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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: Hi- retired investor.
Bought these a while back for fixed income and am down 8% and 10% respectively. Could you explain why these have decreased while bond yields have increased?
Should I dump these and just convert to a 5% GIC or is there a light in view?
Read Answer Asked by JEFF on August 22, 2023
Q: Hello 5i
First, thank you for your excellent service and guidance! I am retired, looking for income and growth. Following are my questions.

1) What do you think of VCNS? Could you suggest an alternative. I presently have a half position in VCNS.
2) At this time would you still recommend a 4.5% position in ATZ?
3)I am down about 30% with MMM. Is there a better place for these funds?
4) I am down 11% with CLF. What has to happen( with interest etc.) to recoup this loss?

Thank you, Bill
Read Answer Asked by William on July 21, 2023
Q: Hello 5i
We currently hold CBO, CLF & XRB at 25/25/50% all as long term holdings in a slight loss position. I believe we are currently at (or very near) peak interest rates. Do you have any suggestions to bond replacements that might be better positioned to capture rate reductions for these holdings. (not accounting for the bonus of tax loss selling)
Again many thanks
Read Answer Asked by Les on June 05, 2023
Q: I am looking at adding a 15 to 20 percent bond component to my portfolio. From the mix of laddered, aggregate, short/long term and high yield ETFs listed. Which would you recommend and why? Please let me know if you have other possible suggestions? Thank you
Read Answer Asked by Myron on March 02, 2023
Q: Now past 30 day tax loss period on the above securities previously sold. Was going to buy back to original weights.
1. buy back now
2. average in over next few months with some of these
3. replace some of these with other securities you might like better
Read Answer Asked by Peter on July 29, 2022
Q: Hi Ryan,
Several years ago I engaged with 5i for a portfolio analysis. I'm a recently retired investor. 5i strongly encouraged me to include a fixed income component to stabilize portfolio fluctuations and lower volatility.

With that advice and for tax purposes I purchased XBB, CLF, and PMIF into my RRSP. Now that the interest rates are marching steadily upwards I'm in a significant capital loss situation on my portfolio's bond allocation.

At this point do you suggest I just hold through the cycle and absorb the loss or should I sell and reallocate funds? Perhaps into some solid Canadian dividend payers? (eg. GWO?)

As always, much appreciate your advice and guidance in these unprecedented times. Thank-you.
Read Answer Asked by Maury on June 16, 2022
Q: For a ultra conservative retired income based investor can you please give us your 10 best portfolio building blocks starting a new portfolio?...many thanks...
Read Answer Asked by adam on June 10, 2022
Q: Could you give me 7 diversified income etfs for 200000 rank them in order which ones you would pick up first etc. thanks
Read Answer Asked by Ken on May 09, 2022
Q: I would like to invest using only 4 ETFs. One for short bonds, one for all Canadian stocks, one for emerging markets, one for the whole US market, and one for the developed world (as wide as possible) excluding Canada and the US.

Which ETFs should I use?

Read Answer Asked by Federico on July 19, 2021
Q: Within my fixed income allotment I've recently favored short term bonds over long term bonds on the advice that they will react less to changes in interest rates. However, since the Fed's meeting last week the opposite has occurred, as there has been a flight from short term bonds into long term bonds. Can you please explain why this is the case and then, given the current environment could you also rank the above ETF's in order of preference. If there are better fixed income suggestions please indicate. Thanks.
Read Answer Asked by Curtis on June 21, 2021
Q: Im 71 years old. As I get older Ive tried to simplify my portfolio, going from about 50 stocks years ago, to my current portfolio of about 16 stocks, 3 ETFs and 15% cash.
I am a subscriber to your Portfolio Tracking and Analysis service and Im told I need to make changes to reach a suggested asset allocation and portfolio diversification. Right now Im tech, utilities and financial services heavy.

Heres what Id like to do:
The following set up gives me an allocation of 70% equities, 20 % bonds and 7% cash. Im comfortable with this and have gone through many 20 and 30% corrections in the past 30 years without too much despair.

In my Canadian cash account Id have CDZ, FTS, AQN.
Locked in RSP (LIRA) I would have AAPL, ZSP, ZEM.
Unlocked RIF I d have CLF, ZAG.
TFSA would have QQQ, ZEM, ZDI, CSU, TOI, SIS.
Id like cash around 8% of portfolio.

Im wondering if I have my portfolio diversification covered and if the right stocks or ETFs are in the appropriate accounts for best tax efficiencies?
Your input would really be helpful.
Read Answer Asked by Frank on June 10, 2021
Q: I am hoping you can help with some suggestions for review for a RRIF portfolio. The plan is for one third to be invested in a 5 year laddered bond portfolio. Is it best to buy bonds or an ETF ? Please suggest a couple of bond ETF's for review.

The remainder would be invested in equity ETF's. Half would go to 3 or 4 ETF's which would pay dividends and would have some growth potential. The remaining third would be invested in 3 or 4 ETF's focused on growth.

Obviously the dividend tax credit is of no benefit in the RRIF but currency fluctuations would be a consideration.

Any assistance you can provide would be appreciated.

Read Answer Asked by michael on April 30, 2021
Q: Hi!

I used to own these ETFs for my fixed income exposure. I went to 0% fixed income during the downturn last year, instead using the proceeds to buy stocks that were crushed. I'd like to slowly start to build a position again in my RRSP. Am I too early? It seems like rates have started to rise and where they go is anyone's guess, but if bonds have an inverse relationship to rising rates, aren't I setting myself up to lose money? Does a laddered approach negate that somewhat? Maybe its best to start with CBO since its Corporate credit and laddered? How would you rank these in general and in order of which I should accumulate first. I realize XHY is riskier than the others.

Read Answer Asked by Jason on March 19, 2021
Q: These ETFs make up my main bond holdings in an RSP. All have done OK, but are starting to slip a little bit. I also hold XTR, which has a high bond component, and noticed that they recently reduced the distribution. In an increasing rate environment, how would you rank these 3 bond ETFs in terms of (1) maintaining share price; and, (2) maintaining distributions?
Read Answer Asked by grant on February 11, 2021
Q: My RSP is comprised of VFV, VIU, CLF but I like the concept of the auto rebalancing of VGRO. However the longer duration bonds in VGRO are concerning. Would you make the switch. Conventional wisdom says bonds are going to be destroyed going forward, when monetary tightening eventually happens.
And by the way my 2020 5i account return was 16%. You guys Rock!!
Read Answer Asked by Brad on February 08, 2021
Q: I have a taxable corp account, 94% equities,(28% US, 6% cash. Just read an article that bonds even at 0% expected return would help off set losses in this and upcoming volatile market, even though interest would be fully taxed.
Would you suggest;
1. sell some winners or tax loss some losers and buy a bond fund, ?CLF. ?CBO-or another one you might recommend. What weight percentage would you suggest?
2. use the cash to buy the same bond fund or a combo of the above two or your alternative
3. buy a preferred corporate share or shares? suggestions or preferred ETF ?HPR or another suggestion
4. Would you suggest a US Bond fund, ?suggestion
5. do nothing
Thanks and deduct what you see fit
Read Answer Asked by JEFF on October 22, 2020
Q: The bond portion of my portfolio is equally weighted between CLF and ZAG. With CLF having a government bond and shorter term focus and ZAG having a corporate bond component and longer average bond life, would it be sensible for someone with a medium risk profile to sell CLF and consolidate the bond portfolio in ZAG to take advantage of the higher interest return?
Read Answer Asked by Ken on July 28, 2020