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ARTICLE ARCHIVE
7/23/2016 11:01:56 AM
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Opinions expressed in articles published on this site are solely those of the contributing authors and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of The Fund Library, its staff or affiliates.

 

Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Friday, July 22, 2016

By Mike Keerma

* Sizzlin’ summer stock markets
* Horizons launches risk parity ETF

The major North American stock indices racked up their fourth consecutive week of gains, as the S&P 500 Composite Index closed the week at a record high 2,175, for a weekly gain of 0.6%. The Nasdaq Composite Index posted a 1.4% weekly advance. Toronto’s benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index rallied during the week to its highest closing value in a year, climbing to a 0.8% gain on the week and 12.2% advance for the year to date.

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DUE DILIGENCE
By Dave Paterson | Wednesday, July 20, 2016



Bonds and bond funds are all in the news these days, given recently plunging yields on government bonds, some into negative territory. It’s in this kind of volatile market that active bond fund managers really earn their keep. And the Manulife Strategic Income Fund has been doing just that, delivering above-average returns while keeping volatility in check.

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ADVISOR’S PERSPECTIVE
By Bruce Loeppky  | Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Millions of Baby Boomers are approaching – or are already in – retirement. Even if you’ve made plans, have a pension, and have saved up a nest egg through the years, there are still a number of important themes emerging that you’ll have to contend with and that may affect your financial planning in the years ahead.

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Monday, July 18, 2016

  

By Michael Cooke, Senior Vice President, Head of Exchange Traded Funds, Mackenzie Investments.

The evolution of ETFs into innovative actively managed strategies gives investors and advisors new alternatives to combine the benefits of ETF investing with advantages of portfolio management. Active fixed income ETFs can provide expanded access and expertise that can help strengthen the core holdings of a portfolio.

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Friday, July 15, 2016

By Mike Keerma

Major stock indices posted another week of gains as the U.S. blue-chip S&P 500 Composite Index touched record highs during the week, gaining 1.5% on the week, while Toronto’s S&P/TSX Composite Index climbed back up near its 52-week high and closed the week with a 1.6% advance. Investor sentiment remained positive, extending the post-Brexit market bounce for another week, as both Canadian and British central banks kept interest rates unchanged. Bond yields also posted advances on profit-taking, as traders reacted to positive retail sales data in the U.S. and rising core inflation, which may signal a rate hike by year-end. The U.S. dollar strengthened after hours on reports of an attempted military coup in Turkey.

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THE ETF INVESTOR
By Tyler Mordy | Thursday, July 14, 2016



What do Brexit and the U.S. elections have in common? Primarily, they pit angry populists against the political establishment. It should be very clear by now that anti-elitist movements are unwelcome by financial markets that are dominated by business elites. But developments here are yet another “unthinkable” in a growing list since 2008. Who knew that presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump would make it so far? And what implications would a Trump presidency have on global markets?

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DUE DILIGENCE
By Dave Paterson | Wednesday, July 13, 2016



Floating rate funds are a relatively new product. However, the investment choice is limited. In fact, of the 10 or so floating-rate mutual funds, only two, from BMO and Trimark, have more than a five-year track record, and only four have a three-year track record. In the ETF space, there are only four Canadian traded floating rate ETFs, and by my count, there are less than 10 that trade in the U.S. Here’s a look at my picks for floating-rate income funds from that rather tiny universe.

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PLANNING POINTS
By Doug Nelson | Tuesday, July 12, 2016



Every so often, the financial services industry takes a run at automated portfolio solutions – black boxes where the investor puts money in and takes returns out. I looked at some past efforts at these in a previous article. Today’s iteration of this is the so-called “robo-advisor” or “robo-portfolio.” It’s a catchy buzzword, but the question is whether these will perform any better than past efforts at automation, and whether such a product is, in fact, right for you.

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Friday, July 08, 2016

U.S. stock indices advanced for another week following the release of an unexpectedly strong U.S. non-farm payrolls report for June. The S&P 500 Composite Index rose to its all-time high in intraday trading, and ended the week up 1.3%. The Nasdaq Composite Index also rallied on the week, gaining 1.9% as investor sentiment turned more bullish after a short, sharp retreat following June’s Brexit vote. Toronto’s S&P/TSX Composite Index ended the week with a 1.4% gain (up 9.6% year to date), mostly piggybacking on U.S. market momentum, overcoming a lacklustre jobs report for June, a merchandise trade balance that remained deep in deficit during May, and a -7.8% retreat in the price of crude oil during the week.

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Thursday, July 07, 2016



By Joe Davis, Global Chief Economist, Vanguard Group, Inc.

Global bond yields hover near all-time lows. In the United States, a 10-year Treasury note yields less than 2%. In Europe and Japan, the bond markets have tumbled through the looking glass into a world of negative interest rates. About 40% of European government bonds yield less than 0%. In Japan, the figure is 70%. The prospect of low to negative returns on government bonds has raised doubts about their value. Why hold an asset that yields almost nothing (or less than nothing)? Why take on any price volatility if you can stash cash in a safe? (That’s what investors in Switzerland and Japan have been doing, according to The Wall Street Journal.)

