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4 responses to “Exclusive Interview: Frontline Producer Explains Controversial 401k Documentary – The Good”

  1. Alison Farrin

    How could anyone beyond first grade think their retirement plan is free? Nothing in life is free except the air we breathe and the sunshine. The real reality is that most of the population expects someone else to figure it out for them. The ones that don’t – one in eight of us, are millionaires. It simply takes paying a modicum of attention, and some discipline. While those of us in the business are outraged, within the greater community – it is still the case that no one cared before Frontline and no one cares after it.

  2. Roger @ The Chicago Financial Planner

    I thought the show brought out some excellent points as you mention Chris. However I think the show would have been more effective if they had looked at the good side of things (spent some time on well-managed plans with reasonable fees and solid investment choices as well as profiling folks who have used 401(k) plans as part of a successful retirement strategy) as well as the bad. Their obvious bias really detracted from the message and in the end they offered no suggestions to folks as to how they can improve their chances of retirement success.

  3. Stephen Winks

    The subtle point that is missed in The Retirement Gamble is not simply cost is not a consideration under a suitability standard, but that the industry’s fight against brokers being accountable and responsible for their recommendations has crippled professional development. We are now seeing consumer direct value propositions that routinely provide a far higher level of counsel than is possible by a broker working within a brokerage format. This is not the brokers fault. It is the industry self-selecting not to acknowledge or support brokers rendering advice because it triggers fiduciary responsibility in the consumers best interest.

    Not only is the consumer not well served by expensive packaged products which can not be client specific as required for fiduciary standing, but packaged products are expensive, afford no transparency, and individual investment holdings are impossible to manage through packaging as required for continuous comprehensive counsel necessary for fiduciary standing.

    The more questions which are raised, the worse the industry looks.

    There is a leadership vacuum in the consumer’s best interest.


  4. BPP401k.com Newsletter 05.08.13 Benefit Plans Plus 401k

    […] Exclusive Interview: Frontline Producer Explains Controversial 401k Documentary — The Good When Frontline producer Martin Smith and his crew set out to make a documentary on the problems with the 401k industry, they sought to “alert,” even “shock,” if not downright “scare” the general public. It turns out, according to Smith, the PBS show was the highest ranking episode of the popular series since last year’s election — and he’s been getting a ton of email since “The Retirement Gamble” appeared. Not all the reviews have been good, with many in the industry accusing the show of bias and even normally independent sources questioning the veracity of some of Smith’s claims. Source: Fiduciarynews.com […]

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