There are a ton of resources available to help you learn about investing in Canada. It can be tricky to separate the good from the bad with limited time, so I’ve put together a list that should be a great starting point.
Canadian Couch Potato: a site authored by Dan Bortolotti, a financial planner and writer for MoneySense magazine. He’s an outspoken proponent of index investing in Canada. The idea behind the couch potato portfolio is, set-up index investments, adjust periodically, sit back and watch your investments appreciate over time. Dan also has a great podcast which I highly recommend.
CanadianCapitalist: this site isn’t quite updated as much as it once was, but is still a great resource for Canadian investors interested in personal finance and index investing.
I could suggest books that are hundreds of pages long and densely packed with material and personal finance philosophy. There are some really good, really deep reads. However, I’m not going to do that. Most people have neither the attention nor the interest. Instead, just read these two short books on finance:
John Bogle – The Little Book of Common Sense Investing: The Only Way to Guarantee Your Fair Share of Stock Market Returns
John Bogle, founder of Vanguard, created the world’s first index fund. If you want to understand index investing, and why it can work, in simple language that you don’t need a business degree to decode, make this your first stop. It’s 240 pages with fairly large print.
Andrew Hallam set out with the goal of writing a personal finance book targeted towards teachers. The book is written in extremely understandable language, structured rather well and provides a ton of useful, straightforward personal finance information. The book ranges from constructing an index portfolio, to behavioural pitfalls in investing. He also has specific information for Canadians, which is a nice touch. The second edition is 256 pages, with graphs.
CanadianCouchPotato: this is by far, the most informative Canadian personal finance podcast to date. Yeah, I’m a bit of a fan. I’ve been following the blog for years, and the podcast hits all the points. If you have time to check out just one podcast, make it this. The podcast is split into a few sections: general Canadian personal finance issues, reader questions and bad investment advice. This last segment, in specific, is amusing and informative in equal parts. They just released their third episode, so it shouldn’t take all that long to catch up.
Mostly Money Mostly Canadian with Preet Banerjee: Preet is a Canadian personal finance consultant and writes for publications including The Globe and Mail as well as MoneySense. His podcast is less succinct than CanadianCouchPotato, and less focused on index investing. However, he has interesting expert interviews and segments which are worth a listen, if you have the time.
Lars Kroijer – Investing Demystified: Lars Kroijer, a former hedge fund manager, put out a series of five short videos discussing how to invest, if you can’t hope to beat the market. They’re well produced, well written and easy to understand. Lars talks about a two fund solution, a world index fund and a bond fund, which simplifies index investing.
Do-it-Yourself Investing with Justin Bender: If you’re interested in ETF investing in Canada, Justin will show you how to get started, with major discount brokerage platforms in Canada (including: TD Direct Investing, BMO Investorline, CIBC Investor’s Edge, RBC Direct Investing, Scotia iTrade and National Bank Direct Brokerage).
Reddit also has a great community under the PersonalFinanceCanada subreddit. I follow it pretty regularly and haven’t been disappointed.
There are a wide variety of ways you can get informed on managing your Canadian personal finances. With the internet, it’s easier than ever before, even if you aren’t a book reader (though I would suggest checking out those two titles – they’re a solid investment in your future).