According to a 2012 survey of Canadians, 88% of those between the ages of 27 and 34 do not have a Will.* Yet, this is often the time of life when people are forming households, acquiring real estate and starting a family – what should be the motivating milestones for putting an estate plan in motion.
CURRENT ISSUE - Winter 2015
When it comes to paying income taxes you want to channel your inner Goldilocks and pay the amount that is “just right” – not too much and not too little. That means filing your taxes accurately and on time, and avoiding the kind of mistakes that can end up costing you more. Susan Dumoulin, Consultant, from T. E. Wealth’s Oakville office, reviews the “do’s and don’ts” for getting your 2014 taxes right the first time.
Depending on who you listen to, the answer to this question could range from “not long – the crash is imminent” to “another ten years, maybe more.” While these comments represent the fringes, the consensus view coming into 2015 is that the current bull market, which in the U.S. is now the fourth longest since World War II, still has some legs. Although, this assessment is usually accompanied by a caveat – all bets are off if we experience unforeseen economic or market shocks. While long-term investors can take comfort in the protection afforded by portfolio diversification, so-called “black swan” events can sometimes spell the undoing of a bull market. With this in mind, 2015 brings with it a range of potential disruptions. Does the view that the current bull market still has some room to grow have merit?
As an oil producer and exporter, Canada is expected to experience a net economic loss at current oil price levels. Despite the highest level of domestic oil production since the 1970s, the U.S. is still a large importer of energy and can expect a net benefit from the downturn in oil prices. Overall, the global economy should also benefit. Although capital expenditures are being cut in oil sands and shale oil projects, production could keep increasing as a result of previous capital outlays, prolonging the downturn in oil prices. Furthermore, shale oil production is expected to shift to the most productive and profitable plays, making it less likely that constrained supply will force world prices back up any time soon.
After another season of “excess” my husband and I have had enough. It’s not that we don’t want to be generous with our family but they already have everything they want and need. Surely, there is something better we could be doing with our money?
You wouldn’t be alone in your concern about the material excesses of the holiday season. A 2013 Pew Research Center poll found that the least liked aspect of Christmas was commercialism, with 33% of Americans saying they disliked the materialism of the holidays. What’s more, only 4% of Americans listed exchanging gifts as what they most looked forward to at Christmas, the vast majority (69%) stating spending time with family and friends is what they anticipate most. In the same year, Ipsos reported that more Canadians (87%) enjoy the good feelings they get from giving to charity than those (81%) who feel good about receiving presents. So it’s not surprising that there is a growing movement toward giving charitable gifts to commemorate everything from birthdays and weddings to anniversaries and graduations. It’s certainly a trend that T.E. Wealth is seeing among clients. According to Scott McKenzie, Senior Vice President, at T.E. Wealth in Toronto, parents and grandparents are looking to engage their family in something bigger.
For nearly 20 years, T.E. Wealth consultants Judith Fulton and Gayle Harris have been helping clients successfully navigate their way to a financially secure retirement. Now it’s Gayle and Judith’s turn, as these senior consultants began their own respective retirements on January 1st.
No one should be surprised that Judith Fulton and Gayle Harris place financial preparedness at the top of the list for retirement success. After all, their focus when helping clients prepare for retirement has been largely on the financial aspects of life after work. As Gayle points out, “All of your plans for retired life won’t matter if you end up worrying about money.” And as would be expected, given their professions, Gayle and Judith are both heading into retirement feeling financially secure.
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