May 2020

May is here! How you managing in our "new reality"?
Our focus this month is on how to understand what is happening in the markets, where they are likely to go, and what you can do to pass your time as effectively as possible.
It appears those that are working are working more hours than ever, and the rest not working!  Some are retired, and it certainly has a substantial impact on your ability to participate in retirement activities that make this phase of life so enjoyable!
We have taken inventory on what you are all doing to pass this time, to stay healthy, and to enhance your daily lives.  Check out our list below of what we found our clients and colleagues are doing to keep busy.
Many people are volunteering for various causes that need help now more than ever.  What a great way to pass the time!
Please continue to share with me and my team what is helping you stay connected, stay involved and have a positive day. In addition, what can we do to help you manage through this challenging time?
I look forward to enjoying face to face meetings again, but I hope we continue to integrate technology to simplify processes going forward. 
To discuss ideas or schedule a virtual meeting, feel free to contact our office.

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Market Update

What do we know?
This is a very unusual time.  We are seeing some big disconnects in the analytics.  It is important to read different sources to ensure you are getting varied opinions and not just those with your own biases.

Right now, a few things that I believe:
1) It makes sense to be a discerning investor.  Ensure companies you hold have lower debt and long term sustainability.  Will demand for their product or services likely to return after this is over?
2) There will be a change.  There will be an impact to our economy and many industries, but with low interest rates, active investing can help.  Taking advantage of mispricing, which often happens when we see a race for the exit or when people rush to re-join the markets.
3) Focus on your timeline, your cash flow needs must come first!  This is especially true if your situation has changed.

4) Alternative strategies such as liquid alternatives, global opportunities, etc. can help a portfolio to better sustain through market volatility.
5) The stock market is a basket of stocks and our portfolio performs differently when we own a different combination.  This can often be beneficial in times of extreme volatility.
6) We may not be done with the volatility, but if we follow the 3rd principal to ensure the risk is in line with your needs your portfolio should be able to sustain itself for the long term.

What is Sustainable Investing?

Our Responsibility Today for a Sustainable Tomorrow

For more information on sustainable investing click here.

Weath Matters & COVID-19: Assante hosts weekly updates with CI Investments' top portfolio managers to address ongoing uncertainty and Canada's COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. To access the information live or listen to the playback, please click  here.

In addition, I am hosting webinars for clients on current market trends. Please let us know what topics you would like to review and we can explore them on the next webinar!

Watch for upcoming webinars on the following topics:

*Market Updates - Where are we now, and where are we going
*Evolution Portfolio Overview
*Tactical Market Positioning - How this helps your Portfolio
*Managing Money for the Younger Investor - Providing priorities for those in the early stages of building wealth. Geared to ages 20-35 years scheduled for Thursday, May 7th at 5:15 pm EST.

The Oil Crash: For information on how oil prices went subzero, check out this article.

Consumer Spending and COVID-19: We understand that consumer spending impacts the economy, but how has our spending habits changed in 2020? Click here to read the full article.
2020 Tax Guide

Donating stocks or mutual funds directly to charity provides a generous tax credit, but also allow you to waive the gains on your investments. This can ensure you keep your precious cash flow, charities get the support they need, and you end up paying less taxes to the CRA.

To see if the Charitable Giving Program is right for you, feel free to read more information here.

Tax savings opportunity: When it comes to taxes, it helps to be prepared. To ensure you take advantage of commonly missed deductions,  check out this article.

Tax loss selling: It can save you money. Feel free to read this article to see if it is appropriate for your portfolio.


Be Well-Advised: Know somebody that needs Financial Planning guidance? We believe in giving back and we are a part of the national team that is donating their time to help others.  Assante's Be Well-Advised Program is targeted to provide financial advice to Canadians that would not ordinarily have access to a financial advisor. For more information, click here.

Emergency Fund: Our current climate has shown that we need to be prepared for the unexpected, which is where an emergency fund comes in handy. To lease what it is and where you start, click here.

Financial Check Up: Take 5 minutes to assess your current financial health by answering a few questions about your spending, borrowing, saving and investing habits. Take the quiz here.
Insurance Update: I recommend to review your insurance needs when there is a lifestyle change, home purchase or considering asset protection for your and your family. Take this quick survey to find if you are meeting your protection needs.
Have a quick read to refresh your memory on protecting yourself and your money:

Estate Planning - A Task for the Times

I never thought I'd say this, but assuming you have some extra time on your hands, I think some of you may be bored enough to complete those estate planning questions and get your affairs in order.

I find that this task, of discussing what you'd want to happen never occurs, and we are always too busy living to want to partake in such a depressing subject. However, in these unusual times, when we are "staying home" and forced to pass on many of our favourite activities, it appears this important yet dry subject may finally have found its time.

So, here's how I suggest you start:

1) Review what documents you have. Note the date and read them over to determine if the actions still align with your goals.

