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  • Twelve Days - And Maxing Out Your RSP - Private Wealth Canada
    2014 But since March 1 falls on a weekend the deadline has been extended to Monday March 3 2014 In Kind RRSP TFSA contributions If you don t have sufficient cash on hand to make an RRSP contribution you can consider making an in kind contribution of eligible securities from your non registered account to your RRSP You can also contribute securities in kind to your Tax Free Savings Account TFSA 2014 RRSP contribution room Potential new RRSP contribution room is created every January 1 based in part on income earned in the prior year In light of this consider making an over contribution of 2 000 which is not subject to the over contribution penalty Although the money is not tax deductible it can be deducted in a future year if you have the available RRSP room To avoid the over contribution penalty you ll need to check that you re not more than 2 000 over your total contribution limit TFSA Canadians who are 18 and over are eligible to contribute to a TFSA The contribution limit was 5 000 per year from 2009 to 2012 inclusive and is 5 500 for 2013 and 2014 If you did not use your contribution room in a previous year the unused room is carried forward indefinitely Family income splitting loans If you set up a prescribed rate loan with your spouse or a family trust in a previous year to split income it is critical that the annual interest on the loan be paid on or before January 30 2014 Eligible retiring allowance If you received an eligible retiring allowance in 2013 you ll have until March 3 2014 to make a special contribution to your RRSP but not to a spousal plan without requiring RRSP contribution room Labour sponsored investment funds Consider purchasing shares of labour sponsored funds by March 3 2014 to take advantage of a 15 per cent federal labour sponsored funds tax credit on a maximum contribution of 5 000 maximum 750 federal tax credit An additional provincial tax credit may also be available Speak with your advisor to determine whether an investment in a labour sponsored fund is suitable for you LIRA conversion to LIF RLIF If you have a Locked In Retirement Account LIRA and are planning to convert it to a Life Income Fund LIF or Restricted Life Income Fund RLIF in 2014 you may want to consider converting the plan in January 2014 rather than later in the year to give you added flexibility to withdraw more from your LIF RLIF in the first year 2013 Home Buyers Plan withdrawals If you participated in the Home Buyers Plan HBP in 2013 but borrowed less than the maximum 25 000 tax free from your RRSP you may be eligible to make another tax free RRSP withdrawal in January 2014 up to the 25 000 maximum permitted After January 2014 subsequent withdrawals will not qualify as tax free For business owners Consider paying yourself

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/TwelveDays.php (2016-04-26)
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  • The Federal Reserve's Centennial Birthday - The 100 Years' War Against Gold - Private Wealth Canada
    The Fed was sold to the public in much the same way as the Patriot Act was sold after 9 11 as a sacrifice of personal freedom for the promise of greater government protection Instead of providing protection the Fed has robbed the public through the hidden tax of inflation brought about by currency devaluation Why The Fed Hates Gold The Fed has many reasons for being at war with gold Gold restricts a country s ability to create unlimited amounts of fiat currency The gold held by the Fed and the United States has not been officially audited since 1953 there are several credible indications that this gold has been leased or swapped and probably has several claims of ownership Germany s Bundesbank was told in January 2013 that it would have to wait seven years to repatriate 300 tonnes of its gold currently held by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York The only plausible explanation for this delay is that the gold is not available Gold is the only money that exists outside the control of politicians and bankers The Fed would like to control all aspects of the global economy and gold is the last defence of the individual who wishes to protect his or her wealth Historically gold serves as the most stable measure of purchasing power Gold owners begin to measure risk in terms of ounces of gold and this provides a broader perspective the gold perspective It takes into account factors that are considered unquantifiable through the narrower fiat perspective that banks and financial media prefer to use It also shows up real inflation Under the gold standard governments are more transparent in raising funds through direct taxation Under a fiat system and a central bank they have to be much more secretive There are two policies or practices currently being used to transfer wealth from the public to the government These are Financial Repression Financial repression is a hidden form of wealth confiscation that employs three tactics indirect taxation through inflation the involuntary assumption of government debt by the taxpayer like the Fed s purchase of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac CDOs debasement or inflation brought about through unbridled currency creation and capital controls Government s Position on Bail ins and the Illusion of FDIC Insurance Many believe their bank deposits are insured against bank failure as this is the Fed s main argument for its existence This is far from the truth since the FDIC could only cover 008 per cent of the banks derivative losses in the event of major bank failures Banks legally see depositors as unsecured creditors as proven by the Cyprus bail in When measured against gold the U S dollar has lost 96 per cent of its purchasing power since the Fed s inception in 1913 This is mainly through currency debasement which leads to inflation Real inflation if measured using the original basket of goods used until the Boskin Commission in 1995 changed the rules

