Consumer Complaints and Reviews
Got a phone call from the financial advisor. He says we can get rid of your husband's Roth IRA if you want to downsize the amount of accounts you guys have. I said, "Okay if that is what you recommend." Then tax time came. Our accountant informed us that because we closed the Roth IRA 6 months too early that there is a penalty and fine to pay. Okay so we did that. Then research was needed to find out what the profits were from the account. This is needed to pay another fine and that fine would be 100% of the profits. We found out that the account after 10 years had a loss. So at least we did not have to give away more dollars.
On another note... We had put $ into our Simple IRA. The advisor says we can put into your traditional too. So I wrote a check. Our accountant said, "NO NO you cannot do both for that year." It took a few hours of phone calls and e-mails to get that straightened out. We ended up leaving the money in the IRA accounts because the IRS does not like you to remove the money once it is there. So we have Taxed and Non-Taxed dollars in our Traditional IRA accounts now. Our accountant says he is keeping track for us of what is real IRA dollars and what are not. I highly recommend that if you are getting advice from a financial advisor to go to your accountant to find out if what they are telling you to do is correct. This can save you from doing costly mistakes that take up a lot of time to fix and figure out.
EDWARD JONES, 2045 Columbia Dr, Pueblo, Co. 81005 - Oh I read the Important Information about doing business with Edward Jones and I couldn't find the part where they said it was alright for their financial advisors to lie to their clients in order to get the extra financial bonus that they receive that left me losing $38,000 Plus. Had $107,834.34 in a Lincoln annuity and was getting $5467. a year, or $453. a month.
8/13 My financial adviser ** said she could get me 6% a year. All I had to do was leave it in for 1 year before I took anything out. So she had Edward Jones take that much out so I would still be getting $453. and I ended up with $101,500. Guess I should have been adding up the numbers because there is $867 missing right there. She just happen to quit or was canned after 11 months. Wonder how much she got for this lie.
So EJ put in a new financial adviser **, went in after that 1st year 8/14 and the annuity was worth $107.590. and I wanted to start taking my money out. ** told me all I could draw out was 4% So now I was only getting $403. a month. Went in 8/15 and asked ** how much this thing was worth because like ** said the numbers looked kind of fuzzy, he told my wife and me said "I don't blame you but as long as don't take any more than I'm taking now it was worth 107,590". Should have went to a real financial adviser for advice because this just cost me another $10,303 for the year.
Went in 8/16 and ** says "oh I don't think you are getting any interest on this", so he makes a call to AIG and says it was only worth $91,800. Guess they heard about the Fiduciary clause and thought if they started to tell the truth now it was alright. They've done this to other people too because the secretary A ** who was an accomplice to ** and should have been canned with her, had this line to says, "you made $300. dollars and you will always get $403 dollars for the rest of your life". I guess this worked with other people who had to have this money to survive. Let's see. That means I made 1/10 of 1% a year for three years.
Talked to a Vanguard agent and in order to transfer this to them would cost Me $3500. to get out of this phony deal with EJ. and the AIG annuity. Could have put this money in a can in the shed in my back yard and been $3,500 ahead. So now I don't take any money out just to get my 6% which in reality is only $600. a year. It will take me another 3 years to get back to 107,000, so made no money for 6 years they used my money. I would think EJ would do background checks on these people being the reputable company they are, just don't google them.
So when they sent me a letter to make them custodians of my account in Dec., I told my wife that it looked like they were trying to steal the other $91,000 so I found a real EJ financial adviser on the north side of Pueblo and transferred it to his office. $5467 X 3 = $16,350 and $107,590 - $91,800 = $15,790 and $3297 to surrender the Lincoln annuity and $3000 to dump this turkey with AIG. Grand total of $38,437. This is pretty apparent that they were working for their best interest and not their client. Didn't seem like it would do any good to do their complaint dept. everybody just gets the runaround.
