2019-10 Portfolio Update

My Current Portfolio

ETF/ Stock

Shares Added

Shares Total






















  1. Plan to sell when husband not working full time:
    1. Amgen
    2. Brk.B
  2. Plan to tax loss sell prn and switch to VGRO:
    1. XAW
    2. XIC
  3. Keep:
    1. VGRO – (80/20 asset allocation ETF)
    2. ZDB – discount bond ETF in CCPC
    3. VAB – intermediate bond ETF in RRSP

Current AA – 23%

The Ultimate Plan:

  1. CCPC – VGRO + ZDB
  2. RRSP – VAB (dripped)
  3. TFSA – VGRO (dripped)
  4. Taxable – VGRO + High Interest Savings Account

Plan is to eventually move all assets to VGRO and ZDB. This will involve some tax loss selling when the opportunity arises.

It’s not like I invested when the markets were low. Trust me it will happen.

The market has been volatile the past week. I snagged some more VGRO. Yay.

I buy my usual tranche on the set time each month. However, as the market takes a dive, I tend to add a bit more.

My asset allocation is quite low so I have zero issue with dumping in more. We are also in accumulation mode thus whatever happens will not impact us all that much.

I have been listening to various experts and their asset allocation percentages. John Bogle’s was 50/ 50. Various folks mentioned that he used his social security as part of his bond.

Larry Swedroe once mentioned that he used a lower AA since he relied on factor investing to give his equities a bigger return. I think he mentioned that he had about 30% at the time.

However, I have NO idea what is a great asset allocation to be honest. My husband says 60/40 forever. We will see about that shall we?

I can live on our funds with a GIC. I would not recommend that but I probably could. That was what I originally thought we would do. Pay less taxes while saving in the corporation and then dribble it out.

It is wise to keep the stash in a lower equity allocation as one approaches retirement. That is when one has the largest stash so it makes sense not to risk the whole pile.

I see many of these bloggers with 80+ asset allocations. I would use that for my children. Not for us thanks. Maybe if we could live on the dividends alone as I have stated in my dream scenario post.

Checking Your Accounts

I have been reading about folks not wanting to check their accounts. And they are also DIY investors.

I check my accounts regularly. The difference is that I feel nothing when I do. I simply record it for my personal tracking and move on.

You have to know yourself. If you freak out when you check your account, I suppose you should not check it. However, if you tend to be emotional about the numerical changes then perhaps you should NOT DIY.

I have a feeling that some folks will find out that they are not suited for DIY investing when the crap hits the fan next time.

That is not a great plan but it will be a lesson that only they can learn. It seems you can never really warn people about most things.

Owning Other Assets

I have stopped posting networth updates online. Thanks hubby.

But I recognize that my paper portfolio is only part of the whole picture. I would prefer to have other assets around since the world can be unpredictable.

Assets I can sell or generate cash flow:

  1. Residential unit
  2. Commercial unit
  3. Commodities

Guaranteed inflation adjusted income:

  1. CPP
  2. OAS
  3. Plan to cover 50% of income/ year after 70 yrs old

You can guess from my planning that I do not rely on any one thing. I believe in diversifying across all assets and all tax structures.

I did this even with our careers. My husband chose to have a career tied to hospitals and all its inherent admin headaches. Thus even though I trained in a hospital based specialty, I chose general practice instead.

No one was ever going to tell me when I needed to work. I tolerated this during residency but I was having none of that when I came out to practice.

I think that’s why many women don’t try for all those careers with loads of titles. It’s not that we can’t do it. It’s because some of us don’t want it.

I wanted to be available for my own family. My husband’s work was already going to be unpredictable.

Now it has zero to do with sexism. When my husband was in general practice, he took care of our babies and let me work whenever I wanted. Women GPs are more in demand. We clearly swung both ways.

I am grateful my husband was happy to do that. I have met many of my girlfriends’ husbands who can not generate the income of their wives. But they also feel they are beyond household duties even when they are a stay at home parent.

I simply roll my eyes. And people are often shocked when they have problems.

Burnt Out Docs

It’s in the Canadian news today about burnt out doctors.

I recall a women doctor once telling me with clear resignation. “Medicine is a career where you have to leave your own sick child but get to take care of other peoples’ sick children.” She seemed to have plenty of regrets.

I don’t believe any of us do not want to care for other people’s sick children. Or else why choose medicine? But it is not talked about how many of us get ZERO support ourselves.

I saw a whole day of patients while having a miscarriage. I quietly went to the ER after my shift.

And the scary thing is that I would do that today. It’s like so many of us are just built this way.

So what would I tell others even when I would not follow the advice?

Take care of yourself first. You will be of no use to anyone else otherwise. Or worse, you take care of everyone else at work but shortchange those you love.

Because those who love you will be the ones who will put up with the worst of your behaviour.

Oh yeah and the silliest reason to run like hell is because you went and spent it all on shiny baubles. Trust me, you will make plenty of mistakes even when you try to “do the right things financially”.

The federal government will change the goal posts. Think of our small business deductions.

The local governments will impact your real estate. Think about all the weird real estate taxes popping up.

That is my reason for making things simple. If all these external processes will be moving the goalposts, why twist oneself into a pretzel?

So no matter what happens, I did not expend much energy over it. That makes me super happy.

It is all about risk management. Avoiding regret is a serious form of risk management.

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