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/FedReserveCentennial.php (2016-04-26)
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  • Help Now Available For Executors’ Upcoming Challenges
    having emotional issues 31 per cent administrative issues 47 per cent and legal issues 26 per cent Legal issues can arise from beneficiaries creditors charities third parties and or service providers There is so much risk that Canadian executors can now purchase insurance to protect themselves Scot Dalton president of ERAssure the company providing executor insurance summarizes it well There are 18 areas with supporting case law where negligence by the executor can result in personal liability to the beneficiaries and creditors of the estate Given that executors have been successfully settling estates for eons it would be fair to wonder what s changed In a word everything Financial products have become more complex and on line accounts user names and pass codes have made it far more difficult to even find assets The internet has also made everyone armchair experts with instant access to information and instant communication devices to voice their opinions Family dynamics have also vastly changed While once there was a sister there now may be a sister step sister step sister in law step sister from a different spouse and the list goes on and on The more complex the family structure the greater potential for litigation Meanwhile declining tax bases and increased property values are creating increased scrutiny on probate fees Ontario is leading the way with changes other provinces may follow to the collection of probate fees called Estate Administration Tax in that province with the acronym EAT presumably because it s the last bite they take They are moving the responsibility this year from Justice Ontario to the Ministry of Revenue The difference is audit authority with sharp teeth including fines and even possible incarceration for executors The conveniently beneficial valuations of old are out the window while meticulous record keeping and professional valuations will become the new norm Executors increasingly have skin in the game but the risk for many is whether they are aware of and are prepared for what they re in for Need Help Executors need help but until now there has been nowhere for the DIY executor to turn They may need to contact as many as 17 different professions in the course of their duties few of whom understand the role of the other 16 Then there are all the government agencies both federal and provincial pension plans banks investment firms life insurers P C insurers mortgage companies and mortgage insurers gas retail and other credit companies loyalty cards phone cable internet eMail accounts alarm companies memberships fraternities oil gas and electricity firms on line accounts and social media ie how would you close a Facebook account without the password It may be the hardest job anybody never applied for Fortunately help is now available The Canadian Institute of Certified Executor Advisors www cicea ca offers an educational program and designation CEA available to all of the professions an executor might encounter providing a practical level of knowledge regarding all of the other professions It covers

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/HelpForExecutors.php (2016-04-26)
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  • 4 'Aha' Truths For A Changing Corporate Landscape
    using their products Corporate leaders can remedy that by becoming thought leaders both within their businesses and beyond the corporate walls and filling their ranks with thought leaders Levy says They need to become the voices that customers and industry peers turn to for expert advice the voices that influence customer and industry decision making Levy says Anyone with expertise in their industry can do that with two core essential tools a book they ve authored and social media Levy identifies four nuggets management should keep in mind Make sure you are getting the right H E L P This is an acronym Levy uses when evaluating a company it stands for Healthy following Execute well Leadership and Proven platform A healthy following means overall respect and esteem both from colleagues in an industry and from customers Increasing visibility online utilizing social media platforms blogs search engine optimization SEO all contribute Execute well and leadership are self explanatory P involves utilizing a marketing platform that allows you to reach your intended audience The world seeks brands People listen to and buy from people they know like and trust As consumers ourselves we all are familiar with the visceral reaction we have to strong brands everything from the Apple logo to our favorite paper towels at the local grocery store Building your brand involves making sure that you re recognized in multi sensory ways and that customers associate what they hear see and read with a very high rate of customer satisfaction This means establishing a visual and interactive presence and addressing any customer dissatisfaction There is one reason thought leaders make it look so easy they work at it all day every day Speaking of Apple it would be an understatement to call the late Steve Jobs a perfectionist The