When I first started to invest I went to Edward Jones. It was a young man who had just started up. I had $6,000 I wanted to invest in Nash Finch. It was $6 a share at the time. He didn't take my order but said he would look at Nash Finch to see if it was a good investment. Later that day I visited him again and he recommended against it because of debt. In place he recommended 3 mutual funds, Putman New Growth Opportunity and 2 Hartford funds $2,000 in each. The result Putman went from $35 to $9 with no call from broker. The Hartford funds went down about 30% again no call from broker. In the same period Nash Finch went from $6 to $36 per share. Decided to do my own thing for awhile and was successful but did not like do it. So decided to try an Edward Jones broker that some of my relatives had used. Went to see him and went through my portfolio with him.
I had bought a drug company called IVAX. He asked me about it and I told him I bought it because the leader of the company was always buying back its stock. He told me I should sell and buy Pfizer which was at $35 a share and I did so on his recommendation. What happened? Pfizer went down to $9 without a call while IVAX got bought out by TEVA the Israel drug company and took off. Again traded on own buying adding a new stock MDU to my portfolio. Went to see new Edward Jones broker asking to buy more MDU. His response was I needed more diversity and suggest Bank Of America at $55 a share. Once again went down to $9 a share with no call from broker.
In addition to these gems they also recommended Citi bonds a burn job and some Williston Basin stock also a bust. I believe my Edward Jones representatives made as much in my account as I did. Closed one account that was basically in cash last Friday and it is now Wednesday and transfer still has not hit bank. Tempted to sue for lack of fiduciary responsibility, believe this is widespread enough it could be a class action.
In October 2015, after having met with an Edward Jones Financial Advisor in Kirkland Washington for the first time, I was advised that my financial situation allowed me to retire at 65 years of age instead of having to wait until 66. She transferred everything I had from Fidelity to Edward Jones saying there would be a "one-time charge of 2.5% and nothing thereafter". I thought that was high but liked the idea of no further charges. She placed me into 13 different Mutual Funds with American and Franklin Funds advising that it was to diversify. It wasn't until I went to a Retirement Seminar months later that it was brought to my attention that I had been charged 3.5%, not 2.5% and that I would be charged an Annual Fee ranging from .9 to 1.6% from each of the Mutual Funds.
Morningstar ranks Mutual Funds from 1-5 Stars Bronze, Silver and Gold. I found out that 9 out of my 13 Funds were Bronze, usually 2 stars, with Below Average Returns for 3,5, and/or 10 years as well as their being High Risks for 3, 5, and/or 10 years. When I asked her about this, she became angry that I was questioning her. I realized I could no longer trust her and therefore could no longer work with her. I sold all of my Funds and transferred the cash back to Fidelity, where it has remained as cash since I am afraid to trust anyone again. I placed a complaint with Edward Jones requesting that my $12,000 commission be returned to me for all that had happened. I had only been with EJ for about 9-10 months. I was just told my complaint had been denied.
If I had known then what I know now about Edward Jones, I would never have gone with them. I think their customer service has been terrible. I have had to call them repeatedly to see where my complaint stood. I feel they did not listen to anything I was saying. They do not record their conversations and they do not allow you to see your record so it was my word against theirs and, of course, they believed their Advisor over me. I have tried to work this out with them but they have refused to work with me. My only option now is to contact FINRA to see what they can do to help.
It takes a lot to inspire me to write a review, good or bad. My experience with Edward Jones has been the worst financial related experience in my life. There was a total lack of concern to get my and our employees' money invested properly, one employee never got his money into an account at all as he thought he had, his deductions just went into a money market fund making nothing, for a year! No one at EJ bothered to say anything to him or follow up with any of us. My funds also languished in this money market fund for many weeks, of the choices told to me, I picked 2, no contact from them telling me one fund was not really available, I had to contact them to ask why nothing was going into my chosen funds. Then they say "oh you have to wait for us to mail you a new form, and mail it back." Seriously?? 2 more weeks wasted. Then my bi-monthly deposits would not show up in my account sometimes a month later.
Long story short, our company chose to move our accounts over to ADP, then EJ takes weeks of prodding to make this happen, then rather than transferring funds into our ADP 401K accounts, they send all our checks to the owner of the company, no notice to anyone, so the checks sit in a mail box for some time before the owner comes home and finds them in the mail. Now none of us knows how to properly get these funds deposited into our ADP 401K accounts as they are not made out to us individually. Never do business with EJ, especially in Sandpoint, Idaho.
