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Navigating Retirement  

It's different for women

Feb 4, 2016 / 2:20 pm
Money means many things to people. For some, it’s a way of keeping score, for others it’s the promise of future security. Some yearn for the status that money can bring, while others value it simply for what it buys. We all have unique viewpoints about money, which ultimately come...

There's more to the picture

Jan 28, 2016 / 5:06 pm
The good news is, we’re living longer. Unfortunately for many, that’s also the bad news. As life expectancies increase, so do the incidences of chronic and incurable progressive diseases. Medical science can keep us alive, but hasn’t discovered how to keep us healthy if we...

In a panic? Change gears

Jan 21, 2016 / 4:28 pm
The way it was The choice used to be obvious. If you wanted to protect your principal, or generate a regular cash flow, you were probably an income investor. If you wanted to see your fortune expand, and had no need for the additional income, you were a growth investor. Income investors...

Advance to Go

Jan 14, 2016 / 6:00 am
When bad markets happen to good people, they, much as our prehistoric ancestors did, see their cortisol levels rise and stress levels increase, and they start actively thinking of ways to make it stop. Unfortunately, the market doesn't care. It will continue to do whatever it is doing,...

The secret of change

Jan 7, 2016 / 10:42 am
As the New Year unfolds, may you be ready for fresh ideas, unforeseen challenges and great opportunities. The markets are just one of the challenges you will face when managing your wealth. Remember, wealth is not an achievement or a financial status, it is the sum total of your financial world:...

Uncertain times

Dec 31, 2015 / 2:49 pm
Generating income in uncertain times Stock markets and interest rates, like everything else we have the ability to look back on, are often remembered through glasses with questionable lenses. Interest rates in the early 1980s are often remembered either fondly (if you had cash to invest),...

Retirement moves

Dec 17, 2015 / 6:00 am
Retirement means a lot of things to different people. For some, it’s a time to move closer to their kids and watch the grandchildren grow. For others, it’s a chance to move away from the place they’ve spent most of their working lives, to start anew. For the majority...
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Surviving the stock market

Dec 10, 2015 / 6:00 am
When I began my career in the investment industry in 1993, the focus was very different than it is today. Financial plans were mostly talked about rather than done. A stockbroker’s job was to make money for clients, and performance was the only measuring stick that mattered. As the...

Protect yourself online

Dec 3, 2015 / 6:00 am
As a rule, cyber security is a topic best left to professionals to detail. I have so many conversations with clients and folks who are retired about this topic, though, that it seems a subject worth exploring from a 10,000 foot perspective. Unlike the generations born and raised with the...

Missing the obvious

Nov 26, 2015 / 6:00 am
My first house was at the bottom of a hill in Prince George. While there may be many houses at the bottom of hills in Prince George, mine was situated so that when the snow melted in the spring, all the water from that melt found its way into my back yard, and from there to the window wells in the...

Myth investing

Nov 19, 2015 / 6:00 am
Rallies and Reversals Myths have been a part of life as long as we’ve been able to communicate. From campfire tales to sage words of advice, myths have been used over the years to teach, to share, and sometimes to create healthy fear. Most of the time, we adults understand that behind...

Lone wolf, or pack?

Nov 5, 2015 / 6:00 am
The investment industry is a continually evolving entity. In days gone by, most investment advisors worked on their own with the support of an associate. As client needs, markets, and demographics changed, so did investors’ expectations. The main function of a stockbroker was to...

The right decision

Oct 29, 2015 / 6:00 am
Most people believe they make objective well-reasoned decisions. But do they? A study done a few years back asked American drivers about their driving abilities, and 64% rated themselves excellent or very good drivers. At the same time, they felt only 29% of their close friends, and 22% of...

A reader's advice

Oct 22, 2015 / 5:00 am
One of the great gifts of technology is the opportunity it provides to discuss, debate or share thoughts with people whom we’ve never met, or who live long distances from us. Not only are we able to communicate, we’re able to do it instantly. We can share other people’s opinions,...

Basement dwellers

Oct 15, 2015 / 5:05 am
Life is often at cross-purposes, it can be like sitting in a rowboat that’s slowly filling with water and far from shore. The immediate priority is to bail the water out lest your boat sink, but at the same time getting to shore is a priority because you can’t bail forever. Throw in...

Income for life?

Oct 8, 2015 / 5:00 am
In almost every conversation I have with clients these days, the topic swings to interest rates. What direction they’re going, how long will they stay where they are and how can one generate better rates of return while keeping their money safe and free from volatility. The conversation...

Living beyond 100

Oct 1, 2015 / 5:00 am
There was a time most careers involved an apprenticeship of one sort another. Some official, others involving years of servitude, and others time simply spent watching and emulating those who knew. Whatever the method, the goal in the end was to learn through a connection the things that one...

Retirement headwinds

Sep 24, 2015 / 5:00 am
Financial planning is never a perfect science. At best, it’s a well-considered approach to marrying potential opportunities with the challenges and costs that often present themselves. It’s a way to protect oneself from an unknown future. I often talk about opportunities and...

Retirement has changed

Sep 17, 2015 / 5:00 am
For most of our modern lives, retirement was essentially a stripped down version of the life we were already leading. We would remove the daily toil and replace it with leisure: maybe a hobby, a bit of travel but the real objective was to give tired bones a well-deserved rest, and take the time to...

Boost retirement income

Sep 10, 2015 / 5:00 am
If you are retired or close to retirement, generating income is probably one of your biggest concerns. You count on your investment nest egg to supplement the income you receive from government sources. But in a low-interest-rate environment, your money needs to work harder. Consider these...

