stats
globeinteractive.com: Making the Business of Life Easier

   Finance globeinvestor   Careers globecareers.workopolis Subscribe to The Globe
The Globe and Mail /globeandmail.com
Home | Business | National | Int'l | Sports | Columnists | The Arts | Tech | Travel | TV | Wheels
space



Search


  This site      Tips

  

  The Web Google

  





  Where to Find It


Breaking News
  Home Page

  Report on Business

  Sports

  Technology

space
Subscribe to The Globe

Shop at our Globe Store


Print Edition
  Front Page

  Report on Business

  National

  International

  Sports

  Arts & Entertainment

  Editorials

  Columnists

   Headline Index

 Other Sections
  Appointments

  Births & Deaths

  Books

  Classifieds

  Comment

  Education

  Environment

  Facts & Arguments

  Focus

  Health

  Obituaries

  Real Estate

  Review

  Science

  Style

  Technology

  Travel

  Wheels

 Leisure
  Cartoon

  Crosswords

  Food & Dining

  Golf

  Horoscopes

  Movies

  Online Personals

  TV Listings/News

 Specials & Series
  All Reports...

space

Services
   Where to Find It
 A quick guide to what's available on the site

 Newspaper
  Advertise

  Corrections

  Customer Service

  Help & Contact Us

  Reprints

  Subscriptions

 Web Site
  Advertise

  E-Mail Newsletters

  Free Headlines

  Globe Store New

  Help & Contact Us

  Make Us Home

  Mobile New

  Press Room

  Privacy Policy

  Terms & Conditions


GiveLife.ca

    
rule
space
PRINT EDITION
space
Globe Columnists
Monday, October 23




  Rob Carrick
spacer
Personal Finance



columnist
Biography arrow    

Long-term-care insurance is slow to catch on space
Policies for those who can't look after themselves should be part of retirement plans, but costs and availability can be a barrier
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, October 20, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- There is seemingly not a financial product more suited to the times than long-term-care insurance.Between an aging population, longer lifespans and medical advances, there's a growing sense in financial planning that a sound retirement plan must include a way to address the costs of care for people who can't look after themselves. Longterm-care insurance is one option, but you soon won't be able to buy it on its own from one of Canada's largest insurance companies.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Squeezing first-time buyers is smart policy space
OSFI's job is to make sure the banking system stays healthy, not help young people get into the housing market
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, October 18, 2017 – Page B6
space
-- If some aspiring home buyers have to be turned away to protect the solidity of the country's real estate market, then so be it.A broad swath of the economy that makes its living from selling real estate has criticized new mortgagelending rules because they make it harder for rookie buyers to afford a house. But responsibly managing the housing market so we adjust smoothly to rising interest rates takes precedence over helping the most people possible buy homes.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
HOW DIVIDEND GROWTH CAN BOOST A STOCK'S PRICE space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, October 18, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- As company's dividends grow, so grows its share price.Growth in dividend payouts and share price don't move in lockstep, but there's a close relationship over the long term.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How a rallying market hurts your portfolio space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Monday, October 16, 2017 – Page B5
space
-- Here's the problem with a resurgent Canadian stock market. In a way, it's bad for your portfolio.When the SandP/TSX composite index is doing well, it's a near certainty that financials and energy stocks are driving the bus. If you own funds or stocks that mirror the broader market, every tick higher by the TSX skews your portfolio to these two dominant sectors.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Have you hurt your portfolio with destructive diversification? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, October 14, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Smart diversification is spreading your investing assets between bonds and stocks, economic sectors, geographical regions and size of company.And then there's destructive diversification. That's a term that applies to the idea of spreading your personal investment accounts among multiple firms.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Rising rates make annuities more attractive space
A laddering approach using these cash-for-life retirement contracts can help you benefit as interest rates go up
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, October 14, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- With interest rates rising, it's time for a fresh look at the cash-for-life comfort and convenience of annuities.A lot of investors and their advisers have avoided annuities in recent years because low interest rates have depressed payouts. But there are signs the rate increases that began this summer have had a positive impact on annuities. To capitalize, consider the same kind of laddering strategy that works well for people buying guaranteed investment certificates.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Putting a price on wealthy clients' advice fees space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, October 12, 2017 – Page B13
space
-- The most coveted clients in the investment advice business may be paying excessive fees.High-net-worth clients - let's say people with investable assets of $1-million and up - typically pay a much lower advice fee than less wealthy individuals. It's basic economics - a smaller percentage of a huge portfolio makes advisers and their firms more than a larger percentage of a small portfolio. But high-net-worth investors may still be paying more than they should. If you're being charged a fee of more than 1 per cent, this column is for you.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
This money-saving mortgage is on sale, but you should pass it up space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, October 12, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- The all-star mortgage choice for saving money over the past few decades is finally back on sale at your mortgage broker, bank or credit union.As was the case before the financial crisis terrorized the world, you can now get a variable-rate mortgage with a discount of close to a full percentage point off your lender's prime rate. The prime today is generally 3.2 per cent. A variable-rate mortgage at 2.3 per cent to 2.4 per cent is attainable.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
These dividend stocks offer the best of two worlds space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, October 11, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Delayed gratification is a fact of life in dividend growth investing, but there are exceptions.The typical dividend growth stock has a low yield, but a record of providing reliable dividend growth through the years.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Think living space, not money machine space
Between maintenance costs, mortgage interest and property tax, a home is not the long-term investment some seem to think it is
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, October 6, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Take some advice from rookie homeowner Desirae Odjick about houses as an investment.As a personal-finance blogger, she ran the numbers on the cost of owning a home and concluded that breaking even would be a good outcome when it comes time, many years down the road, to sell.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A worthy price for peace of mind space
Trip cancellation and interruption insurance could save you a lot if you're taking a trip with significant non-refundable costs
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, October 4, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- Trip, interrupted.Don't let this be the story of your next vacation. Protect your investment in travel with trip cancellation and interruption insurance. Yes, it can add 5 per cent to 7 per cent in costs to your next trip. The payoff is that you're reimbursed for the cost of travel you miss out on for the kind of reasons we're likely to see a lot more of in the future.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Beware the mutual funds from hell space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, October 3, 2017 – Page B12
