Odette Morin

Odette Morin

Recent Posts

Get ready for the Brexit Boogeyman

Brexit Direction Sign

Start building your courage, we are in for a ride ahead of the June 23rd referendum date in the United Kingdom, when British citizens will vote on whether or not to remain part of the European Union. You can expect the markets to move downward a few percentage points leading to the vote, with polls indicating that the race is tight, and a deeper dip if the British vote in favour of leaving the EU.

Should you be spooked by the Brexit Boogeyman? Should we be taking some actions now to mitigate this risk?

The June 23rd referendum clearly represents uncertainty for markets, businesses and the central bank. Independent economists say a vote to leave the EU could cause a drop in the pound of as much as 20% and push the economy back into recession.

Manulife Asset Management’s Chief Economist, Megan Greene believes that the UK’s best and most likely path forward is to remain in the EU. “By doing so, it can try to reform the EU from within”. She explains why the alternatives to EU membership would all leave the UK less well-off and how a Brexit could potentially lead to a weaker pound sterling as well as looser monetary policies from the Bank of England. Interestingly, Ms Greene also notes that “…while Brexit may not be in the UK’s best interest, it might not be the unmitigated disaster that some fear”.

If Brexit occurs, the UK will negotiate some agreement that is mutually beneficial for the UK and the EU.  An agreement will be eventually reached, potentially, similar to the successful agreements with Sweden and Norway.

For investments however, the best buying opportunities come from trading against an emotional crowd. “This may be a buyable dip for those who have the courage to be greedy when others are fearful.  A week of two after the Brexit vote, the unknowns will have been ironed out and we will move forward with a plan.” Says Jani Ziedins from Cracked Market.

Capital Economics has been commissioned by Woodford Investment Management to examine the United Kingdom’s relationship with Europe and the impact of ‘Brexit’ on the British economy.

The in-depth analysis concluded that “although the impact of Brexit on the British economy is uncertain, we doubt that Britain’s long-term economic outlook hinges on it.”

Here is the full 47 pages report which covers the economic impacts of the most important elements of the Brexit debate.

Don’t let this uncertainty rattle your long-term focus.  Remain rational and avoid making risky bets.  Staying the course with your current long-term quality investments – within a balanced portfolio  – is always the safest course of action.

If you are in your saving years and have funds to invest, this dip may prove to be a great opportunity to enhance your returns.


How did the latest “Sell everything” strategy work out?

In my 28 year career in the investment industry, I had to reassure clients time and time again. Investors get really concerned when they hear Doom & Gloom predictions from well meaning friends or the media.
Time and time again I have to remind them to disregard market fluctuations. Good quality investments in a well balanced portfolio always recover. It is safer to stay the course.
Here is a fantastic article about would have happened if you would have followed the latest sell everything strategy that did its rounds earlier this year.

We are not Burger King, and that’s a good thing!

Burger kin

Do you remember the Burger King ads that ran years ago? They always ended with “Have it your way”. It was a positive message that conveyed the importance of client satisfaction.

Fast-forward to today and the You First tax checklists (I bet you didn’t see that coming!). Despite all appearances, asking you to complete these lists our way also represents a desire to satisfy our clients.

After all, the less time we spend asking questions and trying to organize your information, the less it will cost you, and the more likely you’ll benefit from our below market tax preparation rates.

In addition, those clients who complete the checklists as required benefit from a 20% discount on their total. Those who don’t will have to pay full price.

So, while Burger King might hold the lettuce, we’re holding onto our outstanding value.

When you complete the checklists as instructed, we’re able to enter the data into our tax software and in the order which the system requires. It’s efficient and cost-effective.

However, even the slightest discrepancy can result in extra time for us.

We’ve had clients deliver organized, colour-coded and exceptionally detailed information. Yet, because it differed from our software’s system, the time we invested increased, as did our cost.

The fact is, we want to spend all of our time saving you money and making you money. Nevertheless, if you want us to spend time on you unnecessarily, then have it your way (but it will cost you!)

You can find all of our checklists here.


Thank you for preparing our Tax checklists


How to take the bite out at tax time

Amy Lou

Most of you know our little pet, Amy Lou. She weighs 7 pounds and stands no more than a foot tall. Yet, despite her stature, she guards our workplace fiercely.

After all, there’s just no office more important.

I realized as she was barking at someone today that we’re similar – and no, not because of her bark! You see, we both protect what matters to us. In my case, it’s my clients. And, while I don’t bark, I do ask a lot of questions particularly at tax time.

The reason for this is two-fold. For one, I want to maximize all the opportunities and deductions available to you. I also want to insulate you from preventable predicaments with the Canadian Revenue Agency.

That’s where my protective nature comes in, as does that of our entire team.

By asking a lot of questions and requesting documentation to justify the figures presented, we can ensure that you’re very well armed for a CRA review or assessment – which have become more frequent.

It used to be that people would file their returns, documents intact, via regular mail. However, all that’s changed. Nowadays, returns tend to be filed electronically and don’t include documentation. As such, random checks have become more commonplace.

By the way, should you be picked, don’t panic. It’s not an audit. In addition, by managing your returns as thoroughly as we do, we’re in a good position to help you present what the CRA requires in due time and in the best way.

If you’ve been thinking, “that Odette is like a dog with a bone!” now you know why. So please be sure to complete our helpful tax return checklists and have all your documents organized.

Get our tax checklist here