These are tough times for investors in need of income. One result, a surge in investment fraud and Ponzi schemes. Federal attorneys are fighting back with regional "investment fraud summits."
Nationwide, federal prosecutors looking at investment cases from the last two years identified 500 prosecutions that targeted 800 defendants and involved more than $20 billion in fraud, according to Connecticut U.S. Attorney David Fein. For two recent examples from Connecticut, see here and here.
Income investors who avoid Ponzi schemes by putting their money in dividend-paying stocks aren't necessarily safe. As this NY Times article notes, "the Federal Reserve and other central banks have been flooding the planet with money." A lot of that cash presumably has been sloshing into the stock market. How deep will the Dow dip when it sloshes out again?
Conscientious investment advisers can't always make their clients rich, but often they can keep them from becoming poor.