space
-- The mutual-fund industry never looks worse than when you consider the money market fund.Yes, these fossils are still home to billions of dollars in investments from retail investors. A reminder of this sad truth came recently in an e-mail from investor advocate Ken Kivenko. The subject line read: ''The money market fund from hell.''  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
The case for starting CPP benefits early space
They're guaranteed as long as you live, which these days could be a lot longer; meantime, you conserve your own retirement savings
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, September 30, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- The most dispassionate, databased experts on retirement say you should delay starting your Canada Pension Plan benefits until after age 65.But the actuarial take on CPP doesn't sway retirement planner Daryl Diamond. The Winnipegbased author of Your Retirement Income Blueprint recommends that clients start their benefits whenever they retire. ''I don't care whether it's 59 years and 11 months or, age 62 and a half,'' he said. ''It's one of the first streams of income we look at if people are retiring.''  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A loud, sad message from the Equifax affair space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, September 29, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- The Equifax security breach should have you wondering who has your back when thieves steal your private data.You're best off if you assume the answer to this question is no one. The saddest storyline in the Equifax situation is the lack of respect shown to people worried their data may have been stolen.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Want lower investment fees? Don't be too hasty space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, September 29, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- The level of fee awareness among Canadian investors rates may be a C-minus or D-plus.And yet, there is a small but growing slice of the investing public that isn't just aware of the cost of investing. No, these people are frantic about fees. They feel they must reduce their costs and they're keen to get moving.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Sorry, but owning a home won't fund your retirement space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, September 27, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- A disturbing number of people are building their retirement plans on a weak foundation - their homes.Years of strong price gains in some cities have convinced some people that real estate is the best vehicle for building wealth, ahead of stocks, bonds and funds. Perhaps inevitably, there's now a view that owning a home can also pay for your retirement.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Five dividend funds that excel at consistency space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, September 26, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Investors have had so much success with dividend funds in recent years that it's easy to become complacent about these products.But times are getting tougher for dividend stalwarts in sectors such as utilities, pipelines, telecoms and real estate. Interest rates have been on the rise in recent months, and this in turn has put downward pressure on these rate-sensitive sectors.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
The latest retirement obstacle: Thirtysomethings living at home space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, September 22, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- The newest retirementsavings challenge is the thirtysomething who still gets parental financial support.In a recent survey done for a financial planning organization, 13 per cent of parents with children 34 and older said their sons and daughters are financially dependent on them. Twelve per cent said their kids in this age bracket are causing a strain on them financially. How inconvenient - parents with thirtysomething children should be reaching peak retirementsavings momentum.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
These brokers are the best at keeping their clients satisfied space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, September 20, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Desjardins Online Brokerage has taken top spot in a new customer-satisfaction ranking.But if you're looking for the optimum do-it-yourself investing experience, check out Qtrade Investor. Qtrade took second spot in the customer-satisfaction survey by J.D. Power, and it's a top player in comprehensive rankings of Canada's online brokerage firms. J.D. Power assigned Desjardins a rank of five out of five based on the results of a survey of 2,609 investors who are primarily self-directed as opposed to having an adviser. Qtrade came next with a score of four, followed by seven firms with an industry average score of three. Questrade received a score of two.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A $500,000 lesson in how to fight identity theft space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, September 19, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- Identity thieves once stole a total $500,000 by pretending to be Jennifer Fiddian-Green.Her story is worth hearing if you want to understand the risks that arise when your personal information is stolen. We're told endlessly to keep our data private so identity thieves can't get it. But a data breach at the credit monitoring company Equifax highlights the way people can be vulnerable through no fault of their own.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Don't be pressured into taking risk in your RRIF space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, September 19, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- A recently retired couple wants to add some safety to the husband's RRIF account. Their adviser thinks that's a bad idea.The wife recently e-mailed to get an opinion on this impasse.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
If you're married to paper investment statements, it's divorce time space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Monday, September 18, 2017 – Page B5
space
-- There's the eco-argument for choosing electronic statements from your investment firm over paper and then there's cold, hard practicality.No matter what firm you deal with, electronic statements offer a more organized, secure way to store monthly or quarterly statements, trade confirmation slips and tax documents. Suggestion: Pick one of your investment accounts to test electronic document delivery. Once you try it, you'll never go back.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A bull market for bonds in the ETF world space
Despite rising rates, these securities are increasingly becoming the choice for investors over individual debt issues. Here's why
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, September 16, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- The outlook for bonds in 2017 started out blah at best and got worse.Years of speculation about higher interest rates gave way to a rapid-fire pair of rate increases in July and September. Higher rates are bad for bonds, but there's no sign of any concern about this in the world of bond ETFs. In fact, exchange-traded fund sales numbers for the year through Aug. 31 show bonds have by far been the most indemand category of exchangetraded fund.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How to get ahead when your income is hardly growing space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, September 14, 2017 – Page A11
space
