For the past four decades. I have been involved in all areas of personal financial planning with specific activity towards education. And for all intents and purposes, it simply has not made a difference. Consumers do not read and think- they will spend more time analyzing the purchase of a refrigerator than reviewing their finances and investments and insurance. ~~ 59% of middle-income Baby Boomers do not receive professional financial guidance of any kind, whether formal or informal. A majority (62%) have some doubts that they will have enough savings to last throughout retirement.That said, a good portion of that problem is due to the fact that there has not been a solid attempt by the industry to offer real life assistance. They provide all sorts of marketing to induce purchase of "stuff" that generally is highly suspect in terms of fees and probabilities of success. The real offense is telling you that you have to accept huge losses (50%) one or twice a decade with the strict 'buy and hold' heuristics. That makes no sense whatsoever and is responsible for the trillions of dollars lost by mid America that they will never see again. Retirees, obviously, are the most vulnerable to this idiocy, Beyond that is the emotional impact on both personal and family life whcih is even more devastating.
Anyway, I have attempted to get the governmental and private organizations (SEC, FINRA. NASAA, CFP BOARD, DOL, STATE DEPARTMENTS OF INSURANCE et al) to enhance licensing and continuing education training. It's not happening. The recent DOL rule says nothing about education of RIAs. It would appear that the middle class and below are going to be left without adequate assistance. I will try to fix that soon but for the time being, industry marketing and money prevail.
Admittedly, this is a "unique" commentary to start this site, but I have completed a set of videos on a number of financial subjects that the industry has been unwilliiing to offer since the truth would hurt their sales substantially. Additionally I am working with a joint venture to offer two products: one to numerically define risk for the average consumer. No more guessing to "conservative', 'moderate', etc. The second will be a product that will keep losses to 10% to 15% no matter what happens in the market (2000 losses were 44%; 2008 were 57%) while at the same time provides growth when the bad times end. No algorithms or fancy language.
If you are new here, go to the Daily Commentary- what I find as the gems of the day gleaned from material I review. Much of this is Master's level material- I never said it was going to be easy- but almost all can grasp something tangible for a better understanding of what to do in this turbulent world order.