The Importance of Finding Better Problems

February 14, 2024 |Alan MacDonald
Last year, we had the folks from a very successful organization come into Ottawa to facilitate a one-day workshop called “Creating a personal/business vision of greatness.” This particular company set up a training arm to help other businesses and people...
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Staying put in a tough market is hard: Trying to time the market is worse

November 13, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
Investors have been on quite the roller coaster over the last five years. We’ve had three bear markets – when markets go down more than 20 per cent – since 2018. Equities (like stocks) have bounced up and down more times than most of us care to count...
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Fat tails and the precautionary principle: How Isaac Newton lost his shirt in the stock market

October 17, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
Sir Isaac Newton was a mathematician, physicist and philosopher who was considered by many to be the father of the scientific revolution, and one of the greatest thinkers of the seventeenth century. He was also a wealthy man, who inherited a small fortune...
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Cheap and boring: Why the least exciting stocks look pretty good right now

July 31, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
Mark Twain has been credited with saying that “history doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.” In my experience, this sage observation is particularly fitting when it comes to stock markets and the behaviour of investors. In the 1960s and 1970s,...
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When is the right time to exercise stock options or sell stock in your company?

June 12, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
One of the most frequent questions I get from clients who own their own companies, or who have a significant portion of their money tied up in a single stock, is when is the right time to sell some (or most) of those stocks to diversify their holdings...
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Too many investors fear longevity too little – and market volatility too much

May 15, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
In 1993, the cost to mail a letter in Canada was 43 cents. Today (assuming anyone were to actually want to mail a letter) it would cost $1.07. That’s an increase of just over two a half times, and it’s pretty close to the average inflation in the price...
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How to crash-proof your retirement income

April 12, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
As I write this article, the latest crisis du jour is the collapse and insolvency of the Silicon Valley Bank. We here in Canada tend to think of our banks as being virtually invulnerable. But as the 2008 banking crisis taught us, even the biggest blue-chip...
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When to take OAS and CPP -another perspective

March 17, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
We’re all getting older and one of the hot topics for us aging boomers is when to take our OAS and CPP. The rewards for deferring these pensions can be substantial. For CPP, the monthly benefit increases by 7.2 per cent per year for each year you defer...
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An Investor checklist for 2023

February 27, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
An investor checklist for 2023 The first month of the New Year is officially behind us. Traditionally, this is the time when all our well-meaning resolutions are forgotten until next January rolls around, and our old habits start to rear their ugly heads...
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There’s a recession coming in 2023. So why am I still in stocks?

January 16, 2023 |Alan MacDonald
The debate is over. We have an inverted yield curve in fixed-income securities, where short–term rates are higher than long–term rates. Consumers are stretched thin, battered by the twin spectres of rising interest rates and higher-than-average inflation...
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