An interview with Malcolm, an airline pilot

Author -  Malcolm

How did you find Spicers?

I was a walk in! At that stage in my life, I had my big financial commitments out of the way. I wanted to find a better way of managing excess income. Financial advice then was in its infancy, but I had an awareness of which companies were offering investment advice and I preferred to select a company that had been established for a while with a good national network. I knew of the Spicers brand, because it was named on the building in Christchurch where we had a pilot’s meeting. When I moved to Auckland in 2000, I sought them out in Takapuna.

What were your goals?

I am fortunate that with my career and stage of life, I now have income that exceeds expenditure. My main goal over the longer term is to manage the preservation and growth of this excess income to achieve a better result than I could achieve by direct management myself. I’m doing this to fund my chosen lifestyle in the future, whatever that might be and for however long the future may be. With that, I have the satisfaction, financial freedom and empowerment that come with achieving financial independence.

How do you work with your Spicers adviser?

Like all new relationships, it’s important to establish a good and effective communication stream. Initially a great deal of time was taken by my adviser to understand my investment profile - in terms of my aspirations, risk and timeframe - before an in-depth plan was formulated. I have a natural passion for financial literacy, so it was easy to deal with the subject matter in this field. I was able to leverage off my adviser’s specialist knowledge and recommendations for achieving the required outcome. Since the beginning, the monitoring and review of my plan, as well as ongoing financial advice, has been achieved through numerous meetings, telephone dialogues, emails, written reports, newsletters, client events and update forums.

Over time, with this degree of contact, a relationship of trust is built, and this allows open, honest and effective collaboration.

What do you like the most about Spicers?

I believe the Spicers’ brand is generally well-respected in the ever-evolving industry of financial advice. I believe the professionalism of the brand is such that the advisers’ qualifications and competency always meet or exceeded minimum regulatory requirements in the industry.

I also like the fact that Spicers has a good network distribution of representation around the country, with offices in most main centres. There is also the ‘good pedigree’ association that comes with being a subsidiary of AMP, as well as the advantage of having access to AMP’s many resources.

It doesn’t matter how many questions I ask, my adviser is patient and friendly. We have a great rapport. The adviser has also helped with other aspects of my affairs - things that are important in terms of an overall financial plan, like the establishment of wills and estate planning. He’s not looking at my portfolio in isolation, he’s looking at the total picture. For example, there’s no use having a really good portfolio if you don’t have the right insurances in place.

To my knowledge, during the GFC my adviser had very few clients capitulate their portfolio positions in the panic that unfolded. Through good advice and discipline, most held steadfast in their resolve and were subsequently rewarded for doing so. But even more importantly, during that period Spicers’ investment clients were not affected by any of the failed finance companies.

My feedback is always taken seriously by my adviser and followed up with explanations and resolutions to my satisfaction. The coffee’s not bad either!

Is your Spicers portfolio living up to your expectations?

Well yes, mainly. I have a current valid plan that is reviewed periodically. Without that plan, and without Spicers’ ongoing professional advice, I could have been tempted to act differently during the GFC, had I been managing my investments directly. I might have got cold feet. By staying with the plan, I was still acquiring assets at a really low price, which has been rewarded in the longer term so far. Having a plan takes the emotion out of decisions.

Because of the exposure and diversification of the underlying assets I’m invested in, my results have exceeded what I would get for money in the bank. You get fluctuations between quarters, but when you go back to ‘investment 101’ you have to expect negative growth occasionally. It all begins with getting the plan right for you.

Important information

The content on this website is of a general nature and does not constitute financial advice or other professional advice. Before taking any action, you should always seek financial advice or other professional advice relevant to your personal circumstances. The circumstances of the person(s) featured in the customer story are likely to differ from your personal circumstances. All forms of investment involve risk. No entity or person guarantees any investment products mentioned on, any investment in the products, or any returns on any investment in any investment product, gives any warranty of reliability or accuracy, or accepts any responsibility arising in any way from any error or omission. Past performance is not indicative of future performance and is not guaranteed by any party. A disclosure statement is available from your adviser, on request and free of charge.


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