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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: For an RESP with withdrawals starting this year, ending likely 10 to 11 years out for youngest child:
Largest holding is the ETF VUN (US) at 43% followed by BN and AC at around 12% each, then TOI, DOO , ATZ, SU, BAM in the 3-10% range each. Not included is the unfortunate loss of about 8% of the RESP due to failure of XBC.
So the focus remains on growth for the next 4-5 years to keep withdrawals mostly funded by growth.
Thoughts on keeping VUN as is? What about a higher-yielding ZWB in lieu of the individual stocks? Any concerns / risks that you know of for the stocks listed or maybe can offer some lower-risk substitutions?

Big thank you!
Read Answer Asked by Marilou on April 27, 2023
Q: Hi 5i
Wondering if you know of a US equivalent of vbal, that a Canadian can buy. From my own search, it seems like there is onlya US mutual fund equivalent, which Canadians canít buy. But maybe you have other information.
Thanks
Read Answer Asked by joseph on April 26, 2023
Q: We have been keeping in cash the proceed of the sale of a condo. what would you suggest for a conservative growth ETF in canadian currency. That would represent 10% of our equities holdings. Looking for more growth than yield, as this would be in a non registered account. We would like something all in one, as I do not want to add more names to the list of equities we have.
Read Answer Asked by francois on January 04, 2023
Q: Hello,

I need to sell approximately $100,000 from my Unregistered account. I am trying to hold off as long as possible. Looking for your suggestions on which of the listed ETF's I should sell or should I sell a certain percentage from each one given where the market is now and where it might be going? If Industrials or Health care, etc. are projected to go higher then I obviously want to sell out from some other sectors.

Thanks for your great service. It was much easier to stay the course with my diversified portfolio and Portfolio Analytics keeping me on track.
Read Answer Asked by Mauro on November 14, 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: I am thinking of investing in these three ETFs because I believe we are getting near the bottom of the market and all three of these ETFs have good growth prospects over the next 2 years. Would you agree with my thinking?

Thanks. David
Read Answer Asked by David on June 16, 2022
Q: Hello 5i,
These three make up the fund portion of a senior's portfolio. All of these have a US focus. Can you suggest 1-2 ETF's that would compliment these three with more diversification and some balance. Nothing risky; 5-year horizon.

And should the TD mutual fund be replaced with an ETF with lower fees?

Thanks for your guidance.
Read Answer Asked by Robert on February 08, 2022
Q: Hi, Happy new year!!

When looking at the long term rates of return of Emerging markets, developed INTL markets, Canadian and US stocks, the US has outperformed by a mile. I hold mostly stocks that are Cdn and US and I have global international and developed exposure through the mentioned ETF's, which only account for around 6% of my total portfolio. My questions are:

1. What is the simplest way to break down portfolio exposure without getting too overly complicated and detailed? Currently I break it down by where they trade. But for example, I hold stocks such as BAM, SLF, GOOG, JPM, V which are more global. How would I go about classifying some of these stocks? Would I allocate some % of these towards international exposure based on the company revenue breakdown, etc? any other metrics? Any good sites that easily summarize this info. or do I need to go looking through the companies financial statements?

2. Is there any mean reversion long term between CDN, US, INTL, and EE markets? So since INTL and EE has underperformed so much lately, is it time to rebalance equities from US to CDN/INTL/EE? Or for a long term growth investor, is the US still the best place to invest for growth whereas INTL/EE look cheap and have better value, although slower growth? Thoughts?
Read Answer Asked by Keith on January 04, 2022
Q: Hi, currently holding these Cad ETFs in RSP. What would be the best equivalent ETF's to buy in the US if I were to convert my holdings to USD and buy the US ETF. Looking for equivalent exposure with lower MER, better tax efficiency, etc... I've included some of my choices, would these be the best ones to switch to? Other ETFs are welcome if I haven't listed them below. Thanks and Happy holidays, looking forward to a great 2022!

VGG to VIG
XEF to either VXUS/VEA/IEFA
VEE to VWO
ZUH to either XHC/VHT/XLV
VUN/VUS TO VOO
Read Answer Asked by Keith on January 03, 2022
Q: What are the Can ETFs that cover the main US ETFs, like SPY? And what are their mers?

What are the advantages of using these Canadian versions?

Do you still require W-BEN forms if you buy these?

Thanks for all your help.
Read Answer Asked by Mark on October 28, 2021
Q: I recently asked a question about recommended ETF holdings in my RRSP for coverage of the US market. You had suggested converting my holdings to USD and purchase VOO direct on the US market rather than the CAD ETFs I currently hold. This would eliminate withholding taxes.
How much of a drag on performance would these withholding taxes represent?
Read Answer Asked by Bruce on September 09, 2021
Q: I hold the US portion of my portfolio in my RRSP. It represents roughly 20% of my total investment. I do not need to convert to RRIF for another 5 years and at that time will be taking the minimum required.
I currently hold ZQQ; ZPAY; ZDY; ZWH; ZSP.
I am thinking of switching my holdings to the following in roughly equal amounts: ZPAY; VUN; ZSP; ZNQ; XSU.
The objective is to get better coverage of the total US market through XSU and VUN. Maintain coverage of S&P 500 through ZSP. For Tech switching to non hedged via ZNQ. ZPAY will still provide good income with perhaps some downside protection through its options strategy.
Your thoughts and recommendations of alternatives.
The rest of my portfolio in my Non-Registered account and TFSA follow a mixture of your 3 portfolios which by the way have provide me with a return of 12 - 15% in the past 6 plus years.
Read Answer Asked by Bruce on September 08, 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: 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?

Thanks
Read Answer Asked by Federico on July 19, 2021
Q: In my RRSP I would like to take a long term, very low maintenance approach. For this reason I have it all in index funds. I have a 30 plus year time horizon. Which funds would you recommend here? I currently have $60,000 invested in VFV, VUN, VGRO and XAW. Looking to front load these with $2000/ mo for the next 3 years and then stop contributing as I will be "semi-retiring." I'm 29 for context
Read Answer Asked by Danielle on May 11, 2021