FPA of MN Newsletter – May 2015

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President’s Message – May, 2015

Greetings to All,

I wanted to take some time in this month’s President’s Message to give a huge shout-out to the Programs committee for a tremendous job in putting together the programs for this year’s Chapter meetings – no small task. The year is off to a great start, already with several highly-rated programs under our belt, including a recent collaborative meeting with the Minnesota Planned Giving Council that featured Dr. Russell James and attracted over 300 attendees! Many great sessions are still in-store, including David Blanchett (May), Andy Biebl (July), and Ross Levin (September.)

While on the topic of programs, I wanted to remind you to mark your calendars for this year’s FPA of Minnesota Symposium, which will be held on November 3rd and 4th at the Minneapolis Convention Center. The Symposium committee has again put together a fantastic lineup of speakers, including Michael Kitces, Bob Keebler, Jill Schlesinger, and Doug Lennick. Highly recommended!

For those interested in attending the FPA BE Conference, which features a great speaker lineup that can be found here, use the Promo Code AFBE15 while registering and save $50 off of your registration. FPA of Minnesota will also receive a $50 rebate back to the Chapter when you do so.

Lastly, I wanted to let you know of our upcoming Committee Member Drive which will be taking place in May. Look for more information to come, including an opportunity to express interest in joining a committee as part of the May Chapter meeting invite. In the meantime, you can check out committee opportunities within FPA of MN here. If you have been considering getting involved in a committee but have not yet done so, May is the time!

As always, feel free to let me or any of our Board members know of any questions, comments, or concerns that you have. We strive to “ask-listen-respond.”


Steve Gilbertson, CFP®
Accredited Investors, Inc.

Win a scholarship to the FPA NexGen Gathering

The deadline to apply is May 1, 2015.

Download application

Register today for the 2015 FPA NexGen Gathering being held at The University of Texas at Dallas in Richardson, Texas, June 19-21. The conference theme is BUILDING COMMUNITY, providing opportunities for attendees to engage in dialogue on issues of importance to young financial planners and a chance to get to know peers and colleagues in an intimate and free-flow setting.

Past attendees of the FPA NexGen Gathering have found the conference invaluable and they want other NexGen members to have an opportunity to attend. The FPA NexGen Scholarship is funded entirely by donations made by past attendees. First time attendees are eligible to apply for the conference scholarship, which covers the registration fee, onsite lodging, conference meals, and reasonable travel expenses to and from the conference site. Eligibility requirements and application materials are available on the FPA NexGen website.

Minnesota Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman Issues Cybersecurity Warning

The Minnesota Department of Commerce has seen that businesses are increasingly the target of organized cyberattacks. Cyber thieves operate globally and this is a long-term threat. The increasing reliance on technology in our daily lives leaves our sensitive financial information more vulnerable to cyber threats such as unwanted viewing or theft without proper safeguards in place. While investors can take proactive steps to protect their financial information, I also urge financial planners and others in our financial markets who maintain their clients’ private data, to make cybersecurity a top priority in their businesses.

The Commerce Department has identified cybersecurity as a top concern for all of our regulated industries. I have made it a priority of the Department to determine the best way to address the issue with our industry members. As a member of the of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Cyber Security Task Force, and as the Treasurer and Board Member of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), I have been able to discuss these issues and share ideas with leaders in the insurance and securities industries around the country and bring good ideas about how to address cybersecurity risks back to Minnesota.

For example, in 2014, the Department of Commerce participated in a NASAA pilot survey that looked at how cybersecurity is addressed in state-registered investment adviser firms across the country. The survey found that 62 percent of responding firms have undergone a cybersecurity risk assessment and 77 percent have cybersecurity policies and procedures in place.

For Minnesota-registered investment advisor firms with assets under management of less than $100 million, the survey found that 2 percent of responding investment advisor firms indicated that they had experienced a cybersecurity incident in which client data was compromised. In comparison, the NASAA survey, which included Minnesota’s data along with eight other states, found that 1.1 percent of responding investment advisor firms indicated that they had experienced a cybersecurity incident in which client data was compromised.