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After over 25 years with Edward Jones, I closed my account in January 2017. Received all tax info except for one (was sent with incomplete figures) and was checking weekly with the online access for those final figures. With no prior warning or communication I discovered this week that my online access is now denied for the accounts as they are closed!!! When I inquired about this with both my local investment office and the online "Help" 800 number, the response was basically "Too bad, so sad"!! I do my taxes electronically and now cannot pull those figures over electronically as I no longer have the access to that information. Warning to anyone else who has or is thinking about closing Edward Jones accounts. Frankly in this day and age and electronic environment it is beyond logic that this business practice exists. At the very least, the account(s) information and accessibility should remain available until after April 15th of each year!!!
I went Edward Jones in January 2014. Thinking I didn't know too much and put my faith in them. I had $10,000 plus 129 shares of Home Depot. As I sat in his office he told me he thought I should sell Home Depot. Price at that time was $78.00. I told him I really didn't want to sell it as I inherited the stock and wanted to keep it. He assured me I was doing the right thing and he let me keep $1000.00 of stk only. I bought a small amt of Apple and Twitter. In the meantime Home Depot was going up in price. I called Corporate because I was upset. They investigated and said nothing I could do because I sold it.
When I went to transfer to another E. Jones no one would take account. I had to sell what was left through my Agent. Needless to say I lost a lot of money. Today Home Depot is worth $147.00 per share. I am a senior and was counting on that money. They nickel-and-dimed me with fees. I hope I have saved someone from making the same mistake. I would of done better on my own.
I had an account with EJ for many years and contributed many thousands in fees to them. Now that I have closed the account they are not allowing me to access my tax info electronically, per their policy. This means that instead of a simple import into TurboTax, I now have to manually input, into various tax forms, the many trades executed by EJ from a 15-page statement. Everyone who closes their account will encounter the same problem. Other financial institutions that I deal with do allow downloads from closed accounts, as you still have to file your taxes on the previous year's activity and they have profited from your business. By the way, the reason I closed my account was that I consistently lost money yearly with them while paying many thousands in fees. It's a lousy company.
Edward Jones agent sold me an annuity with many promises of how it would step and lock in new highs every time the market set a new high. BS no way. Once confronted about his lies, he said "I never said that", or "Maybe I told you wrong". If you want to be ripped off invest with Edward Jones M. R. Office Castle Rock, CO. I lost about $ 2000.00 or more. All I had to do is put the money in a cd and watch it grow. Never again.
I'd like to warn the public that if you have any issues of any kind including my experiences of Broker misconduct (disclosing my personal info to other Brokers when attempting to move my account from her custody) to their transferring errors (moving my investment accounts to them and they invested my two retirement account improperly and refused to correct it when I discovered it years later). Beware that the SEC only takes the complaints. They do not help and when I attempted resolution with regarding to my investments accounts (they invested my ROTH account into my Standard IRA account so now not only did I not receive credit on my Income Tax return, I now have to pay taxes on the redraw of the funds I already paid taxes on!).
FINRA, a branch of supposed investment regulators that a consumer supposedly can turn to for such matters, told me to hire a lawyer. No one wants to help and Edward Jones doesn't do a thing about misconduct of their Brokers. I have undisputable proof and received a letter back from their Compliance Department, same experience with the retirement account issue that explained nothing. Just said they looked into it and that now they considered the case closed, no explanation whatsoever. It's all for show to make the consumer comfortable that there is supposedly safeguards in place. PLEASE DON'T BE FOOLED. I plan to call my Legislative representatives to see if they can help me since Edward Jones won't. I have been dealing with the hell regarding this issue for several years now. They are deceptive so don't be fooled. I learned the hard way, don't you make that mistake. They seem fine until there's a problem.
My husband passed away recently, and I have been trying to close his accounts, including his Edward Jones account. I am the executor and have supplied them with the paperwork authorizing me to do this. No one else. However, they are refusing to close the account. Instead, they are insisting that I transfer it to a Fiduciary account to be held by them!!! I already have an Estate account!! I have provided the very same documentation to other accounts, with no problems. I would highly recommend NOT putting ANY money with them, unless you don't care if you ever see again! In that case go to the Casino or play the lottery, you'll have more fun throwing the money away.