Where does the money go?

Sep 3, 2015 / 5:00 am
One of the major components of business relationships that involve money are the fees in the investment industry. There is currently a quiet battle being waged between the practitioners who charge their clients a commission on each transaction they make on their behalf and those who charge annual...

Begin with the end in mind

Aug 20, 2015 / 5:00 am
We humans love our dates: birthdays, anniversaries, 9/11, the Ides of March - our lives are intimately woven within the tapestry of the calendar. So it should come as no surprise when you ask a business owner when they’re planning to retire, they can usually narrow it down to some kind of...

The real fountain of youth

Aug 13, 2015 / 5:00 am
One of the beliefs I have regarding retirement is that it’s about more than money. That isn’t to ignore the benefits a well-funded retirement will deliver, it’s just acknowledging that a successful third stage of life is made up of other factors as well. Personal health and...

Taking care of business

Jul 23, 2015 / 5:00 am
Retirement as a goal has changed a lot over the years. There was a time, it was the only goal. You’d punch the clock and count the years until you could stop punching that timecard. For most folks, it meant the beginning of a corporate pension and the start of government benefits. It was...

No news is good news

Jul 16, 2015 / 5:00 am
As our world grows smaller, the number of options we have available to us grows. The global market has connected us to events that in past years would often be buried in the back pages of the newspaper, but today are front and center. Nowhere has this become more evident than in the stock and...

Small business ownership

Jul 9, 2015 / 5:00 am
If you are a small business owner, you may want to consider the transfer of your business at retirement. Many factors such as tax will come into play when a business is transferred and it is very important that you have a plan in place to ensure that the business is transferred to whom you want in...

TFSA strategies

Jun 25, 2015 / 5:00 am
The federal government has increased the annual contribution limit of Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSA) to $10,000. Going forward, the annual limit will no longer be indexed to inflation. Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) recognizes these changes as effective January 1, 2015 meaning financial institutions...

Empty nesting: your home

Jun 11, 2015 / 5:00 am
An important consideration when the children have left is whether you are going to change your residential arrangements. We’re all familiar with the term ‘empty nesters’ and you may be thinking that the ‘nest’ is too large for one or two of you. Various options are...

Live long and prosper

Jun 4, 2015 / 5:00 am
Much can be said about Baby Boomers, but one irrefutable fact sums up this group—everything they embrace, changes. Whether it’s disposable diapers, mini-vans or portable music; the sheer number of people within this demographic make it foolhardy and financially reckless to...

What's a robo-advisor?

May 28, 2015 / 5:00 am
It can only be attributable to human error. -Hal, 2001: A Space Odyssey For most of us who are within thinking distance of retirement, the term “robo” conjures up images of the B9 Robot on Lost in Space or Robby from the Forbidden Planet. That isn’t to say it’s...

Do or do not

May 21, 2015 / 5:00 am
“The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimist stares at the thorns, oblivious of the rose.” - Kahlil Gibran Good planning is all about managing change. If we could depend upon our expectations of the future 100% of the time, there would be little need for...

Death of a sales commission

May 14, 2015 / 5:00 am
In New York City in 1792, twenty-four brokers met under a buttonwood tree on Wall Street. They agreed to buy and sell public stock with each other using a basic commission rate of 0.25%. This was the birth of the Buttonwood Agreement and ultimately the New York Stock Exchange. Since then the...

The other side of retirement

May 7, 2015 / 5:00 am
The golden years - the time we get to leave work life and office politics behind. From Freedom 55 to The Wealthy Barber, much has been said about financial strategies on the road to retirement. It’s something we’re taught to work towards our entire life: save your money, pay yourself...

The rules are changing

Apr 30, 2015 / 5:00 am
In recent years, a number of countries, including England, Australia and the United States, have changed the regulatory framework that governs their financial institutions. Included have been changes to formalize client communications and create greater transparency in fees. While industry is...

What's your score?

Apr 23, 2015 / 5:00 am
There was a time when we would sit down with nothing more than a sheet of paper and a sharp pencil to do the math. Totalling our expenses and subtracting our revenue, the amount left over was the answer to the question, “Can I retire now?” While the basic calculations haven’t...

Living with Plan B

Apr 16, 2015 / 5:00 am
“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit Human beings are optimists by nature. Whether we are talking about our ability to drive, the state of our physical health or our outlook for the future, our...

Do I have to file tax return?

Apr 9, 2015 / 5:00 am
Personal Tax Return Filings Many people assume that they don’t have to file a personal tax return because they don’t have a balance owing. This isn’t the best rule of thumb to follow. Filing is mandatory in the following situations: There are self-employment earnings that...

Retiring with purpose

Apr 2, 2015 / 5:00 am
Our lives are always guided by purpose. We may not think we have a grand design working in them, but the fact is, we are always moving with intent. Whether it’s to have more money so we worry less or do more, or we stay active to prolong our health or improve our looks, there is always a...

CRA Notice of Assessment

Mar 26, 2015 / 5:00 am
Many Canadians rush to file their taxes on time each year and don’t think about it until the next year. One of the most overlooked notices received from the CRA annually is the annual Notice of Assessment. This notice is very important as it summarizes some of the important information from...

Choosing life

Mar 19, 2015 / 5:00 am
In retirement planning, taking care of basic needs questions come first: will there be enough money for you to stop working; can you maintain your lifestyle when the pay cheques stop; what about the unknown future costs: healthcare, transportation and accommodations? For most retirees in Canada...


The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.


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