BANKS: Bankers and the Economy

ECONOMIC PROPHETS?

By Staff Reporters

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Trying to read the economy is difficult But, some of the biggest financial institutions in the US—including JPMorgan, Bank of America, and Citigroup—will release their earnings reports for the final quarter of 2022 this morning. And they’ll share precious insight into the risk of a recession as an uncertain 2023 kicks into gear.

CITE: https://www.r2library.com/Resource/Title/082610254

Why are banks considered economic prophets?

According to Morning Brew and others, it is because their tentacles touch so many aspects of the economy (from consumer spending via credit cards to business health via commercial loans), that they can see into areas single-sectors where others can not.

Banks are hurting. Goldman Sachs just launched its biggest cost-cutting efforts since the 2008 financial crisis, laying off 3,200 employees (or 6.5% of its entire workforce) this week. And it’s not the only one reducing headcount: Morgan Stanley and Citi are among the other global banks that have trimmed their workforce recently as business slowed due to the Fed’s rate hikes. Overall, big banks’ profits are expected to have dropped 15% in Q4 from the year before.

But it’s not all bad. Rising rates can benefit banks—as lenders, they make more money when they can charge higher interest to borrowers. Of course, banks also need to pay out interest to their depositors, too, but the gap between their lending profits and their depositor payouts (known as the “net interest margin”) is expected to widen—at least for now.

Consumer watch: Pay attention to how much banks have set aside to cover defaults on mortgage, auto, and credit card loans. That’ll give us a peek into how American consumers are dealing with inflation.

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BANKS: Goldman Sachs Overhaul

By Staff Reporters

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Goldman Sachs is planning a major overhaul that would combine its investment banking and trading businesses into one unit and its asset and wealth management branches into another.

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Bank Types: https://medicalexecutivepost.com/2022/10/14/the-three-various-types-of-banks/

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REPORTING on Bank Health?

By Staff Reporters

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Major banks report third quarter results, which should give an indication of the health of the US economy and financial system. So, investors, experts and regulators, who wonder about the health of the American economy and the banking system, will finally have a first and clear diagnosis. 

JPMorgan Chase JPM, Wells Fargo  (WFC) – Get Wells Fargo & Company Report, Citigroup  (C) – Get Citigroup Inc. Report and Morgan Stanley  (MS) – Get Morgan Stanley Report, four of the major U.S. banks, release their third quarter results on Oct. 14th, data that should give a picture of how bad things really are. And for a good reason. 

The monetary policy of the Federal Reserve has alarmed many economists who fear that such an aggressive rise in interest rates will cause the so-called hard landing of the economy in a recession.

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BANK of AMERICA: Equity Inflow Warning!

By Staff Reporters

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Inflows to domestic stocks neared a record last week as bets on a bottom forming spurred major dip-buying across U.S. equities. The optimism, however, is likely premature, according to Bank of America.

Analysts at the bank just noted that allocations to equities reached the third-highest sum since 2008 during the five-day period, according to client data — a sign investors believe indicates that the market sell-off is nearing an end.

But BoA contested the notion that the worst is behind for the stock market

“Last week, during which the S&P 500 rallied 1.5% off recent lows, clients were big net buyers of U.S. equities,” the analysts stated, noting that the $6.1 billion total of inflows was the third largest inflow in the banks data history since ’08 and the fifth consecutive week of inflows.

“Our view? More volatility likely ahead.”

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UPDATE: Stock Market and Retail Banks

BY STAFF REPORTERS

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Stock Markets: Stocks ticked higher as investors zeroed in on Senate testimony from Fed Chair Jerome Powell, who is up for a second term. Powell said the Fed would do what’s necessary to get inflation back to normal levels.

Banks: Bank of America decided to make life a little less difficult for account holders without piles of cash. The bank—America’s second largest—announced on Tuesday that it would reduce overdraft fees by around 70%, from $35 to $10. BofA is also scrapping a $12 non-sufficient funds fee (for bouncing a check or making an automated overdraft) and will eliminate transfer fees for its overdraft protection service.The decision comes on the recently shined heels of similar moves by other large banks.

