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THE MAJORITY OF investors in Canada buy funds from a Financial Advisor associated with an intermediary like MoneyWI$E Financial Inc.

Some advisors will sell funds offered by several fund management companies; others will sell only a single group of funds. Firms that advertise themselves as independent dealers, such as MoneyWI$E Financial Inc., offer funds from all of the major fund management companies. In contrast, sales representatives employed by captive sales force such as from Investors Group, offer only the Investors Group funds. Similarly, many insurance agents will sell only the specific family of funds that is affiliated with their insurance company. Likewise, banks offer only their specific family of funds.

If you buy a fund from a bank, trust company or credit union, the quality of advice you will get, if any, depends on the expertise of the individual who comes to the counter. This can be a hit-or-miss situation, depending on the experience and education of the institution's employee.

Should you use an adviser who offers a single family of funds or someone who offers many? All advisers will, or should, offer you the best they have. The question is whether a sales representative handling a single family of funds has the best. Similarly, many independents handle only a few fund groups, which may or may not be the best for you. While many fund companies have top performers, none has a monopoly on top performance in all types of funds equity, bond, foreign equity, specialty funds and so on. An independent advisor, like the one from MoneyWI$E Financial Inc., who handles many funds has access to a wider range than a captive representative who has only a single family to offer. Further, many of the top-performing funds are available only through independent advisors, like from MoneyWI$E Financial Inc.

You should pick an advisor who can tailor a fund portfolio to suit your needs, not one who tries to advise you to satisfy his/her income needs! The key point is that if you are going to need advice and guidance, the advisor you choose must have a detailed understanding of how to use funds to meet your objectives. He or she should monitor fund performance closely and be in touch with fund management companies to be aware of any changes in strategy or investment personnel that may have an impact on client returns.

While there is a tendency among many advisors not to second-guess portfolio managers, some advisor demand detailed explanations of current investment policy. This helps them determine whether specific funds continue to meet the criteria on which they base their recommendations. Take the time to choose your fund adviser carefully and with thought. Making the wrong choice can be financially and emotionally expensive!

Licensing requirements
Provincial securities commissions like the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) regulate sales of mutual funds. Dealers, like MoneyWI$E Financial Inc., selling mutual funds must meet certain capital requirements and their officers and managers must demonstrate specific levels of expertise.

To receive registration to sell mutual funds, individuals must complete an investment course and receive a registration issued by the Canadian Securities Course.

The education division of the Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC) sponsors the Canadian Investment Funds Course. IFIC is the umbrella organization of the fund industry and is recognized as such by provincial securities commissions. The educational standards of the industry are constantly being upgraded. However, the quality of people giving advice on mutual funds varies widely, just as in any other profession. It's up to you to determine whether a specific fund salesperson meets your needs.

You should determine in advance what type of ongoing service you can expect from a fund salesperson. Is his or her analysis of funds limited to reviewing rates of return? Or does the analysis include reviews of portfolio managers' investment strategies and comparisons with other funds? Many fund salespeople do this on their own, while others depend on specialists to do this work. MoneyWI$E Financial Inc. adviser have access to this type of information on a continuous basis in order to advise you when conditions have changed. Your adviser should be able to give you detailed explanations behind all purchase recommendations, especially those that involve converting funds.

What it really comes down to is making sure that you are comfortable with the advisor you choose. Do his or her recommendations fit your investment objectives? Do they take into consideration your other investment holdings? Have the risks been explained in detail? Will your situation be monitored constantly and, if so, how? Will you get service even if you do not make any subsequent purchases? Does your adviser have substantial investment or business experience? Unfortunately, many advisor may not fully appreciate the risks involved in the strategies they recommend.

Financial planning
Many people selling funds call themselves financial planners. However, financial planning is unregulated except in Quebec. Anyone can call himself or herself a financial planner, whether or not he or she has any financial expertise. The Canadian Association of Financial Planners, the Canadian Institute of Financial Planners, and the Canadian Securities Institute are among the nine professional organizations that have formed the Financial Planners Standards Council of Canada.

Do not be shy about asking financial planners about their credentials. Are they Certified Financial Planners (CFP) or taking courses leading to that designation? Do they have any other professional designations that indicate expertise in financial planning? Have they met any continuing education requirements?


Call: MoneyWI$E Financial Inc. at (905) 883 - RRSP(7777)
Fax: (905) 883 - 7778
Address: 120 A Lucas Street
Richmond Hill, Ontario
L4C 4P5 Canada.
Email: inquire@moneywisefinancial.com

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