RRSP Season, Tax Time, and #MoneyTalk

RRSP season is slowly coming to a close, if we are to believe the advertising campaigns from the banks and mutual funds. RRSP season is actually all year round, however March 1, 2017 is the deadline for contributing to an RRSP for the 2016 tax year. It is bad planning (in my opinion) to buy RRSPs at this stage of the game, but if you find money (and don’t have debt to pay off), it is an OK place to put found money. I have over the years written plenty of articles on RRSPs, and here are a few for you to read:

RRSP Season disliker

Not an RRSP Season Fan?
Image used without permission of JK Rowling or Warner Bros.

If this is RRSP season, remember that it is tax season as well. For folks in Ottawa who work for the Federal Government, there are tax problems. Over 50,000 have had issues with their T4 slips from the new Phoenix pay system. Ironically the CRA (who are also part of the Phoenix Pay system) say that there will be no dispensations for them. The CRA was kind enough to put up an FAQ Page for Tax Questions.

The ultimate concept in the #Fakenews? The status bar and how long it says it will take to install your software (several minutes, my arse!)

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My Writings for Week Ending February 24th

Given we are in the RRSP Season, I had my own poke at the topic, which I borrowed from a discussion I had with Preet B. and Michael James about how so many folks seem to forget that an RRSP is a Tax Deferral Savings Plan. How many times have you heard someone tell you how much money they have in their RRSP and never mention the taxes they might have to pay on that sum?

A Money Thought

Kerry from Squawkfox is getting tired of being up sold services at the banks by tellers (and ATMs)

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Farewell Vinyl Café, Snow, Monopoly and #MoneyTalk

I was saddened to hear of the death of Stuart McLean, host of the Vinyle Café. That radio show was truly a slice of Canadiana , and the good nature and happiness in the stories told will be sorely lost. Now is a time when we could use more of Stuart’s stories, and less of the other things on the radio.

Winter Sucks

Mr. Cardinal Confirms, Winter Sucks

Really not sure whether this Joe Trudeau chap really has the chops to be PM.

For those who have not watched the 5th Estate piece on “Betrayal of Trust” outlining the 220 lawyers disciplined over the past 6 years for misappropriating over $160M from clients, well worth watching. Do you trust the folks you entrust with your money?

So far Ottawa has had snow pretty much every day in February (except one), so we are quite the winter wonderland. As can be seen by the cardinal on my birdfeeder, no one seems that happy about all this snow.

For those lovers of Monopoly out there, note the passing of the Thimble as a piece for a player, it will be dropped in future Monopoly sets. I don’t know many folks who will miss it (my Mum used to like to be the thimble).

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My Writings for Week Ending February 17th

We did have a Surprising Job Picture in Canada in January, with jobs created when none were expected. The economy continues to create part-time jobs, but maybe that is what the economy needs?

A Money Thought

We need more kids asking for personal finance education at schools!

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RRSP , Tax , TFSA , RESP, and RDSP Time and #MoneyTalk

It is that magical time of the year, when folks are barraged with countless megatons of advice about financial matters. Some say it is RRSP season, others say it is Tax Preparation season, and still others say it is really TFSA season, but I disagree. It is also RESP season and for some of us RDSP season, because if you are doing financial planning and you have kids you had better include your RESP in those discussions as well. Is it RRSP , Tax , TFSA , RESP or RDSP season ?


RRSP , Tax , TFSA , RESP , RDSP or Dance Season ?
Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti, at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The decision point for a lot of parents is always confusing but allow me two possible lines of attack for your financial decisions in February:

RRSP Pas De Deux

  • Put an amount of money into your RRSP (assuming you have spare cash, and no debt to pay off, if you have debt, pay off debt)
  • From the Refund that you receive (remember you are only deferring your tax on this money, they should really rename the thing, the Registered Tax Deferal Program)
    • ½ of the money into your TFSA, to build up (tax free) the tax you will need to pay when you take the money out of your RRSP.
    • ½ of the refund into your child’s (or childs’) RESP up to the max for the year. The RESP payment will get you added money from the government too.