  • Capital One announced last month that it was eliminating overdraft fees altogether.
  • In August, JPMorgan increased its charge-incurring overdraft amount to $50 (it was previously $5).
  • PNC Bank introduced a 24-hour grace period on overdraft penalties.

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Bank Safety Deposit Boxes; Not So Safe After All?

 Not Really a Safe – SAFE?

By Rick Kahler CFP®

I have routinely recommended that people use a bank safe deposit box to store valuable papers and small assets. These include documents like wills, trust documents, ethical wills, and unrecorded deeds. Valuable assets would include diamonds, gemstones, jewelry, bullion, and small collectables like rare coins, stamps, and trading cards.

The physical protection of a bank vault, plus a system of access requiring two keys kept by the customer and the bank, would seem to provide a great deal of security. Yet several recent news articles suggest safe deposit boxes may not be as safe as they seem.

Report

An article in the New York Times reported 44 robberies in the last five years related to safe deposit boxes. Even worse were numerous bank errors in which boxes were moved, misplaced, drilled open, or closed by mistake. A large Maryland bank closed several branches and lost hundreds of safe deposit boxes. One customer lost $500,000 worth of gold and gems.

In each case, banks vigorously fought any requirement to make their customers whole. Even more shocking, no provision of federal banking law regulates safe deposit boxes.

Nor do banks insure the belongings of customers who trustingly store their most precious valuables in safe deposit boxes. The  risks fall on the renter. Wells Fargo’s safe deposit box contract caps the bank’s liability at $500. Citigroup limits it to 500 times the box’s annual rent. JPMorgan Chase has a $25,000 ceiling on its liability.

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My Story

Decades ago, I placed some rare coins in a safe deposit box with a local bank. A few years ago I went to retrieve my valuables, only to find the bank had drilled open the box and sent the contents to the state as abandoned property. I learned that when I relocated my office, the change of address notification failed to carry through to the annual billing notice for the safe deposit box fee. After three years of non-payment, the bank chose to go through the effort of drilling open the box and shipping the contents to the State Treasurer’s office. It would have been simpler to spend a few minutes looking up my information and contacting me.

Eventually I was able to retrieve the contents of the box. I was lucky.

An international expert in rare watches stored 92 watches plus rare coins, worth millions, in a safe deposit box at a Wells Fargo bank branch. Wells Fargo had evicted another customer for non-payment and drilled open the wrong safe deposit box. The customer found his “safe” deposit box empty. Wells Fargo executives could only find 85 of his watches.

The customer sued. Wells Fargo admitted in court that its employees had mistakenly drilled into and terminated the box. The unrecovered items included gold coins and a watch estimated to be worth nearly a million dollars. After years of litigation and appeals, Wells Fargo has offered no restitution.

If a “safe” deposit box isn’t really safe, what can you do instead?

Here are a few suggestions.

1. Consider investing in a high-quality home safe for small valuables and important documents.

2. Scan all important documents and save copies in a secure online “vault.” Many financial planners provide such online backup storage.

3. If you do use a safe deposit box, choose one at the bank you use regularly and open it at least once a year.

4. No matter where you keep your valuables, insure them adequately. Standard homeowner coverage is probably not enough.

5. Share passwords and access codes with another trusted person.

Finally, ask before you store. Understand a bank’s policies and coverage limits before you trust it with your valuables.

Conclusion

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Risk Management, Liability Insurance, and Asset Protection Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™8Comprehensive Financial Planning Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™

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How Banks’ Fee Bonanza Dries Up

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Changes in rules and customer behaviors are squeezing what was for decades a key source of revenue

[By Dr. Carey via FDIC]

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fees

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Assessment

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Got Cash Money in the Bank?

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Is it Really a Long-Term Investment?

By Rick Kahler CFP® http://www.KahlerFinancial.com

Rick Kahler CFPGot money in the bank? Of course, that’s a good thing.

But, more than a fourth of Americans think the best long-term investment strategy is money in the bank. However, that may be a bad thing!

