Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway often escaped trouble on the field. But in 2010, Elway and a business partner invested $15 million with a hedge-fund manager who was arrested on charges that he ran a Ponzi scheme, The Denver Post reported. Elway lost $3 million.
Athletes can fall victim to Ponzi schemes if they do a poor job vetting the people who are handling their investments, says Michael Chasnoff, chief executive of Truepoint Inc., a wealth management company in Cincinnati.
Athletes often think they can trust the person investing their money if he or she was recommended by someone the athlete respects.
Investors have to perform their own due diligence no matter how much they trust the person who recommends an investment adviser, Chasnoff says.
The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors offers a questionnaire to help investors interview potential advisers. Before signing on, an investor should also contact the adviser's other clients as a reference.
Look for advisers who are known in the community and give back to the community through charities or nonprofit groups. "They are usually very professional, high-integrity people," Chasnoff says.