By Gordon Pape Special to the Star Fri., Nov. 23, 2018 Interest rates are rising. When that happens, bond prices drop. It’s one of the basic rules of investing. But how is that playing out in today’s investment climate? You may be surprised. The Bank of Canada has raised interest rates three times this year, with another quarter-point move possible in December. You would normally expect that such aggressive action would significantly knock down bond prices. However, the FTSE Russell Canadian Universe Bond Index was down only 0.12 per cent year to date as of the Nov. 16 close. In other words, only a tad below break-even. Government bonds took the biggest hit, off 0.22 per cent as a group. Corporate bonds were actually ahead 0.16 per cent. Not big numbers either way. And what about stocks? To that point, the S&P/TSX Composite Index was down 6.5 per cent for 2018. Where would you have rather had your money? Mutual fund returns reflect a similar … [Read more...] about Rates are heading up. Time to buy bonds?
Best etfs to buy now
Last week, global markets were roiled by Turkey’s currency crisis. A US-listed ETF for Turkey, TUR, dropped 24 percent in two days and is down 51 percent YTD. After Trump’s tirades against Turkey, the Turkish lira fell as much as 20 percent in one day, hitting its lowest point against the US dollar in history. Even though the lira recovered from its lows last week, it is still down 37 percent YTD. The turmoil in Turkey dragged down EEM, the emerging markets ETF, which lost six percent over four days. The Philippines was no exception to this, losing as much as 5.1 percent from its recent high of 7879 when it hit a low of 7479 last week. Rubbing salt into the wound Already suffering from fiscal and economic maladies, Trump just had to rub salt into the wound. Last Aug. 10, Turkey became the latest target of the tweeter-in-chief. Trump said that “I have just authorized a doubling of tariffs on steel and aluminum with respect to Turkey as their currency, the Turkish Lira, … [Read more...] about Turkey – contagion?
source Gleb Leonov/Strelka Institute/Flickr Taking control of your finances isn’t hard, as long as you know the basics. Author and financial expert Beth Kobliner offers eight “need-to-know” personal finance rules in the 2017 edition of her book “Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties.” Kobliner’s cheat sheet includes tips on saving money, paying off debt, investing in the stock market, and buying insurance. Personal finance can be daunting, but familiarizing yourself with basic money concepts – like how to build wealth, stay out of debt, and earn returns on your investments – will, quite literally, pay off. To help you get started, we turned to the latest edition of Beth Kobliner’s book “Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties,” released in April 2017. At the … [Read more...] about These 8 simple rules are the Sparknotes version of everything you need to know about personal finance
LONDON: Equity investors looking for protection from tech-led share reversals, trade wars and Europe's slowing economic momentum may find that the "defensive" sectors they usually seek out during market storms are no longer the safe havens they once were.Earnings of telecom, consumer staples and healthcare companies and utilities tend to hold up when macro indicators turn south, but many of these now face disruptive or competitive forces that threaten their traditionally robust income streams."'Defensive value' stocks have become a very small niche this cycle. Those that appear defensive and not aggressively priced typically have some structural or regulatory issues," said Paul Harper, equity strategist at DNB in Oslo.Big European telecom firms for instance are struggling to get hoped-for returns from their investments in broadband and mobile infrastructure as smaller rivals nip at their heels with simple, cheap data plans.And competition rules and the lack of a unified European … [Read more...] about Investors back on the defensive, but where to hide?
Two recently launched blockchain exchange-traded funds are off to a scorching start. But not every market-watcher is convinced that the funds are a solid investment. Two blockchain exchange-traded funds that began trading this month are off to a scorching-hot start, but some market watchers are raining on the parade. Earlier this month, Reality Shares and Amplify ETFs launched funds that aim to provide investors exposure to blockchain technology, which is best known for powering cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. The size of Amplify’s blockchain ETF, which trades under the ticker BLOK, has ballooned to $180 million in the ten days since it began trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Reality Shares’ Nasdaq NexGen ETF, which trades under the ticker BLCN on Nasdaq, has soared past $100 million, the company announced Wednesday. Still, UBS said in a note out to clients Wednesday that blockchain, a distributed ledger technology, is … [Read more...] about Wall Street is raining on the red-hot blockchain ETF parade