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Hello,

Here is an invitation to the moch portfolio challenge on howthemarketswork.com.

How the markets work. (trading platform)

Join my free Stock Contest at HowTheMarketWorks.com! (password: AB2011)

In order to participate to the game you must first create a free account with howthemarketswork.com. You then click on the link to join the game.

Google Finance (Research Platform)

It’s easier to follow the markets when you have a bird eye view of it. here are all the symbols entered into the edit portfolio section of Google portfolios. (note not all symbols are the but most of them).

Portfolio 1: Financials

TSE:RY TSE:BNS TSE:TD TSE:CM TSE:NA TSE:BMO TSE:MFC TSE:LB TSE:CWB TSE:SLF TSE:PWF TSE:POW TSE:AGF.B TSE:DC.A TSE:DW TSE:FFH TSE:GMP TSE:GWO TSE:IGM TSE:IAG TSE:KFS TSE:X TSE:OCX TSE:CIX TSE:SII

Portfolio 2: Oil & Gas

TSE:SU TSE:PD TSE:COS TSE:AXC TSE:AAV TSE:ARX TSE:BIR TSE:BTE TSE:BNP TSE:CNQ TSE:CLL TSE:CMT TSE:ECA TSE:DAY.UN TSE:ERF TSE:CR TSE:CPG TSE:CFW TSE:ESI TSE:FEL TSE:FES TSE:FRU TSE:HSE TSE:IMO TSE:MTL TSE:NAE TSE:NXY TSE:NKO TSE:NVA TSE:OPC TSE:PMT.UN TSE:DEJ TSE:POU TSE:TUI.UN TSE:TLM TSE:PWT TSE:ALA TSE:BNK

Portfolio 3: Precious Metals

TSE:YRI TSE:CEE TSE:G TSE:ABX TSE:K TSE:NG TSE:SEA TSE:AEM TSE:AGI TSE:ASR TSE:ARZ TSE:CG TSE:SVM TSE:PGM TSE:SSO TSE:PAA TSE:SLW TSE:MAG TSE:EDR TSE:CSI TSE:DGC TSE:EGU TSE:ELD TSE:ELR TSE:PTM TSE:MNR TSE:NGD TSE:NGX TSE:SRU TSE:HRG TSE:PTQ TSE:OGC

Portfolio 4: Base Mining (very incomplete)

TSE:TCK.B TSE:GCE TSE:HBM TSE:IVN TSE:TKO TSE:CCO TSE:CFP TSE:FM TSE:CS TSE:EQN TSE:LUN TSE:IMN TSE:SRU TSE:CLM TSE:IE TSE:QUX TSE:S TSE:WTN

Portfolio 5: Agriculture

TSE:POT TSE:AGU TSE:WPX TSE:SVU TSE:MAA TSE:VT

Portfolio 6: Utilities

TSE:ENB TSE:ATP TSE:CPA.UN TSE:CU TSE:DH TSE:TA TSE:TRP TSE:JE TSE:ACO.X TSE:BRC.UN TSE:FTS TSE:EMA NYSE:NPI

Portfolio 7: Technology

TSE:RIM TSE:CLS TSE:WIN TSE:APV

Portfolio 8: Consumer Discretionary

TSE:AER TSE:ATD.B TSE:CTC.A TSE:DOL TSE:DII.B TSE:EMP.A TSE:MRU.A TSE:L TSE:GCL TSE:FGL TSE:GIL TSE:RET.A TSE:RON TSE:THI TSE:MFI TSE:NWF TSE:PJC.A TSE:SAP TSE:SC TSE:WN

Portfolio 9: Manufacturing & Industrial

TSE:BBD.B TSE:RUS TSE:APV TSE:AZD TSE:MG TSE:LNR TSE:CAE TSE:FTT TSE:STN

Portfolio 10: Communication

TSE:BCE TSE:RCI.B TSE:SJR.B TSE:MBT TSE:BA TSE:ACM.A TSE:CCA TSE:QBR.B TSE:TRI TSE:YLO.UN

Portfolio 11: Transportation

TSE:AC.B TSE:CNR TSE:CP TSE:WJA TSE:EIF TSE:TRZ.B

Portfolio 12: Real Estate

TSE:AP.UN TSE:AX.UN TSE:BAM.A TSE:BEI.UN TSE:BPO TSE:CUF.UN TSE:SRQ.UN TSE:HNT.UN TSE:IIP.UN TSE:REI.UN TSE:D.UN TSE:BOX.UN CVE:PAR.UN TSE:REF.UN

