Interest in investing is hitting new highs. Discount brokers are flooded with applications and trading volumes are surging. Despite this renewed focus, some misunderstandings persist about the realities of investing.
To illustrate, let’s deconstruct an investment conversation that you might have with a friend, colleague, or advisor. It goes like this.
“A guy on TV says the economy is strong and stocks are going up. It seems like a good time to invest. I don’t see much downside so I’m buying high-dividend stocks for my RRSP.”
A guy on TV
Many investors think there are people who know where the market is going. Experts who know something the rest of us don’t. The reality is, they don’t. Their insights may be interesting and unique, but any conclusions related to market timing aren’t worth the cup of coffee you’re drinking. It’s impossible to call the market level a week, month or even year from now with enough consistency to be useful. Stock prices are determined by a myriad of factors, many of which we’re unaware of until after they’ve emerged.
The economy looks good. I’m buying.
At the core of most market calls is an economic forecast. This is unfortunate because the connection between what the economy is doing and where the stock market is going is flimsy at best. It’s true that economic activity affects corporate profits, which ultimately drive stock prices, but the relationship is sloppy and unpredictable. Consider the last decade — we had the slowest economic recovery in history and yet profit margins were at or near record levels throughout, as were stock prices.
It bears repeating. Mr. Market is not paying attention to today’s economic headlines. He’s focusing on what the news might be in 12 to 18 months. The corporations you’re investing in aren’t reading the headlines either. They’re too busy trying to move their businesses ahead.
A good time to invest
For an investor with a multi-decade time frame, anytime is a good time. Some points in time, however, will be more prospective than others. These are periods when returns are projected to be higher based on fundamentals like rising profitability, low valuations and/or extremely negative investor sentiment. To be clear, these factors won’t tell you what’s about to happen, but will provide a tailwind over the next three to five years.
Not much downside
When you own a stock, the range of possible outcomes is always wider than you expect. It’s hard to conceive of a holding going down 20, 30 or 40 per cent, especially when things are going well. Unfortunately, recent price moves have no predictive value, they just provide false comfort.
The future for a stock that has recently done well is just as uncertain as one that hasn’t. Indeed, it may be riskier because its price-to-earnings multiple is higher (if profits haven’t kept up with the stock price), its dividend yield is lower and shareholders’ risk aversion, a necessary ingredient for good returns, has melted into complacency.
The higher the better
We all love dividends, but too many investors choose stocks based solely on yield. This is a problem because yield is not a measure of value for a stock like it is for a bond. A company’s worth is derived from it’s potential to earn profits into the future. Dividends are simply the portion of those earnings that get distributed to shareholders.
Yield-obsessed investors often downplay the importance of the stocks’ second source of return — price appreciation. Ask yourself the question: What would you rather have, a $10 stock yielding five per cent that’s worth $8, or a $10 stock with a three per cent yield that’s worth $12?
If you want to focus on dividend income, start with a list of stocks that have an acceptable yield. From there build a diversified portfolio of holdings that are trading at or below what they’re worth.
In your RRSP?
When asked, “What should I do in my RRSP (or TFSA),” I have only one answer. The most important thing driving your RRSP strategy is the strategy you’re pursuing for your overall portfolio (including other registered accounts, taxable accounts, pensions and income properties). Anything you do in your RRSP has to roll up into your household asset mix. In that vein, RRSP contributions are a wonderful tool for adjusting your overall portfolio because transactions have no tax consequences.
Investing is hard enough without basing decisions on false premises. If you find yourself listening to someone pontificate about where the market is going, try to change the subject or look for an escape.
Tom Bradley is
chair and chief investment officer
at Steadyhand Investment Funds, a company that offers individual investors low-fee investment funds and clear-cut advice. He can be reached at
Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2020
Sandpiper Increases Investment in Artis REIT to 10% – Canada NewsWire
VANCOUVER, BC, Dec. 2, 2020 /CNW/ – Sandpiper Group (“Sandpiper”) announced today that on December 2, 2020, it acquired, through Sandpiper Real Estate Fund 4 Limited Partnership (the “Fund“), an aggregate of 100,000 units (“Units”) of Artis Real Estate Investment Trust (“Artis” or the “REIT”) (TSX: AX.UN) in the open market through the facilities of the Toronto Stock Exchange at an average price of $11.10 per Unit or $1,110,000 in the aggregate (the “Acquisition”).
As a result of the Acquisition, Sandpiper owns and exercises control and direction over an aggregate of 13,612,584 Units, representing approximately 10.07% of the 135,221,252 Units issued and outstanding as reported in Artis’ Monthly Cash Distribution Announcement dated November 16, 2020. Prior to the Acquisition, Sandpiper owned and exercised control and direction over 13,512,584 Units, representing approximately 9.99% of the issued and outstanding Units.
The Units were acquired for investment purposes. Sandpiper believes that the Units of Artis are undervalued and represent an attractive investment opportunity.
“Our increase in our ownership in Artis further confirms our long term commitment in this investment,” said Samir Manji, CEO of Sandpiper. “We believe Artis has significant near term and longer term potential with an attractive, undervalued asset base. We look forward to working with the trustees and management at Artis to identify avenues and opportunities that will maximize value for all unitholders.”
Sandpiper and its affiliates may, from time to time, depending on market and other conditions, increase or decrease its beneficial ownership, control or direction over the securities of Artis through market transactions, private agreements, or otherwise.
