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Introduction to ETFs: The Powerful Investment Tool for Modern Investors

By Cyndy Batchelor, FMA, BCom

Financial Advisor, O’Farrell Wealth & Estate Planning | Assante Capital Management Ltd.

Person looking at investment graph

ETFs (exchange-traded funds) are a popular investment option among investors seeking portfolio diversification. In this article, we'll break down what ETFs are, their advantages and disadvantages, and how to get started with them.

What are ETFs?

ETFs are investment funds traded on stock exchanges, just like stocks. They typically hold a basket of assets, such as stocks, bonds, or commodities, and aim to track the performance of a specific market index or benchmark. A variety of ETFs are available, from broad-based index funds to sector-specific funds.

Advantages of ETFs

ETFs have a low cost. Unlike traditional mutual funds, ETFs typically have lower expense ratios, which means investors can keep more of their investment returns. Additionally, ETFs provide diversification, allowing investors to easily invest in a variety of assets with just one fund. Similar to stocks, they can also be traded throughout the day, allowing investors to buy and sell shares as they see fit.

Disadvantages of ETFs

One potential disadvantage of ETFs is that they can be complex. Some ETFs may invest in complex financial instruments, which beginners and casual investors may struggle to understand. Additionally, while ETFs are typically low-cost, some specialty ETFs can have higher expense ratios, which can eat into returns.

How to Get Started with ETFs

To get started with ETFs, you'll need an investment account and an understanding of your investment goals and risk tolerance. As soon as your account is set up, you should evaluate your wealth plan. We highly recommend contacting a financial planner to help you decide which ETFs are right to include in your portfolio.

Before investing in ETFs, it's important to do your research and understand the risks and benefits. Consider your investment goals and risk tolerance and talk to a financial advisor if you have questions or concerns.

In conclusion, ETFs provide low-cost diversification, ease of trading, and flexibility, making them an ideal option for casual and experienced investors alike. With research and a solid investment strategy, you can use ETFs to achieve your wealth goals.

Cyndy Batchelor is a Financial Advisor with Assante Capital Management Ltd. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of Assante Capital Management Ltd. Please contact her at 613.258.1997 or visit to discuss your circumstances prior to acting on the information above. Assante Capital Management Ltd. is a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada.

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