Voluntary CPP Improvements Proposal

Interestingly and unexpectedly, the Tories seem to be suggesting at expanding the CPP program to allow for a voluntary additional payment that will mean receiving higher payments in retirement.

The timing of the election cannot be ignored.  We applaud this proposal as it’s clear that Canadians are, unfortunately, doing a poor job of saving for retirement.

Canadian Energy Sector

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There has been a lot of talk lately about the Canadian energy sector and how Canada is poised to be a leader in energy production, if managed well.

In regards to investing in the energy sector, George Soros, an investor with a praised track record, has recently placed his bet on our energy sector.

Financial post has an excellent article on the subject that we recommend checking out: George Soros is betting on the Canadian energy sector. Should you too?

AB Only: Get $350 for Opening an Account with ATB Financial

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See ATB Financial’s page about this offer.  It appears to run until September of 2015.

Accounts have a monthly fee with the smallest being $3.95 with the exception of a no-fee student account.  Expected criteria appies: moving over direct deposits or pre-authorized payments and having to wait several months before collecting your reward.

June 3rd Spells the End for 3 Year Cell Phone Contracts

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See this article from the Globe and Mail Canada: Cellphone carriers lose court challenge over CRTC wireless code

If you have signed a 3 year cell phone contract in recent times, or not so recent times, as of June 3, 2015 you will be able to cancel it without penalty, regardless of how much subsidy is left and regardless of when it was signed.  You can walk away from your contract and not pay subsidy or cancellation fees (of course fees remaining for cell phone services rendered still apply).

Big Increases in Fees from the Big Banks

Bank of Montreal’s increases went into effect May 1, 2015 and they are not as high as others. Toronto-Dominion Bank’s increases were in April.

Royal Bank of Canada is increasing a variety of fees and transaction costs, effective June 1, 2015 as well increasing the age of senior eligibility for account fees.

CIBC and Scotiabank are expected to follow suit.

This will effect a large number of consumers and is not a trend we like to see.  We will keep you updated on bank fees and on the release of our forth-coming bank selection tool.