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Catherine Antoniou | Retired
Working in the private banking space at one of South Africa’s big banks for 41 years, Catherine Antoniou thought she knew the system pretty well. But, she says, she was horrified when she started getting quotes for her own Living Annuity.

41 years in the business didn’t prepare this retiree for ‘horrific’ fees

Working in the private banking space at one of South Africa’s big banks for 41 years, Catherine Antoniou thought she knew the system pretty well. But, she says, she was horrified when she started getting quotes for her own Living Annuity.

It has taken the newly retired Catherine a little while to find the time to sit down and share her thoughts about her conversion to 10X. She is just back from some travels and has been keeping herself busy as she adjusts to retirement, she says.

Now that she has time to think about it, her story – which she describes as a short one – is worth sharing.

Catherine got a lot of close-up experience of the savings and investment industry during her career in the branch and private banking space of one of the country's big banks for 41 years.

“Within the private banking space we had financial advisers based in our offices to whom we had to provide regular business leads,” she says, adding that almost all of these advisors themselves earned enough to qualify as private banking clients as a result of their annual commission incomes for sales and the amount of business written and invested with the various investment companies.

So, when she made the decision to retire, Catherine says, she had a good idea of the sort of money these advisers earned.

“I was aware of the commission fees paid to financial advisers and the various fund managers, and had seen first-hand the incomes earned off of these commissions.”

She says fees were one of her particular concerns when she started getting quotes at the beginning of the process of choosing her annuity provider.

In addition to her own work experience, Catherine says, she also was fortunate enough to be able to draw on the knowledge of her elder brother, who had retired at the end of 2016.

“He had researched and met with a number of investment companies prior to his retirement,” says Catherine. “He was very cognisant of the cost to invest one’s retirement funds and the impact these fees have on the capital and return of the investment over a period of time.”

She says her brother advised her to do her homework regarding the fees and costs before making a decision. Additionally, Catherine says, another family member, who is an actuary, also provided guidance. The last and final source Catherine mentions is Andre Tuck, a retirement expert from 10X Investments, who met with her to explain 10X’s investment philosophy and fee structure.

You might think that with all this information and experience to draw on there would be no surprises in store for Catherine, much less big shocks.

But, she says, “when I did the calculations on the various fees quoted by some of the investment companies I was horrified!”

The fees were so high that, she says, the money she is saving with 10X every month covers the cost of her medical aid , DSTV and life policy premiums.

As one might imagine, this made Catherine’s decision to invest with 10X "an easy one”!

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