Due Diligence Process

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I thought I would take this opportunity to give you some insights on what I have been up to lately, a little peak into my Due Diligence Process.


During RSP season (Jan-Feb) I get the chance to see a lot of you and get caught up on your personal and financial situations as well as review your investments.  However, after RSP season I use the downtime to start my Due Diligence Process.  This includes reviewing all of the my clients mutual fund holdings, making sure the managers of your investments are doing what they are supposed to be doing and delivering on their process.  At the same time I pick up the phone and I call the representatives and I try to get face to face meeting with all the core/main managers that manage your money so that I can to hear directly from them, eye to eye, what they are doing in the current environment to invest your money!  Now this is only possible because I have a narrow and focused approach!  What this means is I use only 10-15 funds and 7-8 of the best money managers, and depending on the goal and risk, the allocation of those funds changes on a client to client basis.  This narrow and focused approach allows me to be an expert on these 15 funds/8 managers, allows me to stay on top of those funds, but more importantly because of I have millions of your dollars invested with each manager I can pick up the phone and get a meeting!  So that’s exactly what I have been busy doing in April.


On April 13th I made a trip to Toronto and was able to schedule meetings with 3 managers face to face. Jonathon Popper of the Manulife Monthly High Income fund, Dividend Income fund, U.S. Monthly High Income Fund, and Strategic Dividend Bundle as well as Dan Janis of Strategic Income Fund, Strategic Dividend Bundle and finally Terry Carr of the Yield Opportunities Fund.  Now before I left for this trip I had looked at the current environment of healthy economic data and potential of rising interest rates and wanted to meet with Terry Carr of the Yield Opportunities fund to see if I would add this fund into my core fund line-up, needless to say I have and have started to use it with some of your investments and this is as a direct result of my Due Diligence Process and meeting Terry to truly understand how his fund is invested and what he is trying to achieve!


This past week I met with Christian Deckart of Mawer Investments who co-manages the Global Equity Class, Global Balanced, Diversified Investment as well as Global Small Cap fund and got reassurance from him that despite global uncertainty and overvalued investments, they don’t invest in the markets per se, they invest in good companies and they have a buy and sell target on those good companies and therefore, they don’t really care what the “market” is doing, the point is they have a great process and they stick to it and they have the performance to prove that it works!


At the Beginning of May I also had the good fortune to travel to California to hear Marianne Harrison, President and CEO of Manulife Canada as well as a one on one chat with Paul Lorentz, Executive Vice President of Individual Wealth Management of Manulife.  These are good opportunities to be sure that the culture of the company that you are working with is in good hands and culture is something that trickles down from the top and I can assure you that the culture of Manulife is in good hands!


So hopefully this has enlightened you slightly on what I do behind the scenes and that I too have a process and I too stick to it, and after 17 years of being in the business, it does work!  Names like Mawer and the fund names themselves I know will be familiar to you because I know for certain that each and every one of you holds one of the funds mentioned above, and that’s a result of my narrow and focused approach!


If I haven’t seen you yet this year I look forward to seeing you soon and sharing my Due Diligence Process with you in person!


This material is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation. The securities mentioned may not necessarily be considered suitable investments for all clients. Contact your Investment Advisor to discuss your individual investment needs.




Todd T. Hopper BA, CFP
Certified Financial Planner
Account Representative, Manulife Securities Investment Services Inc.
Life Insurance Advisor, Vision Wealth Consultants Inc.