If ever there was a time to sit back, take a breath, reflect, assess and reevaluate this is it …

Why now? Because 2022 was a year like no other — at least unlike anything we’ve seen in a very, very long time. One “event” after another — some unprecedented — challenged us, surprised us and shocked us. And all investors, all over the world felt it and were taken aback, to put it mildly. 

On top of rising interest rates, inflation and the threat of a global recession, no major asset class went unscathed — stocks, bonds, real estate and crypto all underperformed. The last time both stocks and bonds performed this badly was 1969.

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Can any forecaster really predict what we can expect from the markets?

I ask because we can usually expect a rush to do exactly that in a new year, even more so when the previous year was as unpredictable, unstable and unsettling as what we’ve just experienced.

Well, the answer is a resounding “no,” and that’s not just me talking. There are numerous successful investors, analysts, and economists who feel the same way — and have written countless articles, blogs, newsletters and books about it. 

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For this highly-acclaimed investor, successful investing can be summed up in just four words — “simple, but not easy”

It was recently my privilege and pleasure to attend a private CIBC Wealth presentation for Investment Advisors given by Howard Marks, the much-admired author of more than 140 “memos” about his investment strategies and insights — knowledge and experience he has gained throughout his long and very successful career in the investment industry. 

Also the author of three highly-acclaimed books on investing — my personal favourite being “The Most Important Thing” — he is the co-founder and co-chairman of Oaktree Capital Management, the largest investor in distressed securities worldwide.

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It won’t be long before 105 is the new 75. Are you prepared?

This is not silliness, neither is it far-fetched — it’s true. 

From the World Economic Forum comes this: “Two-thirds of the world’s population will be 65 years and above by 2050, according to the UN, and the projection for the global ageing economy is already estimated to reach $27 billion by 2025 — there will be more people ageing and living longer.” 

Too far in the future for you? Well, as of February 2021 there were already “more than half a million people aged 100 or older globally.”

Can you afford to live that long? 

Is “longevity” built into your financial plan and your portfolio? How long is your current “nest egg” projected to last? What happens if you live to 100 or more? Will you outlive your money?

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An article that should be of interest to all investors

We have always believed that “knowledge is power,” and are, therefore, committed to providing our clients and followers with reliable information on topics that are of value to all investors. 

One such topic, which is particularly relevant right now, is rising interest rates. 

There’s a reason why interest rates are such a hot topic right now

You can’t turn on the news or read an article that isn’t talking about inflation. In January the consumer price index, which measures the changes in the cost of everything from food and gasoline to housing, reported that inflation has hit its highest rate in 40 years — 7.5% in the US and 5.1% in Canada. I’m sure you’ve felt the impact. 

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Creating real wealth

When we think of Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk we all recognize the obvious. They are billionaires. Enormous wealth that was created by owning amazing businesses over very long periods of time. Through good and bad times the fruits of their labour took decades to harvest.

Investing is a marathon. Yet today the markets are dominated by short-termism.Read More »

Does your estate plan include everything it should?

I ask, because if you can answer “yes” to even one of these questions, simply including personal assets and investments in your estate plan isn’t enough. What I’m referring to are “digital assets” — certainly not something traditional estate plans ever included.

  • Do you use email?
  • Do you bank or invest online?
  • Do you shop online?
  • Do you collect and redeem airline points?
  • Do you have a blog, are you on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or any other social media?
  • Do you have photos or other documents stored in Cloud or other storage accounts?
  • Do you use PayPal or Apple Pay?
  • Are there websites where any of your financial information is stored?

Would you be surprised to learn that even if all you have is an email account, if you answered “no” to the rest of the questions, email is a “digital asset.” And frankly the truth is, most of us have expanded our digital presence beyond email, particularly since COVID curtailed so many of our activities.

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