Looking for investing ideas? Here’s your weekly digest of the Globe’s latest insights and analysis from the pros, stock tips, portfolio strategies plus what investors need to know for the week ahead.
As reliable as Old Faithful, Fortis has raised its dividend once more
Fortis is Canada’s version of Old Faithful, Gordon Pape writes. While Yellowstone National Park geyser can be counted on to erupt about every 90 minutes, Fortis can be depended on to raise its dividend at this time every year, through good times and bad. It recently announced a 6.1-per-cent dividend increase to $1.91 annually, effective with the Dec. 1 payment.
This is the 46th consecutive year that Fortis has increased its payout, and it’s not going to stop any time soon. The company is projecting annual dividend increases in the 6-per-cent range at least until 2024. This is exactly how a top-quality dividend stock is supposed to work.
Pot stocks are suddenly surging. Here’s why they’re now worth considering
Bottom feeders are moving into Canada’s marijuana sector, buying beaten-up stocks after a brutal six-month selloff, David Berman writes. For investors who ignored the sector when the stocks were rallying to record highs on frothy expectations, perhaps now is the time to give pot stocks another look. The reason: While stock valuations and investor sentiment have changed, the cannabis market hasn’t.
Perhaps demoralized retail investors have lost interest in a stock like Canopy Growth, for instance. But institutional investors are another story. A look at Canopy’s biggest 20 investors shows that these savvy money managers have increased their holdings, on a net basis, by more than five million shares since the end of September.
BMO has just released its TSX outlook for 2020 - and investors are going to like it
BMO’s chief investment strategist Brian Belski started 2019 forecasting that the S&P/TSX Composite Index would hit 17,000 by the time this year was out. Last week’s break above that milestone for the first time ever has made him - so far at least - one of the most accurate forecasters for Canadian stocks this year, Darcy Keith writes. His bullishness isn’t receding as the decade comes to an end. And if he’s right, 2020 will shape up to be another profitable year for investors in domestic equities.
In his new market outlook released this past week, his “base case” 2020 year-end price target is 18,200, a healthy gain of 7 per cent from where the index stands today. His reasoning is similar to last year when looking ahead to 2019. The TSX is still beaten down versus other global markets and valuations are reasonable given prospects for earnings growth.
Robo-advisers have grown out of the novelty stage. Here’s help in finding one right for you
The novelty stage is officially over for robo-advisers, which means it’s time to pivot from talking about what they do to how well they do it, Rob Carrick writes. The first firms in the robo business in Canada have either reached their five-year anniversary or will shortly. That’s long enough for investors to get meaningful information about the returns generated by the portfolios robo-advisers use for clients. The 2019-20 Globe and Mail Robo-Adviser Guide will help you assess the return information that firms provide on their website.
The guide also includes detailed comparisons of the fees each robo-adviser charges. If you’re wondering what to expect in future returns from a particular robo firm, give more weight to low fees than stellar past results.
More from Rob Carrick: ‘What can we do that will stop the bleeding of our investments?’
Something peculiar has happened to Canadian markets in 2019
For investors, 2019 has been The Year of Upside, Tim Shufelt writes. Every major asset class in Canada has participated in an unusual synchronized rise, upsetting the correlations that typically produce a mix of winners and losers in any given year. Over at least the past 35 years, Canadian investors have not seen anything quite like it. The market-wide ascent, which is also happening in the United States, has coincided with an easing of recession fears in recent weeks and a global shift toward lower interest rates.
Financial markets can break from their traditional patterns, particularly when central banks are pumping stimulus into the financial system. As the economic fallout from the U.S.-China trade dispute spread through the global manufacturing sector this year, central bankers moved aggressively to engineer a recovery.
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What investors need to know for the week ahead
In the week ahead, U.S. markets will be closed Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday and close early Friday: the stock market at 1 p.m. ET and the bond market at 2 p.m.
Bank of Nova Scotia kicks off Canada’s big banks earning season, reporting fourth-quarter and year-end results on Tuesday. The rest of the Big Five report the first week in December. Other companies releasing their latest results this week include Alimentation Couche-Tard and BRP.
Economic data on tap include: Canadian wholesale numbers for September (Monday); U.S. goods trade deficit and new home sales for October (Tuesday); U.S. durable goods orders, plus personal spending and income for October (Wednesday); Canadian GDP for the third quarter (Friday).