So, what about medical professionals; and what is a doctor to do?

The Bankrate Survey

Here is the rather discouraging result of a July survey by Bankrate. One of its questions was, “For money you wouldn’t need for more than 10 years, which one of the following do you think would be the best way to invest the money?”

Cash was the top choice at 26%, followed by real estate at 23%. Sixteen percent of the respondents chose precious metals such as gold. Only 14% would put their long-term investment into the stock market, and just 8% thought bonds were the best choice.

Head-on-Desk Syndrome

Doh! That thumping sound you hear is me banging my head on my desk.

I assume those who opted for cash did so because keeping money in the bank seemed to be the safest choice. For long-term investing, however, that safety is an illusion. The best and safest place to put your nest egg for the future is not in the bank, but in a well-diversified portfolio with a variety of asset classes.

Here’s why:

Savings accounts and CDs are safe places to store relatively small amounts of cash that you expect to need within the next few months or years. The funds are protected by insurance. You know exactly where your money is, and you can get your hands on it anytime you want.

Short Term Stability

This short-term safety does not make the bank a good place for money you will need for retirement or other needs ten years or so into the future. It may seem like safe investing because the amount in your account never goes down. You’re always earning interest. Yet, over time, that interest isn’t enough to keep pace with inflation. The purchasing power of your money decreases, which means you’re actually losing money. It just doesn’t feel like a loss because you don’t see the loss in value.

Stock Markets Fluctuate

In contrast, the stock market fluctuates. The media reports constantly that “the DOW is up” or “NASDAQ is down,” as if those day-to-day numbers matter. This fosters a perception that investing in the stock market is risky. Combine that with the scarcity of education about finances and economics, and it’s no wonder that so many people are afraid of the stock market and view investing almost as a form of gambling.

Wise long-term investing in the stock market is anything but gambling. Instead of trying to buy and sell a few stocks as their prices go up and down, wise investors neutralize the impact of market fluctuations by owning a vast assortment of assets.

A Dual Strategy

This is accomplished with a two-part strategy.

1. The first is to invest in mutual funds rather than individual stocks. With just one mutual fund that invests in an index of stocks, you might own thousands of different companies. Your hard-earned fortune isn’t dependent on the fortunes of just a few companies.

2. The second component is asset class diversification. An asset class is a type of investment, such as U. S. and International stocks, U. S. and International bonds, real estate investment trusts, commodities, market neutral funds, Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities, and junk bonds. Ideally, a diversified portfolio should include nine or more asset classes.

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MD Retirement planning

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Assessment

By holding small amounts of a great many different companies and asset classes, you spread your risk so broadly that the inevitable fluctuations are small ripples rather than steep gains or losses. As some types of investments decline in value, other types will be gaining value. Over the long term, the entire portfolio grows.

And, in the long term and for most medical professionals, investing this way is usually safer than money in the bank.

Conclusion

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How Banks Make Money From Home Loans

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Understanding the Fractional Reserve US Banking System

The following infographic explains how banks make money from the deposits of customers. Fractional Reserve Banking is a banking system where banks keep a fraction of deposits from a customer, then use the rest for loans to other customers.

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banks-money-home-loans

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Assessment

Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fractional-reserve_banking

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Video on Physician Loans and Doctor Mortgages [Why Over-Pay Big Banks?]

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Bank Offers a Zero Down Payment Physician Mortgage Loan in Kansas and Missouri

Doctors mortgage programs are offered as a benefit in many hospitals. Banks use these physician mortgage loans as an entry point to gain checking, savings, investment, and Home Equity Line of Credit accounts.

It’s important for physicians to realize that a Big banks objective is assets under management and not necessarily the best mortgage for them.

Many banks offered  special  zero down doctor loans and below market mortgages for physicians.  With the upheaval in the mortgage and secondary market requirements (the people who bought those special physician loans), most of the doctors mortgage programs advantages went away, or became no different than what is available to every other borrower.

Get a second opinion

For this reason, it is prudent for physicians to be aware of the changes in doctors loan programs and seek expert independent 2nd Opinions consultations.

