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When Laura Paglia became president and chief executive officer of the Investment Industry Association of Canada (IIAC) in August 2021, it was “at a time of dramatic transformation in the financial sector and capital markets, and sweeping changes in the regulatory framework,” according to IIAC chair Richard Rousseau.

Taking over from Ian Russell, who previously ran the IIAC for 15 years, Ms. Paglia has wasted no time in her endeavour to bring change to the association. Having spent two decades as a securities litigation and regulatory lawyer, she has been able to leverage hands-on practical experience with industry issues.

Now, more than six months into her new role, Ms. Paglia speaks to Globe Advisor about the IIAC’s evolving mission, efforts to eliminate duplicate regulation, and resources to help advisors and investors navigate upcoming milestones like the intergenerational wealth transfer.

What is priority number one for the IIAC under your leadership?

One of the things the IIAC is looking at is the way Canadians invest and how they would like to have their finances looked after versus the multiple regulators and pieces of legislation we have in this country: do they reflect the investor reality? What you see is a lot of duplication around regulation and legislation related to financial services and that duplication, we believe, confuses the investor and doesn’t add a net benefit and could be eliminated.

We believe there should be a cost-benefit analysis of how regulation and legislation are addressed in making matters as clear and simple as possible to investors.

Is there one challenge you expect to face in your tenure that could overshadow all others?

Well, we are also going to be looking at the great intergenerational transfer of wealth. On one end is the protection of aging investors on practical matters like mild cognitive impairment, which is going to happen to all of us at some point. In the middle is the retirement savings gap and how the private sector is looking to fill that gap. And then on the other end is this new generation of investors and how they invest with technology and otherwise; how they think. ... [Financial advisors’] role in the great transfer of wealth in Canada is [that] they are truly on the front line.

This interview has been edited and condensed.

- Jameson Berkow, Globe Advisor Reporter

Must-reads from Globe Advisor this week

Do you know about your client’s crypto holdings?

If advisors want to help their clients make the most tax-efficient claims this season, it’s important for them to be aware of their cryptocurrency investments in order to explain how evolving digital asset tax rules can impact their entire portfolios. Jameson Berkow looks at why a certain degree of subjective professional judgment is required to determine how the rules are applied.

Fraud-related financial losses more than double

Government data from the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre shows there was a 130-per-cent year-over-year increase in fraud reported financial losses in 2021, totalling $379-million. Older clients and those less technologically savvy are more likely to fall for scams. Renee Sylvestre-Williams reports on how advisors can help prevent their clients from becoming victims and losing large sums of money.

Establishment of RIAs in Canada takes shape with CI Financial’s push

Toronto-based independent fund giant CI Financial Corp., which has been actively expanding its registered investment advisor (RIA) network in the U.S., is forging ahead with plans to launch similar partnerships in Canada. Kurt MacAlpine, the company’s chief executive officer, says a rebranded high-worth division and recent acquisition of Northwood Family Office will collaborate to form what he thinks will be Canada’s first RIA business model. Brenda Bouw digs deeper on why a growing number of firms in North America are pursuing the independent, fiduciary fee-based model.

Alternatives boom means a greater focus on assets’ transparency

Advisors need to recognize the unique risks that alternative investments pose to their clients and sharpen their due diligence on these products as they become more popular, according to experts. Recent redemption freezes of popular private debt funds highlight the need to follow the know-your-product obligations. Jameson Berkow reports on the growth in the sector along with the risks.

Also see:

How to invest in the metaverse while the space is still developing

Fears rise over ‘greenwash’ bonds

How the investment industry’s digital transformation is making advisors more productive

U.S. ruling on bond ETFs raises a market risk

How advisors are helping support the fight for Ukraine

What you and your clients need to know

Canadian stocks with earnings and cash flow growth

It’s been a choppy few weeks for Canadian equity markets but the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is higher than it was since the start of the year. What are the Canadian-listed companies that appear beaten down in terms of price action but continue to show positive, long-term earnings and cash flow growth? Ian Tam of Morningstar Canada looks at 14 stocks out of 704 companies that show a year-to-date prices change worse than negative 7.7 per cent.

Is this ETF’s yield of 8 per cent too good to be true?

Is Hamilton Enhanced Multi-Sector Covered Call ETF a reliable source of income for retirees with its high yield that’s roughly three times the yield of the S&P/TSX Composite Index? There’s a lot going on behind the scenes of this product similar to other high-yielding ones. John Heinzl digs deeper on what investors need to know before taking the plunge.

What does another meme stock rally mean?

More than a year after retail investors forced an epic squeeze of a handful of heavily shorted stocks, aided by social media, a few famous “meme stocks” were back in action this week. GameStop Corp. surged 14.5 per cent on Wednesday while AMC Entertainment Holdings jumped almost 14 per cent. Here’s what market watchers say drove the rally and what’s ahead.

– Compiled by Globe Advisor staff