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investment planning

What is a 'Stock Market' Anyway ?

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.

Investing vs. Trading

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.

Business Adaptation Mechanism

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.

Asset Building Strategies

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.

Integrated Investment Management Can Save Taxes

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.

The Safe Investing Dilemma

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.

Diversification is Key

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.

Volatile Economy = Investor Fatigue

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.

Baby Boomers Getting Nervous

Portfolio Diversification

Looking back over the past few years, one thing is certain - we can never be absolutely sure what the financial markets will do at any given time. We can study charts and graphs, both historical and forecasted, we can consult with economic experts, business leaders, and government officials, we can look at inflation and interest rates, and still we cannot predict the markets with absolute certainty

Don't Give Up on Growth

If you are a prudent investor, then you have a financial retirement plan that will ensure you have sufficient funds for the lifestyle you envision after you stop working. What constitutes sufficient depends on your ambitions and your hobbies, and also on how long you live. People are living longer, and it's not unreasonable to think that you could live into your 90s.

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