Link: www.MedicalBusinessAdvisors.com

Assessment

Many physicians needlessly over pay $10’s of thousands of dollars in interest to big banks. Over a career of homes and refinances, this could add up to well over $100K that could stay in their account.

Video link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygs81Rsk-Zw

Source: http://www.Physician-Loans.org

Assessment

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Why Health Savings Accounts are No Longer a Banking Industry Pariah

The High Deductible Insurance Competition Heats Up

By Dr. David Edward Marcinko; MBA

[Editor-in-Chief]

As ME-P readers are aware, I’ve had a High Deductible Healthcare Plan [HDHP] coupled with a Health Savings Account [HSA] for my family, and consulting firm, for more than a decade. We’ve been very pleased with it thus far. No significant health problems along the way; just a few scares that proved costly, but benign, because of physician over-protection, over-reaction, or liability phobia; i.e., its better to be safe, than sorry!.

Still, having some economic skin in the insurance game because of the high-deductible feature, makes one an informed consumer. It also provides a sense of empowerment which, while ultimately illusionary for mortals, does offer a bit of self-control. After all, while we can’t mitigate against drunk-drivers and catastrophic diseases, we can live a healthy lifestyle and pay out of pocket for true health “maintenance” … much as we self-pay to maintain our cars and homes, etc. We can do our best … and hope for the rest.

Of course, the savings portion [HSA] has always been a secondary after-thought relative to the actual re-insurance coverage terms, exclusions and conditions. I personally remain focused on the indemnity or PPO type with full coverage, no co-payments and few restrictions. After all, if I use up my high-deductible for an adverse health incident, I figure I have far more problems to worry about than economic. My health, well-being and probably life are significantly in peril.

Nevertheless, as a health economist, I have always appreciated the above market rates given to my cash HSA account; 5% to 4.0% historically; and now 2.5% even after the domestic implosion thru 2010. Compared to the paltry 0.19% in my FDIC protected Wachovia money market deposit account, or the 0.5% in my non-FDIC protected money market mutual fund [brokerage] account; this is a great deal. And, it is tax exempt.

Oh the Irony! 

So, it comes as some surprise that after more than a decade, and the recent health insurance reform political debacle, that there is a surge of interest in the HSA companion. This time however, interest comes not from the insured’s – but the insurers. And, not from the health insurance industry, but rather from the affiliated [and desperate] banking industry.

How so – and why?

Well, it now seems some insurance companies actually desire the business of folks like me who are willing to bear a higher deductible in return for lower premiums, or who are willing to research CPT® code prices and question the efficacy of the procedures they negotiate with physicians in a collaborative fashion; or who are willing to watch their weights and abstain from over-indulgences for their own good. How novel; and again, why?

It’s the HSA pot-o-gold; Duh!

The Proof

Below, is a copy of an email I personally received from eHealthInsurance soliciting my separate health savings account [HSA] business; not my health insurance coverage business:

Dear David,

Did you know that your health insurance plan can be complemented by a Health Savings Account (HSA)? If you haven’t opened an HSA yet, it’s not too late! An HSA allows you to:

  • Use funds to pay for copays, deductibles, prescription drugs, dental services, vision care and more
  • Save money by deducting 100% of your HSA contributions from your taxable income
  • Earn tax-free interest on the funds that accrue in your account over time
  • Grow your account from year to year – the money you contribute won’t expire; you can even use an HSA as a secondary retirement savings account

There are no penalties or taxes when you use your HSA funds to pay for qualified medical expenses. Take advantage of your health plan’s benefits and open an HSA today! eHealthInsurance has partnered with nationally recognized, highly-rated HSA banks to offer you industry leading choices:

  • The Bancorp Bank
  • HSA Bank
  • JPMorgan Chase Bank
  • OptumHealth Bank
  • Sovereign Bank
  • Wells Fargo Bank

We’re with you every step of the way

Our representatives are also available for online chat 24 hours day.

Gary Matalucci
Vice President of Customer Care

The Question Is?

Such the deal; NOT!

