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Financial advisors redefined

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The next generation of clients will be different in many ways from today. Baby boomers are going to expect more from their advisors, including the ability to do more than just financial planning. Whether that is fair to advisors is irrelevant; advisors will need to be multitalented. The Retirement Income Industry Association recognizes this and has developed a new job description for financial advisors.

RIIA says the definition is more relevant to the practical challenges that retirees are beginning to confront.

“In order to be effective in the future, financial advisors seeking to provide the best possible results for their clients must embrace a host of new responsibilities and personal professional skills,” says Francois Gadenne, RIIA’s chairman and executive director. “Based on feedback that financial advisors have brought to RIIA, they are concerned about helping investors plan, implement and manage their retirement to achieve and maintain a desired standard of living over the long term. That’s a complex task that calls for new insight and education.”

The expanded job description — which sheds none of the responsibilities advisors already possess — now includes these vital abilities:

  • Skills to help clients accumulate financial capital (savings, investments, insurance, annuities, IRAs).
  • Ability to understand the changing roles of financial capital combined with human capital (wages and earnings) and social capital (Social Security, defined benefit plans).

Many advisors are already doing these things as a way of standing out, but in the near future, such actions will come to be expected of any advisor who wants to remain competitive. For more information, visit


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