Rolled over my deceased husband's IRA to Edward Jones 2 months ago. Told my broker I wanted the money somewhere safe and he suggested 100% in mutual funds. After listening to his spiel, I agreed, and to date have lost over $8500.00. It seems a bit excessive for something that was suppose to be safe. I feel because I know very little about the market that I am being fleeced. Looking for other options.
Last year William ** of the Bellevue branch of Edward Jones approached my husband and I in our driveway. He wanted to sell us some stock. We were not interested. I said if and when I was interested in investing with him I would call him. He gave me his card and I gave him mine. This was early Spring last year 2015. A month or so later I started to get emails then phone calls. Over and over. I kept stating I would contact him when I was ready to do anything. He just would not give up. Then he contacted me about some Disney Stock. Again he just wouldn't stop. So he finally wore me down and we invested 10,000.00 and bought the Disney Stock and of course he was the only one to make money off of that mistake.
As soon as it goes up some we are pulling out and I never intend on doing business with Edward Jones ever again. I also would never refer anyone to them. William ** just couldn't take no for an answer. I have never had an experience with anyone such as that in my life. (He no longer works there) not sure why. I will never do any new business with them.
I created a fund through Edward Jones for my daughter when she was a minor. She has been of age for over 15 years. I recently made an attempt to have the account moved to her name through the broker in Mt. Horeb handling the account. Instead of helping he resigned as the agent. Currently I now have no broker to perform the transfer.
Do yourself a favor by saving time and money by saying NO to Edward Jones and investing on your own or with a fee-based advisor or someone who at least offers low-cost investment options. Edward Jones' fees are insanely high. I recently requested a transfer of my Edward Jones Roth IRA account to another brokerage because I was tired of paying the annual fee EJ IRA fee. EJ charged $95 to terminate my Roth IRA account (not unusual for a brokerage to do that) BUT what angered me is that EJ withheld $40 from the Roth IRA transfer until they could verify that I had already paid the $20 annual fee.
Yes, you read that correct. THEY WITHHELD $40 UNTIL THEY VERIFIED I HAD PAID MY $20 DOLLAR ANNUAL FEE. THAT'S TWICE THE AMOUNT WITHHELD... thus causing me to be put into a margin call status with my new brokerage account. WTF??? I had paid the $20 annual fee in April so I was all set. You mean to tell me they could not check my account statement to see that I had already paid the annual fee BEFORE transferring my account. Now I have to wait 5 business days for EJ to verify that I paid the annual fee and then they will release the $40 to my new brokerage. Stay away from Edward Jones. They suck. They are horrible.
Fraudulent activity on my retirement account at Edward Jones. Edward Jones refuses to investigate fraudulent activity on my account that decreased the amount from over $300 thousand dollars to only $135 thousand dollars. They will not provide any statements other than money has been withdrawn under my name. Well, I have news for Edward Jones, I have not withdraw these money. Edward Jones is really bad company to invest with. Right now I am working with the Police, State Attorney, BBB and FTC to rectify this issue. If you have any money with Edward Jones, do yourself a favor and take them somewhere else before they will misplace them and blame you for it. Trust me it is not easy to fight big companies, but I will do my best to fight them.
My mother passed away recently, and I have been trying to close her various accounts, including her Edward Jones account. I am the executor and co-trustee of my mother's trust. No one else. However, they are refusing to close the account unless my sister signs on to release the funds TO THE TRUST. I have provided the very same documentation to three other accounts, with no problems. I now have to get my attorney involved to help them with their reading comprehension. I would highly discourage anyone from putting any money with these people. If you don't want to see it again, you'll have more fun throwing the money out of a car window.
An Aunt recently passed away and I, along with a few brothers and cousins, received notification from an Edward Jones Rep or agent, concerning a Revocable Trust my Aunt had, to which an Edward Jones Rep accepted the trusteeship and custodianship. E J sent a notification letter explaining a bit about the estate settlement process, etc., while forwarding a copy of the trust, Will, Form W-9, etc.
Edward Jones was the Investment firm my Aunt utilized prior to her death. The real reason I am concerned is that the Edward Jones Rep is also named as a equal Beneficiary of the trust, along with my brothers and cousins, etc. I did not know my Aunt real well, but I understand she was in a care facility for a number of years prior to her death. I have heard a bit about her mental state, but will not go into that here. Am I wrong here to be concerned? This just does not sit well with me. I was a quite removed from my Aunt, so I feel fortunate to have been remembered by her at all. Thank You.