Artis’s head office is located at Suite 600 – 220 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3C 0A5
Sandpiper’s head office is located at Suite 1670, 200 Burrard Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6C 3L6.
An early warning report will be filed by Sandpiper in accordance with applicable securities laws. For further information and to obtain a copy of the early warning report filed by Sandpiper, please contact Alyssa Barry, Vice President, Capital Markets and Communications, Sandpiper at (604) 558-4885.
ABOUT SANDPIPER GROUP
Sandpiper is a Vancouver-based private equity firm focused on investing in real estate through direct property investments and public securities. For more information about Sandpiper, visit www.sandpipergroup.ca.
SOURCE Sandpiper Group
For further information: Alyssa Barry, Vice President, Capital Markets and Communications, Sandpiper Group, Phone: 604-558-4885, Email: [email protected]
"Tectonic forces" could cause economic upheaval: Poloz – Investment Executive
This could lead to many different inflationary scenarios from a return to the 2% inflation target to an inflation outbreak, or to stagflation or deflation.
“Personally, I would not weight them equally, but I would attach a meaningful weight to each of them and suggest that [investors] think about ways to preserve [their] capital should any of them arise,” said Poloz who is a special advisor with Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP.
“We should not fall in love with the high probability scenario where inflation just returns to 2% and remains there.”
One driver of high interest rates in recent decades was the population surge of the post-war baby boom. As this generation now moves into retirement, Poloz believes that the high real interest rates of the past “were an aberration” and should not be expected to return.
While there is an expectation for interest rates to normalize along with inflation targets, Poloz notes there is growing concern that inflation could get out of control as governments borrow a “staggering amount of money.”
The former central banker said that today’s central banks are well-equipped to keep inflation in check via monetary policy.
However, three of the tectonic shifts mentioned could disrupt central banks in their policy goals: growing indebtedness, technological progress and rising inequality.
Global indebtedness was on the rise long before Covid-19 hit, said Poloz.
As a result of monetary and fiscal policies that have prevented recessions, individuals and companies are not retrenching and rebalancing their finances as they might have done in the past. From an investor point of view, this leads to the danger of “zombie firms” that are not “washed out of the system” as they might have been.
In the case of technology, progress generally means more efficiency and lower costs for companies over the long-term, said Poloz. But, that same progress can have serious economic consequences in the short term in the form of economic depressions and disruption.
The world is currently experiencing a fourth industrial revolution as the economy becomes digitized through artificial intelligence — which is leading to fears within workforces that a few large firms will scoop up all the economic benefits, leading to growing income inequality.
“People believe and expect that economic growth is like yeast, it spreads everywhere, so everybody benefits,” said Poloz. “But the reality is more like mushrooms that pop up here and there and single firms can reap most of the benefits.”
Climate change is also having a seismic effect on the economy as more companies try to shift their businesses to environmentally-friendly processes. The problem, noted Poloz, is “markets are really bad at distinguishing between shades of green. They’re essentially only able to tell the difference between green and not-green.”
Firms will have to move towards “full carbon transparency,” which will require significant investments in analytics or consultancy work. And, “firms who invest in this early deserve your attention,” said Poloz.
With these forces in play, “volatility beyond the norm is now a given,” said Poloz. A firm’s risk management for these factors will be key to creating shareholder value and will likely be “the next channel of intangible investment.”
Canadian General Investments: Investment Update – Unaudited Toronto Stock Exchange:CGI – GlobeNewswire
TORONTO, Canada, Dec. 02, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Canadian General Investments, Limited (TSX: CGI, CGI.PR.D) (LSE: CGI) reports on an unaudited basis that its net asset value per share (NAV) at November 30, 2020 was $47.40, resulting in year-to-date and 12-month NAV returns, with dividends reinvested, of 30.9% and 33.8%, respectively. These compare with the 3.8% and 4.3% returns of the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index on a total return basis for the same periods.
The Company employs a leveraging strategy, by way of preference shares and bank borrowing, in an effort to enhance returns to common shareholders. As at November 30, 2020, the combined leverage afforded by both forms of leverage represented 17.7% of CGI’s net assets, down from 22.7% at the end of 2019 and 23.2% at November 30, 2019.
The worldwide spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and its impact on such factors as business operations, supply chains, travel, commodity prices and consumer confidence, and the associated impact on domestic and international equity markets and fixed income yields, is expected to continue to have a significant influence on the equity markets and could significantly impact the value of investments held by CGI. Morgan Meighen & Associates Limited, the manager of the Company, will maintain its consistent, steady, long-term approach of holding diversified, appropriate investments, while pursuing selective new opportunities.
The closing price for CGI’s common shares at November 30, 2020 was $32.20, resulting in year-to-date and 12-month share price returns, with dividends reinvested, of 26.8% and 36.7%, respectively.
The sector weightings of CGI’s investment portfolio at market as of November 30, 2020 were as follows:
|Cash & Cash Equivalents||0.7%|
The top ten investments which comprised 37.2% of the investment portfolio at market as of November 30, 2020 were as follows:
|Canadian Pacific Railway Limited||4.1%|
|First Quantum Minerals Ltd.||2.8%|
|Lightspeed POS Inc.||2.7%|
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
Canadian General Investments, Limited
Jonathan A. Morgan
President and CEO
Phone: (416) 366-2931
Fax: (416) 366-2729
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