Optimism #44

Hello clients and friends,

My wife though our early versions of Optimism looked a bit too “home made” so it’s spiffed up a bit.  We hope you like it.

Markets are down a bit in the last few days but it’s rebounding nicely this morning.  We have had an exceptional run and it will go on to new highs again soon enough.   The companies with high price multiples are getting hit the hardest.  Our value-based dividend payers are holding up better, so I am not concerned.

Here’s a link to a poignant story about a B.C. woman who won it big in the lottery and put the money in a joint bank account with one of her four children, then died soon after with no Will.  Our province has the Wills Variation Act, meaning people can sue the estate if they feel it was unjust.  And the Estate pays the legal bills.  It will be interesting to see what the courts decide. B.C. lottery winner's family headed to court over $3-million jackpot | Vancouver Sun

Two American Presidents died without Wills. Andrew Johnston and Abraham Lincoln.  The best part is… both were lawyers. 

Costco dividend increased its dividend by 13.9% to 90 cents per share.

Insiders are buying at Crew Energy,

I witnessed an interesting situation last week worth sharing. Tracy’s (not her real name) mother is nearly 90, in long term care and no longer of sound mind. Her assets are comprised of a TFSA, a RRIF and a taxable/ non-registered investment account, nothing else. I noticed that her taxable account was not in joint names with either of the adult children and is more than the exempt amount so will eventually require probate. All persons involved reside in Alberta so the probate fee is relatively low, but the paperwork, delays and process remains a headache and worth avoiding if possible.

When the accounts were set up, the Portfolio Manager acted according to the law and did not permit the adult children setting up the accounts to list themselves as beneficiaries or joint owners, even though they are POAs. POAs are not legally permitted to do Estate Planning and using the power of the POA to make a beneficiary or establish joint ownership is considered just that.  For beneficiary purposes, the TFSA and RRIF were also left blank for the same reason.

However, if there is a Will, Portfolio Management firms can allow POAs to add themselves as beneficiaries and joint owners, as long as it is shown to be perfectly congruent with the subject’s Will.  The Estate Department was very cautious, even requesting the death certificate of the late husband. It’s a bit of a process, but well worth it.  Now the accounts will transfer with no delays or fees, just a bit of income tax.

Here is a terrific article on the tax implications of trading crypto currency. Taxation on Cryptocurrency

Here is a funny Southpark video about investing for the future.  It’s two minutes.  Thank you Pete & Rob.  I promise you will laugh.

For most of you, spring is here.  Have a great week.
Derek Moran