I knew about Edward Jones and what a bad investment company they were because I researched them before opening my first Roth IRA at age 18. I instead went with Vanguard. That was 10 years ago. For those not in the know, Ed Jones is bad because they fleece you in fees. Both fixed fees and the variable expenses of their investment picks. They make commission off their selections. Or as they call it "revenue sharing". They make sure you sign the fine print about that and the fees when you open an account. Now I'm sure the people who work for them are nice. You probably know a person or two who works or started working for them. Like insurance, they like to hire people (college grads anyone?) and have them focus on their relatives/friends as new leads. It's why they're quite popular despite how bad they are. Now I understand people need to make money. But that money should be earned and often times, it isn't.
The company's policies are horrid. The financial advisors (and most "advisors" actually) are 80% sales people and 20% financial knowledge. They are a middle man who put you in investments that likely aren't in your best interests, but theirs. If you took a little time and researched basic investment advice, you could be a passive investor in a balance or target date mutual fund and probably come out way ahead than going with this company. In fact, I guarantee you would. My personal story is that my small employer decided to switch to Ed Jones as their "retirement expert" to handle the employees 401ks. It was really a Sep IRA, but that's what they called it. Now I wasn't thrilled about this and I believe they made the decision because of personal connections or a mutually beneficial business relationship. I'm not sure. It wasn't my call to make so off we switched.
Frankly I had to transfer my account over around to Ed Jones mid May 2016. I then took another job in June with a much larger company. Guess what funds they offered their employees? That's right: Vanguard (and Fidelity). There's a reason both them and Amazon and other big companies use them for their employees. Now I was given some interesting advice by both the Ed Jones advisor and his assistant. The assistant was insistent I invest right away into their funds. I politely declined and kept in cash, knowing I was probably going to be switching jobs soon and not wanting to pay transaction fees.
Red flag #1: She hinted I would have to pay taxes on the whole amount if I didn't invest with them in a certain time. Now I know I wouldn't have to if the direct transfer was done correctly. And I think she knew this, with how long she'd be working there. But I suppose I could be wrong about that and maybe she really didn't know. Next when I did talk about funds, he wanted me to invest 33% of my portfolio in Apple stock. Red flag #2. Why? Because investing such a large amount in any one stock is extremely risky. The whole "don't put your eggs in one basket" elementary idea. His graph of Apple's impressive returns over the past 10 years was nice & all but a little common sense would see through this. Apple has peaked. They went from being relatively forgotten to some bigs wins with the iPod and iPhone. It's unlikely those gains would be seen again. At least for the foreseeable future.
So no, I didn't think now was a good time to get into Apple, just from my take on where they're headed. The other 2 mutual funds (utilities and a bond fund) he had me in were high in fees. 1.5-2%. Ridiculous when you're use to.5% or less (usually.15%). And to someone who doesn't know better, it may not seem like much, that 1 to 2% fee difference. But go plug some numbers into a future value calculator and change the rate of return by 1% and be in awe of the difference it makes in 20, 30, 40 years. So I switched my work Sep IRA over to my Vanguard IRA, who did most of the work to transfer it. It closed on 7/7/16. I wanted to make sure it was done before 7/31/16 before the annual fee was charged as was indicated online. But I should have realized who I was dealing with.
I got my statement today. Not only did they charge the close out fee of $95 (also preposterous but this is to discourage you from leaving them), they of course charged the annual fee of $40. $135 to close an account. But I'm not surprised, just ticked off that they can charge a year's worth of account maintenance for a month and a half of service. Not even that. But of course they don't pro-rate fees. If you haven't learned by now from this review and others, they aren't exactly concerned with going out of their way for the consumer.
Do yourself a favor by saving time and money by saying no to Edward Jones and investing on your own, going with a fee-based advisor, or someone who at least offers low cost investment options. It's easy. Just go to Vanguard's website and open an IRA. You can put up to $5500/yr in one. Put it in a target-retirement fund. You chose the year you plan to retire. That's it. Simple. You're already better off than doing any investing with Ed Jones.
