While we can talk about concepts such as inflation and purchasing power the struggle for many people today is earning enough income on their savings to meet their lifestyle needs. Interest rates and the earnings from capital through dividends, bonds and real estate rental income have dropped dramatically in the past few years.
The Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) was introduced in 2009 as a new way for Canadians to build assets and wealth on a tax-advantaged basis. Any capital gains, dividends or interest income are tax-free upon redemption from the account. The initial contribution amount was $5,000 with annual increases of $5,000. This has been increased to $5,500 in 2013 to offset inflation. This brings the maximum contribution amount for a new subscriber, in 2013, to $25,500.
Imagine it is late Monday afternoon and you are wrapping up your day at a large pension plan, as you stretch, your elbow hits the sell button on the keyboard. The board lot (100 shares) of a large Canadian telephone company is quickly bought for $20 and is the closing price as the final trade of the day. The previous closing price was $30.
In the last article we defined investing as buying an ownership stake in companies who are profitable today and whose profits are expected to rise over time. Trading is any other form of managing your money which may or may not take into account corporate profits as part of the decision-making process.
There is a concept in biology about the ability of organisms to adapt to changes in the environment. This adaptation process increases the odds of survival for organisms under stress due to environmental changes. A similar mechanism exists in finance that allows economic organizations, otherwise known as companies, to survive and thrive in changing or shifting economic landscapes.
In the last article Sue had a capital shortfall of $400,000 in order to support her desired retirement lifestyle. This amount will vary for each individual and will be larger or smaller depending upon your income, age and ability to save money as a percentage of your earned income.
High net worth investors are now sitting back and enjoying the summer weather, breathing a sigh of relief now that they are done with their annual tax filings. The work involved in assembling all of the relevant tax information is made more complicated by the fact they often deal with several investment firms.
U.S. financial research firm, Cerulli Associates, recently found that high net worth investors had, on average, 3.7 investment advisors. Ultra-affluent investors often spread their investments across many more.
John was concerned because his 82-year old mother, Betty, was having trouble generating sufficient income to cover her cost of living with interest rates at rock bottom levels. Along with many other investors globally who have poured some $4 Trillion dollars into government bonds since the 2008 Credit Crises, she wanted to feel safe and have her money guaranteed. But the price of safety in a low interest rate world is higher than you may realize.
As with many retirement savers, it took two stock market crashes (2001, 2008) and a global financial crisis to convince Adam and Sonya that trying to 'time the market' or pick specific sectors was a costly exercise in futility. But, with the value of their RRSPs nearly halved in the 2008 crash, they also recognized that they could not afford to avoid equities if they were going to have any chance of meeting their retirement goals.
Investors are becoming increasingly exhausted trying to follow the seemingly never-ending bad global economic news. Overseas markets have put a strain on Canada even though we are more stable, economically, than most other countries in the world.
Crystal balls are in short supply resulting in increased skepticism and general feeling of Is this downturn ever going to end?' The uncertainty has investors reeling - leading them to make judgements with their portfolios that they wouldn't normally exercise.