Understanding the level of preparedness for cybersecurity incidents, and the rate at which firms experience these issues, is just one way in which Commerce working to better understand the issues Financial Planners, Investment Adviser, and other financial professionals are facing.

Cybersecurity is an issue that will never go away and industry members must take precautions, from the simplest to more complex solutions. The threat of a cyberattack is real and the potential for great harm to the industry’s reputation and financial stability exists. At a minimum, cybersecurity plans should include a system to assess, track, report, and respond to any cyber events in an efficient and timely manner, and there should be internal testing of the system. Businesses should consider cyber security insurance to protect against cyber incidents and the related risks to the business and its customers.

As Commissioner, I encourage private-public partnerships to encourage more information sharing to combat this problem. Together, we can help make cybersecurity a top priority—it is crucial for the health of the industry. The Department of Commerce is here to help make sure that Minnesota’s financial industries are doing what they can to protect private data from cyberattacks.

Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman
April 13, 2015

FPA Annual Conference Registration is Now Open

Register now to attend the advanced technical conference for CFP® professionals – FPA’s Annual Conference – BE Boston 2015 that will be held on September 26-28 to gain new practice management knowledge, skills and resources. The schedule is jam-packed with insightful sessions that will help attendees be more knowledgeable professionals and better business owners. Confirmed keynote speakers include:

  • Olympic Gold Medalist Jim Craig
  • Futurist Michio Kaku
  • Marketing Strategist David Meerman Scott
  • Keynote Host Jill Schlesinger, CFP® of CBS News.

Registration is open and members can now save with terrific early bird pricing. Register and learn more at www.FPA-BE.org!

Nominations are Open for the 2016 FPA Board of Directors

The FPA Board of Directors is the driving force behind FPA’s vision to be the professional membership association for the financial planning community and CFP® professionals. The Board is a group of dedicated, dynamic FPA members who recognize the impact that today’s decisions can have on the future.

Are you interested in being part of this high caliber strategic team that is leading the profession and the association while serving the members? If so, consider submitting your name as a candidate for the FPA Board of Directors or recommend a colleague for nomination.

Service on the FPA Board of Directors is a three-year commitment that begins January 1, 2016. Contact board@onefpa.org to request a board nomination packet starting April 15. Deadline for 2016 board nominations is Wednesday, July 1, 2015.

SYMPOSIUM SPEAKER - November 4, Tim Kochis

Mark your calendar and save the dates: November 3-4, 2015
Watch for Registration Link - Coming Soon.

Presentation Scheduled for Wednesday, 1:15-3:25 pm
Anticipated CE: 2 CFP, 2 CIMA, 2 NASBA/CPE, 2 MN insurance

Managing the Complexities of Executive Compensation and Concentrated Stock Positions

Learn what you need to know to serve your corporate executive clients well. Understand the strategic connections between stock options, restricted shares, deferred compensation, and more. Explore techniques for optimizing tax and investment strategies to minimize your clients' risk while directing these powerful wealth building tools toward accomplishing your clients' objectives. Common results of that wealth building are large positions of concentrated stock. Learn the many ways to manage the risks and opportunities concentration presents for philanthropy, inter-generational wealth transfer, investment diversification, and even deliberate...and sometimes affordable...bets on significant upside.

Beware the Phishing Season

Submitted by Donald McNeil, J.D. - Professional Issues Committee Member

The much-anticipated Minnesota fishing opener is set for May 9, 2015. You, however, have been the subject of open Phishing every day, and even as you are reading this article, someone is plotting away to have you part with sensitive, confidential financial information that belongs to you or your customer. Be careful, because, if they are successful, you will be on the hook in more than one way.

Phishing is a criminal effort to acquire access to information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by masquerading as someone else in an attempt to access accounts and money. The criminals spend every day coming up with new ideas, including the more recent “spear phishing” that gathers personal information about the target to increase their probability of success. This technique is, by far, the most successful on the internet today, accounting for 91% of attacks and uses information found on social media to make the phishing expedition more likely to get a nibble on the line.

