Lessons from the Mules

Thompson, Duane R.
March 2003
Journal of Financial Planning;Mar2003, Vol. 16 Issue 3, p35
Academic Journal
This article addresses several issues pertaining to the financial planning industry in the U.S. as of March 2003. Reviewing an unlikely example--the transportation industry--is a classic textbook case of an industry limiting its vision of transportation to functional modes of serving the public. Turning back to financial planning, it has taken decades for other related industries to adopt, perhaps imperfectly at this point, a new process for delivering integrated financial services. Perhaps the unique requirements of personal financial planning will one day turn today's megamarkets into financial dinosaurs. But planners' own professionalism, their lack of major capital and a highly fragmented industry may stymie the profession's dynamic expansion, just as health maintenance organizations are increasingly providing the second opinions to the recommendations of the family doctor. Regulation has had a significant impact on the financial planning profession, even if the impact comes from not regulating financial planners as a profession and allowing the marketplace to decide.


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