Elderly Americans are being duped out of millions by financial advisers with trumped-up credentials, the New York Times reports. Over 39,000 "certified senior advisers" have been rubber stamped by pay-for-service courses in the last decade, and they're selling popular—but unnecessary—financial products to the elderly.
At stake: the more than $15 trillion in assets held by seniors. That's sparking a rush on the credentials—which offer little instruction in financial basics, but do coach recipients in how to scare seniors into buying products. Says one state attorney general, “The insurers are happy to turn a blind eye to what salesmen are doing, as long as they make a sale.”