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Investment Q&A

Not investment advice or solicitation to buy/sell securities. Do your own due diligence and/or consult an advisor.

Q: I have US exposure through a company pension that tracks the S&P. It represents about 20% of my overall holdings. I have recently come into enough US cash to add two or three new individual holdings, or perhaps buy an ETF or two that would complement the S&P tracking pension. I would welcome your thoughts and suggestions for individual stocks or ETFs that would be suitable additions.

Read Answer Asked by David on May 09, 2023

Q: zlu follow up question, thanks for pointing out that zlu trades in USD as zlu.u
When i compare performance of those 2 ETFs using yahoo finance or questrade edge or the bmo website zlu significantly outperforms zlu.u over any time frame
If the performance was similar i would invest in zlu.u as it is in my rrsp account but in this case given the outperformance i think i will opt for zlu.
I do not understand the performance differential, assume fx must be related but it seems like too much.

Read Answer Asked by Rob on November 01, 2022

Q: I am thinking of setting up my portfolio with 25% positions in XIU, ZLB, XSP, ZLU. I am trying to avoid bonds and International stocks as they always seem to be a drag on the portfolio. With this arrangement I feel I have a better chance for returns closer to the market. With the low volatility ETF’s, I am hoping my positions would cause less volatility and would smooth out returns as the holdings in each are well correlated. Would you consider this plan to be too risky or would you have any other commentary or suggestions?

Read Answer Asked by Myron on June 01, 2022

Q: Hi Peter & 5i,
Wishing you and the staff a joyous holiday season!
Would you see any red flags in this portfolio for a conservative investor needing the dividends for cash flow. The portfolio would be 50% equities and 50% fixed income - 5 year laddered GIC's.
Here are the stocks and their proposed weightings:
Financial Royal Bank RY 5.7%
TD Bank TD 3.6%
Sun Life SLF 4.4%
Power Corp POW 4.0%
Utility Fortis FTS 5.7%
Brookfield Renewable BEPC 4.2%
Algonquin Power AQN 2.2%
Comm TELUS T 4.7%
Bell BCE 4.1%
Cons Staple Costco COST 4.3%
Loblaws L 4.0%
Cons Discr. Magna MG 3.8%
Restaurant Brands QSR 2.4%
Industrial CN Rail CNR 5.2%
Savaria SIS 3.6%
Energy Enbridge ENB 4.6%
Suncor SU 2.9%
Materials Nutrien NTR 4.3%
Real Estate BMO-Equal Weight ZRE 4.2%
Tech Thomson Reuters TRI 4.8%
Health Evolve Global Health LIFE 3.8%
ETF BMO-Low Volatility US ZLU 8.7%
iShares-US Equity-Hedge XSP 4.8%
Thanks so much for the fantastic service.

Read Answer Asked by Dennis on December 16, 2021

Q: Hi Peter, Ryan, and Team,

We need to increase our US exposure and wish to do this in our non-registered account. We're considering CUD and VGG as we'd rather use ETFs. (Our broker allows us to buy and sell CUD with zero commission, and not so with VGG, but this wouldn't be a 'make or break' reason for choosing one over the other). What would your recommendation be when considering tax efficiency, performance, volatility, and other important metrics? I do like that CUD has a relatively low weight in Technology, as our Canadian holdings like CSU, ENGH, KXS, TOI, etc. have done so well, and we're now overweight in this sector, thanks to 5i. :) Also, if there are any other US ETFs sold on the TSX that you think we should consider, we'd appreciate that info as well.

Thanks in advance for all your assistance and wise counsel.

Read Answer Asked by Jerry on August 06, 2021

Q: Hi Peter and Ryan

Understanding that timing the market can be difficult and trying to follow your recommendations for the most part has been very useful information. Thank you
I am looking to “lie low” through what I believe to be a coming correction and wish to invest in ETFs with some protection

I am looking at ZDY ZLU ZLB ZEB as a 20 % of my portfolio over the summer. Your comments please and so you have other etfs that might be of interest... Icahn comes to mind


Read Answer Asked by Peter on May 25, 2021

Q: Hi Gentleman,
I currently have a portfolio that I do not need to access for 10 years. Currently I have MFC4644 - $100K, XWD - $160K, ZLU - $190K and VGRO - $220K. Would you make any adjustments or other suggestions to my current holdings.
Thank you,

Read Answer Asked by Steve on April 27, 2020

Q: Which best bang for the buck should a retiree look at when looking for some US exposure through ETFS, for the future recovery, I have no US exposure as of now and would like to take advantage of the downturn, I get by on the pensions I have.
Thank you.

Read Answer Asked by James on March 19, 2020

Q: Hi Peter. I own ZWH.U which is down about 26%. I had thought that the covered call strategy would have provided some shelter from the downdraft, but it appears that really isn't the case. Oh well. My question relates to going forward. Since the covered call strategy will likely limit future gains, what ETF would you suggest for ZWH.U's replacement in my US accounts? thanks, J

Read Answer Asked by John on March 13, 2020

Q: I am looking to pair ETFs or stocks for growth and safety. What do you think about this idea and XMU [or ZLU] and ZUQ, for example. What portfolio percentage would you allocate to this strategy?

Read Answer Asked by sam on March 12, 2020

Q: I sold my business and started a non-registered investment account in November 2019 and currently have no US equity. I am semi-retired and looking for total return, with a 10 year time line. Can you recommend an ETF that I can slowly add to with market dips? ZDY is down about 10% YTD, trading a 52-week low with a P/E of 14.90 and dividend of about 3.25%. But ZSP and ZLU have historically better 3-year returns. I would be grateful for your recommendations. Thank you!

Read Answer Asked by Grant on March 09, 2020

Q: Could I please have 5 recommendations for investment in Canadian stocks and/or Canadian ETF's focused on the US market. I currently have no investments in the US market in my RRIF. Thanks

Read Answer Asked by Barbara on January 24, 2020

Q: I have some $ in zwh and I am looking to add either sphd or zlh for more u.s. exposure with capital preservation and income. Would you please evaluate these 3 etf and make a recommendation. Thank you.

Read Answer Asked by Steve on January 22, 2020

Q: Hello Peter and colleagues
I am trying to develop a simple but effective portfolio. What would be your opinion and recommended percentages on a simple portfolio including these ETFs: XIC, VFV, VXUS
Would you recommend adding more ETFs while keeping it simple? and if so, what would be the percentage of each. Do you recommend replacing VFV with VTI? and why?
Please deduct as many points as needed.

Read Answer Asked by Hassan on December 06, 2019