Happy Holidays Weekend Reading – Mastering your money, advice for millennials, financial crisis looming and more #moneystuff

Happy Holidays Weekend Reading – Mastering your money, advice for millennials, financial crisis looming and more #moneystuff

Welcome to my latest Weekend Reading edition – the Happy Holidays edition – where I share some of my favourite articles from the week that was across the personal finance and investing blogosphere.

I got around to posting two articles this week:

Here are 10 ways you can master your money in 2019.

This is why my goal to live off dividends remains alive and well.  From the article:  “I firmly believe our focus on the income that our portfolio generates, instead of the portfolio balance, is setting us up to deliver some reliable income that will complement our small workplace pensions, the ability to work as we please in our 50s and 60s, and cover some basic necessities of life stress-free.”

To all fans of this site – Happy Holidays! Mimimalism

While I might post an article here and there over the break – I want to tell you I appreciate your blog support throughout 2018 and I look forward to interacting with you in 2019.  By the numbers, this site continues to grow more over time: Site Stats December 2018 To my family, friends and fine readers who enjoy this site – a very happy holidays to you and best wishes for 2019.  We’ll be in touch soon. Mark

Thanks to Rob Carrick for highlighting another blogpost of mine in The Globe and Mailthese are 10 goals we hope to nail in 10 years for an early retirement.

A recent post shared how small habits can make a HUGE difference over time.  I’ve been a big believer in making small, incremental changes over time myself.   This site is actually part of that journey.  The following sums up my thesis on habits very well: Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement. The same way that money multiplies through compound interest, the effects of your habits multiply as you repeat them. They seem to make little difference on any given day and yet the impact they deliver over the months and years can be enormous. It is only when looking back two, five, or perhaps ten years later that the value of good habits and the cost of bad ones becomes strikingly apparent.

I liked what Benjamin Felix had to say to a millennial about investing.

For young investors with a stable income and an ability to either ignore the market or stomach large drops, I see no problem with a 100-per-cent allocation to stocks; that is where your expected returns are highest. Isn’t this an interesting chart – from Financial Wisdom site:Financial Wisdom

Millennials don’t have it easy in some cases – but this is a golden age for them to be investing.

In fact, millennials can get wealthy eventually if they do these five things.

Alan Greenspan believes the next financial crisis is coming:Alan Greenspan Master your money in 2019!

Here are some tax tips to master your money next year.

Save your money!

Use this page on my site to own the best low-cost ETFs.   Less money management fees – more cash for you.  It’s that simple.

Check out my Deals page here to save more, invest better, and keep more of your money!

Want to get closer to building your $1 million dollar portfolio next year?  This post will tell you how to do it.  Part of the secret sauce is just four ingredients:

  • Start saving early, preferably by your late-20s and never stop.
  • Use registered accounts for investing.
  • Focus on investing in equities.
  • Keep your money management costs low.

You’ll find dozens of articles on my site about all of these bullets and more. Search away!  If you don’t mind exactly what you are looking for – let me know.  I’m happy to put a post together that discusses information you might need. Best wishes again.

My name is Mark Seed - the founder, editor and owner of My Own Advisor. As my own DIY financial advisor, I'm looking to start semi-retirement soon, sooner than most. Find out how, what I did, and what you can learn to tailor your own financial independence path. Join the newsletter read by thousands each day, always FREE.

47 Responses to "Happy Holidays Weekend Reading – Mastering your money, advice for millennials, financial crisis looming and more #moneystuff"

  1. Well, put some (what I thought were low) bids in on BNS and ENB and acquired them this morning so that’s the wife’s TFSA done. Now I just have to decide whether to pull cash out of the HISA (2.5%) or wait a few months to accumulate enough for mine. If I go with MFC I have until mid (ish) February to hit the next ex-dividend date so I’m not in any kind of rush. Maybe if we see some further market pullback I’ll jump in.

    1. I’ve drafted a post about my top picks for TFSA in 2019: RY, TD, BNS, AQN and FTS. I will post that next week.

      I need to invest in U.S. assets in my RRSP after for the rest of the year. This CDN $$ dollar is terrible! Maybe I buy BIP or BEP as a proxy for my U.S. purchase – inter-listed stocks as you know via BIP.UN to BIP (USD) and same goes for BEP.

