[Note: I apologize for the lack of a video and light posting this week. I’ve been sick like a dog and only just recovered ever so slightly. Speaking of which, do you notice how expensive over-the-counter drugs are at Shopper’s Drug Mart compared to Costco or Wal-Mart?]
Food prices have been trending upwards already but we haven’t yet seen the kind of price increases that consumers in emerging markets have been experiencing. That may be about to change. The Globe & Mail reported that Weston is increasing prices on bread, cookies and cakes by an average of 5 per cent starting April 1 (Sorry, this is not an All Fools Day joke).
The Bank of Canada decided to keep interest rates level at 1 per cent. The Prime rate to which variable-rate mortgages and lines of credit are tied to remains at 3 per cent. In its accompanying statement the Bank said the economic recovery here at home is “proceeding slightly faster than expected” but inflation had been “consistent” with its expectations.
TD Bank became the first bank to boost its dividend since the big banks stopped regular dividend increases to conserve capital in the wake of the financial crisis. The Bank increased its dividend by 8.2 per cent, the first such increase since May 2008.
Warren Buffett’s annual letter to shareholders was much talked about this week. Larry MacDonald liked the part where Buffett warns about reading too much into a company’s net income figures. Michael James offered a sampling of some interesting nuggets. You can read the original letter on the Berkshire Hathaway website.
Longleaf Partners Funds is a much-admired US mutual fund company. Tom Bradley of Steadyhand Funds posted a few interesting morsels from their year-end report. The Longleaf report is available here.
Did you procrastinate on your RRSP contributions until the last minute? Jon Chevreau says that setting up regular contributions will help eliminate the last-minute scramble. As an added bonus, send in your T1213 form and get your tax refund upfront.
Should you obtain a mortgage through a broker or a banker? Financial Uproar weighs in.
Canadian Money Forum members are discussing the best oil company stock here. I’m already slick with oil exposure by owning XIU.
Million Dollar Journey featured a guest post on mutal fund sales loads.
Preet explains why investors who have flocked to fixed income securities are in store for a rude awakening if bond yields spike.
Canadian Financial DIY posted highlights from the Credit Suisse Global Investment Returns Yearbook. The report updates the It is available for download here.
Blessed by the Potato debates whether value investing is a form of market timing.
That’s it for this week. Have a great weekend everyone!