Archive for December, 2007

2007: A Retrospective

December 30, 2007


As we bid farewell to 2007, let’s look back at the news that directly affected our pocketbooks:

  1. The Federal Budget in March introduced major changes to RESPs and introduced a new child tax credit.
  2. Vanguard introduced the Europe Pacific ETF (VEA) and injected much needed competition to the iShares MSCI EAFE Index Fund (EFA).
  3. After charging $25 to $30 per trade for close to a decade, a few major discount brokers started lowering commissions for some account holders.
  4. In its fall fiscal update, the Federal Government reduced the GST to 5%, lowered personal income taxes and cut corporate taxes.

I hope 2007 was a prosperous year for you and wish you more of the same in 2008. Happy New Year!

This and That

December 28, 2007

  1. Our soaring dollar may have crimped returns from foreign equities but it is Time magazine’s Canadian newsmaker of the year.
  2. James Daw writes in The Star that RRSPs have received creditor protection in the event of a bankruptcy.
  3. There is very little tax relief in 2008 because most of the tax cuts were made retroactive to 2007. The only significant tax break is the further 1% cut in the GST that takes effect in the New Year.
  4. For what it’s worth (not much), here are some more predictions for 2008.

This and That

December 21, 2007


Though I’ll be posting sporadically next week, most of you will be taking a well-deserved break and spending time with your loved ones during the holiday season. So, I’ll take this opportunity to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

  1. When John Bogle speaks, it’s worth paying attention. Fortune magazine gave its readers a chance to ask questions (and more questions) to the founder of Vanguard.
  2. Jonathan Chevreau cites an explosive US study that found that investors who buy load funds through advisors underperform those who buy no-load or index funds and concludes “Good advice is better than no advice, but it appears bad advice is worse than no advice at all”.
  3. Get ready for Jim Cramer, the sober financial guru: “You won’t beat the market, and you’ll probably lose money”. Yeah, I was surprised too.
  4. It’s the silly season of predicting how 2008 will turn out to be. Rob Carrick talks to Bay Street prognosticators and Royal LePage estimates how Canadian real estate will fare next year.

Blog Roundup:

  1. Thicken My Wallet wrote informative posts on setting financial goals and offered tips on finding and working with an accountant, lawyer or financial advisor.
  2. Mike questions whether some financial goals make sense.
  3. Larry MacDonald wrote a series of posts on RESP Pitfalls (Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3).
  4. The Dividend Guy finds out why women kick butt when it comes to investing.
  5. Million Dollar Journey finds out how canceling a credit card affects your credit score.
  6. Steady Hand’s Tom Bradley notes that while losses from the credit crunch are characterized as “extraordinary one-time events”, the profits generated by the same products were treated as “recurring”. I can’t say that I’m surprised.