General Hillier: "Validate and verify, rely on your confidants and
protect yourself from surprise attacks"
TORONTO, Sept. 9 /CNW/ - While the worst of the battle may be over, now
is not time to be complacent. General (Retired) Rick Hillier and Patricia
Lovett-Reid, Senior Vice-President, TD Waterhouse, are issuing Fall Marching
Orders designed to help Canadians ensure that they have a sound financial
strategy in place. TD Boot Camp's proven military directives align military
strategy with investment strategy to help Canadians develop a plan of action
and seize opportunities.
TD Boot Camp's Fall Marching Orders:
Ms. Lovett-Reid and General Hillier began providing advice to Canadian
investors through TD Boot Camp in January 2009, and the duo are back with fall
marching orders. The General and Ms. Lovett-Reid collaborated to adapt
military directives to financial planning advice for Canadians adjusting to
the new economic climate.
1. Validate and verify
Validate and verify that your strategy is still applicable. It is
essential to continually reassess.
"Remember this: Order. Counter order. Disorder," says General Hillier.
"What does this mean? The worst thing a leader can do is constantly change
their long-term goal or strategy, because the result of that is no strategy,
no approach and therefore a much higher risk of failure."
What does this mean for Canadian investors? "Now is the time to verify
that you have the right composition in your portfolio, but that doesn't mean
you should change your original strategy," says Ms. Lovett-Reid. "Despite the
recession, we've proven that buy and hold still works for long term investors.
So, revisit your original strategy and ensure you have a plan in place to help
you achieve your retirement goals. A first step is to speak to and receive a
personal assessment from your financial advisor."
2. It's all about the people: rely on your confidants
You trusted your battle buddies to get you through the worst. Those
battle buddies, the people that saw you through the economic downturn, are the
confidants you can now rely on to give you advice and counsel.
"Soldiers want to execute their mission with the conditions set for
success," says General Hillier. "To succeed, you need your battle buddies who
can now help you move forward and take advantage of a changing dynamic."
"For Canadian investors, we've been through the worst of the battle; now
we want to win the war," says Ms. Lovett-Reid. "To do this, we need to trust
the people who got us through the past year because they can help:
professionals such as your financial advisor, lawyer and accountant."
3. Maintain flexibility
Ensure you always keep a reserve so that you can take advantage of
opportunities and manage risk.
"Flexibility is essential," says General Hillier. "You don't want to lock
everything in to one tactical approach, things change and you want to be ready
to seize opportunities and balance risk when that happens."
"Keep a reserve and maintain a balance in your portfolio," echoes Ms.
Lovett-Reid. "Your portfolio is not carved in stone-you want the ability to be
proactive to changes in market conditions."
4. Metrics for success
You can't manage what you don't measure. This is extremely important
during a mission-and also for your investment portfolio.
"You have to set metrics and the challenge is that many measurements in
life are subjective, not objective. Rely on your confidants to help you to
measure success against both concrete benchmarks and the subjective goals,"
advises General Hillier.
"Half of market movement is valuation and the other half emotion," says
Ms. Lovett-Reid. "What does that mean? While it is very important to
continually benchmark your portfolio's performance, it is also importance to
evaluate your emotions and discuss them with your confidants who can help you
to gain control and feel less anxious about your financial future."
5. Protect yourself from surprise attacks
"You can give yourself protection from surprise attacks, but the risk is
never reduced to zero," says General Hillier.
"For investors, it is about ensuring you have downside protection in your
portfolio: rebalance your asset mix, stick to quality stocks and bonds, avoid
concentration risk (holding large positions in a single stock or sector), keep
a reserve and use a disciplined stop-loss rule to protect your portfolio from
volatility," advises Lovett-Reid.
Ms. Lovett-Reid advises that investors could take advantage of key
opportunities in the Canadian market. "The current global recession has placed
Canada front and centre on the world stage, showcasing its financial
stability. Canada is not just a great place to live and raise a family but
also to conduct business and invest," says Lovett-Reid.
"Canada is the best country in the world," agrees General Hillier. "We
have security, stability, luxuries and rights that most people in the world
can only dream about."
About TD Bank Financial Group:
The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as
TD Bank Financial Group. TD Bank Financial Group is the sixth largest bank in
North America by branches and serves approximately 17 million customers in
four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial
centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including
TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse
and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking
through TD Banknorth and TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and
Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD Bank Financial Group also ranks
among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 5.5
million online customers. TD Bank Financial Group had CDN$545 billion in
assets on July 31, 2009. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol
"TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.
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For further information:
For further information: Carolyn Abbass, Karen McCullough, Paradigm
Public Relations, (416) 203-2223, email@example.com,
firstname.lastname@example.org; Maria Leung, TD Bank Financial Group, (416)