Some fishing lures just are not effective and it is hard to imagine how they catch anything. The Nigerian princess that needs help transferring $10 million is about the same as using corn on a hook to bait a walleye; it’s just not going to work. However, an email purportedly from your equestrian-loving customer needing a transfer of money for the purchase of a horse may succeed. Such personal information is often readily available when the privacy settings on your customer’s Facebook page are set low.

There have been a number of successful phishing trips lately.Pretending to be the IRS continues to be a popular tactic to part the recipient with confidential information. An email from a trusted college domain that has been hacked remains a nifty way to set a hook. And last year, receiving an email from an attorney with the zip file proved to be irresistible to many.

The number one way for you to remain off the hook continues to be a phone call to your customer to verify the source of the email. There is nothing better than the old-fashioned telephone call followed up by written authorization before sharing information or transferring money. Remember, it remains open season and you are a prime target. Stay aware, my friends.

What are the Benefits of your FPA Membership to your Business?

We are a Minnesota estate planning law firm. We work with many financial planners to provide estate planning and estate administration services to their clients. The FPA provides current, relevant information to members about trends in the financial planning community. This education is important to allied members as well as planners.

As estate planning attorneys, we work with financial planners to strengthen their relationships with their clients.The FPA’s focus on long-term relationships fits with our mission. For example, our New Member Director and Chapter Guide, Kathie Bortnem, has been very helpful with navigating our FPA membership.

Also, we have been impressed with the events organized by the FPA. Our membership brings opportunities for a successful future with the FPA.

Kathleen Fedor, Client Relations Director
Mullen & Guttman PLLC

May Member Discount - Comcast Business Class

Comcast Business Class powered by Integrated Communications

Keep on top of telecom costs with a free plan audit

Comcast Business Class offers Internet, Ethernet, Voice and TV for businesses.

Services are delivered over a diverse, private network - the nation's leading alternative to the phone company. With Internet speeds up to 66 times faster than standard DSL and T1 and Ethernet that provides carrier-grade data and Internet services, at speeds up to 10 GBPS, businesses will find the right solution.

Business Class Voice offers a variety of options like voice lines and PRI trunks. And Business Class TV will keep customers entertained. Customers also value the 24/7 business class support.

Also, check out these other program offerings:

  • Managed IP (hosted VoIP solution for businesses near the end of their phone contracts or with multiple locations). With ManagedIP, there are no expensive installation or upfront frees - just a bundled program with tons of features (i.e., remote office, call alert/history, call rejection/forwarding, simultaneous ring, messaging and custom greetings, etc.) under one easy monthly bill.
  • Teleconferencing multiple plans ($.05/min. with a 24/7 personal dial-in conference facility, integrated with your email/calendar planner, billing management, call recording and in-call control, pay-as-you go, easy set-up via a simple website or your BlackBerry® Smartphone or Windows Mobile. Dial in from any phone.)
  • Local/long-distance T-1, DSL, etc.

CALL Greg Hannon 763-201-8015/888-609-2462 and ask for the Business AdvantEdge program

FPA of MN: Volunteer for One-on-One 2-Day Event

A one-on-one financial consulting opportunity with AmeriCorp volunteers on two consecutive Fridays, May 22nd and 29th, from 1 - 2:30 PM, in St. Paul.

The format will be similar to Financial Planning Days, 20-minute face-to-face Q&A sessions with AmeriCorp and College Possible staff. College Possible is a nonprofit organization that makes college admission and success possible for students from low-income families.

15 volunteer financial planners are needed on each Friday. If you are interested in helping, giving financial guidance and pointers to young adults a year out of college and embarking on their careers, please email San Asato or call (952) 548-3130.