The E. Jones advisor wanted to buy Chevron. I worked in oil & gas, so advised her our CEO told us prices dropping, so I just sold my co. stock. I reluctantly agreed, making clear if no profit I would move acct. She bought CVX and again when price falling. I lost 8% of initial portfolio in a year, then moved acct. I am holding, hoping oil goes back up. Some experts say it won't (electric cars) & CVX will cut its dividend. All oil stock PE too high.
We opened and funded our accounts the latter part of May. At that time it was suggested we each invest in American Funds. We told our adviser that we collectively had $217,730 invested with American Funds and declined his offer. We were shocked and frustrated after reading our July 15th Jones Account Summary to find our adviser had invested another 50,000 dollars in Income Fund of America and incurred an AMECX capital loss of $5,943 recorded 7/30. Meanwhile we sold the funds for a loss and are considering court action.
Last night I got a call from a telemarketer. They identified themselves and said Edward Jones sold them my number. Beware giving Edward Jones your personal data.
I originally thought that in opening an account and NOT using advising services was FEE FREE... but as my stock gained value and the gains rolled into new stock purchases I learned 8 years later that I'd been paying for re-investing existing stock. So I moved my money and I had to pay $95 just to close my account, which I feel was exorbitant and predatory to consumers and I don't recall agreeing to these fees.
I opened my IRA account on 5/18/2012. I closed my IRA account on 3/8/2016. So complete length of time I have had my account with Edward Jones has been < 4 years or about 46-47 months. However they charged me 5 years of annual fees. I was charged $40 in May of 2012, $40 in May of 2013, $40 in May of 2014, $40 in May 2015, and then another $40 in March 2016, even though the fee was not due until May of 2016. So I have only had my account < 4 years, but they have charged me 5 years of fees totalling $200.
I have contacted the #800 and local office and have only been told, "we don't prorate the fees". However I'm not asking them to even prorate the fees, I am just asking NOT to be charged for fees I don't owe. In addition I had to pay $95 just to close my account, which I feel was exorbitant and predatory to consumers. I don't understand how they earned $95?? I filled out all the paperwork myself, and at most a wire fee to send money out is only about $15 - $30. It appears Edward Jones motive is to charge excessive and unearned fees, especially the close-out fee which is 3 times in excess of what the industry standard appears to be. Then they tried to tell me it's "for account management/reporting" going forward.
The cost of a stamp is 47 cents, and most IRS reporting is done electronically nowadays, at a relatively minimal cost, additionally I'm not retiring anytime soon, so I don't see how Edward Jones can justify $95 other than to say "sorry no one explained these fees to you." I'm also concerned at how easily their business practices can take advantage of the elderly or less educated in regards to investing. Telling people these fees 'are the norm', when they absolutely must be the highest in the industry. I do not understand what fiduciary responsibility they have to consumers, their sole purpose seems to be to charge their clients exploitative fees/charges whether earned or not, for the sake of their own profits.
My employer suggested we move from Principal Funds to Edward Jones. Mid October 2015, Andre ** visited my place of employment with folders of paperwork to fill out. November 11th met with Andre ** in his office with October Principal Funds Quarterly Statement (something ** said he needed in order to facilitate rolling over into Ed Jones). Signed paperwork to open the account.
** strongly recommended I buy into the John Hancock Lifestyle Growth PTF A. I said no, that I wanted my investment to remain in an Index Fund as I have with Principal Funds and we left it at that. January 2016, I received an End of Year Statement from Principal Funds indicating nothing had been rolled over. I was told the account had been created but nothing had been deposited. I was told I needed to fill out a Transfer Form. I said "I did that already". I was told to do it again which I did promptly. January 26th, I received a voicemail message indicating the rollover from Principal Funds had taken place and all was in order.
Mid-March, I received a voicemail message wanting to know what to do with the cash I was accumulating. The message was, "All I need is a quick verbal over the phone to get things in motion and I will send a Letter of Standing Instruction to take care of further purchases. You won't be bothered any longer." I phoned back and spoke with **. I said "I wanted the cash invested in the Principal Funds Index Fund that rolled over to my Ed Jones Account." ** said, "oh that's a bad decision. The fees are so high." I held my ground and said "Index Fund", and that was that.
