Monday, 18 June 2012

Talk is Cheap

One of the financial institutions I bank with here always lures me in for a chat whenever I go to a bank teller.

And because I usually use the ATM or online banking, I forget they like to drag me in and discuss my financial goals for the next 10 years when I'd only planned to be in the bank for five minutes.

The bank teller suggests that I should be looking at investment options and her colleague could give me some information about it.

This past Saturday I said sure, but warned I was in a hurry. "It will only take 10 minutes," she said.


A young sharp-looking man in a suit led me to his office and then I quickly realized this was not going to take 10 minutes and nor was it just passing some brochures to me.

He looked up my banking information and said that since my cash was not making any interest in the bank, why not invest it?

And then I retorted that I'd already invested with them before and was not happy with the returns which is why I'd cashed out over a year ago.

He seemed completely unfazed by what I'd said and went on to suggest that I park my investments in mutual funds where a big percentage of the companies invested were from China.

I said I wasn't interested because the country's economy was slowing down, but he tried to reassure me by saying the government was controlling the economy and purposely putting the brakes on.

But I replied that China had a serious problem of overcapacity and countries like Europe and the United States weren't buying the overproduction so things were just going to get worse.

What was really interesting was how unflappable this guy was in trying to sell me investment products I didn't believe in at all.

He just kept trying with the next one and the next. Even a minimum of $1,000 was enough to start investing.

But in this economy I have no appetite for that and just want to see how things go first.

After I'd given him more than 10 minutes I pleaded I was in a hurry and managed to flee his office.

So while we see how things go with the euro, please remind me stay away from the bank teller at "The world's local bank"?

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