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Sunday, January 18, 2015


Thanks to all who replied to my panicky call for help in coming to terms with my mother's broker. It is painful to witness the process whereby she has been--and is being--manipulated by this man. 

I am amazed that my little blog, which has a very small footprint in the big world of blogging, should attract people so willing to share their expertise. It means a lot to me that my misgivings and suspicions have been corroborated by others.

My father, whose death propelled my mother within a few weeks into the "arms" of a broker to whom she gave total control of her assets, would, I am sure be horrified. I began this blog a few months before my father's sudden and unexpected death. In rather ironic timing on the part of the universe, my father died in November 2008, in the midst of panic about the Great Recession, revelations about Bernard Madoff, and an uncertain future for many.  My father and I had, to be plain, a terrible relationship, which still pains me to  contemplate.  But he was very good at finances and enjoyed managing his money. I learned a lot from watching my frugal dad. 

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Duchesse said...

I had similar feelings of gratitude to your readers whose expertise will likely save the day.

Quick story: It's 2006, my mother is playing bridge with a woman who is boasting about her returns with "Uncle Bernie" and tells Mom she can get her investments moved there. Mom (always shrewd with money) decided not to accept her help, because, she said, "No one gets returns like that year after year, unless they're dishonest." Whew! She died in 2008, same time your dad did, with her estate in good shape considering the year.

dotsybabe said...

Now might be the time to have the "difficult" talk with your mother about providing you or your brother with a durable power of attorney, health care proxy, wills, and l-t and s-t investments and income needs. Her returns don't seem "bad" but there seems to be a lot of "churn" in her portfolio for unspecified reasons. Maybe her returns would have been higher absent broker commissions. It's hard to tell anything from the point of view of a blog reader! But it may be time to protect your mother's assets more aggressively.

SewingLibrarian said...

One more thought, Frugal: we have our funds with a CFP as mentioned by Seattle Sews. The company has a setup whereby we can see everything happening in our accounts in real time on the computer. This allows us to see what activity, if any, is happening. Maybe you or your brother could see if this broker has such an option. If not, could you use this fact as a selling point to persuade Mom to move her money?