3 episodes

The ultimate guide to ETF investing for Canadians. Hosted by Justin Bender of PWL Capital.

Canadian Portfolio Manager Podcast Justin Bender

    • Investing

The ultimate guide to ETF investing for Canadians. Hosted by Justin Bender of PWL Capital.

    Tax Me If You Can: Foreign Withholding Taxes on ETF Distributions

    Tax Me If You Can: Foreign Withholding Taxes on ETF Distributions

    In this tax-heavy episode, Justin discusses his part-time obsession – foreign withholding taxes. Throughout the show, he explains which specific ETFs are best held in each account type in order to reduce this largely hidden tax drag. He is joined by industry experts from BMO, BlackRock and Vanguard, who each discuss their company’s approach to mitigating this cost. ZEM and XEC also go head-to-head in the latest ETF Kombat. As a side-bar, Justin’s popular model ETF portfolios have been updated for 2020, and now include Light and Ridiculous levels of portfolio complexity (with Ludicrous and Plaid versions in the works). Justin finishes off the show by answering a listener question regarding the new iShares foreign equity ETFs that trade in U.S. dollars.
    Three ETF structures for accessing U.S., international and emerging stock markets [0:02:03.3] How Level I and Level II withholding taxes arise [0:02:28.3] How the type of account holding your ETF impacts foreign withholding taxes [0:03:44.3] The most tax-efficient U.S. equity ETFs for each account type [0:05:41.3] Why investors with smaller portfolios should generally avoid U.S.-listed ETFs in their RRSP (even when using the Norbert’s gambit strategy to cheaply convert their loonies to dollars) [0:06:43.3] When can purchasing U.S.-listed ETFs in TFSAs and taxable accounts still make sense? [0:09:03.3] Kevin Prins of BMO ETFs discusses some of their tax-efficient international and emerging markets equity ETFs [0:11:31.3] The worst fund structure for international equity ETFs [0:14:28.3] The most tax-efficient international equity ETFs for each account type [0:15:27.3] Steven Leong of BlackRock Canada discusses XEF’s transition from a U.S. wrap structure to one that holds the stocks directly, and why the U.S. wrap structure can still be a more cost-effective choice for some other asset classes [0:18.40.3] The most tax-efficient emerging markets equity ETFs for each account type [0:24:11.3] Why ZEM’s tax-efficient structure may still not beat XEC’s after all costs are considered [0:26:03.3] ETF Kombat: ZEM vs. XEC [0:27:51.3] The most tax-efficient global equity ETFs for each account type [0:31:23.3] Scott Johnston of Vanguard Canada discusses the recent tax-efficient changes to VXC’s fund structure [0:32:28.3] The overall cost of currency-hedged global fixed income ETFs (and why there’s still room for improvement) [0:35:42.3] Foreign withholding taxes on the Vanguard and iShares asset allocation ETFs [0:38:09.3] Ask Bender: Martin has a question about the foreign withholding tax implications of the new iShares USD ETFs (XUU.U, XEF.U, XEC.U and XAW.U) [0:39:28.3] Next episode, we’ll tackle asset location (i.e. where you should hold each of your ETFs for maximum tax efficiency). See you then! [0:42:06.3]

