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Globe Investor Rock-solid REITs, bank stock upside and new cannabis mutual fund: What you need to know in investing this week

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.



Three rock-solid REITs for income seekers

Real estate investment trusts deserve a spot in every income investor’s portfolio, John Heinzl writes. They generate steady cash flow, provide the opportunity for long-term income and capital growth and – if you focus on high-quality REITs – let you sleep soundly. Here he looks at three REITs that check of all these boxes. As a bonus, even though REITs as a sector have rallied this year, all three are trading at a discount to their net asset value, which makes them even more appealing. (Disclosure: I own all three personally).

Read more: John Heinzl’s model dividend growth portfolio as of Aug. 31, 2018

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Related: Canadian REITs that offer safety and value

Cheer up TSX bank investors: the one earnings number that truly matters is flashing a buy signal right now

The third-quarter earnings season for Canada’s big banks underscored something that investors should embrace: The banks’ bread-and-butter lending activities are still gushing money, David Berman writes. Sure, lending money to Bob and Mary for their first bungalow sounds like a sleepy activity – and, yeah, there are lingering concerns about the housing market and indebted Canadians. But the scale of this lending activity is really something to behold, and it is driving up net interest income, or the difference between what a bank pays for deposits and what it makes on loans, at an impressive clip – good news for any bank investor who wants bigger earnings and quarterly dividends.

Read more: Three bank stocks that insiders are trading

How Canada’s first pure-play cannabis mutual fund plans to outsmart other investors

Canadian investors who want to gain exposure to the high-flying cannabis sector without having to participate in individual stock picking will soon have the option of turning to a traditional mutual fund, Brenda Bouw writes. The StoneCastle Cannabis Growth Fund is set to launch this coming Friday, a month before recreational cannabis is expected to become legal in Canada on Oct. 17. It's believed to be the first Canadian pure-play mutual fund targeting the pot industry, although there were recent launches of actively managed exchange-traded funds with similar mandates.

Why this $620-million fund manager is reducing risk in his Canadian equity portfolio while loading up on U.S. value stocks

Portfolio manager Ryan Lewenza plays it straight with his clients around what to expect this year. “We’ve been telling clients we’re expecting a good year, not a great year,” says Mr. Lewenza, senior vice-president and portfolio manager at Turner Investments, citing volatility from trade wars and rising interest rates amid an aging bull market as weighing on overall markets. While he's expecting a rally in equity markets in the fourth quarter and believes we're in a longer-term secular bull market, he also believes the risks are higher today than they were in the past six to nine months. The Globe and Mail recently spoke with Mr. Lewenza, who manages about $620-million in assets, about what he’s been buying and selling.

Low-cost investing smackdown: Balanced ETFs vs. robo-advisers

A welcome new development in exchange-traded funds raises questions about the relevance of robo-advisers for people who want a simple, low-cost ETF portfolio, Rob Carrick writes. Balanced ETFs give you a fully diversified portfolio in a single purchase – you keep buying more of your chosen fund, and the managers handle diversification and rebalancing for you. That’s kind of what robo-advisers do for clients, but with one big difference: Robo-adviser clients pay fund fees, plus an advice charge that is usually in the range of 0.5 of a percentage point. Are robo-advisers worth the extra cost? The Portfolio Strategy’s Balanced ETF-Robo Adviser faceoff will help you decide.

Read more Carrick: Despite a strong economy, debt-related stress is on the rise in Canada

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What investors need to know for the week ahead

Economic data on tap this week: U.S. consumer credit numbers for July on Monday; Canadian housing starts for August on Tuesday; U.S. Federal Reserve's Beige Book of regional conditions on Wednesday; U.S. inflation figures for August on Thursday; and U.S retail sales for August on Friday. Companies releasing financial results include Roots, Dollarama, Kroeger and Transat AT.

Looking for more investing ideas and opinions?

Gordon Pape answers reader questions: Avoid a crash with cash, emergency funds and TFSA withdrawals

The world’s most expensive – and least costly – cities for Canadians living overseas

Tesla, Loblaw and the Globe’s other investing stars and dogs for the week

Attention investors who want to avoid foreign exchange fees in their DIY accounts

The cost of private school can run far deeper than tuition in fees, fundraising and excursions

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Don’t use the longest bull market as a reason to sell

Avoid the surprise of having to pay someone else’s taxes

Why investors need to look beyond diversification strategies to manage portfolio risk

This little-known indicator has something encouraging to say about the economy and markets

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