Reason to belong to FPA

The FPA Jobs section is the premier electronic recruitment resource for the industry. Job seekers can showcase their skills and work experience to prospective employers to find the best job opportunities. Employers and recruiters can access the most qualified talent pool with relevant work experience to fulfill staffing needs.

View FPA Jobs Section

PR Committee Seeking Financial Education Bloggers

The PR Committee is currently seeking FPA ‘media trained’ members who are interested in contributing financial education blog posts to the Star Tribune on a regular basis. We are happy to assist you with content ideas and ideas on how you can ‘repurpose’ the blog content that you create. It’s a great opportunity for our members to educate the community at large and also help grow their practice. If you are interested in participating in this effort, please contact PR Committee chairperson, Kristy Gusick or call 651-592-4662.

Also, if you are not yet officially ‘media trained’, please consider attending one of our up-coming webinar training sessions. Each 90-minute media training program, conducted by our national FPA Director of Public Relations Ben Lewis, covers the essentials in working with journalists. Not only is media training mandatory for all CFP® members who want to receive FPA media queries, but the information will enable you to effectively approach media relations within your own business!​

The All-Member Virtual Media Trainings will be held on:

  • Thursday, June 4, 2015 from 4 to 5:30 pm ET
  • Thursday, September 3, 2015 from 4 to 5:30 pm ET
  • Thursday, December 10, 2015 from 4 to 5:30 pm ET​

Register for one of these training sessions

Please and Thank You

Please and thank you are words we all learned at a very young age and they have likely have served us well throughout life. They even work in today's txting world...pls and ty, right?

The New Member Committee is responsible for the recruitment and integration of new members in their first year of membership. We need help from you-our valued members! Here goes...

PLEASE ask a friend or colleague to a Chapter meeting so they can experience what you experience each month. Great networking with professionals and great programs providing CE.

THANK YOU for supporting our effort to grow our Chapter. Do One Thing-ask!

Attend FPA Residency with the help of a scholarship from FPA of MN!

Join experienced CFP® practitioner mentors and other soon-to-be or new CFP® practitioners at the FPA Residency October 2-7 at the Inverness Hotel and Conference Center in Denver. This highly acclaimed case-study centered program will build experience and establish relationships with thought leaders in the profession – and provide continuing education credits. For more information, visit the FPA website here and download the application here. Two $2000 scholarships are available – apply today!

Montgomery Scholarships Available for CFP® exam-taking Students

Attention UMD and Mankato College Students – are you preparing to take the CFP® exam? Two $1,000 Montgomery Scholarships are available to students that are admitted to a program administered by an accredited university or college registered with the CFP® Board. For more information and to apply, visit the FPA website.

FPA of MN Member Gives Presentation to 75 Americorp Volunteers

FPA of MN member, Ben Wacek, presented to 75 Americorp Volunteers on Friday, April 17. This group of young adults were very receptive to Ben's presentation which focused on the topic of cash flow and creating a budget. There were many enthusiastic questions around the following topics:

  • Where is a good place to bank?
  • Where should I open a Roth IRA?
  • Should I put extra funds toward paying extra on student loans or saving into a Roth IRA?
  • What technology can I use to track my spending?

This presentation will be followed up in the next couple of weeks by Pro Bono offering one-on-ones to the attendees. If you are interested in learning more about volunteering for speaking engagements, please contact the Financial Education committee.

FPA Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C.

Did you miss Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. last year? If so, now is your opportunity to take part!

Sixty-five members from 21 states put FPA on the map last year to raise awareness about FPA and our profession. This year, join your fellow FPA members from across the country in Washington, D.C. for the 2nd Annual FPA Advocacy Day on June 23-24, 2015. This will be your opportunity to help spread the message on our key issues and meet with our elected officials in Congress. They need to hear from you on those issues that affect the financial planning profession and your clients.

FPA will provide a structured experience including: training, materials, pre-event tips and tactics, a group room rate at a convenient hotel, appointments with the offices of your representatives and the opportunity to network with your fellow FPA members. All members are responsible for their own travel expenses and meals.

Learn more and register now