-- If you're financially struggling to get ahead, here's why.Puny income growth is a fixture in the Canadian economy, new census data show. Our economic reality is that prosperity comes not from a growing paycheque, but rather from the stuff you do with the pay you get. Three strategies to follow: 6 Invest in your career; 6 Invest in your wealth; 6 Make one significant cut in your household spending.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Could my brokerage get into trouble? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, August 29, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- A lingering after-effect of the global financial crisis is the skepticism that people are showing about the investment firms they deal with. Good on you, skeptics. There's no downside to asking hard questions about what happens to your assets if an investment firm fails.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Stop ducking your investment statements space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, August 26, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- Whether it's out of dread or complacency, a lot of investors aren't reading their account statements.That's the conclusion to be drawn from a J.D. Power survey in which investors were asked if they noticed any change during the past year in how fees and performance information was communicated by their advisory firm.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Strange but true: A big bank savings account with decent rates space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, August 24, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- There has been a crack in the steely resolve of the big banks not to offer a competitive rate of interest on savings accounts.Bank of Nova Scotia was set to introduce a new online savings account on Thursday that pays a regular interest rate of 0.7 per cent and a premium of between 0.75 per cent and 0.9 per cent if you leave your money untouched for a certain period of time. These rates are good, not great, in the broad banking universe. Among the Big Six banks themselves, they're excellent.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
For postsecondary school, don't make a $20,000 mistake space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, August 23, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- There's a flaw in the usual back-to-school financial advice for university and college students.Budgeting and controlling debt are covered, and rightly so.But there's never any mention of a mistake costing as much as $20,000 that is commonly made at this time of year.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
What to do when the grim reaper comes for your ETFs space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, August 23, 2017 – Page B7
space
-- As popular as ETFs have become, there's not enough room in the marketplace for every fund now available.So expect to see more of the kind of announcement that BlackRock Canada's iShares division made a couple of months ago. By the end of September or thereabouts, seven of the firm's exchange-traded funds will be terminated. Five are fund-offund products in the ''portfolio builder'' series, and the other two are cover emerging markets (Brazil and the other BRIC countries - Brazil, Russia, Indian and China).  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Time to tool up for a new investing season space
This set of simple online resources should help patch any holes in your portfolio before fall comes around
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, August 19, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- For investors, fall tends to be a hotter season than summer.So find a mellow moment before the summer ends to review your investments in peace. Prepare for any dramatics this fall before events start exposing any flaws in your portfolio.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
You're overpaying for financial products space
Canadians would save thousands if they shopped for banking purchases the way they do with vacations
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, August 18, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- Not shopping around for financial products can cost you tens of thousands of dollars over a lifetime. It's just pathetic how often this happens.A recent survey commissioned by the website LowestRates.ca tells the story. Of the 2,002 people who participated in the study, 63 per cent said they use price-comparison websites to book hotels and another 60 per cent said they compared and booked flights online. Just 45 per cent said they did lots of research when applying for credit cards and 47 per cent heavily researched car insurance.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
What PC Financial clients need to know space
If CIBC wants to retain its customer base, it should offer them something more, such as free e-transfers or better overdraft protection
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, August 17, 2017 – Page B2
space
-- The online bank President's Choice Financial will fade to black in November. Roughly two million PCF accounts will be moved over to a new online bank called Simplii Financial, which will be run by Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Why we pay so much for chequing accounts space
The big banks typically have offerings costing well below $15, but extra service fees can pile up if you're not careful
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, August 16, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- In a financial-services sector where many costs are falling close to zero, the big banks have created a booming business in chequing accounts costing a hefty $15 or so a month.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
ETFs for an RESP? The math doesn't work for this investor space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, August 16, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Sometimes, the math on ETF investing just doesn't compute.A reader found this recently when he looked at making regular contributions to his daughter's registered education savings plan account at an online brokerage.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Investors need to be ruthlessly pessimistic about their returns space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, August 10, 2017 – Page B7
space
-- The need to be ruthlessly pessimistic in your expectations for investment returns cannot be overstated.The latest update of investment return guidelines for financial planners suggests conservative investors should expect annual returns of 3.25 per cent after fees over the long term, which is specified as 10 or more years.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
The final defence against old age space
A power of attorney allows a trusted individual to look after your investments when you can't act for yourself
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, August 5, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- There's more to de-risking your retirement investments than preparing for stock-market crashes, inflation and other headline-grabbing events.The risk of losing your ability to look after your investments as you age must also be addressed.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Want to be a homeowner? Here's a game plan space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, August 4, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- We're finally seeing some hopeful signs for the wannabe home buyer who has been priced out of the market.The twin cities of unaffordability, Vancouver and Toronto, have cooled down some. And many other cities across the country are producing more or less normal price gains that make it possible to buy without committing financial self-strangulation.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Has the time come for relationships of financial convenience? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, August 3, 2017 – Page A9
space
-- Living alone is bad for your personal finances.From a basic sharing of expenses to the availability of tax breaks, you're better off financially if you have a spouse, partner or roommate. But as 2016 census data show, singles now account for the biggest slice of Canadian households. Possible trend of the future: The relationship of financial convenience, where people of all ages live together to save money.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Do seniors lose from inflation? Not as much as you'd think space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, August 1, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- The financially frail senior on a fixed income is a stereotype ready for retirement.A significant part of your income can be inflation-protected in one way or another when you're retired, which is to say it's not fixed at all.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Support for adult children the new norm space
The trend of parents giving their grown offspring money is largely a reflection of our economy in the 21st century