2) Ask questions to determine if you should re-do your will:
*Do you still want the same executor? Do you have an appropriate alternate executor?
*Are all your assets in place as identified in the will? Do you still want them to go to the same beneficiary?
*Has the status of your beneficiaries changed? For example, are your children now married and it's time to review if you wish to include in-laws or grandchildren.
*Does the will match your wishes especially when considering tax implications and the impact of other assets that have a direct beneficiary, such as TFSA and RRSP.

3) The wording in wills has evolved, so if you have several bequests and beneficiaries, it may need to be updated to ensure it's appropriate.

4) Review some of the estate planning documents to ensure you are considering what you want as your end wishes. By ensuring those objectives drive your decisions, experts can assist you in getting you to where you need in the most tax-efficient and family-friendly manner.

So take a little time to complete a thankless task, but one that will free up your time when we get back to normal. I want you to enjoy it when we get there and with a little planning, nothing will hold you back.

For more information, please reach out to us for the Estate Planning Kit. We would be happy to provide some resources to help you start the conversation. For more information, feel free to read this article.


Assante Rated # 2 in Canada: 
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Trustee Fee:  Please note that Trustee fees for RRSP, LRSP, RRIF, LIF will be charged June 6th.

Positive in a Pandemic

I found it refreshing to hear more uplifting news stories and your creative ways to pass the time indoors and thought I would share some of those ideas to inspire you. Whether you are home alone, getting to know your significant other's work personae in extremely close quarters, or juggling video conferencing while homeschooling your kids, I hope this list will make you smile or help you survive.
Cook like crazy: Whether you have been cooking all your life or you struggle with ramen noodles, there are always new recipes to try.

Gardening: Add a little colour to your neighbourhood. We can add flowers to compliment the chalk drawings of rainbows that cover the sidewalks.

Learn something new: Try learning Spanish on Duolingo or explore for free courses online. I have seen lots of people learning to bake bread and some have picked up knitting in their spare time.

Workout: My friends and I danced our way through an online Zumba class and my daughters keep yoga mats around the house for when they need a break.

Meditate: It is a great time for quiet reflection. Start with a guided meditation if you are not sure where to start.

Write it out: Our emotions can be all over the place and writing can be a great form of expression. It can help you organize your thoughts, or you can write letters to your friends and family to connect. You can start a journal, practise calligraphy, or maybe you start a blog about all the books you have been reading while safe at home.

Post-quarantine jam jar: Every time you think of something you are excited about, write it down and put it in a jar. I miss our huge family dinners to celebrate the holidays. My daughter is dreaming about bottomless brunch. It seems every Canadian is excited to greet everyone once more with a big hug. Once our lives are back to normal and you aren't sure where to eat or where to go, you can pull inspiration right out of a jar.

Interview your elders: Take the time to chat with your family and record their stories. Ask them questions about their life and listen to their advice.

Connect with your community: While we are practicing social distancing, some of my clients shared they were volunteering at their local food bank or shopping for someone else who is at higher risk. Others had purchased gift cards from their local businesses to try and support their local economy. One client has pulled out their old sewing machine and has been working on cloth masks for others. There are online music lessons and painting classes to ensure you are socially distancing while connecting with others that share your interests. My family has been video calling with our friends and family for dinner or a glass of wine to keep our spirits up.

Bang your pots and pans: This one you may have heard already on your street. Around the world, people are banging pots and pans in support of our health care workers. Referred to as "cacerolazo" in Spanish, this act of defiance has a rich history across the globe.

Hand Washing the Fun Way: A contact shared her creative hand washing video, and we thought we'd pass it along!

Hand Washing - By 2020 (Best Practice)
Hand Washing - By 2020 (Best Practice)

Lately, I have been working with wood working to refinish wooden side tables and sanding pine walls. I love working with my hands on a project, and it has been a welcome break.

Feel free to share photos of anything that has made you smile or ideas you have had to pass the time!

This material is provided for general information and is subject to change without notice. Every effort has been made to compile this material from reliable sources however no warranty can be made as to its accuracy or completeness. Before acting on any of the above, please make sure to see me for individual financial advice based on your personal circumstances. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of Assante Capital Management Ltd.
Insurance products and services are provided through Assante Estate and Insurance Services Inc. Assante Capital Management Ltd. is a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada.
Assante is an indirect, wholly-owned subsidiary of CI Financial Corp. ("CI"). The principal business of CI is the management, marketing, distribution and administration of mutual funds, segregated funds and other fee-earning investment products for Canadian investors through its wholly-owned subsidiary CI Investments Inc. If you invest in CI products, CI will, through its ownership of subsidiaries, earn ongoing asset management fees in accordance with applicable prospectus or other offering documents.
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Janine Purves
Senior Financial Advisor
Assante Capital Management Ltd.
Ph (905) 707-5220
Fax (905) 707-1035
9130 Leslie St., Ste. 302 
Richmond Hill,
ON L4B 0B9
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