Investment Terminology

What is a custodian?
Safekeeping or custody is a service in which the brokerage or financial institution holds securities on behalf of the client, which reduces the risk of the client losing his/her assets or having them stolen. On November 12, 2013 NBIN Inc. became the custodian of choice for QVIM client's assets. Clients receive coverage by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF). NBIN Inc.s is a wholly owned subsidiary of National Bank Financial Inc., itself a wholly owned susidiary of National Bank of Canada - a Canadian brand that is recognized and trusted.
What is an exchange traded fund (ETF)?
ETFs are generally baskets of securities traded like individual stocks on an exchange. ETFs are similar to index mutual funds but are much more tax efficient and cost effective due to their structure. ETFs differ from index mutual funds in that ETFs can be traded all day on a stock exchange.
What is a Canadian Investment Manager (CIM)?
Achieving the Canadian Investment Manager (CIM) designation earns the holder credibility in the eyes of clients, peers and employers. It provides the necessary skills and proficiency to become registered with provincial securities commissions as a Portfolio Manager. This designation is administered by the Canadian Securities Institute of Canada (CSI).
What is a Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute (FCSI)?

The FCSI stands out as one of the most respected accreditations in the financial services industry. It recognizes individuals who bring a rare combination of education, ethical training and experience to their firm and their clients' businesses.

It is one of the most demanding designations in the industry. FCSIs are recognized as trusted leaders in their field. For more information, please visit

What is MER? Is it the same thing as a management fee?
MER stands for Management Expense Ratio and gives investors the definitive measure of how much it cost to own financial products such as mutual funds or exchange traded funds (ETFs). MER includes the management fee, taxes and operational expenses of the product. People often confuse the term management fee with MER.
What are the advantages /disadvantages of ETFs over mutual funds?
ETFs are cost-effective, tax-efficient, diversified and exchange traded. When ETFs were still in their infancy, the disadvantage at the time was that you could not access a foreign economy in a diversified manner unless you invested in a specialty mutual fund. This is no longer the case. ETFs now exist to allow the retail investor to gain exposure to almost any asset class, sector, economy or commodity. Liquidity is never an issue for ETFs for the simple reason that they have an open-ended structure where designated brokers can create more as needed.
What is a bond?
A bond is a type of debt security. Debt securities have a number of attributes that make them ideal investments for most portfolios. They provide income, safety, diversification and potential for capital gains.
What is an option?
When most people think of options they think of stock options that key executives at public corporations receive as a form of incentive compensation. Options are financial securities that give the holder the right but not the obligation to buy(sell) a stock at a pre-determined price during a pre-determined time frame. Options are also a type of derivative that involve leverage. Used conservatively, options can help hedge portfolios or even extract extra return on stock portfolios.
Why doesn't QVIM suggest mutual funds to clients like most firms?
In short, QVIM does not believe that mutual funds perform well enough to justify all fees associated with them. Most mutual funds represent "expensive underperformance." Furthermore, mutual fund salespeople are in the business of selling products in return for a commission. The salesperson has an incentive only if a product is sold. QVIM believes this payment model is flawed and presents a conflict of interest. 100% of QVIM's compensation comes from its clients and not third party fund companies. We sell advice, not products.
What is the OSC?
The Ontario Securities Commission works to protect investors by making and enforcing rules governing the securities industry in Ontario. QVIM is registered with the OSC to provide service to residents of Ontario.
What is the AMF?
The Autorité des Marchés Financiers regulates Quebec's financial markets and provides assistance to consumers of financial products and services. QVIM is registered with the AMF to provide service to residents of Quebec.