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, July 28, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- One of the biggest 21st-century paradigm shifts in personal finance could be the growing extent to which parents are financially supporting their adult children.Parents helping with the costs of weddings or home down payments has always been a thing, but today, the scope is much greater. The parenting playbook pretty much dictates that you will be a major source of funding for your kids long after graduation.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Warning signal: When adviser fees are 'too complicated to explain' space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, July 25, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- What do you make of an adviser who provides friendly service and good returns, but talks complete garbage when asked about fees?I ask in the context of a note from a reader who simply wants to know what she's paying her adviser and firm in investmentmanagement fees.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Bond investors, hang tough space
As long as there's an expectation of rising interest rates, bonds will struggle. Here's a seven-point survival guide
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, July 22, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Doing the right thing as an investor can sometimes be costly and painful. Example: Holding bonds when interest rates are rising.Bonds are a non-negotiable part of a well-diversified portfolio, but they're struggling right now. Count on this continuing as long as there's an expectation of high rates in Canada.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
About those pension payments for life you were counting on ... space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, July 21, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- Apparently, Sears Canada can't interest you in kitchen appliances, golf pants, tube socks, luggage or any of the other miscellaneous items found in its stores.Now, what about defined-contribution pension plans? The struggling retailer, now under court protection from its creditors, has done a great job lately of selling people on the attributes of this second-best type of pension plan.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Why GIC rates will stay stuck in the basement space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, July 18, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- As a seller of GICs and mortgages, Brandon Brot is the first to hear about how the financial industry is reacting to the recent rise in interest rates.Every day, he receives bulletins about changes in rates for both GICs and mortgages. ''We're getting mortgage-rate increase, mortgage-rate increase, mortgage-rate increase these days,'' said Mr. Brot, a principal at GIC Wealth Management. ''But we don't see anything on the GIC side.'' The Bank of Canada's first increase in its benchmark lending rate in seven years has either directly or indirectly fed increases in borrowing costs for mortgages, lines of credit and loans in the past week or so.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Your new retirement-income tool: TFSAs space
A breakthrough strategy using these versatile accounts to pay yourself in retirement offers simplicity - and new levels of tax freedom
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, July 15, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- TFSAs are still new enough that using them for generating tax-free retirement income is a fresh concept.Just fill your tax-free savings account with dividend stocks, real estate investment trusts, preferred shares and such, and then pay yourself tax-free income using the combined income and share price appreciation. For simplicity and efficiency, it's a breakthrough strategy.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
The question we should be asking about our debt space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, July 14, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- Trivia question: What is the interest rate you're paying on your various debts?Interest rates seem vitally important in a week in which the Bank of Canada raised its benchmark lending rate for the first time in seven years, but they're not what you should be focusing on as you prepare for the possibility of borrowing costs ahead.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A surprise ally for your portfolio against rising interest rates space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, July 14, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Preferred shares as a hedge against rising interest rates?Believe it. The changing profile of the preferred share market in recent years has remade what was once a dismal place to be in a rising rate world.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How the rate hike affects your mortgage space
When the Bank of Canada changes its benchmark rate, the move ripples through to other interest rates, including those of mortgages. With that in mind, Rob Carrick, Jeremy Agius and Matt Lundy provide a guide to how the rate hike will affect homeowners and prospective buyers
space
By ROB CARRICK, JEREMY AGIUS, MATT LUNDY
Thursday, July 13, 2017 – Page A8
space
-- HOMEOWNERS WITH FIXED-RATE MORTGAGESThere is no immediate impact on payments for existing mortgages. Only when the mortgage comes up for renewal would higher rates affect payments.The interest rate on fixed-rate mortgages is influenced by the interest rates on bonds issued by the federal government, not the Bank of Canada's overnight rate.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Five harsh realities of rising rates for savers and borrowers space
No real winners with Bank of Canada rate hike
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, July 13, 2017 – Page A8
space
-- Everyone has something to complain about as interest rates rise. There are no true winners - borrowers pay more, while returns for savers and cautious investors improve to pretty bad levels from the punitively awful. Here are five harsh realities of rising rates for both savers and borrowers:  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
What to do with risky preferred shares? Don't own them at all space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, July 12, 2017 – Page B7
space
-- A reader recently asked what to do about some preferred shares in his portfolio that he was quite correctly worried about.The investment he asked about was a preferred-share issue from Aimia Inc., parent company of the popular Aeroplan customerloyalty program. Aeroplan announced in May that its star attraction, Air Canada, will exit to start its own client-loyalty offering starting in 2020.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Six ETFs that could get smacked by rising rates space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Monday, July 10, 2017 – Page B5
space
-- We've seen so little of rising interest rates in the past few years that it's worth a review of how they affect various types of investments. Here's a six-pack of exchange-traded funds that could come under pressure when rates rise: 6 BMO Equal Weight Utilities Index ETF (ZUT): The utilities sector is notoriously sensitive to rising interest rates. Remember, utilities are a defensive sector that flourishes in uncertain times. If rates are rising, that signifies an expanding economy.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Make no mistake, borrowers will bear the brunt of rate increase space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, July 7, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- W hen the Bank of Canada cut interest rates in 2015, the big banks brazenly refused to fully pass along the full extent of lower borrowing costs to their clients.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
If your portfolio works, stop worrying about missing out space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, July 5, 2017 – Page B7
space
-- A reader reports that she had a nice little portfolio of ETFs going, but then started putting money into something she thought was better - TD e-Series index mutual funds. Now, she has a question: Sell the ETFs and commit to e-Series funds, or find some better ETFs?  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
TFSAs squeezing out RRSPs space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, July 5, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- TFSAs are beating up on RRSPs.The tax-free savings account has only been around since 2009, while registered retirement savings plans were created in 1957. But age and experience count for little in today's savings world. Data from the Canada Revenue Agency show that TFSAs have been drawing in more money than RRSPs in recent years, and the growth rate in TFSA contributions makes RRSPs look kind of sad.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Six reasons to be thankful on Canada 150 space