Portfolio 13: Infrastructure

TSE:ARE TSE:BIN TSE:BRC.UN TSE:TA TSE:TRP TSE:RON TSE:SNC

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Term life insurance protects against premature death, known as renting insurance because it has a defined term and indemnity amount. Common terms for temporary insurance are 10, 20, 30 and 100 years. This insurance can often be added to other policies and would be referred to as a rider.

Whole life insurance protects against premature death, it remains active for the life of the insured. There is a defined indemnity amount that can increase depending on the cash surrender value in the policy. The cash surrender value represents a savings portion for the policy owner.

Universal life insurance protects against premature death, it remains active for the life of the insured. There is a defined indemnity amount that can fluctuate depending on portfolio performance and contribution amounts. This policy would be a combination of investments and life insurance on permanent basis.

Critical Illness insurance protects against stated illnesses to the insured. These contracts have a wide selection of terms and are very customizable. The amount of illnesses can be chosen, along with various policy add-ons (riders). The principle to this insurance can be life saving because a lump sum is paid in the event of certain life threatening illnesses. It can open the door to higher quality treatment.

Disability insurance protects against a stated types of disability. These contracts are fully customizable in terms of types of disability, riders, terms and indemnity amount. The premise of this insurance is to provide income if you’re disable and cannot work.

Long term care insurance protects against debilitating conditions. These contracts are also fully customizable and are similar to disability. They are not disability insurance on the other hand and are often mistaken for it by many insurance agents. They protect you in the case that you cannot perform tasks of daily living, for example showering and eating. You can be disabled but still not qualify for long term care indemnity. The indemnity is structure as an influx of payments.

Health and dental insurance covers costs of non government sponsors health expenses (e.g. prescription, ambulance and dental care). These policies can be fully customized and are often seen as an employer sponsored group plan. They typically reimburse or directly pay the costs associated.

I have recently been doing some research to bring you the facts about Payday and Title loans. I’m sure many of you have heard of payday cash stores. They are the stores that will offer you a cash advance on your next pay cheque. These stores typically offer the following products; payday loans, bank accounts, prepaid cards, cheque cashing, title loans and money transfers. A title loans is a short term loan (1 month) with an asset, like your car as collateral. Generally speaking, the bread and butter of these stores are often payday and title loans.

The reason why those products are so lucrative for them is because they charge in the range of 21% on the loan itself. I will put this into perspective with an example;

Sally makes $44,000 per year as a sales representative, but unfortunately does not have a group benefit plan at work. She was jogging in the park one day, tripped, fell and broke her two front teeth. She was financially unprepared. Devastated and frantic to fix her smile, she decided to max her credit card and take a payday loan to combine two pay cheques. Because she nets approximately $1250 every two week, the loan store agreed to lend her $1000 for 2 weeks at 21%. Two weeks later, Sally could only budget $500 to pay the loan, but the loan was now at $1210. She deducted the amount and rolled over the loan for another two weeks. Two weeks after her first loan payment, Sally’s credit card payment was due, requiring her to role over the loan again.

The bottom line for this example is that credit offered at such a short term and high interest rate is extremely difficult to pay off. This example discounts the possibility of fees which likely exist in cases of overburdened clients.

I personally called a few of these stores to ask them for a quote on rates and was told it was 21% per loan, adding up to 59% on an annual basis. I’m not sure what the 59% annual rate refers to as the payment amount is not specified. If you don’t make any payments, the rate is closer to 250%. Having laws in Canada making criminal to charge more than 60% interest annually on a loan, these stores are protected by the fact that every loan is considered separate. This very strategy is called “Financing the Bubble”.