Skip to main content

Portfolio manager Barbara Stewart says her best investment move came during the 2008 and 2009 crash, a period when ‘all money managers were put to the test.’

Barbara Stewart, 50

Occupation

Portfolio manager

Story continues below advertisement

Portfolio

Includes shares in Imax Corp., Nvidia Corp., Imperial Oil Ltd., Potash Corp., CIBC and Agrium Inc.

The investor

Barbara Stewart is a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder and manages investment portfolios for high-net-worth clients at Toronto's Cumberland Private Wealth Management Inc. She has done extensive research in the area of women and finance; publications include the report Financial Lives of Girls and Women.

How she invests

Ms. Stewart invests the same way she counsels her clients to invest. Following her firm's approach and research team, she buys "undervalued stocks when the conditions are favourable for a market uptick." She also likes to buy companies with "catalysts for growth."

She owns Agrium and Potash Corp. because they are "in the fertilizer space." This industry has good long-term prospects because of population growth and rising per capita incomes in emerging economies and elsewhere. These two factors should boost meat consumption and, in turn, the planting of grain crops to feed animals.

Story continues below advertisement

Ms. Stewart recently bought CIBC shares because it is "the best capitalized Canadian bank, yet it trades at the lowest price-earnings multiple and has the highest dividend yield of its peers."

Best move

Her best investment move came during the 2008 and 2009 crash, a period when "all money managers were put to the test." Sticking with her value discipline, she deployed cash reserves and became fully invested by early 2009, in time for the lift-off in equity markets.

Worst move

"Long after my firm decided to sell Research In Motion, I opted to hold onto it in my 'play' account. I have a very close relationship with my BlackBerry and I let my own attachment drive the decision to keep the stock. Fortunately, RIM is a relatively small amount of my overall portfolio – smaller now, of course."

Advice

Story continues below advertisement

Spend time up front "developing a strategy that is aligned with your investment objectives as well as with your core personality." When investors ground themselves at this initial phase, "they are far less likely to work against themselves down the road by shifting strategies depending on the headlines."

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Tickers mentioned in this story
Unchecking box will stop auto data updates
Comments

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

If your comment doesn't appear immediately it has been sent to a member of our moderation team for review

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading…

Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.