"For older workers, I would say that the level of knowledge is generally a state of confusion unless they are working with a good RIA type of planner. The barrage of conflicting information from the financial industry has generally made it difficult for people to become well-informed, even if they put a modest amount of effort in."We can start with a clarification of the term "RIA", an abbreviation of registered investment adviser. I think Investopedia says it well.
"In general, only larger advisors that have at least $25 million in assets under management or that provide advice to investment company clients are permitted to register with the SEC, while smaller advisors are required to register with state securities authorities. Registration of an investment advisor is not meant to denote any form of recommendation or endorsement by the SEC or state securities regulators. It simply means that the investment advisor has fulfilled all the requirements for registration as an investment advisor."RIA is not a certification, like CFA or CFP, but simply a required registration with the Securities Exchange Commission for large firms or the state for smaller firms. RIA does not speak to the skills or training of the adviser, it only denotes that the adviser has legally registered to provide advice, analysis or recommendations regarding securities for pay.
[Tweet this]What do you find most confusing about retirement planning?
It is also possible that the reader meant to type "RIIA", an abbreviation for Retirement Income Industry Association. RIIA does offer a certification called a Retirement Management Analyst (RMA) Designation that involves "rigorous educational and ethics training curriculum."
I responded to this reader by saying that I try to resolve some of that confusion with my blog, but it occurred to me that I may not have a clear idea of what confuses people most about retirement finance. So, here's your chance to let me know.
If there are issues about retirement finance at any life stage that you find particularly confusing or conflicting, please let me know with a comment below. I'll do my best to respond to them all.
I'll summarize the results in my next post, Following Up on Confusing Issues.
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