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-   -   Financial Mis-selling to expats (https://www.englishforum.ch/finance-banking-taxation/71732-financial-mis-selling-expats.html)

glinaa 13.03.2011 22:03

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by KMGSUISSE (Post 1134102)
I am one of the directors of an IFA firm based in Switzerland who provide services to expats.

Which one? I'm sure you can at least disclose your company name, as you have clearly provided sufficient evidence that yours is not one of the "bad ones".

swans1984 13.03.2011 22:06

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Treverus (Post 1134121)
Oh, really? When did you move? Where do you live then? In January you sent me a PM offering me financial advice. You told me you work here... :confused:

Well now live in Spain is that ok for you, if your here you can come and visit me maybe
Anything else you need to know what size pants i wear or anything

KMGSUISSE 13.03.2011 22:08

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
A reference was made in an earlier thread that 37 companies were registered at the office block.

This is not 37 companies that the IFA has registered at the office, it is 37 completely different businesses all operating in different industries etc.

Sorry if you miss understood, I agree if one firm had 37 different companies registered at the same address this would be an area of concern.

mirfield 14.03.2011 09:20

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by swans1984 (Post 1134048)
You are saying this so back it up with the proof please
What they did and which company come on show us all

The thing is Swans, there was once a thread on EF with a great post (I know. Who'd've believed it?).

The poster went to a meeting proposed by one of these advisors/salespeople. It detailed what was said, what the advisor tried to sell and their tactics.

The poster (an expert in finance IIRC) listed several points where the advisor was mistaken, wrong or downright lying. Mistakes that would probably not have been spotted by the average person signing away their savings. The scheme that was offered was inappropriate and the first x years (5?) payments were essentially servicing the advisors/IFA's commission.

The thread was removed after legal threats to EF.

Treverus 14.03.2011 10:08

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mirfield (Post 1134391)
The thing is Swans, there was once a thread on EF with a great post (I know. Who'd've believed it?).

And the other thing is that EF is a community that works a bit differntly than most other online forums:
1. many members know each other personally and trust each other
2. we had over the years so many weird experiences from all sorts of spam over trolling to companies bullying the owners that we know most tricks in the book.

For those two reasons is it quite important to be honest on here if you want business from the members.

After all the events mirfield wrote about and the countless of calls we get each day, financial advice has turned into a pet hate of many on here. In January, there was a complete newby coming up and telling us all what an incredibly great experience she had with her advisor... (Post 44 on this thread: http://www.englishforum.ch/finance-b...s-prowl-3.html) Many thought immediately that it is just hidden advertisement. I played the game and asked her for the name of her advisor. I got an unsolicited PM by you and you claimed to work for the company she recommended.

Now you write that you do not live here and not work in finance - but you find all the criticism completely unfair. Logical reaction: If you live in Spain and have nothing to do with financial advice in Switzerland, why do you bother to post here?
You know: If you really give up your job and moved away, why don't you just write something in the line of: "I used to be a financial advisor in Switzerland and can tell you that we are not all black sheep" and give us some insight on what to look out for: What's the good stuff, what to look out for to not get tricked into paying years of your plan as sales comissions?

Your emotional reactions and PMs just make me believe that there is more behind your posts again - just as "Social Butterflys" recommendation in January. I really think you underestimate us.

P.S: Please don't send me a PM for every of my post you don't agree with anymore. I will never answer them or discuss outside of the public forum.

amogles 14.03.2011 10:12

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Uncle Max (Post 1134063)
Getting defensive again, swans1984. Shouting doesn't help get the message across, which is a tactic still considered effective by the hot house flowers. People are making "pathetic threads" to publicise the practices of such operators, and rightly so. There's no orchestrated campaign; merely members discussing their experiences. It would be refreshing to hear one of the honourable firms responding. It would only help their PR to Switzerland's premier website for Engish speakers :rolleyes:

they might actually create the impression that they were honest if they didn't send their lawyers out to close down every thread on this forum that calls them by name. Only those who fear the truth need to hide it.