So, any thinking HDHP participant [like me] must logically ask why such “nationally recognized, highly-rated HSA banks” would offer above market rates during these times of essentially zero interest rate levels.  Why the interest at all? Are they trying to loose money; or are they just befriending me?

As tennis player John McEnroe might say: are you serious!

Assessment

Yes John, the high rates are a serious loss-leader for more expensive products.

These banks want to make money; not from the non-existent interest rate spread on your HSA cash, but by enticing us to place this growing cash horde into their “investment vehicles.”  In the recent past, some of us mortgaged our homes chasing the stock market or were goaded into flipping houses. And now, these same bankers are encouraging us to mortgage our health insurance on whatever high-priced, low-quality, fee-ridden, load bearing, snarky “investment vehicles” they can pawn off on us.

Of course, the health insurance companies get a fat sales commission or percentage cut, as well. A win-win situation for all but us – the insured.

Think AARP.

My Personal Advice

Do not do it. Do not take the bait.

The HSA portion of your HDHP is for paying premiums and future medical care in the event of a health catastrophe. It is for savings, not for investing in a risk-bearing vehicle. Far too many of us realized too late that a home is a place to live – not an investment. Likewise, a health savings account is for your health, and health insurance – not risky investing.

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Assessment

Well, that’s my opinion as a retired surgeon, former insurance agent and financial advisor.

Conclusion

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Impact of Performance Fees on Mutual Funds and Physician Portfolios

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More Complex than Realized by Some Doctors

[By Dr. David Edward Marcinko; FACFAS, MBA, CMP™]

[By Professor Hope Rachel Hetico; RN, MHA, CMP™]dave-and-hope4

Physician-investors may find themselves paying advisory fees, brokerage commissions, and other sales charges and expenses. All of these layers of expense can reduce or eliminate the advantage of professional management, if not monitored carefully. Also, fees can have a major impact on investment results. As a percentage of the portfolio, they normally range from low of 15–30 basis points (or .15% to .30%, a basis point is one one-hundredth of one percent) to a high of 300–400 basis points or even higher.

Charges are Universal

All portfolio managers, mutual funds, and investment advisors charge fees in one form or another. Ultimately, they must justify their fees by creating value added, or they would not be in business. Value added includes tangibles, such as greater investment return, as well as intangibles, such as assurance that the investment plan is successfully implemented and monitored, investor convenience, and professional service.

Comparisons Required

Always compare investment performance of funds or managed accounts after fees are deducted; only then can adequate comparisons be made. Also, compare fees within asset classes. Management fees and expenses of investing in bonds or bond funds are much different than the fees of investing in, for example, small companies or emerging market stocks. Whereas 100–200 basis points of fees may be appropriate for an equity portfolio or fund, similar charges may offset the advantages of a managed bond portfolio. With managed bond portfolios, real bond returns have limited long-term potential, because returns are ultimately based on interest rates. For example, if a 3% real (i.e., after inflation) return is expected, 200 basis points in fees may produce a negative after-tax result: 3% real return minus 2% fees minus 10% taxes equals a negative 9% total return.fp-book22

Sales Charges

Mutual funds (and some private portfolio managers) charge sales charges to sell or “distribute” the product. Investors who buy funds through the advice of brokers or “commission based” financial planners will pay a sales load. The many combinations of sales charges fall into three basic categories: front-end, deferred (or back-end), and continuous.

Front-End Fees

Front-end fees are a direct assessment against the initial investment and are limited to a maximum of 8.5%. They usually are stated either as a percentage of the investment or as a percentage of the investment, net of sales charges. For example, a 6% charge on a $10,000 investment is really a $600 charge to invest $9,400 or a real charge of 6.4%. Many low-load funds charge in the range of 1% to 3%. Rather than pay brokers or other purveyors, these fund companies or sponsors use the charges to offset selling or distribution costs. Although rare, some funds charge a load against reinvested dividends.