    • 42 min
    Dumping Your Losers: Tax Loss Selling with ETFs

    Dumping Your Losers: Tax Loss Selling with ETFs

    In Episode 2, Justin gets into the weeds of tax loss selling with ETFs. You’ll learn the core rules to follow, common pitfalls to avoid, and the best “portfolio-tested” ETFs for implementing this tax-efficient strategy. Back by popular demand, the show also features another ETF Kombat, this time with VCN and XIC facing-off in an epic battle you can’t miss. And if you don’t have time to listen to the entire episode, skip ahead to the TLDL (too long, didn’t listen) segment, where the entire episode will be summarized in under five minutes.
    Introduction to tax loss selling [0:00:47.2] Why it’s sometimes okay to “sell low” [0:02:38.2] Understanding CRA’s superficial loss rules [0:03:36.2] Which ETFs are classified as “identical property”, according to CRA? [0:05:47.2] Should you worry about the future performance of your replacement ETF? [0:07:30.2] Why you need to coordinate tax loss selling with your spouse [0:09:18.2] Why DRIPs can be an investor’s worst nightmare when tax loss selling [0:11:00.2] How diversifying your portfolio managers can “di-worsify” your tax loss selling strategy [0:11:51.2] Should you look for tax loss selling opportunities year-round, or just in December? [0:12:58.2] How big of a loss do you need before selling your ETF? Larry Swedroe’s $5,000 and 5% rule [0:14:03.2] Justin Bender’s $10,000 and 10% adjusted rule [0:16:17.2] Should you bank losses, even if you have no gains to offset? [0:18:19.2] Justwealth’s tax loss selling strategy, featuring James Gauthier, Chief Investment Officer [0:20:24.2] PWL Toronto’s tax loss selling strategy, featuring Shannon Bender, Portfolio Manager [0:23:09.2] ETF Kombat: VCN vs. XIC [0:26:44.2] Introducing PWL Toronto’s tax loss selling ETF pairs: [0:31:33.2] Global equity (ex Canada): XAW/VXC [0:32:38.2] Canadian equity: VCN/FLCD, XIC/FLCD, ZCN/FLCD [0:35:11.2] U.S. equity: XUU/VUN [0:40:21.2] International equity: XEF/ZEA [0:41:50.2] Emerging markets equity: XEC/ZEM [0:43:58.2] Improving your international and emerging market equity tax loss selling ETF pairs [0:45:35.2] Are asset allocation ETFs ideal for tax loss selling? [0:49:42.2] TLDL (Too Long, Didn’t Listen) – a quick summary of the main topics [0:52:40.2]

    • 57 min
    Plain and Simple: Vanguard’s Asset Allocation ETFs

    Plain and Simple: Vanguard’s Asset Allocation ETFs

    In the debut episode of the Canadian Portfolio Manager podcast, we kick things off by helping you choose which Vanguard Asset Allocation ETF is right for you. During the show, Justin estimates the future expected returns of these one-fund solutions, and also discusses the reasons for their overweight to Canadian stocks. At the end of the podcast, personal finance expert, Robb Engen (of Boomer and Echo fame), asks Justin whether he should optimize his portfolio to save on product fees and taxes.
    Using Vanguard’s Investor Questionnaire as a starting point to determining a suitable portfolio mix between stocks and bonds [0:02:54.1] Why you shouldn’t buy any of these ETFs if you need the cash back in less than 5 years [0:04:17.1] Picking the best asset allocation ETF for your time horizon [0:05:03.1] Why you should pay more attention to your willingness to take risk, rather than your ability to take risk [0:06:04.1] Considerations for new investors who want to dive head first into an aggressive all-equity portfolio [0:08:50.1] How to estimate the future returns on stocks and bonds [0:10:53.1] The underwhelming expected returns for VCIP, VCNS, VBAL, VGRO and VEQT [0:18:28.1] ETF Kombat: VGRO vs. XGRO [0:20:24.1] The “optimal” split between Canadian and foreign stocks in your portfolio [0:24:17.1] Is a more complicated portfolio worth the hassle (featuring Robb Engen)? [0:33:12.1]

    • 41 min

Customer Reviews

Kaleb35704 ,

Great Canadian content

Anything from the PWL crew seems to be solid. Thankful they are using social media such as YouTube and podcasts to communicate with Canadians. Keep the great content coming!

montreal23 ,


Love the work you are doing educating people like me. Thank you. The podcast is informative. The sound is good. The only thing i would change is the cuts with voices from movies. Too many. I hope that with more listener questions the overall flow will improve. Thanks anyways!

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