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    March 2017
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    Ian R. Whiting



    Highly accomplished finance management specialist with progressive start-ups, business revitalization & financial leadership expertise. Provide direction & consultation of key projects to maximize results, curtail potential risks & achieve organizational objectives. Demonstrate success in implementing revenue generating business opportunities to amplify bottom line profits by analysing market needs, evaluating competitive threats, expanding business prospects & leveraging existing channels. Advanced experience & knowledge in developing & applying financial controls, introducing new technology, streamlining operations & facilitating aggressive financial plans.

    Areas of Expertise

    Business Planning & Evaluation Compliance & Fulfillment
    Strategic Management & Training
    Financial & Wealth Management Asset Valuation & Protection Cost Containment
    Capital & Resource Deployment
    Process Reengineering
    Product Design & Development


    Ian R. Whiting's Recent Articles

    Tax-time 2014 – what a fine way to start 2015!

    Wow – another 3 month (and 5 day) push on behalf of the CRA, with more to come when all of the corporate and trust tax returns have to be filed! So, were there any special changes or affects this year – yes indeed? I have exposure to tax returns from several other countries and […]

    Posted: May 25th, 2015 under Finance, General, MONEY®, Personal Finance, Taxes, Travel.


    And the winner is ……..

    While reading our last issue, an advertisement caught my eye – The Great Canadian Sales Competition.  So, I did a bit of digging to learn more and satisfy my curiosity.  I was pleasantly surprised! So what has this got to do with our RRSP issue?  Surprisingly quite a bit … but I digress.  The brain-child […]

    Posted: April 14th, 2015 under Financial Planning, MONEY®.


    GICs, RRSPs and TFSAs – what make sense for you?

    As usual for this time of year, financial institutions across Canada are trying to find a way to separate you from your money – not actually stealing it but rather asking you to give it them (lend) in return for some interest over some period you select. There are traditional GICs that pay a fixed […]


    Do you know the truth behind the GIC market in Canada?

    Written by Ian R. Whiting, Staff and Contributing Editor Back in the latter part of 2012 and into 2013, the Federal Government began investigations into pricing, yields and distribution challenges with GICs. As you would expect, there were many submissions from the major banks plus trust companies, credit unions and caisse populaires – there were […]

    Posted: November 25th, 2014 under Finance, Financial Planning, General, MONEY®.


    Book Review – THE WILLS LAWYERS – their stories of money, inheritance, greed, families and betrayal

    Barry Fish and Lex Kotzer have done all Canadians a great service with this book – and there is a touch of humour amongst the angst and situations revealed.  The vignettes are easy to read and understand – they speak the truth about families in time of loss. All of the situations are actual cases […]

    Posted: November 14th, 2014 under Estate Planning, Financial Planning, MONEY®, Trust.


    Expectations of entitlement – where do you sit?

    This is coming from Panama – Coronado on the Pacific Coast to be exact. We are here for 12 days. An interesting country – some very lovely spots and the people have been universally friendly so far! Lots of expats here – both Canadian and US. They have their own currency, the Balboa – but […]

    Posted: October 22nd, 2014 under Bargains, Cost of Living, Finance, General, Government, MONEY®, Taxes, Travel.


    Annuities – how they work and why have one!

    Retirement is near or perhaps you are already retired. It’s time for choices. How do you want to receive your income? Is an annuity a good choice? Annuities can be considered as backwards, long-term mortgages with a couple of twists. Rather than a financial institution giving you a lump sum and you repay them monthly, […]


    Has Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) outlived its’ usefullness?

    In the early 1950s, Dr. Harry Markowitz was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his work in defining the relative relationship between risk and reward when analysing investments. Considering that he did all of this work without the benefit of modern computers, this was truely ground-breaking research – and up until recently, has stood […]


    What is a GIC? And why would I want one anyway?

    Written by Ian R. Whiting, MONEY® Canada Limited || MONEY® Magazine  GIC is an acronym for Guaranteed Investment Certificate. These are available to Canadian investors through banks, trust companies, credit unions, caisse populaires and some life insurance companies. When an investor buys a GIC they are loaning the financial institution a sum of money for […]

    Posted: August 26th, 2014 under Guaranteed Investment Certificates, MONEY®.


    What is the worth of life and limb?