Amid the festivities, let's pause to salute a few personal-finance gems, from TFSAs to the humble loonie
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, June 30, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Not everything is about money.But Canada's 150th birthday is an ideal opportunity to consider our good fortune in living in this country. In the personal-finance realm, here are six things to be thankful for as Canadians.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How to benefit from a rate hike space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, June 30, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- The positive spin on the interest rate increase that could come as soon as July 12 is deliverance from the hell of trying to earn a decent return on safe money.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Six index busters to help diversify your portfolio space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, June 29, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Good money has been made by investing in the main Canadian stock market index - close to 7.5 per cent annually on average for the past 30 years.But the SandP/TSX composite index is definitely flawed. It's our very own index and totally reflective of corporate Canada.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Should you dip into your home's equity? space
It's time to take a fresh look at the reverse mortgage and get over the common view that it's a last resort or short-sighted measure
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, June 28, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- There's still one notable example of the old Canadian conservatism with money.It's the reluctance of retired people to crack open the equity they have in their homes and spend the money. Strong growth in demand for reverse mortgages suggests this won't last.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Seeking bond ETFs that can weather rising interest rates space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Monday, June 26, 2017 – Page B5
space
-- Worried about what rising interest rates will do to your bond holdings?Let's look at some bond ETFs that combine a low level of vulnerability to a rate increase with cheap fees.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Home Capital GICs: A new layer of confidence space
With Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway offering financial support, the company may not need to offer premium rates for long
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, June 23, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- If Warren Buffett likes Home Capital enough to invest in its shares, then there's less reason to hold back on the company's GICs.That 3.25-per-cent, five-year guaranteed investment certificate that Home Capital's selling under its Oaken Financial brand?  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How high debt loads are hurting our children space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, June 21, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- The debt of parents will be visited upon their children.That's not a Bible quote. It's economics.Some parents owe so much they can't save adequately for their children to attend college or university, new research from the analysis firm Strategic Insight shows. The impact on kids could turn out to be a lifetime of indebtedness - from their student years into retirement.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
An ETF fee cut in the dividend aisle space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, June 21, 2017 – Page B12
space
-- One by one, the higher-cost ETF categories are getting cheaper for investors.Bond funds, at one time overpriced by the standards of the exchange-traded fund business, have become cheaper to own in the past year or so. Now, fees for dividend ETFs are getting the chop.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Are these preferreds a 5-per-cent solution? space
If you're after steady, bond-beating investment income, perpetual preferred shares are at least worth considering
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, June 17, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Five-per-cent dividend yields are plentiful today in a mostly overlooked corner of the preferred-share market.Perpetual preferred shares are a classic risk-reward case study for investors. The yields are juicy in today's low-rate world, and reliable where blue-chip companies are the issuer. The bulk of the preferred-share market today is made up of rate resets, which all have their own formulas for setting payouts in relation to fiveyear Government of Canada bond yields. With a perpetual, the yield is the yield.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Food prices offer a taste of inflation to come space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, June 16, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- For a taste of good, old-fashioned inflation, check your grocery bill.Although Statistics Canada's consumer price index says food prices have fallen a bit in the past year, there are indications from another source that the cost of some grocery items has increased a lot.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Six smart ways to get ready for rate hikes space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, June 14, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- The Bank of Canada has begun the process of slapping Canadians back to reality on interest rates.Economic growth is picking up and the central bank made it clear earlier this week that it's looking at whether to raise rates. CIBC Economics sees the bank raising rates by a total 0.5 of a percentage point in the first six months of 2018, or a bit sooner.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Small-cap stocks: Not what they're hyped up to be space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, June 8, 2017 – Page B13
space
-- The story on small-cap stocks is that they offer more risk with the potential for better returns than blue chips.The reality over the past 10 years for small-cap stocks, however, is more risk and worse returns. Investors did far better with blue chips than with smaller companies. Until global economic growth moves sustainably higher, this trend is likely to continue.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Readvanceable mortgages: A trap for the debt-addicted space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, June 8, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- The newest product offering in convenient, low-cost borrowing has quite the hook.Readvanceable mortgages combine a mortgage and home-equity line of credit (HELOC). As you pay down your mortgage, you increase the amount you can bor.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How to play Toronto's falling real estate prices space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, June 7, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- In an expensive housing market, it only takes a small price drop to help buyers save big time.Someone who bought an average-priced home in Toronto in May instead of April would have saved $56,881. That's a substantial $234 a month for someone who made a 10-per-cent down payment on the average Toronto home in May and borrowed the rest at 2.5 per cent over a term of five years.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
For those thinking of investing in ETFs: Are you sure? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Monday, June 5, 2017 – Page B7
space
-- They're in their 70s with a low six-figure portfolio invested in bank mutual funds. They would like to switch to ETFs.Welcome to my world. More and more, I'm hearing from readers who want in on the low cost of exchange-traded funds. My response: Are you sure?  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Why bond ETFs are proving more and more enticing space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, June 3, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- The fees on bond ETFs are finally falling into line with the low interest rate world we're stuck in.Exchange-traded funds holding bonds are less costly to own than bond mutual funds. But with bond yields as low as they've been in recent years, bond ETFs still seemed a bit pricey. Price competition in the ETF business is taking care of this, at least for core bond funds.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
For these boomers, GICs hold their appeal space
After downsizing to a condo, couple with zero tolerance for volatility have $300,000 to invest
