Canada Investing

Why I Will Never Invest in a Pre-Construction Condo Again

Lisa Colalillo | Posted 11.26.2014 | Canada Business
Lisa Colalillo

The biggest lessons I've learned about investing have come from the biggest mistakes I've made. I bought a pre-construction condo unit in a popular Toronto neighbourhood. I forked over a 20 per cent deposit to make the purchase. That was four years ago, the property still hasn't been built so I can't sell it or rent it out.

Mutual Fund Purchase Options Are Not All Equal

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 11.21.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

Take a look at your most recent investment statement. Do you see the acronym DSC on any of the pages? If you do, you'll want to keep reading.

Actually, You Might Be Poorer Than You Think

Tim Paziuk | Posted 10.31.2014 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

Regardless of what type of investment products you're using, you should always know what it's costing you to have your money managed. If nothing is done to reduce the fees institutions are charging for investment management services most Canadians are going to be poorer then they think.

How to Find the Perfect Financial Advisor for You

Bob Stammers | Posted 10.23.2014 | Canada Business
Bob Stammers

Finding "the right one" these days can be very complicated, and by the one I mean the right financial advisor! Searching for an advisor that is the perfect match takes time, effort and plenty of research. Finding the right financial advisor is not necessarily a simple task but it can be straightforward if you follow some basic guidelines.

Your Emotions Rule How You View Investment Risk

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 10.21.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

No one likes permanent loss of capital and no one seeks to have a drop in the value of his or her assets. What we need to understand is if you can sleep at night when your monthly statement value has dropped by some amount. More importantly, will it impact your ability to enjoy your life and meet your personal financial obligations, if this were to occur?

Outperforming the Market Is Simple

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 10.12.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

In a culture of pursuit, "average" is a negative word. It's the tide of mediocrity to swim against, if not a failure to avoid at all costs. Beat the market! Out-performance is the only way to win. "You should see what I made on the last stock I bought!"

Despite All Their Benefits, RESPs Are Underused in Canada

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 10.03.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

The Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) has become the most underused, yet indispensable tax shelters designed to make post secondary education more accessible to children and grandchildren. Unfortunately, many of us don't use the RESP and if we do, we typically don't maximize the benefits available.

40 Year-Old Retirement Fund Virgin? Time to Get in on the Action

Bob Stammers | Posted 11.17.2014 | Canada Business
Bob Stammers

Let's face it: many people work better on a deadline. This is the same mindset that leads perfectly reasonable adults to the conclusion that saving for retirement can wait until tomorrow, until they get a raise or have taken the next vacation, or until they turn 30, 35 or 40. If you are approaching 40 and have procrastinated, it's time for a gut check.

How Smart is Smart Beta, Really?

Bob Stammers | Posted 10.14.2014 | Canada
Bob Stammers

It has been said that in investing, what is comfortable is rarely profitable. This perhaps explains why the investment landscape is littered with novel and sometimes unsuccessful money making strategies.

When it Comes to Pensions, Plan for the Worst and Hope for the Best

Tim Paziuk | Posted 10.08.2014 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

I always tell people that those who plan ahead stand a better chance than those who don't. Don't risk being blown off course by a sudden change in the wind. As sailors say, "plan for the worst and hope for the best."

Throw Away Your Bond Ladder

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 10.03.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

The first step is to devote just enough funds in short-term vehicles or ones that mature when you need specific payments. Pension funds have been using the strategy of liability matching, for generations where they meet liability payments with specific investments coming due at that same time.

Get Ready For a Completely Different Kind of Phone Call From Your Investment Advisor

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 09.15.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

Transparency is ultimately a useful tool and a move in the right direction: the more we know, the better. Of course, if you've hired a portfolio manager who charges a monthly or quarterly inclusive fee, you have already been enjoying full transparency, long before these regulations came into affect.

Stock Market Highs: What to Watch Out For

Sheldon Dyck | Posted 08.18.2014 | Canada Alberta
Sheldon Dyck

Beyond the goofy hype and hyperbole, the silly alliteration and the abundant capital letters, headlines like "Market's Sizzling Spike Sets Seventh Record High in 2014" are actually something we need to take seriously.

Risk Tolerance Is Nothing to Take Lightly

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 08.17.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

Every time you sit down with an investment professional, you are asked what your risk tolerance is. Regardless of the method for defining the risk you'll accept in your investment portfolio, you are wise to define the meaning at the outset with the person administering your money. It will save you a lot of sleepless nights.

