Tag Archives: Essex Financial Services

Its All About Trust at Essex Financial

Earning customer trust and keeping that trust is the most important commodity a financial company offers its clients. Although sorely challenged recently, Essex Financial Services, a Connecticut-based subsidiary of Essex Savings Bank, pulled through their crisis in the best possible way.

The trouble began when the founder of the firm, John Rafal, was accused of obtaining a large account by means of an illegal referral fee.  He then tried to cover up the payment, but was unsuccessful, and a government investigation ensued. Some of the firm’s top advisors left, and some customers. A strong, positive reaction was needed for the company to regain the confidence of its clients and the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Into the fray entered Charles R. “Chuck” Cumello, Jr. Already part of Essex Financial, he was promoted to the office of chief executive and president, while Rafal, at first, remained on as vice chairman. Eventually, under pressure from the SEC, Rafal was fired and then banned from the securities industry.

“We handled it the way we should,” Cumello said in an interview this month at Essex Financial. “At the end of the day, this is a trust business; there is a right way and a wrong way. … We navigated some rough waters, but we did what we had to do.”

Essex Financial paid a fine for the unethical actions of Rafal. But to regain the trust from the firm’s clients Cumello insisted that the firm assert an uncompromising requirement of utter transparency.

One colleague, John Patrick, president and CEO of Farmington Bank, which has a marketing partnership with Essex Financial, had the following praise for Cumello:

“Chuck kept me abreast of everything,” Patrick said. “He’s done a terrific job considering the (situation) that he inherited.”

Stay Financially Healthy With Professional Financial Advisors

Individuals and families should consider taking charge of their financial situations to reach their material goals in life. Most people would like to save for retirement, many would like to secure the ability to pay, at least partly, for their children’s college educations. Others plan and save for vacations, purchasing a home, or a host of other things which can take a substantial bite out of their monthly incomes.

Financial service companies, such as Essex Financial in Essex, Connecticut, can help people clarify their goals and set up savings plans that will help them reach them.

Saving for retirement is something highly recommended, and which many people take responsibility for. Although some people choose to handle their own retirement plans, many others turn to professionals like Essex Financial to help them manage investments, understand new tax laws which can affect their bottom lines, and other complex issues that most working people simply don’t have the time or expertise to focus on successfully.

Financial planners are trained professionals that have at their fingertips large amounts of information that a layman would need hours of research to discover. Once financial goals are clarified, then the advisor can recommend actions on how families or individuals can meet those goals. He or she will know how investments should be allocated, how much and what kind of insurance is needed, and how certain actions affect the individual’s tax bill or estate.

Just as someone would not diagnose or try and treat an illness without the help and advice of a qualified medical professional, so too people should seek the help of a financial professional to help them maintain excellent financial health, all throughout life.