A guide to how flow-through fund limited partnerships can mightily aid your tax planning!
The end of the year will raise concerns among many professionals, self-employed persons, business owners and even regular wage earners about the amount of tax they will owe the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA).
Tax demands can come as a nasty shock and place the unfortunate recipient in a quandary. What assets can be sold, income diverted or spending deferred are the questions that typically come to mind when a tax bill comes due.
Help is at hand with the flow-through fund limited partnership, one of the few tax shelters still available in Canada and one that will not only give investors a deduction against their taxes, but will potentially qualify for a British Columbia provincial tax credit. Oh yes, and they can also feel good about helping the Canadian economy. How come? And what’s the reason behind this official largesse?
In 1986, the Canadian government decided to encourage investment into small and medium oil & gas and mining companies by allowing them to transfer expenses (Canadian Exploration Expenses) directly related to exploration to investors. The government did this by instituting the Flow-Through Tax Credit under the Income Tax Act which allowed these companies to “flow through” these costs to investors via the purchase of flow-through shares. Broadly, this allowed for exploration and pre-production expenses to be generally 100-percent tax deductible against any source of income in the year the investment is made. Sounds great, eh?
A flow-through partnership is a professionally managed portfolio of junior resource stocks that exists for a defined period of time, usually one to three years. At the end of that period, a “disposition” must occur in which the shares are sold or rolled over into another security, usually a mutual fund. On disposition, proceeds would be treated as a capital gain.
The flow-through concept has been enormously successful in raising money for resource exploration. According to the Department of Finance, approximately $1.4 billion per year was raised by flow-through shares from 2007 to 2012 alone.
You’re probably wondering by now how a potential investor can take advantage of this uniquely Canadian tax innovation to their best advantage. Well, below is a hypothetical example of a flow-through share fund, assuming the top tax bracket of 43.7 percent for a B.C. investor. For the sake of simplicity, the fund is also assumed to be invested entirely in B.C. resource companies, though in actual fact a fund manager is more likely to spread risk across the country.
Investment amount $1,000
Combined Fed & Prov Tax rebate (43.7 tax rate) $ 437
Federal Tax Credit $ 120
B.C Tax Credit $ 200 +
Total tax savings $757
Less income tax on inclusion of federal & provincial income tax $139 –
So, an investment of $1,000 garnered a cash return from tax savings of $618; however, an investor can still make a profit even if the fund is redeemed at a lower value than $1,000.
“What?” I hear you saying. “I lost money on the fund but can still realize a gain? How so??”
Let’s assume the fund is redeemed at a modest 60 percent of the investment value, bearing in mind the proceeds are fully taxable as a capital gain.
Now let’s do the math!
Proceeds of the sale $600
Less capital gains at 43.7% tax bracket $109 –
Net proceeds $491
In the end, money can be made since the investment also garnered some handsome tax savings, making the total return to the investor of:
Tax savings $ 618
Net proceeds $ 491 +
Therefore, the final cash benefit to the investor is $1,109 on an investment of $1,000. Certainly better than handing the same grand to the tax man and the investor’s money would be locked up for a little less than one year.
As you can see from the previous example, if the fund was redeemed for anything more than 60 percent, the investor would begin to realize a profit.
Who can benefit from investing in a Flow-Through Fund? Just about anyone. It includes individuals and corporations interested in reducing or deferring taxes; individuals wanting to reduce Old Age Security claw backs; or recipients of lump-sum payments.
Interested? Then you’d better hurry. The last date to invest in this last, great Canadian tax shelter to achieve tax savings for earnings in 2014 is December 15th.
This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy the securities referred to herein. The information contained in this article is not intended to provide any tax, legal, or financial advice. We recommend that you consult an investment professional before investing in this or any investment product. Please consider a fund's objectives, risks, and charges and expenses, and read the Offering Memorandum carefully before investing.
Chuck Duerden is a dealing representative for Pangaea Asset Management in Kelowna. He may be reached at 250.575.3798 or at [email protected]. Follow Chuck as Charles Duerden on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Mortgage brokers know that a great rate and a great mortgage are not always synonymous. Many clients have tunnel vision when it comes to interest rate but it is only one component.
How do we as mortgage professionals convince our clients of this when rate is the only thing they can easily compare? How do we explain that avoiding potential costs like high mortgage penalties, refinance restrictions etc., often justifies paying more up front?
It is important for a consumer to ask their mortgage broker or specialist about the differences between a collateral change and a standard charge and the impact a collateral charge may have on their ability to shop for the best rate at maturity. Also it is critical to understand the difference between the penalty charges by the Big 5 Banks versus the penalties of some of the other lenders with the same interest rates.
Most mortgage consumers do not realize that 63% of mortgages are broken before maturity and sometimes the differences in penalties can be over $10,000. Some of the low interest, rock bottom mortgages are usually part of a no frills product and can cost thousands of dollars more in the future.
Some of the other components that are not always offered in a low rate mortgage are flexible prepayment options which will save thousands of dollars in interest costs over the life of the mortgage. Add to this portability, assumability and the ability to refinance which are important considerations.
Sometimes saving money involves much more than the best rate. It is essential to understand the trade-offs associated with some of the mortgage rates advertised. This is why using an Accredited Mortgage Professional (AMP) is so important.
Please feel free to call me at 250-862-1806 or email me at [email protected] to set up your FREE mortgage rate consultation.
To keep your house from being haunted with potential insurance woes, Wayne Ross, an insurance and claims expert for Aviva Canada, offers some Halloween preparation tips for preventing fires and other insurance claims:
• Practice fire safety: When setting up spooky electrical decorations and lighting, ensure that electrical outlets are not overloaded. Consider battery or solar powered Jack-o’-lanterns.
• Make sure your walkways are safe: Although darkness may set the Halloween mood, keep walkways well lit and obstruction-free to reduce the risk of injury and allow many goblins to walk through simultaneously.
• Check your insurance coverage: While homeowner policies generally will cover you and your property on Halloween, it is a good idea to contact your insurance broker to ensure that you have the right amount of coverage —especially with hundreds of small visitors to your home.
“It is the responsibility of homeowners to make sure their property is safe for visitors during the Halloween festivities,” states Ross. “By taking some precautions, homeowners can join in the celebrations and enjoy a safe night of fun with their families.”
While you’re planning for your Halloween haunt, talk your insurance broker or insurer to determine what you can do to keep trick or treating safe. More detailed information is available from your insurance broker or at AvivaCanada.com.
If you have any questions regarding home insurance and would like a referral to a broker or have question about mortgages please call 250 862 1806 or email me at [email protected].
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