Deferred Charges

Deferred charges (or back-end loads, or redemption fees) come in many forms. Often, the longer the investor stays with the fund the smaller the charge is upon fund redemption. A typical sliding scale used for deferred charges may be 5-4-3-2-1, where redemption in year 1 is charged 5%, and redemption in year 5 is charged 1%; after year 5, there are no sales charges. Sometimes deferred charges are combined with front-end charges.

Redemption Fees

Certain quoted redemption fees may not apply after a period, such as one year. Funds often use such fees to discourage the trading of funds. Frequently, these charges are paid to the fund itself rather than to the fund management company; or broker. Long-term physician investors actually benefit from this fee structure; short-term shareholders who redeem shares bear the additional liquidation costs to satisfy redemption requests.

Continuous Charges

Continuous sales charges, known as 12b-1 fees for the SEC rule governing such charges, represent ongoing charges to pay distribution costs, including those of brokers who sell and maintain accounts, in which case they are known as “trail commissions.” The fund company may be reimbursed for distribution costs as well. In the prospectus, funds quote 12b-1 charges in the form of a maximum charge. This does not mean that the full charge is incurred, however. For example, a fund with a .75% 12b-1 approved plan may actually incur much lower expenses than .75%. Compared to front-end charges, a .75% per year sales charge of this type could be more costly to investment performance, given enough time.

Sales Loads

Portfolio managers can charge sales loads as well, usually in the form of a traditional WRAP fee arrangement (the investor pays a broker an all-inclusive fee that covers portfolio manager fees and transactions costs). No-load funds can be purchased through brokers or discount brokerage firms. The broker charges a commission for such purchases or sales.

Management Advisory Fees

Private account managers and mutual funds charge a fee for managing the portfolio. These fees typically range between 25 and 150 basis points. Bond funds tend to charge in the range of 25 to 100 basis points, and equity funds charge 75 to 150 basis points. Fees charged by private account managers usually are higher because of the direct attention given to a single doctor client. These managers do not pass along additional administrative costs, however, because they pay them out of the management fee. These management fees come in many forms. Tiered fees can charge smaller accounts a higher fee than larger accounts. Mutual funds often charge “group fees”: a fund family may tier its fee structure to encompass all funds offered by the fund family or by a group of similar funds (such as all international equity funds). Performance fees, although subject to SEC regulations, may be charged as well. A performance fee may be charged if the manager exceeds a certain return or outperforms a particular index or benchmark portfolio.

Administrative Expenses and Expense Ratios

Most private managers are compensated with higher management fees, as mentioned above. Therefore, many private accounts usually do not incur separate administrative expenses. Some management firms charge custodial fees or similar account maintenance fees. Mutual funds incur a number of administrative expenses, including shareholder servicing, prospectuses, reporting, legal and auditing costs, and registration and custodial costs. Mutual funds report these expenses and management fees as an expense ratio—the ratio of expenses to the average net assets of the fund. Expense ratios also include distribution costs or 12b-1 charges.insurance-book10 

Brokerage Commissions

Almost all buyers and sellers of securities incur brokerage commissions. Private “wealth managers” usually provide commission schedules to prospective physician-investors or current clients. Some private managers charge higher management fees and a discounted commission schedule, while others charge lower fees and higher commissions. These combinations of management and commission fees make comparison of prospective managers’ cost structures a difficult task. Most portfolio managers obtain research from brokerage firms, which can affect the commission relationship between broker and manager. Reduced commission schedules exchanged for information are known as “soft dollar costs.” Mutual funds may negotiate similar reduced commission schedules. In this regard, more-competitive brokerage firms can charge lower fees to investors. Commissions are not part of the expense ratio, because they are a part of the security cost basis. Firms with higher portfolio turnover are more likely to have higher commission costs than those with low turnover. Asset class impacts such costs as well. For example, small-cap stocks may be more expensive than large-cap stocks, or foreign bonds may be more expensive than domestic bonds.

Total Cost Approach

To arrive at a relevant comparison of fees among funds and managers, and to see what the total effect of fees on investment performance is, analyze the various charges on a net present value basis. Begin with a given investment amount (e.g., $10,000) and factor in fees over time to arrive at the present value of those fees. Present the comparisons in an easy-to-use table.

