Bank/TPM: Ulster Savings Bank/Primevest City: Kingston
Bank/TPM: Northfield Bank/Invest City: Staten Island
Bank/TPM: Corning C.U./Raymond James City: Corning
BIC: What are the opportunities in your territory?
Jeffreys: Pushing a lot of things is clients' desire for additional income-mutual funds with dividends, managed money, some bonds, and I'm rebalancing more frequently in order to take profits when they're there.
Morris: The real opportunity is in retirement income planning. A high level of integrity is important and you always need knowledge, whether that's through additional training or by partnering with product providers.
Quattrini: We have the population of a Fortune 500 company in our backyard-Corning's employees number in the thousands, and they're a source of many client relationships. We're also the largest financial institution in town, with $800 million in assets and 75,000 members. We've only really scratched the surface of both these markets.
BIC: What practice management technique has helped you the most?
Jeffreys: Returning calls as soon as possible to both clients and prospects referred to me.
Morris: Tactical investing, shifting between asset classes such as stocks, bonds, alternatives and annuities. You need to be able to shift in the short term to balance volatility in the market.
Quattrini: Unless you break from the mundane mold of going over clients' investments, you'll miss out on opportunities such as life insurance and long-term-care insurance, and even property and casualty insurance, which I don't get paid for. You want to be able to protect the assets clients have accumulated over the years.
BIC: How does your client demographic affect product mix?
Jeffreys: I work in a savings bank with a lot of retired teachers, and factory and government workers. Most of the time I'm turning their 401(k)s into income. Wrap accounts have been successful, as have unit investment trusts, mutual funds and some fixed annuities, as well as variable annuities and life insurance.
Morris: I do 40% mutual funds and unit investment trusts, 30% variable and fixed annuities, and 30% stocks and bonds. I'm moving more to fees, but I'm still 80% transaction based.
Quattrini: We've identified wealthy clients with special needs and started a subdivision called the Wealth Management Group. These clients get a personal service manager who handles everything for them, including income tax preparation, which helps differentiate us.
BIC: What's your biggest challenge?
Jeffreys: Client emotions get caught up in the swing of the market, but we're putting it in historical context. This too shall pass and we will see the market go up again!
Morris: Being able to come up with solutions that will help older people retire comfortably, which also means being aware of international and political concerns, and how those things will change the markets.
Quattrini: The days of passive management are behind us; we must be nimble. It's impossible to time things perfectly but you can recommend the best money managers.
BIC: What advice would you give an industry newcomer?
Jeffreys: Find a mentor who is willing to help and learn from his or her mistakes. Most important, don't give up-there is light at the end of the tunnel and it's not a train!
Morris: It's a very challenging environment, but learn your business and don't be afraid to give advice and the business will follow.
Quattrini: Get good at two or three things, equities and bonds for example, and don't try to do everything all at once.
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