    While this is a financial blog, I am going to take some editorial licence here and move to us – each of us – and the death wishes that many people exhibit daily – and no, I am not talking about smoking yourself to death. I’m talking about the rush to cross streets against “Do […]


    Custom-built Equity- or Index-linked GICs

    No doubt you have heard or read about Equity- or Index-linked GICs. Many financial institutions market variations of these products. The intention is to provide the guaranteed return of your principal and give you the potential of higher returns based on some external equity fund or market index. The options for early withdrawal are virtually […]


    To Be or Not to Be – (or which is better, pay-off the mortgage or buy an RRSP?)

    Lee and Daphne are asking this very question – which is better for them? They are aware of the huge interest cost on their mortgage but also would like to be able to retire in their late 50s or early 60s. Can they do both at the same time or must they choose? Through diligent […]


    How can I recognise a SCAM?

    A very good question and here are some tips including information from the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. 1. If it sounds too good to be true – guess what?! You’ve won a big prize in a contest that you don’t recall entering. You are offered a once-in-a-lifetime investment that offers a huge return. You are […]


    Internet and E-mail Safety (and security)

    In this blog, let’s look more closely at internet and e-mail scams and security. Internet Knowledge is power – and never truer than when surfing the net. The most common risks are viruses, key-stroke recordings, miscellaneous malware and Trojan horses. Viruses do the same thing to your computer as they do to us – they […]


    Fraud and Identity theft – a common glossary

    Unfortunately, identity theft and fraud are among the fastest growing crimes in the world. In 2012, more than 120,000 calls were received and more than 40,000 e-mail messages each month were reported to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre! In 2011, credit card fraud alone exceeded $436 million! By contrast, in 2007, TOTAL fraud losses were $14 […]


    Protect yourself from Identity Thieves!

    Andrea told her husband Jack that she had noticed a young person going through their condo paper-recycling bins. At first, she thought they were just looking for recyclables which could be turned into cash, but later realized the person was rummaging through all of the containers that were paper-products only. These bins often contain bank […]


    Dying isn’t free (no good deed goes unpunished!)

    I know this sounds a bit irreverent or flippant however it is meant to stimulate some hard thinking about the real costs of dying. Sure, there are lots of lists around, but I haven’t found 1 yet that covers everything I have seen in nearly 43-years in this industry. Is this list perfect? Absolutely not […]


    When does not spending $150.00 cost you more than $6,000.00?

    Six years ago, Al went to see his lawyer. A widower in his late 70s, Al had been advised to update his Will after his wife Gloria had passed away. He thought this made sense and off he went. The lawyer did his job properly and professionally and the new Will has duly prepared and […]


    Is there such a thing as the “perfect” asset?

    If you found an asset that met all 13 of these criteria – would you purchase it? What about if the asset made 12 out of 13? What about 6 out of 13? Or 3 out of 13? ◊ Safe harbour against the vagaries of market turmoil ◊ Welcomed by lending institutions as “Grade A” […]


    Lifting the veil on ETFs – Part 4 of 4

    Warning about the fees and costs of ETFs The expense ratio is not the only cost of investing in exchange traded funds. ETF shares must be purchased through a regular stock brokerage account. There will be commissions to both buy and sell ETFs. The commissions on buying and selling ETFs are the same as for […]


    Lifting the veil on ETFs – Part 3 of 4

    Taxation By their nature, ETFs are tax efficient and can be more attractive than mutual funds. When a mutual fund realizes a capital gain that is not offset by a realized loss, the mutual fund must allocate the capital gains to its shareholders. These gains are taxable to all shareholders, even those who reinvest the […]


    Lifting the veil on ETFs – Part 2 of 4

    Stock ETFs The first and most popular ETFs track stocks. Many funds track national indexes. Bond ETFs Exchange-traded funds that invest in bonds are known as Bond ETFs. They thrive during economic recessions because investors pull their money out of the stock market and move into bonds (for example, government treasury bonds or those issued […]


    Lifting the veil on ETFs – Part 1 of 4

    Recently, one of the big 5 banks did a customer survey on ETFs and one of the questions was: “What do the letters ETF mean?” The responses shared were interesting to say the least! Most thought they stood for Emergency Task Force! Another group though it was an abbreviation for Energy Transfer Fund (like a […]