      Doesn’t sound like you’re in a rush for your HISA. Keep the cash maybe since you’ve already got your wife’s TFSA done?

      I know it’s important for us to max out our TFSAs in early Jan., get the money invested, so I don’t think about it and make any bad behaviour mistakes. I’m guilty of that from time to time and I’m trying to be better.

      1. I now try to look at what I might want to invest in first, and then look at ex-dividend dates to set my timeline to acquire the shares. I don’t see a purpose to buy just because it is immediately after Jan 1. Getting them on sale trumps speed as long as I do eventually get them before I lose out on a dividend payment. In hindsight, I maybe could have gone lower on my bids in the hopes of the shares falling further as I had lots of time (especially for BNS). I’m content.

  2. Hi Mark

    Happy Holidays, best wishes for a wonderful 2019 (including some memorable travels), and thank you for a years worth of interesting personal finance reading, much appreciated!

  3. Indeed. Seems rather over done but that is almost always the way.

    With todays tweet the stable genius bought himself even more uncertainty across the globe. It seems we’re in for a much rougher ride ahead.

    1. I think you’re correct, the emotions and speculation is probably more of a driving factor than the actual fundamentals of the economy. Certainly, leadership is not helping the situation. Looking at the numbers, my finger is getting twitchy and it takes a wee bit of effort to not jump in. Maybe once we’re into the new year, we’ll see, I could see picking up some stuff from time to time.

      1. Yep, at least at this point re fundamentals. They’re changing but don’t seem bad yet. Leadership = gong show.

        I’m at full equity weighting. It hurts and I’m extremely tempted but my rules say can’t buy more untill we have another ~5% peel off.

        1. lol…at the way it’s been going, 5% is just a couple of days. 🙂

          I’m planning (as of today anyways) to go ahead and buy within the wife’s TFSA pretty well right away (BNS or ENB, maybe split?) and do mine (maybe MFC?) in March. I’ve got enough cash laying around for one and will have the rest by March. I *could* pull some cash out of the HISA to fund mine right away as well but I see no strong reason to be in a hurry.

          1. Very true. This includes CDN, Int, US equity overall.

            Have my buys already done for our TFSAs. Several weeks too early, but then my crystal ball is usually cloudy.
            There’s lots to choose from out there now.

            Good luck in 2019.

          2. Up or down 5-10% or more or less – its impossible to say in the next week or 3mths, or 12 mths from now. Only thing I do know is value is better now than a month ago.

            Looks like some good candidates for the longer run.

          3. My “reasons” for BNS, MFC and ENB is that we already have them (although MFC is just an orphan holding), they are not over represented within the overall portfolios, they’re fairly well traded, they have a decent yield and they’re at the lower end of their 52 week range. As I’ve said more than a few times, I ain’t a sophisticated investor pouring over data. A dart board would be as sophisticated as what I do. This is just for the TFSAs.

            With the falling markets, I’m thinking of playing a new game with some un-reg cash. I might take 20-30K and buy the e-series on major down days. For example, when the market falls by >100, I’d buy the dollar amount of the fall. Haven’t decided for sure but I think it might be fun.

            1. FWIW, neither am I Lloyd. re: “I ain’t a sophisticated investor pouring over data.”

              I buy what I feel is right, closer to 52-week lows ideally and I figure more money invested over time is better than not investing at all. I don’t care about market timing. I definitely care about how much income my portfolio can generate. On that note, fingers crossed for end of 2019 – I am very hopeful we can hit $19K within our TFSAs and non-reg. accounts alone.

              You have the luxury of having “enough” – you are entitled to some fun if you wish!

          4. Sounds like a good plan Lloyd. ENB & BNS are my 2 largest CDN positions. Don’t own MFC.

            On the e-series if you buy on dips- is the settlement on the end of that business day and what’s the latest in the day you can make the buy ie 3:30 pm? Sounds like this could net out pretty well for you over the longer term.