14.03.2011 11:11

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by amogles (Post 1134423)
they might actually create the impression that they were honest if they didn't send their lawyers out to close down every thread on this forum that calls them by name. Only those who fear the truth need to hide it.

And it is also a fact that people are at work trying to do an honest days graft (& concentrate on EF of course:D), they don't want to be disturbed.

I started another thread about this (Is being a financial advisor a bum job?), the type of posts complaining about these people proved that it is a service you really do have to hard-sell as most people are happy with other means of investing their hard-earned.

Finally, one of these companies tried to employ me (Geneva based), they were very cagey about answering salary questions (with only a mention of performance based renumeration at first when asked), the office stank & was tiny & overcrowded (the loo had piss all over it) & the general feeling I got was that they were only interested in how many signatures they had that week & proud of saying to me that if employees didn't perform in the second month they were out.

I cut the 'interview' short & I told them there & then that I wasn't interested in their job & was just as proud to tell them that as they would be me if I was stupid enough to work for them.

Also something about Panorama program too.

Treverus 14.03.2011 11:11

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by amogles (Post 1134423)
they might actually create the impression that they were honest if they didn't send their lawyers out to close down every thread on this forum that calls them by name. Only those who fear the truth need to hide it.

My favourite link on that topic: http://www.google.com/support/forum/...a087d3fc&hl=en

GenevaSculler 14.03.2011 11:23

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Treverus (Post 1134475)

This link probably gives a fairly good idea of what sort of products these companies are pushing:

http://www.international-adviser.com/

Doctor 14.03.2011 21:44

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by swans1984 (Post 1134037)
But in this line of business its the way the companies work. How do you know the products aint good enough have you used them, NO YOU HAVENT SO YOU CANT COMMENT CAN YOU
Like i said a number of times show proof about people losing money where are all these people.
I used to work for vodafone cold calling selling upgrades so you saying them products aint good enough cause i was cold calling

You are correct I have not bought any of their products, but I have tried to sell them. I had one of those financial coldcalling sales jobs 18 years ago, where you are self employed, and not guaranteed a salary. At least it was just a job after school for me, so it was easy for me just to let it go, as I still had my student aid.

I was coldcalled by Orange 2 weeks ago. What they offered me was a cost upgrade of CHF 15 per month, and "free" calls in Switzerland up to a certain limit in the evening. I use VOIP at home in the evening, and can call most of Europe for free for just EUR 20 per YEAR.

Doc.

17clarence 15.03.2011 12:42

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
This thread is going splendidly.

Any feedback Alan_Zurich on the small print?

Papa Goose 15.03.2011 13:59

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
As a ex-financial services manager I can tell KMGSuisse:

If you think cold calling is anything more than an unprofessional way of damaging your firm's image and reputation to the very people you claim to represent, 'hoss on matey. For every person you take on, you will repel dozens more, and this has long been understood. It is cheap however, especially when done from the UK. Any firm who has a director who is unable to grasp that, should really refrain from highlighting the fact.... oh you didn't say which firm did you.

Here is my experience (maybe your firm who knows):
Someone in my wife's firm was paid (and subsequently given a disciplinary) to hand over names of employees (oh dear), but when the woman cold called (from the UK where tele-sales jobs are way cheaper than here) I accepted a meeting with one of these advisors out of curiosity. I can say that my labrador has more financial nouse than the chap that pitched up to see me. The 'fact find' was no more than a cursory few notes revolving basically around the ages, income, and how much cash we had to invest, and after 20 minutes this genius had our case analysed (double oh dear) and for our "holistic" (how the hell would he know from what he noted down) situation (I nearly choked on my ginger nut) what he was able to recommend was a chunky front end loaded bond, which is available from any reputable UK companies, that people are likely to have heard of, with an off shore arm... with considerably less load. After 30 minutes my time and patience were up, and to stop my ginger nut joining them.... he was asked to leave.

Packaged products for people who can't manage direct investment is a reasonable way to proceed, as long as the cost are explained. BUT.... do us a favour, and leave off the sad practise of cold calling FS, it's just a poor way to do business.

