Remember dial telephones? Back when they were popular, stockbrokers sold stock. Agents sold insurance. Bankers made loans. Everyone had their own patch and stuck to it. In the 1980s, it changed. Cash management accounts were invented. Bank CDs were offered by financial consultants. You became licensed to sell insurance. Throughout it all, many advisors were uncomfortable with cross selling, preferring to stick to familiar products.  Now the pandemic has created an opportunity.

1. Let’s add insurance. “Money talks. It says goodbye.” For a short period of time, the stock market was down 30%. The TV news helpfully told investors how many years they’ve been set back because of vanished appreciation. Clients might be receptive to adding a component to their portfolio that builds cash value regardless of what’s happening in the stock market. You have insurance products.

2. Credit cards. OK, maybe you don’t get paid on them. Consider it a service to your client.  Interest rates on money funds might be near zero, yet their credit card likely charges 17% on their revolving charge card balance. If there’s a bank in the background, your firm likely offers credit cards. They may offer lower introductory rates, especially for wealth management clients.  They may have an attractive balance transfer rate too.

3. Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC). They were popular (too popular) during the subprime mortgage crisis of 2007-8. Your client probably has equity built up in their home. They’ve discovered selling stock to raise cash in a declining market can be very painful. They needed cash. They might need it again. The HELOC gives them an available option, usually at a much lower interest rate than credit card cash advances.

4. Mortgage refinancing. They’ve likely done it once or twice over the past decade. Rates are now at historically low levels. According to, on 5/29, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage was 3.397%. Has your client been paying attention? Your parent company likely does mortgages.

5. Fixed income. It’s not exactly cross selling. When addressed as part of the asset allocation conversation, it adds a component that usually doesn’t move in lockstep with the stock market. Rates might be low, but that’s why bond ladders are considered a good investment strategy. 

6. Cash reserves. Asset allocation conversations include “stocks, bonds and cash.” Cash is boring, or was until mid February, 2020. Then it became a decently performing asset class and a handy reserve if your client was laid off or furloughed. You have products and investments that would be classified as cash equivalents. Treasury bills are an obvious example.

7. Securities-based lending. Years ago, borrowing against stock was called a margin loan. People didn’t pay too much attention to the interest rates charged. They went up. Firms developed different programs based on asset or securities based lending. Certain accounts are designed as pledged collateral. The interest rate is usually lower than a margin loan. Like a HELOC, the facility stays inactive until you start using it. You get a checkbook to lock away.  It’s another emergency line, to give your client peace of mind.

8. Time deposits. The bank has been issuing certificates of deposit, even when interest rates are low. Although you have cash equivalents, some people like the FDIC deposit insurance connected with accounts held when the bank is the institution. CDs are easy to understand. They make some people more comfortable.

9. Long-Term-Care Insurance. It’s something we all hope we will never need. The pandemic has introduced a “what if” element into your client’s financial planning. There are many senior care options available today, but they would need to be paid for somehow. Your client should realize the earlier you get started, the better the cost.

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