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, June 3, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- A couple we'll call Roger and Angela are living the ultimate baby boomer dream of home ownership.They just sold a house in the Greater Toronto Area for more than two-and-a-half times what they paid in 2006. The couple will downsize to a condo in Ottawa this summer and expect to have $300,000 left over to invest. Their question: Where should they invest their money?  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
An outlier in the investment advice industry space
Alberta's ATB Investor Services positions itself as a trustworthy firm that puts service ahead of sales. Will others follow?
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, June 2, 2017 – Page B7
space
-- The most glaringly vacant position in the traditional investment advice industry is that of champion for the everyday investor.Finally, there is an applicant.Rather than following the pack in highlighting blow-out returns, hotshot managers or exclusive strategies, Alberta's ATB Investor Services is positioning itself as a trustworthy firm that puts service ahead of sales.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How to find the right travel reward plan space
Points programs such as Aeroplan and Air Miles evolve over the years - and you may want a change from your current card
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, May 31, 2017 – Page B13
space
-- Never marry your travel reward program.There's no point in making that level of commitment. Travel reward programs change over the years and you may want a divorce. We've seen these changes most recently at Aeroplan, which will lose Air Canada as its star player in mid-2020.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
The case for not biting on Home Capital's 3.1% GIC space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 26, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- Life is stressful enough without worrying whether your investments are safe.So if you're a conservative GIC investor, take a pass on the excellent interest rates that Home Capital is using to attract money through its Home Trust, Home Bank and Oaken Financial operations. At midweek, Oaken offered 2.6 per cent on a one-year guaranteed investment certificate and 3.1 per cent on a five-year term. A five-year bond issued by the federal government yields about 1 per cent these days, while banks are posting five-year GICs in the area of 1.5 per cent.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
In defence of mutual-fund fees - sort of space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 26, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- Improved financial literacy is waking people up to the fact that mutual funds are a comparatively expensive way to invest.But anti-mutual fund sentiment is starting to go too far. On my Twitter feed last week, someone asked me why I am not ''screaming from the rooftops'' that mutual funds are a ''sucker bet.'' Many funds are just that. I can't argue. But there are too many good fund products out there to make such generalizations accurate. You can be a sensible, successful investor using mutual funds, just as you can be with exchange-traded funds and individual stocks.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL WITH HOME CAPITAL GIC INVESTORS space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 26, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- You're not alone if you were scared senseless by the fact that your supposedly safe guaranteed investment certificates were issued by troubled Home Capital.My interactions with readers in recent weeks suggest some investors were so jolted they looked into selling GICs with a penalty charge, even though they're backed by Canada Deposit Insurance Corp. Here are a couple of examples:  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
WHAT IS FREEDOM 0.12? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 26, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- The supersimple Freedom 0.12 Portfolio is a friend to DIY and advised investors alike. Consider it a lesson about how cheap investing in ETFs is, more than a definitive blueprint.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Stepping back from a financial abyss space
Many parents help their children buy their first home, but here's why this could be toxic to some millennials' finances
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, May 24, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- Realtors, lenders and everyone else living off hot housing, thank a parent today for helping to keep prices on the rise in cities across the country.Manulife Bank issued survey results on Tuesday that suggest 45 per cent of millennial home buyers received a gift of money or a loan from family. That compares with 37 per cent for Gen Xers and 31 per cent of baby boomers. One-third of the people receiving financial help recently got more than $25,000.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Dividends: The ETF Buyer's Guide goes global space
Foreign stocks can bulk up the investment income you generate from your portfolio and produce solid total returns
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, May 20, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- We have a fine crop of Canadian dividend stocks, but you're missing out as an investor if you don't consider U.S. and international dividend payers as well.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How dividends came to dominate our investment portfolios space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 19, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- After housing, the hottest thing in personal finance is dividend stocks.Even as interest rates remain stuck near historical lows, the amount of investment income received by Canadians has surged in recent years. You can thank dividends for that. More and more, they're the go-to vehicle for retirees and others who want investment income.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Stocks, not ETFs, the best choice for rising payouts space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, May 16, 2017 – Page B13
space
-- Need a way to generate a reliable flow of dividend income? Consider a dividendfocused exchange-traded fund or mutual fund.Want dividend growth? Forget the fund and look to individual stocks. ''If you think you can build income with mutual funds or ETFs, think again,'' dividend expert Tom Connolly writes in an edition of his Dividend Growth newsletter from last fall. ''Funds are not noted for providing growing income.''  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Better rates, higher risk: The lowdown space
Home Capital's woes offers a lesson, but perhaps also needless worry, for everyone who has put money in the big-bank alternatives
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 12, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- The problem with people waking up to risks in the financial system is that they can swing in a heartbeat from obliviousness to unfounded suspicion.There are signs this is happening with customers of Home Trust, Home Bank and Oaken Financial, all part of alternative mortgage lender Home Capital Group Inc.'s corporate family.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Prepare for an all-out war for your loyalty space
An industry official sees the future of businesses' rewards programs as a lasting battle for market share
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 12, 2017 – Page B6
space
-- Fresh off the Air Miles debacle of last year comes a new shock to reward-program enthusiasts.Air Canada says it will start its own customer-loyalty program in 2020 rather than using Aeroplan. Many details about the new program and Aeroplan's future remains up in the air, so to speak. What we do know is that the golden era of loyalty programs is just about over.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A closer look at cash-like exchange-traded funds space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, May 11, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- The ETF world has a few options for investors who are parking cash and want to squeeze at least a modest return out of this money.By now, most investors have discovered the benefits of investment savings accounts for holding their cash. These accounts are traded like mutual funds and offer interest rates around 0.75 per cent. Typically, they're quite safe because they're eligible for coverage by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corp.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