EDIT: The company may or may not be one with a great relationship with it's lawyers, so I won't name them but PM me and I'll tell you... or for the puzzle junkies, the name has the same capital letters as a very reputable UK motoring organisation, and give or tale a letter, the same name as a Highland sporting estate were the fishing is not great (alledgedly) but the stalking and Speyside malt is 1st class

magyir 15.03.2011 14:07

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by amogles (Post 669724)
I did phone the FINMA about a certain company which we aren't allowed to name on this forum, and I was told this company has the licence to sell products to certified investors but not to members of the public.

This is a very good point. These companies usually incorporate a branch office in Geneva or so with a limited remit but then seem to extend it.

Setting up such a branch office is legit, but not a huge investment and doesn't offer much safety. The question for me is to what extent is the regulator really monitoring this. There's a conflict of interest for all those "wealth management" companies run by Swiss citizens bringing in foreign investors to Swiss banks buying their investment products. :D

A Swiss resident contacted should ask for local certification and where none can be provided draw the appropriate conclusions in terms of risk, reward, redress and remedy.

grumpygrapefruit 15.03.2011 14:31

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by swans1984 (Post 1134145)
Well now live in Spain is that ok for you, if your here you can come and visit me maybe
Anything else you need to know what size pants i wear or anything

A few months ago I got a series of cold calls from a financial advice company based in the south of Spain. When I asked them in which country they were regulated and if they were licensed to sell financial products in Switzerland they just told me that all of this could be explained by their "consultant". These initial calls were just to find out how much I had available to invest.

The whole thing just screamed of scam, I let them play their game for a while but after about 5 calls they gave up on me.

The one thing that really gets me about these companies is that they admit to "targeting ex-pats", it's almost as if they believe expats are easy pickings. Why not offer the same "advice" to the locals?

Treverus 15.03.2011 14:43

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by grumpygrapefruit (Post 1135884)
Why not offer the same "advice" to the locals?

Because the Swiss authorities might care more about locals than about you. If you fall for a scam that transfers your money to some channel Island without proper regulation, nobody cares: Your home country thinks "he didn't pay his taxes here", the channel island government thinks "when is my next payment coming" and Switzerland thinks "Who cares? What an idiot...". If on the other hand some Swiss loses his money and stirs up a stink in Blick, some populistic politicians would ride the wave and get the "advisors" into hot water.

So targetting expats is risk avoidance, helps you to find over average earner quickly and you can continue to use your cheap UK call center for the cold calls, otherwise you need to know the local language...

swans1984 15.03.2011 17:54

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by grumpygrapefruit (Post 1135884)
A few months ago I got a series of cold calls from a financial advice company based in the south of Spain. When I asked them in which country they were regulated and if they were licensed to sell financial products in Switzerland they just told me that all of this could be explained by their "consultant". These initial calls were just to find out how much I had available to invest.

The whole thing just screamed of scam, I let them play their game for a while but after about 5 calls they gave up on me.

The one thing that really gets me about these companies is that they admit to "targeting ex-pats", it's almost as if they believe expats are easy pickings. Why not offer the same "advice" to the locals?

So what are you implying there.
If you like you are more than welcome to come and visit me on the farm.

Guest 15.03.2011 17:56

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by swans1984 (Post 1136111)
So what are you implying there.
If you like you are more than welcome to come and visit me on the farm.

Good point, it isn't like there's a way for people in foreign countries to contact someone in Switzerland, and say they are licensed in Switzerland.

swans1984 15.03.2011 18:09

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Good point, it isn't like there's a way for people in foreign countries to contact someone in Switzerland, and say they are licensed in Switzerland.
Can you run that by me again didnt understand

gata 15.03.2011 18:09

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by swans1984 (Post 1136111)
So what are you implying there.
If you like you are more than welcome to come and visit me on the farm.

I dont think he is implying anything.

gata 15.03.2011 18:11

Re: Financial Mis-selling to expats
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by swans1984 (Post 1136126)
Can you run that by me again didnt understand

Ok i say i live in Geneva and i work in the UN which has allowed me to take charity donations for poor people. Prove im lying


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