Question

Sandy and Phil have recently married and are both in their early 20s. In establishing their financial goals, they determine that their three long-term goals are to purchase a home, to provide their children with a college education, and to plan for their retirement.
They decide to seek professional assistance in reaching their goals. After considering several financial advisers who charge an annual fee based on the size of their portfolio, they decide to go to Sandy's cousin Larry, who is a stockbroker. Larry tells them that he is happy to help them, and the only fee he will charge is for transactions. In their initial meeting, Larry recommends stocks of several well-known companies that pay high dividends, which they purchase. Three months later, Larry tells them that due to changing market conditions, they need to sell the stocks and buy several others. Three months later, the same thing happens. At the end of the year Phil and Sandy, who had sold each of the stocks for more than they had paid for them, were surprised to see that the total dollar value of their portfolio had declined. After careful analysis, they found the transaction fees exceeded their capital gains.
a. Do you think Larry behaved ethically? Explain.
b. Would Larry have a personal reason for handling Sandy and Phil's portfolio as he did? Explain.


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  • CreatedOctober 13, 2015
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