* Markets start climbing out of the hole.
Stock markets staged a strong rally last week, climbing back somewhat from
steep losses suffered the week before, even as headline U.S. inflation rose
in January and Treasury yields climbed in anticipation rate hikes by the
Fed. Friday’s session saw some anxiety return as 13 Russian nationals were
accused of interfering with the U.S. elections. Toronto’s
S&P/TSX Composite Index rose 2.8% on the week while the
S&P 500 Composite Index surged 4.3% and the
Nasdaq Composite Index gained 5.3%. Commodities also gained on the week while
crude oil rallied 4.1% on the week and
gold posted a 2.5% weekly advance. Meanwhile, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX)
continued to drift lower through the week, ending Friday at about 19, down
from a high of 29 on Monday.
Exchange Traded Funds have become the foundation of clients’ investment
portfolios, and like any new product, while many benefits are understood,
there are misconceptions that have entered into client conversations.
With their straightforward approach, Toronto based EdgePoint has been a
favorite of mine for a while. They keep things simple with only four
funds: a Canadian equity, a global equity, a Canadian balanced, and
global balanced fund. The
EdgePoint Canadian Growth & Income Portfolio is their balanced offering. And it’s a winner, literally. The fund was
FundGrade A+ Award for 2017, adding to its shelf of three previous A+ Awards in 2014, 2015,
At the start of 2009 I created several model fund portfolios for various
types of investors, from very conservative to strongly growth oriented. In
each case, I set a target range of return that was consistent with the risk
level. These portfolios have just completed their ninth year (as of Dec.
31), so we now have a good idea of how they perform over a meaningful
period of time. I’ll review three portfolios in this article, including my
RRSP portfolio, and three more, including my Growth Portfolio, next time.
In the early months of the new year, our inboxes are bombarded with
outlooks for the year ahead. Economists, strategists, and other financial
commentators trip over themselves to issue precise forecasts for the next
12 months. Where will the Dow end in 2018? How much growth will Japanese
GDP show? Will the market “crash” – and if so, when? And when the market
suddenly turns volatile as it did last week – seemingly out of the blue –
why didn’t the pundits, experts, and forecasters predict it? Our industry
should stop doing this.