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A top broker's bullish view; financial planning pedigrees

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Certainly the numbers show that people are interested in becoming financial planners. The roster of enrollees at the College for Financial Planning, in Denver, has gone from 3,500 in 1978 to 12,000. And the number of graduates in the 18- to 24-month program, which offers the professional designation ''certified financial planner,'' has climbed from 1,500 to 4,000.

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In Pennsylvania, at the American College at Bryn Mawr, enrollment has also been strong for a newly developed program leading to the professional designation chartered financial consultant (ChFC). Last month the college, which for years has conferred the designation ''chartered life underwriter'' on insurance executives, conferred the ChFC title on 2,000 men and women, most of whom are in the insurance business, who have completed the new five-year course.

Within 10 years, predicts William Anthes, president of the College for Financial Planning, nearly 20,000 people will graduate with one of its professional designations.

At the American College, Davis W. Gregg, former president, estimated that by 1987 there would be 25,000 ChFCs.

The reasons vary among people taking the courses who are already in finance. Generally they are interested in broadening their scope. Mr. Anthes says that although there is no guarantee that adding the designation will help them personally, his course, which costs $995, should also enable them to make a lot more money. He says it's not difficult for a CFP with five to 10 years of experience to gross $90,000 to $100,000 a year.

Mr. Foley, the lawyer who works for IDS, is one of a group of 200 IDS people enrolled in the program. He says the certified financial planner program ''is emerging as good training for financial planning.'' IDS tries to integrate the CFP and ChFC courses with its own internal training programs. Mr. Foley says it is unlikely that any of the 1,000 new salespeople IDS hires each year will take the courses. Only the 3,000 more experienced ones will be considered eligible. IDS pays half of the tuition cost of the courses.

About 65 percent of those enrolled in the CFP program are under such corporate sponsorship. Although most of the courses are self-study, the College for Financial Planning has seminars taught by adjunct faculty at affiliated colleges and universities.

Stanley Weinstein, who is a vice-president for trusts and financial services at Security Pacific Bank, Los Angeles, says the bank has started to encourage some of its employees to become CFPs. ''We hope to make our line people - those people dealing directly with the public - more skilled in the principles of financial planning,'' he states.

And he notes that even though financial planning has not been profitable for banks that have offered it as a service in the past, he maintains that ''it's the wave of the '80s. Customer attitudes are changing and people are looking at the bank as a place to go for financial services.''

The bull market roared back to life again last week. In some of the heaviest trading ever, the stock market rose dramatically after the elections. By the end of the week, even after a spate of profit taking, the Dow Jones industrial average sat at 1,051.78, up 60.06 points for the week. The Dow broke its highest previous level, surpassing the old high of 1051.73, set in January of 1973. Traders were once more fired up by falling interest rates and the prospects for higher corporate profits in the later half of next year. Although blue chips led the advance, investors began moving into second-and third-tier companies.