Sources of Fee Information

Consult the mutual fund prospectus for fee information. The prospectus has a fund expenses section that summarizes sales charges, expense ratios, and management fees; it does not cover commissions, however. Expense ratios usually are reported for the past 10 years. Commission or brokerage fees are more difficult to find. The statement of additional information and often the annual report disclose the annual amounts paid for commissions. When the total commission paid is divided by average asset values a sense of commission costs can be determined. Private wealth managers disclose fee structures in the ADV I filed with the SEC. Managers must disclose these fees to potential and current clients by providing either ADV Part II or equivalent form to the investor.

Reporting Services

Reporting services, such as Morningstar and Lipper, provide similar information from their own research of mutual funds. These services can be extremely beneficial, because fee information is summarized and often accounted for in the reports’ investment return calculations. This helps the investor and planner make good comparisons of funds. Information services that cover private managers provide information, primarily about management fees.

Assessment

To the extent that online trading, deep discount brokerages, lack of SEC and FINRA oversight, and the recent financial, insurance and banking meltdown has affected the above, it is left up to your discretion and personal situation. Generally, all fess are, and should be, negotiable.

Disclaimer: Both contributors are former licensed insurance agents and financial advisors.

Conclusion

Your thoughts and comments on this ME-P are appreciated. Feel free to review our top-left column, and top-right sidebar materials, links, URLs and related websites, too. Then, subscribe to the ME-P. It is fast, free and secure.

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Speaker: If you need a moderator or speaker for an upcoming event, Dr. David E. Marcinko; MBA – Publisher-in-Chief of the Medical Executive-Post – is available for seminar or speaking engagements. Contact: MarcinkoAdvisors@msn.com

OUR OTHER PRINT BOOKS AND RELATED INFORMATION SOURCES:

Comprehensive Financial Planning Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™

***

Understanding Money Market Account Risks

Terms and Definitions for Physician Investors

By Staff Writers56371606

The recent banking industry debacle has prompted several of our cost-conscience doctor-clients to rethink money market account risks and related products. We trust this brief review is helpful to all concerned.

Money Market Deposit Accounts

First, the term “money market account” must be defined.

Link: http://www.HealthDictionarySeries.org

dhimc-book2

There are two types of money market accounts [MMAs] that most people refer to when using this term. The first is a money market deposit account (MMDA). This is an account at a bank designed to compete with money market mutual funds (MMMF). MMDAs usually pay less interest than money market mutual funds and in return offer federal insurance on balances, now up to $250,000 with convenience through check writing and access through ATMs [reverts back to $100,000 after December 31, 2009]. MMDAs under this amount do not have any risk of failure because they are insured by the US government.

Money Market Mutual Funds

Money market mutual funds are mutual funds that invest in short-term instruments with maturities of less than one year, and usually offer check writing on the account. They are not federally insured, but are considered safe in stable economic times. Net Asset Value [NAV] is one dollar; USD. Nevertheless, a few have “broken-the-buck” with NAV at some increment below $1.00 USD.

fp-book7

Evaluation Methods

The first way to evaluate the MMMF risk is to look at the average length of maturities in the portfolio. The shorter the maturity – the safer the MMMF. The second way is to look at the type of security owned by the fund. Government securities are generally less risky than corporate securities. Interested investors can also contact a rating service that evaluates the securities in a MMMF’s portfolio.

And now – a few related words about “so-called” high-yielding CDs.

High Yielding Brokered Bank CDs

insurance-book5

First, the physician-investor should determine if the CD is issued by a federally insured institution. If the answer is yes, the investor knows that a portion of his money is safe if the institution fails. If the answer is no, the doctor should obtain the institution’s ratings from the appropriate rating agencies and analyze the institution’s financials. Second, the physician-investor should investigate the volatility of the CD’s return.

Assessment

When interest rates fluctuate, the price of MMAs and CDs fluctuate much like bonds. Therefore, short-term securities are less risky than long-term securities; all things being equal.