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/fourTruths.php (2016-04-26)
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  • Budget Steals From Rich And Not So Rich - Private Wealth Canada
    to have disposed of the property for proceeds equal to its fair market value which triggers an immediate gain He will also be deemed to have immediately reacquired the property at a cost equal to that fair market value The taxpayer would be considered not to own the property unless circumstances arise in respect of the property such that it is no longer the case that the risk of loss and opportunity for gain lies with someone other than the taxpayer This change impacts common equity monetization strategies that have been used in the past to reduce exposure to concentrated stock positions say Cestnick and McGeorge This budget changes the taxation of certain investments that convert interest income into favorably taxed capital gains If these investments were made separately for example as a purchase and sale of a capital property and a cash settled derivative financial instrument any income from the derivative investment would be taxed as ordinary income instead of both components being taxed as a capital gain This change could impact certain investments where interest is being converted to capital gains so it is worth a careful review of one s portfolio to see if there are investments which could now result in more tax than expected The government intends to consult on possible measures to eliminate the tax benefits that arise from taxing certain trusts at graduated tax rates Cestnick and McGeorge say that the plan indicates that taxing ordinary trusts at a high flat rate of tax helps to prevent tax motivated use of these trusts so it appears likely that the government is considering taxing testamentary and grandfathered inter vivos trusts in a similar manner They say that the use of trusts in tax and estate planning will not disappear and there will still be opportunities to sue trusts for tax savings asset protection and other objectives They do however recommend reviewing your planning Non resident Trusts However some non resident trusts could be treated as Canadian under a budget proposal Currently there are rules in the Income Tax Act that prevent taxpayers from using non resident trusts to avoid Canadian taxes A related rule prevents a tax deferred distribution of property from a trust where property of the trust is or has been subject to the trust attribution rule The current budget intends to amend the deemed residence rule where a Canadian resident taxpayer has effective ownership of property held by a trust such that the Canadian resident taxpayer will be treated as having made a contribution to the trust with the result that the trust will be deemed to be resident and subject to tax in Canada Cestnick and McGeorge advise that if you currently have a connection to a non resident trust it is time to review how you interact with that trust each year As well you will want to avoid contributions to that trust even if you re not the settlor When there is a change of control of a

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/budget2013.php (2016-04-26)
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  • Information Is Power, If Used Intelligently - Private Wealth Canada
    few years and to generate double digit growth rates SAP has supported these initiatives by making a series of major acquisitions Acquisitions like Sybase Ariba and SuccessFactors are in the process of being integrated and they are intended to secure SAP a leading edge position in the following new growth areas Cloud software as a service Mobile access to SAP systems via mobile devices HANA In Memory Computing platform Of the three new focus areas we are particularly intrigued by HANA This is a truly innovative product capable of making large hard drives superfluous and of increasing the speed of corporate transactional data processing by up to 1 000 times HANA builds on technology from Samsung Electronics and Intel with Intel s processors being connected in parallel and working directly together with the processing memory This makes the computing processes significantly faster as calculations are not delayed by slow access to data on separate storage media Using HANA a major food manufacturer like Nestlé is now able to track global sales of Nescafé in real time for instance launching a global sales campaign Such calculations would usually take three hours but with HANA they only take a few seconds This provides Nestlé with a wide array of new possibilities for tracking and optimising sales down to specific product codes and points of sale Nestlé is an example of a company that understands how to leverage technology and extract intelligent information from its data volumes Data monopolies Super data collectors such as Google Facebook and Twitter are gradually developing into data monopolies The more users there are to drive a positive network effect the better their products get They and a few others have succeeded in achieving dominant positions but we rarely hear about the many losers that never achieved critical mass We have met with and analysed loads of small companies but often their business model is so new and unrefined that we deemed the risk too great However every once in a while we come across large and well established companies which despite their size are able to leverage opportunities in the overall theme that we call Connected Lives and create great value One example is Carnegie Worldwide s investment in Samsung Electronics which has septupled its market capitalisation over the last ten years or so and now holds a global leadership position in the manufacture of computer chips and mobile phones The extensive use of social media and Google is proof that incredibly many people all over the world benefit greatly from using these medias but this comes at a cost Individuals pass the right to use data to the super collectors One might claim that super data collectors are not doing enough to educate and inform their users about their lack of ownership of their own data Take Hugo Campos who has a pacemaker as an example In his appearance on TED Talks Hugo Campos vented his frustration that the manufacturer of his pacemaker regularly collects data

