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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: When deciding what to hold in a non-registered account, is it more important to maintain adequate exposure to the US with something like VUS, or to keep the dividend tax credit with a CDN option like CDZ or XEI?

Read Answer Asked by Alan on August 23, 2023

Q: I currently have 40% of my portfolio in Canadian banks, utilities, BN,TOI, LMN and other dividend paying stocks Mostly purchased in the last year. I'm considering legging 60% of my remaining cash in my portfolio into VTI and VUS in the next 10 months. Do have any thoughts or concerns?
My understanding is any US stocks paying a dividend should go into an RRSP account. All my investments are in RRSP's and TSFA's.


Read Answer Asked by Brian on August 22, 2023

Q: Hello Peter and team,
Would you prefer VOO or VTI at this time? Also, is there an etf in canadian dollars (tsx) that mimics VTI similar to xsp on tsx and SPY? Thanks very much.

Read Answer Asked by umedali on March 09, 2022

Q: Hi,

I'm looking for 2 or 3 broad based ETFs that track the CDN TSX closely, and two or three ETFs that track the US broad market closely, for a 'couch potato' strategy.

Read Answer Asked by Graeme on December 13, 2021

Q: Helping my son with his investments which are as follows: MAW 106 24%,MAW 106 20%. VUS 21%, VEF 18%, VEE 8%, ZJG 6% and XQQ 3%.Feeling there is a bit of an overlap with some of these investments eg XQQ and VUS also with MAW 150 and VEF to a degree. Any advice is welcome ,stay as is , reduce holdings or increase some..He prefers ETF's and Mutual Funds (Mawer) and is a bit risk adverse but does realize markets go up and down though and is young( mid 30's ) enough to handle declines. ! Thanks.Paul

Read Answer Asked by Paul on January 11, 2021

Q: My daughter is 27 years old and is looking to invest around $35,000 as her first investment. She is considering investing 40% in Canadian equities (ZLB, PDC, and XRE), 50% in US Equities (VUS and DXU), and 10% in International Equities (FCIQ and VEE).

As an initial investment, does this balance seem reasonable or would you have other recommendations? Is this sufficiently diversified or are there too many funds?

Thank you!

Read Answer Asked by Geoff on April 23, 2020

Q: Good morning - I have owned VUS (CAD hedged US Total Market ETF) for many years in a taxable account. I would like to switch to VTI (the un-hedged version of the same ETF) but would realize a large capital gain. Is there any way an individual could synthetically gain the same USD exposure via a swap or option contract? I would obviously like to avoid high fees to do this. Thanks

Read Answer Asked by Gary on February 27, 2020

Q: Hi,
Can you explain the difference in performance over 10 years between those two ETFs? I am showing a difference of almost double between the two over eight years. The portfolio seems to share similar stocks. Could it be the currency hedging? Please explain
Thank you for the great service

Read Answer Asked by Jean on February 20, 2020

Q: Awhile back you suggested the following percentages for my son's investments.IIP.UN 23%,VUS 16%,VEF 16%,VEE 10%,MAW 106 20%,MAW 150 15%.Just wondering if these percentages are still valid?If so fine, if not do you have other suggestions?Thanks.Paul

Read Answer Asked by Paul on January 24, 2020

Q: Hi,
I'm currently in my late 30's and have some funds in a LIRA from a previous company pension. They were invested in some funds with Sunlife before but now just sitting in cash waiting to be in invested. I'm looking for long term capital appreciation as I won't be able to take these funds out until retirement. Looking to increase my US and Intl exposure, which ETFs would be best? Currently own VGG, VUS, XEF and VEE. Should I increase these weights to my desired % or add any others? Looking for low MER core positions. Also should I approach investing in my RSP and LIRA in different ways or would you view them as the same? For example, would you buy stock A in your LIRA instead of RSP or vise versa.


Read Answer Asked by Keith on August 23, 2019

Q: I currently hold both VTI and VSP in my RRSP for US exposure.
VTI is my only US holding (i.e. trades on US exchange) in my RRSP, so it is the only holding that forces me to occasional exchange currencies (US dividend).
Which of the following options do you prefer (feel free to suggest an additional option):
1) Do nothing (continue converting the US dividends to CDN$).
2) move VTI to VSP. (CAD hedged.)
3) move VTI to VFV. (not hedged)
4) move VTI to VUN. (not hedged, broader index)
5) move VTI to VUS. (hedged, broader index)

Read Answer Asked by Mike on January 08, 2019

Q: I have just recieved some new money to invest and woukd like to increase my expsosure outside Canada. Im thinking of a US index fund. Can you please tell me the difference between VUN/VUS, HXS and SPY? Which one is better? Do you think this is a good time to invest in the S&P with it at all time highs?
As always your advice is greatly appreciated.

Read Answer Asked by Nancy on September 26, 2016

Q: The above 5 etfs are core holdings with VXC and XHY at 15% each and the others at 10% each. The balance of my portfolio is made up of a diversified set of individual stocks (Canadian companies). I am considering exchanging XIN with ZWE to still have European exposure but with a better yield or should I keep XIN and just add ZWE to my core holdings? As always, thanks for the advice.

Read Answer Asked by Rudy on September 12, 2016

Q: Hi,
My son is taking a break from active stock picking and has gone with this ETF model: VUS(15%), VBU(5%), VCN(22.5%), VAB(5%), VI(22.5%). His investing horizon is very long (10-20 years). Your thoughts on the individual ETFs? How about sector & geographic diversity? Any other concerns?

Read Answer Asked by Gordon on July 25, 2016