Conclusion

And so, your thoughts and comments on this Medical Executive-Post are appreciated. Are you looking at these terms and conditions more closely during this national economic crisis? Please opine and advise.

 

Risk Management, Liability Insurance, and Asset Protection Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™8Comprehensive Financial Planning Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™

 

Retail Banking Today

Ten Things your Bank and/or Banker Won’t Tell You

Staff Reporters

From: Smart Money

Do you assume that your bank serves your best interests? Do you believe that a big bank’s products are better than a smaller bank? Do you think that that your online bank account information is accurate or secure? If so, think again!

And don’t ever believe everything your bank, or banker, tells you.

Review

As readers of the Executive-Post know; medical, dental, allied healthcare and administration students of all stripes are increasingly in school-debt these days.

Assessment

Therefore, we trust this basic, but important, report will be reviewed by medical practitioners and administrators of all ages. Don’t let the bankers add to your economic misery.

Link: http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Banking/BetterBanking/10ThingsYourBankWontTellYou.aspx

Conclusion

Your comments are appreciated.

Speaker: If you need a moderator or speaker for an upcoming event, Dr. David E. Marcinko; MBA – Publisher-in-Chief of the Executive-Post – is available for seminar or speaking engagements. Contact: MarcinkoAdvisors@msn.com  or Bio: www.stpub.com/pubs/authors/MARCINKO.htm

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Copyright 2008 iMBA Inc: All rights reserved, USA, unless otherwise noted. Use is restricted to Executive-Post subscribers only. No redistribution is allowed. To avoid violation of iMBA Inc copyright restrictions and redistribution policy, please register for your own free Executive-Post membership. Detailed information and registration links are available at:

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New Health Insurance Compliance Issues

Implications of US Patriot and Bank Secrecy Acts on Hospitals

By Dr. David E. Marcinko; MBA, CMP™

By Hope R. Hetico; RN, MHA, CMP™  dave-and-hope4

With the recent popularity and growth of personal health insurance plans (PHIPs), health savings accounts (HSAs) and / or medical savings accounts (MSAs), compliance with the USA PATRIOT Act has become an important issue for these new health insurance products.  

These insurance plans place financial services organizations into relationships with shared information institutions like hospitals, healthcare organizations, medical clinics and patient clients.

The Online Connection 

This happens because many, perhaps even the majority of health insurance plans are opened online as patients and insurance company clients use Internet search engines to find the “best” policy type to meet their needs.  

Appropriately, banks, healthcare entities, and hospitals are working with insurance companies, trust companies, banks and broker-dealers to offer identity-compliant and integrated insurance plan products. 

Verifications that these clients are who they say they are, is as paramount as monitoring their activity. 

Example:  

Section 314(b) of the US Patriot Act permits financial institutions and health insurance companies – upon providing notice to the United States Department of the Treasury – to share patient and related information with one another in order to identify and report to the federal government activities that may involve money laundering or terrorist activity.  

The US Patriot Act 

The US Patriot Act aims to partially accomplish this through three critical goals:  

  1. First, it gives investigators familiar tools to use against a new threat.
  2. Second, it breaks down a wall that has prevented information sharing between agencies.
  3. Third, it updates U.S. laws to respond to the current Internet environment.  

Bank Secrecy Act, PHIPs, MSAs and HSAs 

For additional compliance security, The USA Patriot Act also amended the Bank Secrecy Act [BSA] to give the federal government enhanced authority to identify, deter and punish money laundering and related terrorist financing activities.  

Assessment 

Whatever the financial outlays required for insurance/financial organizational compliance, it may result in very large savings later if affected hospital assets and patient health insurance information is safeguarded against attacks of virtual or real assets. 

Conclusion 

And so, what is your opinion on the above health law and policy? 

Institutional information: www.HealthcareFinancials.com 

Terminology: www.HealthDictionarySeries.com 

Related reference: Marc B. Royo and David B. Nash.Sarbanes-Oxley and Not-for-Profit Hospitals: Current Issues and Future Prospects.” American Journal of Medical Quality: Vol. 23, No. 1, 70-72, February 2008.

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