RRSP Grand Jete (redux)

  • Put an amount of money into your RRSP (assuming you have spare cash, and no debt to pay off, if you have debt, pay off debt)
  • From the refund (again only deferred tax here), do the following
    • ½ of the refund up to the max for the year to your family member’s RDSP
    • ½ of the refund up to the max put into your kids’ RESP
    • Any remaining moneys put into your TFSA to build up the Tax Payment needed to take your money out of your RRSP.

The funny thing I am seeing on line is that many writers do not take into consideration the fact that many folks have many different registered accounts that “need to be fed”.

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My Writings for Week Ending February 10th

This week I saw a really good article on the Stats Canada Web site, and that inspired, You are Spending More, where I do some comparison with the numbers in the Stats Canada report and report and contrast them. You can use these numbers to help plan your financial future, if you are not tracking your own numbers.

A Money Thought

As usual the folks at the Fraser Institute pokes at the Public Service with their latest report on the differences between the Public and Private sector employees.

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Year of the Fire Rooster, Financial Groundhog Day and #MoneyTalk

Yesterday, a rodent may or may not have seen his or her shadow and winter may or may not be ending sooner or later. What would financial ground-hog day be like ? This happens pretty much every month, when the Bank of Canada sets key interest rates, maybe they decide on the basis of the Governor seeing his own shadow? No, but that is a worthwhile indicator I suppose.

Financial groundhog day

Year of the Fire Rooster a 13 month long year.

It is the year of the Fire Rooster, to our friends who observe the Chinese Lunar Calendar. If you are a Rooster, this may not be a good year for you, but I still enjoy the Festive Celebrations for this new year. We shall see how fortunate a year it ends up being, but it will be a long year, with 13 months .

In Ottawa we begin Winterlude , the festival celebrating the winter here. The weather rarely co-operates, it is either too warm and the canal melts or so cold no one wishes to be outside. The forecasts suggest  this might be a good year to enjoy the festival.

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My Writings for Week Ending February 3rd

I have been meaning to publish this week’s article for a while, but wasn’t sure whether I got it right. I have been approached by a few “Promoters” of companies that charge a fee (or percentage) to help folks get their Disability Tax Credit, and I have ignored their offers, as I feel they are taking advantage with their fees. When I came upon Bill C-462 I thought that finally the government was agreeing with my opinion, however, as I wrote in Bill C-462 : Protecting Disabled Canadians or a Paper Tiger ? it seems this act is dead on arrival.

If anyone has any more insight on this, please contact me as I am very interested to find out whether this Act will ever be put into practice.

Editor’s Note: I have now included the last update date on all my articles, so you can see that those that I may “reprint” in social media, has usually been updated (or edit’ed to make it more readable).

A Money Thought

Nothing like a ribald commentary from Squawkfox to make me laugh, just goes to show, not everyone gets loans?

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Alternate Financial Facts, 1984 and #Moneytalk

alternate financial facts

Amazon Link for 1984

This week we were introduced to a new term that I am pretty sure is going to stick around for a while. Arguing a point a Trump advisor used the expression that they had Alternate Facts and from that statement it all exploded. Alternate Facts, now seems to imply falsehoods, so let us bring up some Alternate Financial Facts into the argument:

  1. Would alternate savings really just be debt ?
  2. Alternate credit rehabilitation simply be bankruptcy or getting farther into debt?
  3. With alternate financial facts negative equity would be a very good thing

What would the Ministry of Truth think of that? Speaking of 1984 by George Orwell, surprisingly it is now a best seller. The book is a must read, as is Animal Farm , just to understand how totalitarian worlds evolve from democracy (or how a good idea can be perverted easily). I prefer Animal Farm to 1984, but both are books you must read.

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My Writings for Week Ending January 27th

I guess my alternate fact analytics are showing that millions of readers came over to check out my only writing of the week, Energy Up 4.0 % for 2016 , where we learned that in Ontario electricity costs were up over 11% (year over year), and we all keep asking why?. The Ministry of Truth does need to look into that one.

A Money Thought

What does the Dow at 20,000 mean? I have no bloody idea, and luckily neither do other folks.

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