Whose advice are you listening to?

The other day, I contacted one of our clients to let her know her insurance policy premium was overdue and that the policy would lapse if it remained unpaid.

For privacy reasons I will name her Sandra. Sandra said that upon the advice of her “trusted” accountant, she will allow this policy to lapse as her circumstances have now changed.

What were her new circumstances? Very sadly, her husband had been diagnosed with a terminal brain illness. What was the accountant’s advice? To allow her Income Protection policy to lapse and redirect the “saved premiums” to mortgage repayments.

On several levels, the accountant has not acted in the best interests of his own client Sandra.

  1. What happens to Sandra should she find herself in a position to be unable to work and earn an income to pay for her living expenses?
  2. Has Sandra’s overall position (financial and her own health)  been taken into account when advised to cancel her insurance policy, which Sandra has had for 7 years (health can often change in that period of time…)
  3. Just as importantly, the accountant has advised in an area in which he is not qualified to advise in.

The above scenarios happen all too often and the following needs to be kept at the forefront when acting on such advice:

  1. Is the person providing me with advice, qualified to do so? We are often tempted to act quickly and irrationally on forecast information obtained over the fence or at the barbers when it comes to investments…
  2. What is the person providing me with advice’s underlying basis for such advice, it is you, the client’s, best interest?

So in summary, ensure when you share your financial circumstances when seeking advice, you speak to an expert in that area, ensure the expert knows the full picture and overall, you will not be worse off as a result.

For an appointment with a qualified Wealth Adviser, contact us


Written by Maria YankosPractice Manager, Odyssey Financial Management



ODYSSEY Magazine – Spring Edition

In this edition we will identify five key learning’s from the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) more than 5 years on. Our regular feature sees Piers Bolger, Head of Research & Strategy at BT Financial Group, delve into investment sentiment in markets. Finally, we take a look at ways to assist women with small businesses develop their long-term financial health.

For a full version of our newsletter, please click 
here. Until next time – happy reading.

5 lessons from the financial crisis

Lessons from the financial crisis more than five years on

It’s been more than five years since the worst of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) hit equity and bond markets. While flow-on effects continue to affect financial markets, there are many lessons we have taken from the crisis that can be applied to wealth planning. Here are our top five lessons from the GFC to consider when making investment decisions.

1. Cash needs careful consideration

When the financial crisis started many investors sold higher risk investments such as shares and increased cash holdings. While all investment portfolios should have some allocations to cash, having too much can reduce returns over time. If your investment portfolio is still substantially overweight to cash, now might be the time to consider whether taking this approach will allow you to meet your lifestyle needs in retirement.

2. It’s time in the markets that matters

It’s difficult to pick market cycles. This is why investors benefit from taking a longer-term view to investing. Jumping in and out of the share market increases the risk you will miss the market’s best performing days, which may have a substantial impact on your returns. Even when market downturns occur, if you maintain your investment in shares your assets may increase in value over time.

3. Diversification helps smooth out investment returns

The GFC was an enormously volatile time for share markets. In light of market volatility astute investors have been looking for ways to smooth out returns over time. One of the best ways is to ensure your portfolio includes a diverse array of different asset classes. Markets will always trade with some level of volatility, but taking this approach helps even out the highs and lows over time.

4. Understand your risk appetite before investing

One of the biggest lessons learnt from the financial crisis is to understand your appetite for risk. History shows the returns from equities are considerably more volatile than the returns from less risky asset classes such as cash or fixed income. Hence, if the bulk of your portfolio is held in shares, you need to be conscious that it’s likely the value of your investment will rise and fall to a greater extent than if it was held in cash or fixed income.

5. Advice matters

When markets are volatile it’s easy to take kneejerk reactions and sell down investments that are underperforming at what could be the worst time to make such sales. Instead of taking short-term decisions about your investments,
it’s a better idea to develop long-term investment goals and objectives in line with your financial requirements. We are always happy to help you understand the potential risks and rewards that come with investing. So why not contact us today to find out more about what we’ve learnt from the GFC?


Click here to read our full ODYSSEY MAGAZINE – SPRING EDITION

Discover how the inner circle can help you. Contact us today for a financial consultation.

This information is of a general nature only and has been provided without taking account of your objectives, financial situation or needs.
Because of this, you should consider whether the information is appropriate in light of your particular objectives, financial situation and needs.
Odyssey Financial Management is an authorised representative of Securitor Financial Group Ltd.