A week later I received a Letter of Standing Instruction for me to sign and send back indicating I wanted ** to invest my contributions to the John Hancock Lifestyle Growth PTF A. I phoned him back and told him "no I wanted my contributions to be invested in an Index Fund." He said he was coming to visit my place of employment and we could chat more about it.
April 5th, I met with ** at work. He pulled out another Letter of Standing Instruction for me to invest my contributions in yes, you guessed it! The John Hancock Lifestyle Growth PTF A. He said, "I need instructions on how to invest the cash that is building in your account." I said "I wanted the cash to go into the Principal Index Fund that rolled over from Principal Funds." At this point I was tired. I said, "let's just let the cash build." He agreed. Less than an hour later, I receive a voicemail message from ** saying, "I FORGOT I put through a 'buy' on Friday (4 days prior), so you don't have any 'cash' in your account anymore. It's not too late to cancel it if you want, but you need to call me back soon."
I'M DONE WITH HIM! He forgot??? We talked for nearly an hour about what to do with the 'cash' in my account and he forgot he used the entire amount and put through a 'buy'! I have no cash and he can't remember? I'm not necessarily upset about the transaction - it's actually what I've been wanting to happen for the last 5 months (since November 11th). I told the 'powers that be' at work and heard similar stories. The good news is we're moving our retirement investments to another company!
Long story short, I let them recommend stocks. They picked 100% oil stocks. In a year when the market went up I lost 16,000. Cenovus was the biggest loser. There's obviously some kind of scam relation going on there. I filed complaints with FINRA. I honestly don't think anyone really cares including the government. Too many people in on the scam.
When investing you either make money or you don't. With EJ I did not make money. I invested low amount of $14,000 and waited for EJ to prove themselves before I invested more money with them. EJ proved themselves failures. My EJ financial adviser put my money in mutual funds and he told me it will take about 6 months on average to make money and 2 years is more than enough time for my holdings to make money.
After 2 years all my mutual funds lost $2000 and my adviser told me he does not remember telling me that in 2 years I will make money, and instead told me it takes about 5-10 years for my accounts to make money. As the markets tanked my adviser told me to buy against the tide (sales pitch) and I asked my adviser why he sold me oil stocks at the top peak before oil prices tanked and his excuse was "nobody can predict the markets". I don't care about excuses. After 2 years I sold off all my accounts with EJ and fired my adviser and EJ. I will never do business with EJ and do not recommend them. Edward Jones either scams customers or does not know what they are doing with customers' money.
I made the mistake of rolling over my Personal IRA from my bank into an investment portfolio at Edward Jones. Boy, was that EVER a stupid move! In the 2 years I had my IRA, it had increased in value by $9,000.00. In just the 1 year since I rolled over my IRA to Edward Jones, my investment lost $5,000.00. This just doesn't sit well with me, so I call the Edward Jones office to ask about it, and of course, I got nothing but a bunch of runaround. Nobody there can, or will, explain to me why my portfolio has lost so much money so fast. It's totally unacceptable to me, not only that my portfolio has lost so much in so little time, but that nobody can, or will, explain it to me. Obviously these ripoff artists care nothing about their client's money! Otherwise they'd be doing a much better job at protecting their client's money! These thieves have just lost another client!
Fiduciary irresponsibility - My brother put mom's trust in EJ. When I got part of it, the advisor called and said "Oh, Ebola, the world is ending..." I said "I'll get back to you after I talk to my brother" of course not planning on responding to the advisor's idiocy. But, the advisor sold all my stock, of course to his great advantage. I have been fighting this for over a year going up the chain and to a pro bono lawyer (it's not enough to hire a real lawyer) and EJ just does not respond to the lawyer's requests. But also offers no explanation for not having my permission to touch my money. Even the SEC won't help, and I reported it to Virginia and they haven't responded in over a year. What can I do?
Edward Jones offices around the country hang plaques that tout Edward Jones as winner of JD Power and Associate's "One of the Best Companies to Work For." I'm sure they are great to work for because they have a heck of a business model that benefits from an endless stream of investor newbies, directing them to buy investments at a premium allowing them to profit enormously. At the end of the day it's their client that pays the overhead for their 11,500 brick and mortar branch offices across the country, the sports domes, the billboards, the TV commercials. I wish EJ was publicly traded, they would probably be a great investment ($6.28 billion in revenue in 2014), although arguably not an ethical one.
