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Financial Advisor Gaithersburg MD: Stock Broker vs. Financial Advisor


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Stock Broker vs. Financial Advisor

Our financial advisors can lead you in the right direction for investing in your future today! First, what is the difference between a stock broker and a financial advisor? There are two major differences between the two; first, what they do (including their fiduciary responsibility) and second, how they are compensated.

Fiduciary Responsibility

Perhaps the most important difference of a stock broker vs. financial advisor is the fiduciary responsibility. A stock broker essentially has one job– to sell you investment products. They have a standard of suitability to uphold, which means that the products they sell their clients must be suitable investment vehicles – not scams. They do not, however, have any fiduciary requirement beyond ensuring that all of their products are suitable for you.

A financial advisor, on the other hand, typically has a fiduciary responsibility to their client. This means that, aside from selling you products, the financial planner also has a professional responsibility to make sure that you are getting the right investment products for your needs. This is one of the most important differences when considering whether you should use the services of a stock broker vs. financial planner.


A financial advisor is compensated on either a fee-only or fee-based basis. Fee only means exactly what it sounds like. They charge you only the fee for their service, and nothing else. Fee-based means that they charge a fee for service, but can also make a commission if you choose certain products. Either of these is beneficial to the customer, because it means the financial advisor can always look out for your best interests without sacrificing their ability to make a living. If you need more information about stock brokers vs. financial advisors contact CIC Wealth today; our financial advisors are here to help.