Thank You TD

I figure I should write an official thank you note to TD, TD Mutual Funds and TD Waterhouse, because without them I would not have some of my most popular articles.

TD Toronto Dominion Bank

TD

I went back over my archives and I realized that not only am I a customer of TD, TD Mutual Funds and TD Waterhouse (and a shareholder as full disclosure), but I write about their services a great deal.

Many (if not all) of the articles in my RDSP page talk about TD Waterhouse’s RDSP, which while currently one of the only RDSP Investing Vehicles that gives you the freedom to choose whatever portfolio you like, it still has many shortcomings that need to be addressed.

The RESP page is all about the RESPs that I initially set up with Canada Trust Mutual Funds, that got transferred to TD Mutual Funds, and I should have moved them over to TD Waterhouse (but that is my own fault).

Then there are the many discussions about Bank Fees and my begging for cheaper rates.

A Bill Paying Solution

I also note that the TD Banking Web Page has added a very useful tool to their web bill paying and that is the ability to show you the last time you paid a specific bill. Remember I lamented about getting inundated with bills from various sources, but with this page, I can at least go and check to see when the last time was that I paid a specific bill.

TD Bill Payment

New TD Bill Payment Page

Having the record of when you last paid a bill and how much you paid will make life a little simpler for me at least.

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Ten Years and Still Going

Ten years ago today I wrote a simple post

First Entry

I was planning on creating this site on my account on another ISP, but decided, maybe this is more of a BLOG type thing. I will turn on Comments and such once I get some content up to discuss.

Little did I know that it would start a 10 year run of writing about money, life, family and a few other odd topics.

10 Years is a Long Time

Ten Years Later

Ten Years is a Long Time

What has changed financially over these 10 years?

  • The TFSA didn’t exist 10 years ago, it wasn’t even a thought, now it is a key aspect of how Canadians save.
  • The RDSP didn’t exist for parents with disabled loved ones.
  • The great crash of 2008, which we are still recovering from. Goodness, that was a crash!
  • I got laid off, and then found another job (eventually). Nortel went bankrupt, but I managed to dodge that bullet too.
  • We all got used to LUDICROUSLY Low Interest Rates, how will we ever kick that habit?
  • Gasoline prices back in 2005 were about 90 cents a litre and today they are about $1, so gas has only gone up 10 cents in 10 years right?
  • Banks not only open on Saturdays now they Open on Sundays too (they didn’t in 2005)
  • The iPhone appeared and hipsters round the world danced a happy jig.
  • Plenty of tax changes:
    • Public Transit tax credit
    • Safe deposit boxes are no longer an investment carrying charge
    • Introduction of Sports (and Arts) credits for active/artsy kids
    • Income splitting for Pensioners, and a meager attempt for others.
  • I published over 2700 articles? Wow, that is a lot of words. Over 300 of those articles are on Personal Finance .

Did I miss anything big over the past 10 years?

Will I be doing this in 10 years? Who knows?

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Unemployment Up in February in Canada

Another confusing message from Stats Canada on Friday, with Employment staying the same (year over year) however, unemployment is up 0.2% (year over year, seasonally adjusted). The more unemployed is actually attributable to a believable reason, there are more folks looking for jobs last month, even though there are more employed folks (confused? don’t worry I am many times, and I have a Math degree).

The optimistic statement in the report was:

Compared with February 2014, full-time employment rose by 121,000 (+0.8%), while there was little change in part-time work. Over the same period, the total number of hours worked was up slightly (+0.2%).

An economy that is creating more full-time jobs is a healthier economy.

Total Employment

Total Employment for the Past Little While

The other question is, where are the folks who weren’t looking for a job, coming from? Let us check the unemployment rate first, then there is another telling statement in the report.

Unemployment Rate in Canada

Unemployment Rate for the Past 5 Years

So, who was looking for jobs?

While youth employment was virtually unchanged in February, their unemployment rate rose 0.5 percentage points to 13.3% as more youths looked for work.

More jobs for old folk over 55 too, shows the cracks in the recovery, which is youth unemployment. Old folk (such as myself) staying employed is fine, but youth unemployment is a very bad thing. That should be the biggest question in the coming election, but I somehow doubt it will be.

Employment by Age

Have a look at this table and see where the jobs are by age

Labour force characteristics by age and sex – Seasonally adjusted

January
2015
February
2015
Std
Err
Jan to
Feb 2015
Feb 2014
to Feb 2015
Jan to Feb
2015
Feb
2014 to Feb
2015
thousands (except rates) change in thousands (except rates) % change
Both sexes, 15 years and over
Population 29,139.2 29,160.7 21.5 305.6 0.1 1.1

