What to do after a perfect storm

It has been a stormy 3 months and, no, we are not referring to the weather. By now many people have probably noticed that, regardless of what they are invested in, their investments have had a slightly negative return. It is important to remember that a 3 month period of time is not long enough to judge any investment. Concerns should be restricted to the cause of poor perfomance and long-term implications. With that in mind, let's take a look at what affected the markets this summer and what long term affects are expected.

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OAS Clawback

When approaching retirement, most Canadians begin to focus on where their retirement income will come from. One of the programs that leads to confusion is the Old Age Security (OAS) benefit, particularly when it gets clawed back.

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Budget 2017

The 2017 Federal Budget was tabled by the Liberal Party on Wednesday, March 22, 2017. It was the second budget of the Liberal government and Finance Minister Bill Morneau.

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Budget 2016

The new Liberal government delivered its first federal budget on March 22 in Ottawa.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spent heavily in this budget, leading to a projected $29.4-billion shortfall this year.

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Do You Understand TFSAs?

A recent survey, conducted by Mackenzie Investments, has demonstrated that six years after TFSAs were introduced, many clients still don’t understand how they work. Canadians, who are still not familiar with the basic elements of the program, risk not using their accounts to the fullest.

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Federal budget 2015

The federal government announced its annual budget on April 21, 2015. This article doesn’t contain a complete list of proposals, but outlines the ones that may be of the most interest in your financial Planning. Please note the announced budget contains proposals that may undergo revisions before becoming law.

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Seven tax filing tips for 2015

You have probably received most of your T4s, T5s, T3s and RRSP contribution slips in the mail. While tax filing is on your mind, here are seven ways to help reduce taxes.

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Travel Insurance – Are You Really Covered?

With the months turning colder, many Canadians start planning their trips south to sunnier destinations. One very important item to keep in mind, when planning these trips, is the cost of health care if an emergency should arise while you are away. This is something many Canadians may overlook as we are used to having universal health care at home.

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Protect Yourself Not Your Lender

When most people apply for a mortgage they also purchase creditor insurance from their lender. While protecting your mortgage is very important, the creditor insurance offered by most institutions may not be the best solution. What you need to realize is that creditor insurance, or mortgage insurance, is nothing more than life insurance with strict limitations.

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Who Should Invest Every Month? - Maybe You!

One of the easiest, oldest and most popular investment strategies is dollar cost averaging, but how does it work and who should do it? One of the easiest, oldest and most popular investment strategies is dollar cost averaging, but how does it work and who should do it?

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Turn Your Mortgage Interest Into a Tax Deduction

Are you looking for a way to accelerate your net worth while maintaining control of your debt? Creating a deductible mortgage may be the solution.

The deductible mortgage is a borrow-to-invest strategy that allows you to gradually unlock real estate equity and redirect it to an investment for growth. It allows you to build wealth without committing large amounts of extra cash and take advantage of long-term investment growth. It can be ideal for investors who have restricted cash flow, or those who do not want to sacrifice their standard of living now for benefits far into the future.

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Are You Aware of What You’re Really Agreeing to With Your Bank Mortgage?

In Recent years banks have started switching from conventional to collateral mortgages. While this has allowed them to offer lower interest rates in advertising and on paper, the way that interest is calculated and the restrictions it adds may make it not worth the “savings”. Many Canadians who have signed up for these mortgages don’t realize what they have actually agreed to, so this quarter we are comparing the conventional and collateral mortgages in order to allow you to ask the right questions and make the right choice for you.

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New Year's Resolution

Happy New Year!

As with every year, many of us have made promises to ourselves to improve this year. Most of us plan to join a gym, lose weight, or just be more physically fit. Another very popular New Year’s Resolution is to become more financially fit. Here are some tips on how to succeed.

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Are GICs Really a Safe Option?

With the increased market volatility that people have experienced this year, more and more investors are looking to the security of Guaranteed Interest Certificates (GICs) to protect their savings. However, what many people do not realize is that while most GICs are not subject to market risk, there are other types of risk that can affect a GIC.

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Are you receiving as much CPP as you should?

Are you receiving as much CPP as you should? Canadians should review the amounts they’re receiving from the Canada Pension Plan to ensure they’re collecting as much they’re entitled to.

Despite a long history of steady employment, you may be disappointed to discover that your CPP benefit isn’t quite as much as you had been expecting, largely because extra time in school, travelling, or perhaps those last few low-income part time years, have clipped your entitlement.

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Are You Too Young For an RRSP?

If you are in your 20s, saving for retirement is unlikely to top your list of priorities. A new survey suggests that it probably should. 70 per cent of people polled, thought they could only afford to retire if they started saving by age 25.

It definitely seems like a daunting task when coupled with high debt levels, costly tuition fees and starting position salaries, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.

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Are you on the road to financial freedom or is it time to make a U-turn?

You may have had your annual physical exam and taken your car in for scheduled service this year, but what about your Annual Financial Review?

If you were on a long road trip, you'd stop occasionally and look at the map to see if you were headed in the right direction, wouldn't you? An Annual Financial Review serves the same purpose. It's an opportunity to review how you've done financially over the past twelve months and make sure you're still headed in the right direction.

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Passing Down the Cottage Lifestyle

There is something magical about soaking your feet off the end of the dock, sleeping the afternoon away in a hammock, or helping the kids make their first s’mores. If you have a cottage you know exactly what I mean. A cottage is a place of dreams, hope and wonder. It brings the family together away from the stress and strain of city life and creates a lifestyle you want to pass on to your children and grandchildren and so on. But have you taken the necessary steps to ensure this peaceful oasis will be enjoyed for generations to come?

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4 Money Mistakes to Avoid

When it comes to money, most of us like to think we're pretty sharp. We know enough to comparison shop, stay out of debt and set up some sort of savings plan. Sometimes though, we just get things wrong. Last year, Consumer Reports highlighted how making poor choices can cost you. Here are some of the highlights that apply to Canadians.

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The Benefits of Planned Giving

There are as many reasons to give as there are givers. But whether your reasons are altruistic or simply tax-related, the benefits of planned giving are powerful. Satisfaction - Knowing that you are giving back to a cause, program or organization that holds special significance for you.

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Changes to Old Age Security (OAS)

Budget 2012 takes action to ensure that the OAS program is on a sustainable path by increasing the age of eligibility and providing an option to defer OAS benefits.

Budget 2012 proposes to increase the age of OAS and GIS eligibility from 65 to 67, with the changes being phased in beginning April 2023, and full implementation by January 2029. The 11-year notification period, followed by a six-year phase-in period, is provided to ensure that individuals have significant advance notice to plan and adjust.

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Changes to Tax Free Savings Accounts

Canadians will get a little extra room to save money in their tax-free savings account (TFSA) this year, as the federal government increased the $5,000 annual contribution limit for inflation.

The built-in indexation for TFSAs kicked in for the first time in 2013, taking the maximum contribution to $5,500.

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