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/InformationIsPower.php (2016-04-26)
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  • Gold Outlook 2013 And Beyond - Private Wealth Canada
    based oil and perhaps most concerning the movement away from the U S dollar as the global reserve currency These trends are long term and in some cases irreversible Full throttle currency creation isn t the only solution to our problems but the failure of cutbacks and austerity measures in Europe have led Western central bankers to choose a policy that is less visible to the average investor the policy of financial repression Concept Two Financial Repression Financial repression worked well after WWII when many countries found their debt to GDP levels soaring The policy is surreptitious and highly deceptive but it effectively reduced government debt through currency debasement during the three decades after the war Its success then was due to a robust manufacturing sector and high employment levels conditions that do not exist today The four main pillars of financial repression are Negative real interest rates and interest rate caps through suppression of CPI Nationalization of industry Strict government control over investment criteria capital controls and lending practices Currency debasement through unrestricted debt creation Financial repression is a complex subject For retirees the most important aspect of financial repression next to loss of purchasing power is low interest rates In 2007 the most secure risk free investment in the world 12 month U S Treasuries were paying five per cent interest On 1 million one could earn 50 000 a year Today thanks to financial repression interest rates are at historic lows and the same 12 month Treasury bond pays 0 14 per cent On 1 million one can now earn only 1 400 in interest annually To make matters worse financial repression to succeed relies on complete co operation between government the banking industry the financial services industry and the mainstream financial media Government statistics on inflation are parroted by financial media bankers and investment advisors even though they are completely deceptive Anyone who eats drives heats their home or sends children to college knows the cost of living is much higher than officially stated Beginning with the Bill Clinton presidency in the U S and its Boskin Commission the consumer price index CPI went from measuring a fixed standard of living with a fixed basket of goods to measuring the cost of living with a constantly changing basket of goods measured with metrics that are themselves constantly changing John Williams of Shadowstats com see Figure 2 still uses the original pre Clinton basket of goods that includes food and energy By this measure inflation is running at close to 10 per cent not the official two per cent Figure 2 Despite the talk of eventually raising interest rates this cannot happen with so much debt in the system as it would immediately crush any hope of an economic recovery the housing market would collapse and interest payments to privately owned foreign banks would be impossible to meet Therefore interest rates will likely remain low and retirees will have fewer and fewer options through which to gain

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/GoldOutlook2013.php (2016-04-26)
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  • Private Wealth Canada
    it more difficult for them to save for the future Because of increased fiscal and investment risks it has become increasingly important for pension members to plan more strategically and understand the likely drop in income they could face in retirement The key to surviving any downside scenario is to plan for it to determine in advance what you can do today to minimize the impact and what steps you are willing to take to survive should you find yourself with inadequate resources to live on Planning is essential Any decision about retirement is likely to be an important one and therefore members of pension plans need to be confident that their retirement arrangements can provide for them and their family s financial security well into the future Making the right choices is vital as the value of members benefits at retirement age will depend on contributions paid the length of time they have been invested and on investment returns achieved Remember unless members are reasonably close to retirement age they should view their retirement plan as a long term investment The road to retirement the number of years members have to save and invest will typically fall between 20 to 30 years sometimes more For members with a long time horizon 20 to 30 years short term market fluctuations are less important There is generally sufficient time for market values to recover and achieve their long term expected returns For members with a shorter time horizon the effect of swings in the stock market is potentially more problematic as there may not be sufficient time for the value of their investments to recover before retirement age Therefore for members who are close to retirement the less volatile investment categories such as fixed interest and cash may be more suitable as they can protect against potential short term losses in the equity markets Investment Strategy Generally investments can be categorized as either defensive or growth oriented Defensive investments such as cash and bonds protect against the chance of negative returns but generally produce lower though more stable short term returns Growth investments such as equities have historically experienced short term volatility sudden ups and downs but greater long term returns Therefore resulting investment strategy should be one that minimizes the ups and downs consistently while giving members the required level of total returns to meet their financial goals Every investment carries risk To determine how much of a trade off a pension plan member is willing to make they should consider how much risk they are comfortable with The direct relationship between risk and return also means that the higher the returns they aim for the greater the potential volatility of the investment and the greater their tolerance of risk has to be The opposite is also true If members only aim for low returns their chosen fund is likely to be less volatile and their risk tolerance does not have to be as high For members finding their risk

    Original URL path: http://privatewealthmagazine.ca/articles/livingTo100.php (2016-04-26)
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