Our team specializes in the Discretionary Portfolio Management of our client's accounts through our Managed Portfolio Account (MPA) program. Debbie, Chris and Mark are all licensed as portfolio managers, and as a team, we work together to build a customized portfolio for our clients to help them reach their financial goals.
Our team has over 60 years of combined experience in managing assets for clients and has found that discretionary portfolio management is the best way to customize client's portfolios to reach their financial goals.
This approach to financial planning allows us to act proactively for our clients and create consistent value for them through our investment selection process, rather than using a one-size-fits-most solution through external portfolio managers.
Our investment philosophy is to invest in high-quality companies with consistent earnings, free cash flow growth and strong management teams. Companies with these qualities are often rewarded by the markets as leaders in their industries and have historically outperformed their peers and the overall markets. Our team analyzes the commentary from management and analyst's at BMO Capital Markets, JP Morgan Markets, SIA Charts, Morningstar and more to determine which companies best fit our investment strategy and best contribute to the investment goals of our clients.
By focusing on companies with these investment characteristics, we can create a portfolio designed for long-term growth and absorb the exogenous shocks that hit the financial markets. While this strategy may miss out on high-paced growth companies, it also stays away from value-oriented companies that are cheap for a reason. This strategy has been learnt over the 110 years our family has been in the financial services industry and has been refined over many crises, including the crash of Black Monday in 1987, the dot-com bubble of the early 2000s, the great financial crisis in 2008 and most recently over last year with COVID-19. The lessons from these crises have moulded our investment philosophy and helped our clients stay in the markets during times of volatility.
When creating portfolios, our teams use between 30-40 companies from Canada and the US, with 15-20 companies in each country. Our research has shown that this balance of securities allows our portfolios to benefit from our investment selection process while being efficiently diversified. It removes any unnecessary non-systemic risk from the portfolios and does not mirror the broader equity markets.
With the fixed income portion of our client’s portfolios, we continue our strategy of owning individual corporate bonds for our clients when possible. We believe that the fixed income is there to balance force with the equities in your account. The decision to hold individual bonds allows us to have greater control over their individual purchasing price, a strict rule that we have as bonds are inherently bound to their maturity price. With this strategy, we can reduce the risk of losing capital in the “safe” portion of the portfolio, which allows for funds to be accessed in times of market stress.
Better Control Capital Gains and Cash Flow
Our strategy of purchasing individual securities allows our team to significantly better control capital gains and cash flow in non-registered accounts. Typically, with a mutual fund, the external portfolio manager will make investment decisions that will result in capital gains payable. At the end of the year, the client will be responsible for paying these additional taxes regardless of if the fund was sold during the year; this can be quite a nuisance during tax time, and it is also not efficient for tax planning throughout the year. By owning individual securities, we can better control what is sold and when it is sold to manage your annual tax burden best and make sure there are no surprises when you’re filing your taxes.
As a part of our investment philosophy, we understand the along with being stewards of your capital, it is important to be good stewards of our planet. Over time, Investing has morphed and changed to incorporate a more integrated approach to recognize and incorporate stakeholders and Environmental, Societal and Governance (ESG) risk into investment management.
Our team believes that ESG conscience investing is the best way to align investors, corporations and stakeholders for sustainable investing. By using an Investment approach that integrates long-term ESG criteria into investment and ownership decisions, our team can generate superior risk-adjusted financial returns by acting in the best interests of our clients.