A gift from boomers to their adult children space
Let your offspring help you in retirement because they want to, not because you didn't save enough when you had the chance
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, May 10, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Boomers, there's a more important way to help your adult children financially than giving them money for a house down payment.Save enough money to look after yourself in retirement. Don't neglect your finances so your children have to help pay your way.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
ETF Buyer's Guide: Dividend funds space
We look at dividend-paying exchange-traded funds, a handy option for both income-seeking investors and blue-chip-stock seekers
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, May 6, 2017 – Page B12
space
-- A dividend ETF is like a faucet that pours out cash every month.Exchange-traded funds holding dividend-paying stocks are a handy option for both incomeseeking investors and people who want a portfolio of mainly blue-chip stocks.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Gen Y work woes: Going up a down escalator space
Globe online survey shows a significant number of millennials aren't prospering in today's economy, with job quality the No. 1 issue
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, May 5, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Starting a career as a young adult today is precarious work.Almost one-quarter of the generation of young adults born between 1981 and 2000 are working temporary or contract jobs, nearly double the rate for the entire job market. Almost onethird are not working in their field of education, 21 per cent are working more than one job and close to half are looking for a new job.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
SOME SAVINGS ALTERNATIVES TO HOME CAPITAL PRODUCTS space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, May 4, 2017 – Page B12
space
-- Home Capital's problems have resulted in money flying out of the high-rate savings accounts offered by subsidiaries Home Trust, Home Bank and Oaken Financial. But where is it going?  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
How to protect your finances against real estate contagion space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, May 4, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- Too much exposure to real estate can be toxic to your financial health.So do a personal inventory right now to see how much of your net worth is tied to the housing market. It's not just your house. We've seen lately how your savings and investments can also be affected by what's happening in the housing market.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Looking for new choices among blue-chip dividend growth stocks space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, May 2, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- You tend to see a lot of the same names over and over when you look at lists of dividend growth stocks - Metro, Canadian National Railway, Alimentation Couche-Tard, Enbridge, Telus and more.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
The risk of reaching for higher interest rates space
The story of Home Capital's decline should be a red flag for yield-hungry investors
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, April 28, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- Canadians have had a great run of luck in getting better returns on their savings and investments by taking on more risk. The Home Capital story is a reminder that this risk is real, not just boilerplate that can safely be ignored.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Household debt: And now the good news space
Canadians may have run up their debt to record levels, but the vast majority of people are acing their repayments
space
By ROB CARRICK
Thursday, April 27, 2017 – Page B11
space
-- Wow, are Canadians ever accomplished borrowers.We've run our debt levels up to record levels, but carry it well. Credit ratings vary on average from province to province, with Quebeckers at the top and Alberta at the bottom. But nationally, the vast majority of people are acing their debt repayments.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
To be truly diversified, don't count on preferred shares space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, April 26, 2017 – Page B15
space
-- There's true portfolio diversification, and then there's fake diversification.In this era of low interest rates, be especially wary of the fake kind. That's where you swap out bonds in favour of income-producing investments, such as preferred shares or dividend-paying common shares. Substitutions such as this are rationalized on the basis that bonds pay only trace amounts of interest right now and are basically dead money.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
ETF Buyer's Guide: Global equity exposure space
Our focus this week is on proven, broadly diversified ways to internationalize your portfolio in a single fund
space
By ROB CARRICK
Saturday, April 22, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- No matter how you prefer to globalize your investment portfolio, ETFs have you covered.Want to pick Canadian and U.S. equity funds and then add some exposure to the rest of the world?  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Ontario's new housing plan: What buyers and sellers need to know space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, April 21, 2017 – Page B1
space
-- Home owners and buyers are going to need an attitude adjustment as rationality seeps back into the country's hottest real estate market.The Ontario government has introduced measures to restrain housing price surges that last month came in around 30 per cent in Toronto and nearby Hamilton. We could see prices stagnate or decline in the months ahead, but a crash is unlikely for now.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Best to stay out, first-timers space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 – Page A9
space
-- The Fear of Missing Out phenomenon in the housing market is leading to bad buying decisions.First-time buyers should be much more afraid of getting into a hot real estate market. The risk of taking on more financial weight than you can carry has never been higher.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Do I buy a bank ETF or individual bank stocks? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Tuesday, April 18, 2017 – Page B13
space
-- Bank stock quandary: Try to pick the best banks, or just buy them all?A reader asked this question recently. He wanted to know the pros and cons of buying individual bank stocks versus a Canadian bank ETF.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
In praise of the normal housing market space
As real estate prices continue to rise in Toronto and its surrounding area, let's celebrate cities that aren't suffering from bidding wars
space
By ROB CARRICK
Friday, April 14, 2017 – Page B8
space
-- Life in a hot housing market can be such a grind.Baby boomers are afraid to sell their valuable homes because they're worried about how much it will cost to buy another place. Millennials are shut out of the market in some cases or they suffer from buyer's regret over their debt loads. And when you do find an ideal home, there's a good chance you'll find yourself in a financial cage match of overbidding.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Expect big-bank 'deals' to be temporary space
Bank of Nova Scotia's Tangerine may have set a speed record in introducing a product - and then dialling back its features
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, April 12, 2017 – Page B9
space
-- The big-bank tactic of upselling customers has a nasty twin you'll like even less.It's the downgrading of perks and features in products such as reward credit cards. A fresh example is the Tangerine MoneyBack Credit Card, which is not much more than a year old and already being changed for the worse.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Dip in dividend growth: More pressure on the big banks? space
space
By ROB CARRICK
Wednesday, April 12, 2017 – Page B10
space
-- Recent dividend-growth patterns at the big banks offer some clues about why highpressure sales tactics at bank branches have been an issue lately.Some people are willing to forgive, or least indulge, the banks about their sales tactics because bank shares can be relied upon to pay a growing stream of cash via quarterly dividends.  FULL STORY arrow
space