    The 7 parts of Financial Planning

    There are a lot of misconceptions about financial planning – and more and more often the word “holistic” is being tacked on to this process – a meaningless and confusing addition in my mind. Done properly, financial planning has always been about “the whole person” and “the whole family” and about all of those things […]


    2014 Resolutions – is it too early?

    2014 Resolutions – is it too early to plan ahead? Yes, it is only late October. No, no-one likes to make resolutions as most people fear the self-recriminations if they fail. So let’s call them guiding principles for 2014 instead! 1. Avoid credit to the greatest extent possible. Special offers arrive weekly in our mail […]


    Have Canadians (and their politicians) completely lost their moral compasses?

    First a disclosure – I have never been, am not and never expect to be a member of ANY local, municipal, civic, provincial, territorial or federal political party. That said, let’s move on. It seems that over the past few years, Canadian politicians of all stripes and levels have stooped lower than tricky-Dicky Nixon (sorry […]


    From loyalty programs to the true cost of credit cards

    Moving past the cost of loyalty programs to credit cards My last blog covered how the costs of all the loyalty programs are passed along to all consumers – even those who don’t belong to such programs. Credit card costs have been in the news a great deal in 2013 and even received a mention […]


    Loyalty and rewards programs – free??

    A conversation with one of my grand-daughters I always enjoy chatting with Jeannette – 23, very smart – we starting talking about “free flights” from a well-known loyalty program used by many retailers. I asked her if she really thought they were free – and she said yes. She had never been charged any extra […]


    Inheritances – a relic of the past?

    A touchy subject I suspect, as I know of quite a few Boomers, Gen Xs and Ys that are counting on inheritances from the Zoomers and then down through the other generations, to fund their own financial independence. Numerous studies have pointed to the trillions of dollars currently in the hands of the rapidly aging […]


    September again – and time to get serious about tax planning for 2013!

    2013 is nearly ready to head into the history books with less than 4 months left before 2014 – and it is time, once again, to revisit your annual tax planning checklist! TFSAs If you haven’t already been making regular deposits to your TFSA for 2013, now is the time to get busy. Unlike RRSPs, […]


    Is there such a concept as “corporate ethics”?

    Much has been written and said recently about an apparent lack of ethics in many segments of our society – in particular our politicians, political appointees and corporate executives. As the political side of this issue is well discussed in the forthcoming issue of Money Magazine, I am going to visit corporate ethics here. I […]


    Suddenly you are an Executor!

    After his sister’s death, Andrew suddenly realized he was the Executor of her Will. He figured she must have asked him about it at some time, but he’d forgotten about it. Now he had to find out what Executors are supposed to do. Their responsibilities and duties scared him at first, because he found he […]


    There may be 50 ways to leave your lover – but how many ways can you leave Canada?

    Tongue in cheek of course, and no I don’t mean planes, trains and automobiles! I am talking about moving out of Canada and no, U-haul or hitching doesn’t count either. Many people are under the mistaken perception they can just take their Canadian Passport, pack up and move elsewhere – presumably with the blessing of […]


    Credit card fees – revisted

    I think it is reasonable to assume that most Canadians are now aware that the Competition Tribunal tossed a complaint about the excessive fees being charged by credit card issuers (mainly our big banks) and the impact of those fees on small business and consumers. Even more interesting is the fact that the reasons for […]


    Does your advisor have a Succession Plan? Your right (and obligation) to know!

    My previous blog touched on the subject of understanding that your advisor is legally required to take continuing education to maintain their licence or registration but in this instance, there is no obligation for an advisor to have a Succession Plan and you may be the one that suffers the consequence! Any financial advisor will […]


    Is your advisor staying current? Ask about their Continuing Education credits!

    Many people are still unaware that all licensed or registered advisors have to complete a certain minimum amount (usually hours or credits) of Continuing Education – called CE Credits – each year in order to continue their licensing or registration. This is very good news for the consumer – or is it? I wish I […]


    Is the General Practitioner a dying breed of Financial Advisor?

    In my last blog, I introduced the concept of “strike teams” as a potential solution to the solo advisor trying to be “all things to all eople at all times” – which is, of course, an impossibility. So what is a “strike team”? STs are groups of advisors – each with their own specialty or […]


    Can a single advisor handle it all?

