I've spent the last two years as a low-rung Financial Advisor at one of the biggest wire-houses in America, and it’s all true. I have sold out; gave in. I am now something that I used to hate. What the “99%” say, what they suspect, I fear now that it may all be true.
The other Financial Advisors in my office disgust me, grey haired (what hair they have left), gluttonous slovenly losers who love Golf and Republicans alone. They make ½ Million a year, yet still dress like it’s 1982, and act like it’s 1952. They lounge about all day, if they are in the office at all, they are most likely practicing their putts. They take long lunches, laugh in unison with each other at the most immature jokes. They drive very expensive cars, but of the worst color choice possible (is that a baby blue 6-series BMW?). I have no patience for bad taste. This is just one of the things that grinds me every day. And it grinds me good.
You see: Wall Street has been Occupying me. Lured in with promises of soon-to-come riches and the daily satisfaction of “helping people,” the job is really about convincing people to do things they really do not want or need to do with their money.
I have become obsessed with “the markets”, constantly prowling for new prospects, trying to sniff out the amount of investable assets someone might have through idle conversation. I have gained 15 pounds. I rarely write and I never paint anymore. The corporate culture is suffocating me; choking me –literally: we must keep the top button buttoned.
We must push A-shares (charges the client 5% upfront) and Annuities (charges the client 7% up front). We must “fake it ‘til we make it”, pretend we know what we are talking about, assure pre-retirees that the Firms Research is top-notch; 100 years in the business, blah, blah, blah.
Something about this whole thing feels slimy. There’s nothing wrong with having a lot of money (if it was obtained appropriately), or making a lot of money (again: appropriately), but it now seems to me that there is something very wrong with making money off of other people’s money.