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DUE DILIGENCE
By Dave Paterson | Wednesday, July 06, 2016



Many are still expecting the U.S. Federal Reserve to move rates higher again before they end of the year, which is likely to put some upward pressure on bond yields across the spectrum. As we know, bond prices tend to move in the opposite direction of yields, so if yields are rising, bond prices are likely to be falling, creating headwinds for traditional fixed-income investments.

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Financial Education
By Knowledge Bureau | Tuesday, July 05, 2016

TAX PLANNING FROM THE KNOWLEDGE BUREAU



By Evelyn Jacks

In June, Canada’s finance ministers met in Vancouver and agreed in principle to the expansion of the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) over a seven-year phase-in period, starting January 1, 2019. Higher contributions by workers and their employers will result. But will the revamped CPP be enough to provide for the retirement security Canadians need?

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Monday, July 04, 2016

 

By James Youn, CFA, Senior Portfolio Manager, Questrade Wealth Management Inc.

At its most basic, liquidity is defined as the ability to sell an asset in a timely manner at a fair price. It’s a fundamental characteristic that underpins all investments, whether financial in nature (such as stocks, bonds, and hedge funds) or hard assets such as oil, wheat, real estate, and even niche areas such as art and fine wine. It is for this very reason that ETFs have gained traction: They are simple, rules-based, efficient, transparent, and liquid investment vehicles.

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Monday, July 04, 2016

By Mike Keerma

Major stock indices rallied from steep losses sustained earlier last week, following the U.K. referendum in which a majority of voters elected to cut ties with the European Union. The resurgence of buying sent the S&P 500 Composite Index to a 3.2% weekly gain, its biggest of the year, and back to near its 52-week high. The big U.S. blue-chip index was ahead only fractionally on the month, but managed a 2% advance in the second quarter overall, and is now ahead 2.9% year to date. Toronto’s S&P/TSX Composite Index ended the short trading week with a gain of 1.2%, giving it a hairline loss of -0.01% on the month but a powerful 4.2% gain in the second quarter, and a strong 8.1% advance for the year to date. The S&P/TSX Composite benefitted from rallies in gold (up 8.8% on the month, 26.5% year to date) and crude oil (up 7.5% on the month, 32% year to date).

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DUE DILIGENCE
By Dave Paterson | Wednesday, June 29, 2016


Before the U.K.’s Brexit referendum yielded a 52% majority vote for leaving the European Union, there had been rumblings that the U.S. Federal Reserve would be moving rates higher in the next little while. That appears to be on hold now until the dust settles. Either way, rates in Canada don’t appear to be going anywhere either. That being the case, the high-quality, actively managed PH&N Total Return Bond Fund remains one of my favorites in the category.

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PLANNING POINTS
By Doug Nelson | Tuesday, June 28, 2016



With the growing popularity of so-called “robo-advisors” and “robo-portfolios,” I’m starting to see history repeat itself. So I thought I’d take a closer look at what’s behind the evolution of this new portfolio product, and try to answer the question: “Is this really anything new and will it perform any better than past automated portfolio solutions”?

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Friday, June 24, 2016

By Mike Keerma

Traders hit the sell button hard on Friday, following a U.K. referendum on Thursday that saw Brits vote 52% in favor of leaving the European Union compared with 48% who voted to remain. The results apparently took markets by surprise, leading to Friday’s risk-repricing frenzy and a steep one-day selloff not seen since the financial crisis of 2008. For the week, however, Toronto’s benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index broke even, while the U.S. blue-chip S&P 500 Composite Index dropped -1.6%. London’s FTSE 100 Index went countertrend and gained 2% on the week. On Friday, gold surged 4.6% as a direct beneficiary of the global flight to safety, but leaving it ahead only 1.5% for the week. Crude oil, the other currently newsy commodity, fell -5% on Friday, putting it -1.0% underwater for the week.

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Fund Library News
By Fund Library News Wire | Thursday, June 23, 2016

By Mike Keerma

* TSX launches NAVex fund trading platform.
* Vanguard debuts four new active ETFs.
* Big Mack launches two smart beta ETFs.
* Canoe adjusts risk rating on two funds.

* TSX launches fund trading platform. Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) on Monday launched TSX NAVex, a centralized mutual fund trading platform, designed to introduce operational and cost efficiencies in the processing of mutual fund transactions.

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THE ETF INVESTOR
By Tyler Mordy | Thursday, June 23, 2016



Undoubtedly, a U.K. vote to leave the European Union would have a negative impact on business and investor confidence. Not only would it increase fears of a the bloc’s disintegration – emboldening anti-EU parties like Spain’s Podemos and Italy’s Five Star Movement – but, more importantly, it would create an upsurge in populist groups promoting nationalism and protectionism. That’s a clear negative for risk markets.

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DUE DILIGENCE
By Dave Paterson | Wednesday, June 22, 2016



Since the financial crisis in 2008, there has been a steady decline in the amount of liquidity in many investment markets, including equities, foreign exchange, and most notably, the bond market. The concern in the bond market has become an increasingly frequent topic of conversation with advisors in recent months, as the potential for rising rates is once again returning to the forefront.

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