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‘My girlfriend is a busy lady’: She advised me to handle her investments and generate 10% returns — she acquired offended once I refused

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Dear Quentin,

My friend is a very busy woman and wants to retire early. She calculates how quickly she can retire based on the net worth accumulated from investment returns. We’re both in our late twenties. She wants me to manage her investment accounts, including her IRA, and get results that are above normal market returns.

She bases her expectation on an annual return of 10%, which is not difficult to achieve with ETFs. But as with any investment, there are no guarantees. She said it was my responsibility to beat the market and get a 10% annual return. I don’t want to take the blame for a bad year as I have no control over it.

“She wants to retire early.”

I told her that I don’t want to manage her investments and that it is not fair for her to put that responsibility on me and blame me when things go wrong. She got angry and said how busy she was at work and how stressed she was. And she said if she can’t trust me with her money, she can’t trust me at all.

I think it’s not fair for me to bear the investment risk alone while she calculates how quickly she can retire based on the returns I’ve earned for her.

Convened fund manager

Dear draftees,

We are all busy people.

There are no conscripts in relationships, especially when it comes to requests for your or their finances. There are only volunteers. First of all, change your signature to “Volunteering Fund Manager” because you are free to say no. Disconnect from your friend’s reaction and her emotional reaction – no matter how violent it may seem – if you politely decline.

Your answer might go something like this: “It’s not a question of trust. It’s a question of responsibility. I don’t want to be responsible for other people’s investments. Not yours. Not my father’s. Not my next door neighbor. It’s not personal. I am not a CPA or a financial advisor. But even if I were both, I wouldn’t be comfortable managing your investments. I ask you to respect that. “

“Don’t let other people’s anger hold you hostage. ‘

If she protests, all you have to do is stick to what you said. Just because people get upset with you doesn’t mean you have to manage their investment accounts, transfer your home to your partner or all of your estate, or do a number of things that are uncomfortable for you. Don’t let other people’s anger hold you hostage.

Start how you want to continue and use this as a template for all future relationships: professional and personal. It is not a good sign that she believes you should be providing financial services. You are not responsible for keeping her busy or stressed out. If you override your own desires now, you will set an unhealthy and unhappy precedent in your relationship. What if your girlfriend doesn’t respect your wishes?

Tell her you are busy.


You can email The Moneyist at qfottrell@marketwatch.com with any financial and ethical issues related to the coronavirus and follow Quentin Fottrell on Twitter.

Check out Moneyist’s private Facebook Group in which we look for answers to life’s thorniest money problems. Readers write to me with all sorts of dilemmas. Ask your questions, tell me what you want to know more about, or take part in the latest Moneyist columns.

The moneyist regrets not being able to answer questions one by one.

More from Quentin Fottrell:

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• My mother had my grandfather sign a deed of trust that left two grandchildren millions of dollars and avoided everyone else
• My brother’s soon-to-be ex-wife embezzles money from her business. How do we find hidden accounts?
• “Grandmother died recently and left a seven-figure estate. Needless to say things are getting messy ‘

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