I'll say little more than "it is something to consider". I am not an attorney nor am I a tax preparer or tax expert, but there are certain legal and tax questions regarding investing I feel comfortable answering. Those that I don't I would suggest speaking to an attorney you know. I also still have many contacts in the business including Certified Financial Planners and Chartered Financial Analysts and can access them for answers to more complex queries if needed.

Entirely too many people on the old DU in both the Economy forum, GD and elsewhere felt it was completely OK to tell people they should buy this stock, that commodity, that Mutual Fund or this foreign currency. Not me.

But I will do my best to clearly and plainly answer any questions I can and explain technical points regarding securities to anyone who is interested.

Here's hoping this group is a bit more active than the old one!

Paul.

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Reply If you read this group in the old DU, you know I posted/answered a lot of questions. [View all]
A HERETIC I AM Dec 2011 OP
Common Sense Party Dec 2011 #1
A HERETIC I AM Dec 2011 #2
elleng Dec 2011 #3
Jack Sprat Dec 2011 #4
A HERETIC I AM Dec 2011 #5
Jack Sprat Dec 2011 #6
A HERETIC I AM Dec 2011 #7
Jack Sprat Dec 2011 #8
A HERETIC I AM Dec 2011 #9
CountAllVotes Dec 2011 #10
A HERETIC I AM Dec 2011 #11
CountAllVotes Dec 2011 #12
Common Sense Party Dec 2011 #13
CountAllVotes Dec 2011 #14
marissa686 Mar 2013 #15
steve2470 Sep 2013 #16