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The Globe and Mail

Three top picks from Northland’s David Cockfield

David Cockfield is managing director and portfolio manager at Northland Wealth Management. His focus is on Canadian equities.

Top Picks:

iShares Canadian Short Term Corporate Maple Bond Index ETF (XSH TSX)

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The investment strategy of XSH is to invest in a regularly rebalanced portfolio of bonds, selected by BlackRock Canada from time to time, that closely matches the characteristics of the Maple Short Term Corporate Bond Index. 87 per cent of the portfolio is in the 1-5 year term range.

Brookfield Asset Management (BAM.A TSX)

Brookfield Asset Management with $200-billion assets under management is an alternative asset manager operating globally. Their portfolio includes residential and commercial properties, utilities, transport, energy, timberlands and agrilands. The stock has recently moved to annual highs and trades at low P/E of 11.0 times.

BMO Low Volatility Canadian Equity ETF (ZLB TSX)

This Canadian ETF was designed to provide investors with a means to participate in a portfolio of low beta Canadian stocks. Beta measures the sensitivity of a security to market movements. The top portfolio sectors are financials (18.8 per cent), consumer staples (18.1 per cent), energy (15.9 per cent), telecos (9.3 per cent) and consumer discretionary (14 per cent).

Past Picks: August 12, 2013

BMO Low Volatility Canadian Equity ETF (ZLB TSX)

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Then: $19.36; Now: $22.87 +18.13%; Total return: +20.82%

Agrium Inc. (AGU TSX)

Then: $89.55; Now: $100.26 +11.96%; Total return: +15.70%

BCE Inc. (BCE TSX)

Then: $41.59; Now: $48.29 +16.11%; Total return: +22.23%

Total return average: +19.58%

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Disclosure:

Personal

Family

Portfolio/Fund

ZLB

N

N

Y

AGU

N

N

Y

BCE

N

N

Y


Market outlook:

Equity markets in North America appear tired and in need of a rest or a correction. So far, markets seem indifferent to significant international problems in the Ukraine and Iraq. The coming end to the Federal Reserve security buying program implies a beginning to tightening – normally a difficult time for equities. Investors should in the interim conserve cash and avoid high beta securities.

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