By Staff | May 18, 2006 | Last updated on May 18, 2006
3 min read
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(May 18, 2006) The majority of actively managed mutual funds continued to underperform the standard benchmark indices through the first quarter of the year, according to the latest Standard & Poors Indices Versus Active Funds (SPIVA) Scorecard.

According to the index creator, the S&P/TSX Composite index outperformed 69.8% of Canadian equity funds, while the S&P 500 Index outperformed 61.4% of US equity funds. Of course, the index alone would be expected to beat any mutual fund which tracked the index, since investors in the fund see management fees eat away at the gains earned.

The report goes on to point out that only 15.4% of actively managed Canadian Equity funds have outperformed the S&P/TSX Composite Index over a five year time horizon while only 10.5% of actively managed Canadian equity funds have beaten the index over three years.

The SPIVA scorecard does give active managers credit when it comes to smaller issues, stating that 63.3% of small cap equity funds have outperformed the S&P/TSX SmallCap Index in the first quarter of 2006. Over a five year horizon, the performance gap closes, with 45.8% of actively managed Canadian small cap funds outperforming the index.

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MFDA preps for new round of compliance exams

(May 18, 2006) The MFDA is getting ready for its second round of compliance examinations at dealer firms and has issued an advance list of required documents as well as a questionnaire.

The second phase will focus on reviewing deficiencies identified in the first examinations, the MFDA said in a bulletin issued on Thursday, as well as how members resolved those deficiencies.

A number of documents, along with the questionnaire, must be submitted to the MFDA prior to the self-regulator’s second firm visits, including lists of staff and registered salespersons, new and current client accounts, complaint logs, samples of account opening forms, training programs and financial documents.

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Employers could offer better retirement support

(May 18, 2006) When it comes to retirement planning, many Canadians do not feel their employer is offering them much help, according to a Leger Marketing survey sponsored by Edward Jones.

Nationally, 37% of respondents said their employer was either “not very helpful” or “not helpful at all” in helping them plan for retirement. Those in lower income brackets felt the most under-served, with just 16% of those earnings less than $40,000 describing their boss as “extremely helpful” compared to 29% among those earnings more than $60,000.

“This survey question proves there is an opportunity for employers to take charge and help prepare their employees to lead a financially secure life when they retire,” says Edward Jones principal Gary Reamey.

“Those who think they’re getting the information they want from their employers may need more help than they think,” he said. “Employers can be part of the solution and offer quality retirement planning programs to help people from making errors.”

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RBC Centura beefs up anti money laundering unit

(May 18, 2006) RBC Centura — the U.S. subsidiary of Royal Bank — is hiring 40 new staffers at its anti money laundering division in North Carolina.

The unit is responsible for compliance, including U.S. regulations intended to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing activities.

RBC Centura has about $20 billion US in assets, and operates in a number of U.S. states, including North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Georgia and Florida.

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Dundee joins CNQ

(May 18, 2006) Canada’s alternative trading platform, CNQ, has announced that it has approved Dundee Securities as a participating dealer.

The addition of Dundee brings the total number of CNQ participating dealers to 26. Others include BMO Nesbitt Burns, Desjardins Securities, Scotia Capital and TD Securities.

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The staff of have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.