Labour force

19,148.4 19,197.6 29.0 49.2 91.3 0.3 0.5

Employment

17,886.9 17,885.9 28.7 -1.0 129.9 0.0 0.7

Full-time

14,454.2 14,488.2 39.2 34.0 121.1 0.2 0.8

Part-time

3,432.7 3,397.8 36.1 -34.9 8.9 -1.0 0.3

Unemployment

1,261.5 1,311.7 24.6 50.2 -38.6 4.0 -2.9
Participation rate 65.7 65.8 0.1 0.1 -0.4
Unemployment rate 6.6 6.8 0.1 0.2 -0.3
Employment rate 61.4 61.3 0.1 -0.1 -0.2
Part-time rate 19.2 19.0 0.2 -0.2 -0.1
Youths, 15 to 24 years
Population 4,451.4 4,446.9 -4.5 -42.5 -0.1 -0.9
Labour force 2,860.5 2,870.9 16.9 10.4 19.7 0.4 0.7
Employment 2,495.6 2,488.4 15.6 -7.2 28.4 -0.3 1.2
Full-time 1,286.5 1,266.2 18.8 -20.3 -16.9 -1.6 -1.3
Part-time 1,209.1 1,222.1 19.8 13.0 45.2 1.1 3.8
Unemployment 364.9 382.6 14.5 17.7 -8.6 4.9 -2.2
Participation rate 64.3 64.6 0.4 0.3 1.1
Unemployment rate 12.8 13.3 0.5 0.5 -0.4
Employment rate 56.1 56.0 0.3 -0.1 1.2
Part-time rate 48.4 49.1 0.7 0.7 1.3
Men, 25 years and over
Population 12,074.8 12,087.5 12.7 169.9 0.1 1.4
Labour force 8,636.1 8,674.0 15.3 37.9 78.8 0.4 0.9
Employment 8,137.5 8,139.5 16.5 2.0 91.1 0.0 1.1
Full-time 7,455.4 7,497.2 21.9 41.8 90.1 0.6 1.2
Part-time 682.1 642.3 17.9 -39.8 1.0 -5.8 0.2
Unemployment 498.6 534.5 14.3 35.9 -12.3 7.2 -2.2
Participation rate 71.5 71.8 0.1 0.3 -0.3
Unemployment rate 5.8 6.2 0.2 0.4 -0.2
Employment rate 67.4 67.3 0.1 -0.1 -0.2
Part-time rate 8.4 7.9 0.2 -0.5 -0.1
Women, 25 years and over
Population 12,613.1 12,626.2 13.1 178.1 0.1 1.4
Labour force 7,651.7 7,652.7 16.5 1.0 -7.2 0.0 -0.1
Employment 7,253.7 7,258.1 16.0 4.4 10.5 0.1 0.1
Full-time 5,712.2 5,724.7 24.9 12.5 47.8 0.2 0.8
Part-time 1,541.5 1,533.4 23.7 -8.1 -37.3 -0.5 -2.4
Unemployment 398.0 394.6 13.2 -3.4 -17.7 -0.9 -4.3
Participation rate 60.7 60.6 0.1 -0.1 -0.9
Unemployment rate 5.2 5.2 0.2 0.0 -0.2
Employment rate 57.5 57.5 0.1 0.0 -0.7
Part-time rate 21.3 21.1 0.3 -0.1 -0.5

not applicable

  1. Average standard error for change in two consecutive months. See “Sampling variability of estimates” in the section “About the Labour Force Survey” at the end of the publication Labour Force Information(Catalogue number71-001-X) for further explanations.

Note(s):

The sum of individual categories may not always add up to the total as a result of rounding.

Source(s):

CANSIM table 282-0087.

 

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Another fun few weeks of US College basketball (and Canadian University ball this weekend) starts up this weekend, with the entry tournaments for the NCAA March Madness Tournament, and the CIS Men’s Basketball finals (in Toronto), so I am in Hoops Nirvana. The joy is watching to see if there are major upsets in the first few rounds, and which “Cinderella Team” (i.e. a team with a low rank that still manages to get through the first few rounds) will capture our hearts.

Will She Make This Shot? She made the last one, but does that matter?

Hooping it Up!

It’s tax time too folks, you should have all of your tax receipts by now, so get your tax returns done, so you can get your refund, or wait until the last day to make your payment to the CRA. If you are wondering, “Should I do my taxes?”, the answer is Yes!

A second Friday the 13th? Yes, thanks to there being a Friday the 13th in February, there is one in March as well. It is followed by a Saturday where the Formula 1 racing season begins, so it can’t be that bad a Friday, can it? The snow is melting in Ottawa (as well), so that will make it a better Friday as well.

Watch next week, as I will be celebrating 10 years of writing on-line. Not exactly sure what that is going to entail, but remember I do have about 2800 articles to choose from.

Get $50 in free trades.

My Writings for Week Ending March 13th

I am still fighting off the remnants of that horrific flu that I picked up two weeks ago, but I did manage to write a couple of articles this week. :

  • Financial Daylight Savings is me having a poke at the idea of how Daylight Savings makes days longer, and how debt is pretty darn similar to that (in terms of a BIG lie).
  • Thanks for the $2000 CRA is pointing out to those who can get the new Family Credit, should make sure they are getting it. I checked over my return on Turbotax and sure enough, there it was (very nice). It would even be better without the $2000 cap, but it’s a good start.

Click here for more great financial stories

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Thanks for the $2000 CRA

I have been slowly getting my Tax Returns together (I do them for most of my direct family), and while doing that I wondered if I was going to receive the announced $2000 tax rebate announced last fall, so I went looking to see whether that was the case.

I am talking about Line 423 of your return:

Under proposed changes, for the 2014 and subsequent tax years, you or your spouse or common law partner may be able to claim a non refundable tax credit of up to $2,000, if your child ordinarily lived with you or your spouse or common-law partner throughout the year.

Luckily, we have young Master C8j, and Mrs. C8j works “full part-time” so she does not earn too much, so we end up not eligible for this credit. Given Mrs. C8j stayed home for most of the time when my daughters were growing up, it would have been nice to have this credit back then, but I suppose I can’t complain about it. Naturally Turbotax Canada 2014 had the credit already calculated.

My only query ends up being, why is this being capped at $2000? I keep reading how it only helps the Rich Middle Class in Canada (I’d like to say “WTF?” to that one), or that somehow it discriminates against women working (yes I did read that, I ain’t making it up), anybody care to comment about how it is such a diabolical Harper Government ploy to take over our minds?

Is this enough to buy my vote? No, since (as usual) the program is half-baked (much like the TFSA and other ideas), and I am not a one issue voter.

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