    So far in 2013, there has been a lot of discussion about the potential for “one-stop-shopping” either through advisors or through certain financial institutions. This begs a basic question in my mind – can any one advisor or any one FI properly handle all of the financial matters for a client? From the perspective of […]


    Long Term Care – a cost or an investment?

    Death, taxes and ?? Some certainties in life to consider. I would like to suggest that the ?? in the opening statement should be long term care. And all Provincial and Territorial Health Ministries and Departments agree. Here is the link for BC. AE132538BBF7FAA2EF5129B860EFAA4E/pdf/active_aging_symposium_2011_ report.pdf Going back for more than a decade, Provincial and […]


    Income Tax Time – Medical Expense Tax Credit

    This is another area where I too often see mistakes that have been made in the past. For some reason, many people and tax preparers only pay attention to the current tax year date – but this can be a costly error. You are allowed to use any 12 month period that ends in the […]


    Education and Tuition Claims at Tax Time

    I am right in the middle of the annual early season tax rush and many of the early filers expect refunds. I always get a few new clients each year as referrals from existing clients and it is always interesting to see previous returns they have either done themselves or have paid someone else to […]


    Some changes in allowable medical expense claims

    Since we are right in the middle of the annual ritual here in Canada, it is a good opportunity to quickly review some recent changes in this area. Up until two years ago, just about anything done by an MD or other approved specialist, was eligible to be used as part of your medical expense […]

    Posted: March 18th, 2013 under General, Government, MONEY®, Saving, Taxes.


    Disability Insurance – different occupation definitions

    Today I will explore some of the different definitions that can be in disability insurance policies that relate to your occupation. Essentially there are 3 main types of DI policies re your occupation. Own Occupation, Regular Occupation and Any Occupation. There are 1 or 2 companies that add some little twists, but these are the […]


    Disability Income Insurance – two myths debunked

    Most people know at least something about this product – usually called DI – however there are a lot of misconceptions and I am going to try and sort out a couple of the main ones here. Myth – none of the policies ever pay and if they do pay, you have to be nearly […]


    Conflicting “fiduciary duty” – who is first, the client or the company selling the product or service?

    Assuming this comes to pass, how do the institutions sort out the conflicts? Over the past year or so, I have been looking at a number of codes of conduct for employees and advisors within the financial services industry and they do make interesting reading. The all have some type of statement along the lines […]


    The costs of imposing a legal “fidcuiary duty” on the Canadian financial community

    Presuming that reasonable people understand the need for a legally-grounded requirement for advisors – ANYONE who advices, sells, recommends, etc. any financial product or service – to have a fiduciary duty or responsibility, the next question is “WHO IS GOING TO PAY FOR IT?” I can already hear pundits and armchair quarterbacks and experts pontificating […]


    Fiduciary duty – a long time overdue

    As most Canadian readers will know, the concept of mandating that certain advisors have a legally binding fiduciary duty to their clients has been gaining strength recently. Long overdue in my opinion! Ignoring fancy legal words, a fiduciary duty or responsibility is to put the interests of the client FIRST, before the interests of the […]


    The cost of cheating

    Is there a cost to everyone when someone in the position of a Lance Armstrong, Barry Bonds, Mr. Maguire or good-old Ben the Canadian Sprinter cheat (and lots of others)? Use drugs to promote their own selfish ambitions? Think they are above the rules or the law? A sense of unbridled entitlement gone wild? Is […]


    Identity theft, email and phone fraud – some tips – Part 2 of 2

    Identity theft, email and phone fraud – some of the “tricks” Written by Ian R. Whiting, CD, CFP, CLU, CH.F.C., FLMI(FS), ACS, AIAA, AALU, LSSWB, Contributing Editor Website: Blog: Ponzi Schemes – These never seem to go out of style, mainly because greed is such a powerful emotion. Earl Jones from Quebec and […]


    Identity theft, email and phone fraud – some tips – Part 1 of 2

    Identity theft, email and phone fraud – some of the “tricks” Written by Ian R. Whiting, CD, CFP, CLU, CH.F.C., FLMI(FS), ACS, AIAA, AALU, LSSWB, Contributing Editor Website: Blog: This started out as a short, 500-word blog but unfortunately, this issue is so prevalent in the world today, it became two blogs! Today, […]


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