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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: XSP is the CDN hedged version of the S&P 500 which should match the performance of SPY (the S&P 500 in US dollars) over the same time period. However XSP has significantly underperformed SPY eg the compounded annual performance of XSP for the period ending April 30/24 for 3 years, 5 years and 10 years is 6.71%. 11.45% and 10.98% respectively. The corresponding nos for SPY are 7.94%, 13.09% and 12.30% ie XSP has underpermed by 1.23%/year for 3ys, 1.64%/year for 5 years and 1.32% for 10 years. Both ETFS have the same MER of 0.09%- Blackrock indicates that the cost of hedging is included in their MER but this cannot be the case. Is the real cost of hedging with XSP as high as 1.23-1.64%/year? There should a small tracking error but these differnces in performance are siginficant and consistently in favour of SPY
Read Answer Asked by Lakis on May 22, 2024
Q: Hi Guys

It seems during the last year that the Mag7 have really had their time in the sun. I am wondering if there might be some rotation out of these names. Wondering where you thought the best returns would be over the next few years in a S&P 500 type ETF:

1) XSP - iShares Core S&P 500 Index ETF
2) An Equal Weight S&P 500 Index like Invesco S&P 500 Equal Weight Index ETF, 3) or or something like the Vanguard Dividend Appreciation ETF.

What ETF would you think would do the best


Read Answer Asked by Stuart on January 29, 2024
Q: hi, can I get your top pick(s?) for a US market(s?) ETF CDN$ hedged long term hold.
cheers, Chris
Read Answer Asked by chris on January 09, 2024
Q: I'm split at 20% ETF and 80% stock. Going into 2024 where do you see the canadian market vs the S&P or MSCI EAFE ? The US has outperformed the other 2 in 2023 as usual but do you believe that this continues into 2024? Could you comment on the 3 and what are the chances for the Canadian and International markets to perform better than they have in the coming years?
Read Answer Asked by Yves on November 20, 2023
Q: Hello Peter,
From an earlier question on VFV in terms of foreign taxes, it looks like there is a double taxation as VFV invests in US ETF not directly in US stocks.. I would think i am better off with xsp excepts the etf hedges. Would i better off just investing in SPY or is there another ETF that is like VFV but invests directly in US stocks.. Thanks very much
Read Answer Asked by umedali on September 26, 2023
Q: Hi there,

The majority of my portfolio is held in XEQT. If I wanted to increase US exposure from 45% to 60%, in your opinion would to be best to layer in a hedged or unhedged US etf, considering XEQT already holds unhedged US exposure?

Read Answer Asked by Michael on August 01, 2023
Q: When lookking at the ROI over 3-5-10 years. The S&P has always done better than the others. When looking at the strength of their economy and the investment that US companies put in R&D how are they gonna loose their 1st position as a super economy power? and foremost and this is the question: Why invest elsewhere? Canada with merely 5% of the world economy? Europe has been lagging since I started investing 40 years ago where else? China? gotta be kidding. Seriously why spread our investments worldwide when the best is our neibours? Just buy the S&P and wait still forever.


Read Answer Asked by Yves on June 26, 2023
Q: Hello Peter,
Thanks for your service. My renewal is coming up and yours is the only service i plan to renew.

For the three index funds, over a 5 year comparison, VFV out performs all , SPY 2nd and XSP is the last ... Why such a discrepancy? Am I better off with VFV going forward? Thanks
Read Answer Asked by umedali on June 12, 2023
Q: What ETF's do you recommend for dividends and growth for:
1. Canadian coverage
2. US coverage but in $CAD.
3. Europe coverage but in $CAD
4. Asia coverage but in $CAD
Read Answer Asked by Ron on June 05, 2023
Q: Hello Peter,
Is VFV and XSP about the same except one is hedged? I have held Sienna and Chartwell for a long time and I thought from a demographic point , they would be great long term holds.. I am down alot but the dividend is great. Are these two good long term holds or since covid, the recovery maybe too long of a time given the high interests that we see. Thanks very much
Read Answer Asked by umedali on November 02, 2022
Q: 1.For Canadian coverage would you choose xic, vcn or xiu?
2.Would it be worth putting half the total amount in one of the above(xic, vcn, or xiu)and the other half in vdy?
3.For the U,S. allocation should I choose vig or spy which both require payment in u.s. dollars which I don't have, or would it be adequate to simply choose vun.

Thanks in advance. I plan to hold these allotments for many years and I appreciate dividends but do not need them for my living expenses.
Read Answer Asked by Astrid on September 20, 2022
Q: Hi there, I'm building a portfolio based on the 4% withdrawal rule. I read a study where based on country specific stock market data, the 4% withdrawal rule only worked in Canada, US and maybe 3 other countries. Based on this study and using history as a guide - if one were to build a portfolio with 50/50 Canada and US exposure, would it be best to use VCE and VFV or VCE and XSP? Also, if VCE is not the most appropriate Canadian ETF, what would be the most suitable? I've seen XIU, XIC and VCN often mentioned, but it appears like VCE has a slight outperformance?

Read Answer Asked by Michael on September 15, 2022
Q: I own an Ishares all in one ETF to round things out. I just found out they hedge the currency on the non Canadian holdings. I tried to find out the cost to hedge but was unsuccessful. After doing more research I found the costs to hedge can be 1-2% a year. When doing a back test between IVV and XSP the hedged EFT lagged by 1-3% a year over 20 years. From 2002-2012 the lag averaged 2.1% a year but in the last 10 years the average lag was 1.1% a year. Do you know any all in one Canadian ETF's that don't hedge the currency?

Thank you.
Read Answer Asked by Derek on September 07, 2022
Q: Can you recommend your favorite Cad Hedged Nasdaq ETF and also Cad Hedged S & P 500 ETF?
My reason for hedging is with Canadian Energy companies picking up, unless we have a housing correction, the Cad dollar should eventually rise.


Read Answer Asked by Paul on June 23, 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: My sister has an RDSP with BMO. She has 75,000.00 in each the above funds. The lifestage money will mature in June and automatically go into a money market fund. The money will not be needed for years. She also has a trust fund. Do you have any suggestions for the 75k? Also, I believe the Cad and Usd equity funds are mutual funds. Should I move them to a lower cost ETF?
Read Answer Asked by Andrea on May 26, 2022
Q: I am looking to simplify my non-registered investment portfolio for my retirement, which is now only 9 months away. I am looking to protect capital and create income. I am looking at one ETF and one fund as possible landing spots for my capital: XSP. And FID282.
Can you please compare and contrast these two funds for me? Are the different enough to warrant owning both? Is there anything else I should be considering?

Thanks in advance
Read Answer Asked by Donald on April 08, 2022