Fraser Valley (Bill Westmacott) – Firstly, I hope you had a wonderful summer and some new adventures. Thankfully, my wife and I enjoyed a couple of trips, lots of outdoor exercise and time to recharge. For many people, September is like a new start and a time to refocus and reengage with your career or possibly school. For younger families, lots of stuff ramps up with the kids. 

With all of the new activities, and priorities don’t lose sight of your financial world. For example, many people will spend far more time and energy planning a trip than reviewing their financial health or goals. In my professional opinion, this is a big mistake. Wealth is not all-important, but it is vital to your future and lifestyle choices. So, let us do a quick review of 2021 and what I see for the final quarter of 2021.

  • In the last year and a half, we have seen record government deficits with little to no accountability. Mr. Trudeau has put us in the worst financial debt situation of all the G7 Nations. Here is a recent quote from an article from the Toronto Star, “Canada’s total non-financial debt-to-GDP is considerably worse than the global average; at a massive 343 percent it is one of the highest in the world”. So remember, debt expansion does have severe consequences with the promise of more TAX and less money to you and me!
  • Real inflation does not seem to be transitory, as Fed Chair Jerome Powel claims. As a note, Central Bankers have a terrible track record of forecasting the economy. On the contrary, 2021 has been a year of severe inflation of double digits in many assets classes, and I suspect it will continue for the foreseeable future. 
  • I still see a threat of a significant market correction as markets are highly overvalued, and this is not the time to be complacent with your wealth.
  • In my opinion, we have a severe leadership crisis in our Nation (most Nations) as most politicians and Parties see lockdowns and business restrictions as viable solutions. As a result, we have lost over 180,000 businesses in Canada and growing (how tragic) with record suicides and depression. We need leadership that uses common sense and proper consultation with business owners and broad base industry. 
  • The virus variances continue to be in the limelight, and vaccines are not providing the promised long-term immunity. Israel is six months ahead of the rest of the world in broad adoption of vaccines and provides good stats, and the double vaxed are getting the variant at the same rate as unvaxed. Will ongoing boosters be the solution? To be clear, I am not anti-vaccine, and each individual should do what they feel is best for their health after proper research and consulting medical professionals. We all need to respect each other’s choices. I am deeply concerned about the growing divisions and even hatred in society over this issue.
  • There are rising geo-political tensions in the Middle East and Asia. If things deteriorate, this will have a significant impact on markets. 

To my final point, are you prepared? Preparation is not living in fear but using wisdom as our world is becoming more unstable in multiple ways (droughts, pandemics, crazy storms, earthquakes, social unrest, wreckless politicians and central banks, Etc.). We had three 1000 year plus events this summer!

  • If you have not done a financial review this year, I strongly suggest you do one. Do you need to change your portfolio mix? The smart money has already done this.
  • I recommend you should also look at your budget. Are you living within your means and saving each month? Do you need to cut expenses and focus on eliminating debt as part of your plan? 
  • Build up at least three months of emergency funds. As you know, our world is in a volatile phase (80 to 85-year Cycle), and cash is king in a crisis! 
  • Build up three months of essential household goods and non-perishable foods. Please do not horde; slowly build up what you need by adding a few extras each time you shop.
  • Stay connected with several good friends/family and build a robust social network. We all need people we can chat with and do meaningful and healthy activities with real-world stresses. 
  • If you are a person of faith, keep growing and strengthening your spiritual foundation.

In conclusion, be proactive with the crucial matters of life, faith, social network, health and fitness, business or career and please don’t neglect your financial priorities. If you need a second opinion and some new ideas, please feel free to reach out to me. bill@fivefoldfinancial.ca or 778-539-7107. 

All the best for the remaining 2021,

Bill

PS For business owners and professionals, I will be doing a live webinar and interview JP Laporte, the founder of the Personal Pension Plan. We will discuss the many advantages of the PPP over an RRSP or an IPP. Please join us on September 22 at noon PST (45 minutes with a short Q&A). I will send out a ZOOM invite in the next Blog. 

PPS In the next Blog an update on Gold, Silver and Cryptocurrency.

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