BMO Financial Group

BMO Financial Group

March 16, 2013 07:00 ET

REPEAT: BMO St. Patrick's Day Study: Irish Eyes Are Smilin' When You've Mastered Investing Basics

- More than 40 per cent of Canadians admit they are not confident investors

- Only 16 per cent are very familiar with their specific investments

- BMO: Successful investing does not necessarily require 'Luck O' the Irish'

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 16, 2013) - In advance of St. Patrick's Day, a BMO study reveals that 44 per cent of Canadians are not confident investors and only 16 per cent are familiar with the investments they hold in their portfolios. This indicates that Canadians may not feel well positioned to find their "pot of gold" at the end of the investing rainbow.

"Even if you do find a four leaf clover, the success of your investments will depend on much more than just luck," said Serge Pépin, Vice President, Investment Strategy, BMO Asset Management. "Successful investing starts with building a sound financial portfolio - one that incorporates a financial plan as well as knowledge of the financial markets and the types of investments available out there. With these elements and guidelines in place, investors will feel more confident in the investment choices they make."

For those who are unsure where to start, Mr. Pépin notes that a good first step is to meet with a financial professional.

"There is tremendous value in working with someone who understands your financial objectives and can provide expert advice," said Mr. Pépin. "A financial professional will work closely with you to determine your investing goals and help develop a financial plan that helps you to tackle important milestones such as purchasing a house, saving for children's post-secondary education or preparing for retirement."

BMO offers the following tips for investors for managing their portfolio:

  • Talk To A Financial Advisor: Sitting down with a financial advisor can help you save money and time by providing you with options that you did not know were available. An advisor can also ensure your portfolio is meeting your financial goals and reflecting your risk tolerance.

  • Don't Put All Your Eggs in One Basket: Make sure you are well diversified. Consider both conservative and aggressive investments in order to balance risk. Diversification will make your portfolio less susceptible to market fluctuations.

  • Invest Year-Round: Establishing a pattern of regular contributions to your investments is easier than coming up with a lump sum once a year, such as at the annual RRSP deadline. Consider pre-authorized contributions - they provide an easy and effective way to contribute and alleviate the stress of last-minute contributions.

  • Consolidate Your Assets: Keeping your assets in one place or in one institution makes it easier to keep track of things, and can save on fees.

  • Read the headlines: Stay aware of the current events that may have the potential to move financial markets. Ask your financial advisor how the make-up of your portfolio might be affected by increased volatility.

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The survey results cited in the BMO study are from online interviews with a random sample of 1,000 Canadians 18 years of age and older, conducted between November 6th and November 8th, 2012. A probability sample of this size would yield results accurate to ± 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

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