space
Complete Index of Today's Print Headlines
space


space  Advertisement
space

Need CPR for your RSP? Check your portfolio’s pulse and lower yours by improving the overall health of your investments. Click here.

Advertisement

7-Day Site Search
    

Breaking News



Today's Weather


Columnists



For a columnist's most recent stories, click on their name below.

 National


Roy MacGregor arrow
This Country
space
Jeffrey Simpson arrow
The Nation
space
Margaret Wente arrow
Counterpoint
space
Hugh Winsor  arrow
The Power Game
space
 Business


Rob Carrick arrow
Personal Finance
space
Drew Fagan arrow
The Big Picture
space
Mathew Ingram arrow
space
Brent Jang arrow
Business West
space
Brian Milner arrow
Taking Stock
space
Eric Reguly arrow
To The Point
space
Andrew Willis arrow
Streetwise
space
 Sports


Stephen Brunt arrow
The Game
space
Eric Duhatschek arrow
space
Allan Maki arrow
space
William Houston arrow
Truth & Rumours
space
Lorne Rubenstein arrow
Golf
space
 The Arts


John Doyle arrow
Television
space
John MacLachlan Gray arrow
Gray's Anatomy
space
David Macfarlane arrow
Cheap Seats
space
Johanna Schneller arrow
Moviegoer
space
 Comment


Murray Campbell arrow
Ontario Politics
space
Lysiane Gagnon arrow
Inside Quebec
space
Marcus Gee arrow
The World
space
William Johnson arrow
Pit Bill
space
Paul Knox arrow
Worldbeat
space
Heather Mallick arrow
As If
space
Leah McLaren arrow
Generation Why
space
Rex Murphy arrow
Japes of Wrath
space
Rick Salutin arrow
On The Other Hand
space
Paul Sullivan arrow
The West
space
William Thorsell arrow
space





Home | Business | National | Int'l | Sports | Columnists | The Arts | Tech | Travel | TV | Wheels
space

© 2003 Bell Globemedia Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Help & Contact Us | Back to the top of this page