Don't Invest in Worries

Tim Paziuk | Posted 08.13.2014 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

If you're an average Canadian, you probably own a principal residence and have a few dollars invested or saved somewhere. If you have money invested in stocks, bonds or real estate, you may be concerned about losing your money. This is a reasonable thought; although, depending on what you're invested in, your concern (read: worry) is probably a waste of time.

Would You Trust a Robot With Your Finances?

Bob Stammers | Posted 08.10.2014 | Canada Business
Bob Stammers

Investing and managing money might seem like one such task that requires a large amount of personal attention and professional advice. However, an increasing number of investors have started looking to technology to help manage their money. This trend has seen the rise of a new breed of wealth manager -- "the robo-advisor."

How to Remove Emotion From Your Investments

Coreen T. Sol, CFA | Posted 08.06.2014 | Canada Business
Coreen T. Sol, CFA

Coupled with the outside noise of market emotions, our individual ability to justify decisions based on sometimes irrelevant and biased information, makes the seemingly simple axiom, 'buy low, sell high' difficult to execute efficiently. Luckily, there are 3 easy ways that you can create and manage an emotional firewall between you and your investments:

Be Tax-Savvy With Your Investment Dollars

Sarah Twomey | Posted 08.04.2014 | Canada Business
Sarah Twomey

You survived the debt temptations of the holiday season, achieved your personal best in RSP contributions and only had to pay a small amount in additional taxes for the last year. Now you can relax until the whole headache starts again in a few months. But what if you could avoid the hassle by setting up a plan that could help reduce your next end-of-year tax bill?

What Kevin O'Leary Gets Wrong About Business

Jason Clemens | Posted 07.15.2014 | Canada Business
Jason Clemens

Kevin O'Leary has created an entire persona around a sort of modern-day Gordon Gekko. O'Leary is fond of and famous for employing phrases like "it's all about the money," "people only care about money," and "money makes the world go round." To put it mildly, this is a superficial, even one-dimensional understanding of markets.

Are You a Zombie Investor?

Tim Paziuk | Posted 07.08.2014 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

Whenever I think about zombies, my mind immediately creates a picture of a group of blank face dead people walking around with no thoughts of their own. When you make an investment decision, are you basing that decision on facts gathered through a due-diligence process? Or are you mindlessly following the crowd?

A Money-Saving Secret the Taxman Doesn't Want You to Know

Sarah Twomey | Posted 06.24.2014 | Canada Business
Sarah Twomey

Want to know a secret? There's another tax-free way to save for retirement that the Taxman doesn't really want you to know. It's called universal life insurance, a special financial security portfolio that gives you life and health insurance coverage and a tax-deferred saving component.

Don't Use Your RRSPs To Invest in Private Companies

Tim Paziuk | Posted 06.05.2014 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

It is extremely easy to buy into private companies; they will be more than willing to use your money to fund their ideas and aspirations. It is very difficult for the average investor to successfully "invest" in private companies, since success requires some type of return. I'd rather sit back, enjoy a beer as a customer, and consider some other investment options.

How Being a "Tax-Wise" Investor Can Improve Your Nest Egg

Andrew Sheppard | Posted 05.17.2014 | Canada Business
Andrew Sheppard

Clients often ask me how high of a return can they expect from the portfolios I recommend. While I understand why they are focused on the potential returns, I always start my answer with my favourite rule when it comes to money: It doesn't matter what you make, it matters what you keep.

Five Steps To Help You Avoid Investment Fraud

Bob Stammers | Posted 05.11.2014 | Canada Business
Bob Stammers

When the conversation turns to fraud, investors can sometimes forget that tried-and-tested investment management principles still need to be applied. Even though diversification is one of the most fundamental and enduring investment principles, many investors forget to ensure their assets are diversified widely enough.

The Difference Between a Mutual Fund and a Seatbelt

Tim Paziuk | Posted 03.30.2014 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

Like seatbelts, when it comes to public safety, the Federal Government can intervene. So why ban on Deferred Sales Charges? Quite simply, it's an issue of public safety. There is nothing beneficial to the consumer about a DSC. As a matter of fact, it's nothing more then a legalized trap created by companies that produce and market mutual (and segregated) funds.