Now that I've been with my office for over a year, I'm eligible for the 401K, so our investment rep dude was here yesterday to set me up. He doesn't know I have a background in stock market analysis, so the first few minutes consisted of him giving me a remedial lesson on mutual funds. Then he just plowed straight into filling out my forms, and explained that since I'm young, I shouldn't be concerned with bonds, and here's the fund I think you'll want, so I'm just going to write this in here and you just sign right there and you're all set.
Wait a minute, dude. I see that this is your most popular fund and it's performed very well and all that, but what stocks are in it? He can't tell me off the top of his head so we look it up. It's like 10% oil stocks and 10% big pharma, among other things. Um, dude. No thanks. So I had him sign me up instead for a fund that's mostly tech and innovation-related. He was like "I'm glad you felt comfortable enough to speak up about that." Mmhmm, why didn't you ask me in the first place before you just wrote everything down without me opening my mouth?
I then asked if we could set it up as a Roth IRA, and his eyes bugged out a little bit, probably at the mere notion that I had a clue. He hemmed and hawed a bit and then said basically that I wouldn't want to do a Roth because certainly my husband's income puts us in too high a tax bracket for this to be smart for me. What? Dude, seriously, what? He didn't even ask what my husband's job was. All he knew was that I have a husband.
I was just flabbergasted by the whole experience. I mean I can understand that it's a reasonable assumption that your average 30-year-old part-time hourly employee doesn't know a lot about mutual funds and investing, but the combination of all the different ways he spoke down to me just left a horribly foul taste in my mouth. I so wanted to name drop Warren Buffett on his ass. "The last time I was playing bridge against Warren..." But it didn't come up.