By Staff | June 16, 2009 | Last updated on June 16, 2009
3 min read
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Desjardins Group is building an even stronger presence in socially responsible investing (SRI). Desjardins Private Management clients can now invest via segregated accounts managed according to an activist investment principle, which emphasizes dialogue with companies.

The offering is in partnership with Northwest & Ethical Investments L.P., Canada’s leader in SRI and a 50%-owned subsidiary of Desjardins.

“Providing the option of making socially responsible investments enhances our discretionary portfolio management offering,” states Jean Brunelle, director with Desjardins Private Management.

In addition to segregated accounts, discretionary portfolio management will also boast new DIM Private Funds, while some existing funds will be modified. These enhancements are part of an inclusive offering that combines the many aspects of family asset management.

For more on SRI, read:Is SRI sustainable in a downturn?

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Russell to offer U.S. currency hedging

Beginning June 15, 2009, Russell Investments Canada Ltd. will commence U.S. currency hedging in the following portfolios:

• Russell Retirement Essentials Portfolio • Russell Retirement Essentials Class Portfolio • Russell Diversified Monthly Income Portfolio • Russell Diversified Monthly Income Class Portfolio

This implementation will allow clients to invest in these balanced portfolios without concern that currency fluctuations between the Canadian and U.S. dollar might materially affect their returns.

“While Russell believes that currency impact is largely muted over the longer term, we also continually monitor the economic and investment environment and try to minimize any potential risks we can foresee for clients,” says Sadiq S. Adatia, chief investment officer with Russell Investments Canada.

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Scotiabank offers small businesses guide

Get Growing: Keys to Unlocking the Potential of Your Small Business, lands in bookstores today, offering entrepreneurs and small businesses advice and strategies to build a successful business.

In the book, Scotiabank small business experts and co-authors David Wilton and Kyle McNamara offer guidance on how to handle the major challenges that small businesses face. It also talks about some success stories that the authors uncovered during their five-month Canadian tour.

“Small business owners we met across Canada discussed how they overcame challenges and capitalized on opportunities. We saw first-hand their willingness to share those perspectives for the benefit of others,” concluded McNamara. “Through this book, our goal is to use the advice and information we gathered from the businesses we met to help facilitate an exchange of ideas.”

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Acuity plans changes to funds’ objectives

Acuity Funds announced today that it will seek the approval of unitholders of the Acuity Income Trust Fund to change its fundamental investment objective, expanding and diversifying its permitted investments to include other income-producing securities.

The fund’s managers are seeking the option of investing in dividend-paying stocks and other types of equity and/or debt securities, including high-yield, corporate, convertible and government bonds. If the move is ratified by unitholders, the fund’s name will be changed to the Acuity Diversified Income Fund.

The company is also seeking unitholder approval for changes to the investment objectives of the Acuity Growth & Income Fund to allow the fund to invest in corporate debt.

Notice of unitholder meetings and an information circular will be mailed to applicable unitholders for meetings to be held on or about Aug. 12, 2009. If approved, the aforementioned changes are anticipated to become effective by the end of August 2009.

(06/16/09) staff


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