          5. I haven’t seen much consistency at TD as far as time of day goes. I’ve seen it take two complete days to get bought and a couple of times I placed a morning order and it was filled that afternoon. If I do it, I’ll shoot for around 2-2:30pm my time to place the order and if it does not get actioned in the following day, I’ll call and whine.

          6. I think we will still see a few more dividend increases yet so you should be good Mark. With the DRIPs adding each quarter/distribution it will just compound and if the market stays *sensible*, those added shares should come in at a better price.

            1. I think so…throughout 2019 – yes. Long-term, hard to say but my portfolio is banking on this!

              That’s part of the reason why I love dividend investing. Dividends are paid, reinvested, more shares pay out more dividends over time. You know the drill. I’m biased I know but -10% or -20% declines don’t bother me. I see them as a golden time to buy more of my favourite 30-odd CDN stocks that pay dividends.

              These are my favourites to invest in, in Canada:

              These are banks (examples: RY, TD, BNS, BMO, CM) – 5 stocks.
              These are insurance companies (examples: SLF, MFC, GWO) – 3 stocks.
              These are pipeline companies (examples: ENB, TRP) – 2 stocks.
              These are telecommunications companies (examples: BCE, T) – 2 stocks.
              These are energy companies (like SU) 1 stock.
              These are utilities (examples: FTS, EMA, AQN) – 3 stocks.


              Add in a few top REITs and you’re close to 20-25 companies to buy and hold for good.

              Holiday cheers,

    1. Not so bad for those with some $$$$ in a non-reg act. (tax loss selling). Not so good for those with the bulk in an RRSP. I like the options the non-reg acts give :). Again – thats just another reason why the bulk of my $$$ is in a non-reg act and why I closed out the RRSP act – years ago. Don’t you hate being taxed on the Divs you pull out of your RRSPs? (as income)

      1. I dunna know, not that I’ve pulled dividends out of my RRSP (yet), but I’d probably rather have positive income and pay tax on it than have to sell an under water stock and lose some income from it forever. I’m more of an *investor* rather than a *trader*, but to each their own.

        1. Lloyd. What do you do when you have an under water stock or complete dud like AX.un (or any other stock that you want to get rid of) in your RRSP? Do you always pick winners? or just sit on the losers and hope for them to recover?

          1. I sit on them. Other than last fall when I sold off 400K for GICs, I haven’t sold much of anything in the RRSPs ever. Barring any kind of world wide catastrophe, I’m not likely to in the next 10-15 years either.

          2. I guess you could always buy more of a holding (thats down) – to cost average and hope it bounces back. But if its a real dud – i guess your stuck with it. If it was in a non-reg act – you would have the option to sell and use the loss against gains. (or could do same as above)

          3. If I had put the $$ into non-reg when I earned it, I would have less than half as much as I currently have in the sheltered accounts. Ya, I’ll pay some tax upon taking it as income but I’m fine with that. Furthermore, in order to use tax loss selling, I’d have to be selling something to have a gain to apply it to. I’m sure for people who buy and sell more than I do it is a very good tactic, it’s just that I don’t invest that way. I have in the past added to holdings that have decreased in value to average down, and of course the DRIPs can accomplish that as well.

        1. Gotcha for the TFSA 2019.

          I think I’m going with a CDN bank (BNS is #1 on my list) and some KMP.UN or some CAR.UN. Not sure yet. As RRSP builds up, going with VYM. Need about $3K or $4K USD to make the purchase worthwhile!

          1. No KMP here at least yet. CAR is a fairly large position for me. Thing has risen gangbusters and have dripped for past year or so.
            Got it on VYM. May need to buy some here later this year plus VTI to rebalance, I’m guessing.

  4. Very best to you & your wife Mark and to all the regular followers of your site. We’re getting settled here in AZ and expect company this year. Will be back after the holidays.

  5. Happy holidays to you and your family, Mark. Thanks a lot for this blog and your hard work. Not only I learned a lot, but also got lots of support from you and other readers of this blog during my investment journey, especially at times when I doubted myself.

    Happy holidays to all the readers of this blog.

    I am heading to Disney World in two days with my family. See you in new year.


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