While I don't think my Edward Jones adviser (a friend of the family actually) ever set out to intentionally do me wrong, the company is structured so that advisers are commission based salesmen. They are encouraged to promote mutual funds like American Funds which have ridiculous loading fees of 5.75% ( For every 10k you invest, you lose $575 from the get-go that won't be growing over the next 10, 20 or 30 years) and on-going high expense ratios that skim money from your holding whether the fund is performing well or not. They will tell you that choosing "Class A Shares" with loading fees is good because these funds have no sales fees later and lower expense ratios than Class C shares, and if you are to hold funds for a long time, in the long run this is better. While this Class A vs C is true of American Funds, what they don't tell you is that other fund families have no loading fees and lower expense ratios as American funds class A shares.. American Funds has very cozy relationship with EJ - they get a commission on the loading fees AND on the high expense ratios you pay (even with Class A shares) are partially comprised of whats called 12b-1 fees - that's an ongoing finders fee that American Funds is kicking back to EJ for getting you into their fund! If you are savvy enough to choose your own investments and buy mutual funds not associated with EJ, they are still going to take commissions far greater than other brokerage firms.
Any stocks you buy have ridiculously high commission rates (2% taken) at both the time you Buy and Sell. That's like buying stock on Wednesday and stock immediately dropping 2%. On top of that Edward Jones then takes 2% of all your dividend earnings when you have selected to have your dividends reinvested into the same stock or any other fund. That's money they take as a commission for a process that is fully automated and as far as I know this commission on divined earnings is not something any other major brokerage firm does.
To add insult to injury, EJ has all these other little charges that add up, annual account charges and even a monthly fee if your checking account drops below $2000.
Now, 10 years after mediocre returns at best, having made EJ thousands of dollars of my hard earned money and all I have to show for it is a stack of their annual Birthday and Christmas cards (no i didn't really save these). I've realized why savvy investors gibe EJ customers with "How are those American Funds doing :P" and calling them "Jonestown" followers. I for one can't drink the green Kool Aid any longer!
It is extremely easy to move your IRA or other investments to another broker and you can transfer them "in-kind" which means you're not even out of the market. After you move your funds over to another firm, you can then sell them for far less commissions and reallocate them in funds that will likely outperform American Funds. There's a particular investment firm out there that is member owned and has the lowest fees. I won't mention them by name in case that's bad etiquette when reviewing another company, but if you do your research you'll find many savvy investors recommending them.
Barbara FriedbergPersonal Finance Contributing Editor
Barbara Friedberg, MBA, MS is a former investment portfolio manager with decades of financial experience. Friedberg taught Finance and Investments at several universities. Her work has been featured in U.S. News & World Report, Investopedia, Yahoo!Finance and many more publications.
Edward Jones, a Fortune 500 company, is one of the largest financial services firms in the country. With 11,000 offices, Edward Jones has served nearly seven million clients for over 90 years.
- Services: The company provides a wide-range of services, including wealth management, retirement and college savings planning and investing guidance. Edward Jones representatives are competent in handling various financial planning services for individuals and business owners. Edward Jones is one of the few financial services firms dedicated to the individual investor.
- Products: The firm offers clients access to a wide range of investment and money management products including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, insurance and annuity products. They also offer cash and credit solutions to their clientele.
- Investment philosophy: Edward Jones believes in a long-term approach to wealth building with regular meetings between the client and advisor. The company focuses on quality and diversified investment products and features a personalized approach.
- Educational and client resources: Assistance with statements, taxes, fraud awareness and protection are available. Edward Jones’ clients receive easy account access and management with mobile apps, online account access and bill pay.
- Best for Clients looking for a personal financial advisor dedicated to their financial needs, the newly wealthy, those experiencing family and/or household changes, the financially unsavvy and business owners.
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Edward Jones Company Profile
- Company Name:
- Edward Jones
- Year Founded:
- 12555 Manchester Road
- St. Louis
- Postal Code: