Sat. Mar 2nd, 2024

From high-interest savings accounts to no-cost ETF investing, discover the lesser-known financial opportunities that can boost your wealth in the coming year.

In the world of personal finance and investing, it’s often the flashy headlines and well-marketed products that grab our attention. However, some of the best deals and opportunities lie hidden in the shadows, quietly waiting for astute individuals to discover them. As we embark on a new year, it’s time to uncover these hidden gems that can transform your financial landscape in 2024. From high-interest savings accounts to no-cost ETF investing, let’s explore five lesser-known financial deals that could help you achieve your financial goals.

4% Savings Accounts: Unleashing the Power of Compound Interest

In the realm of savings accounts, the average interest rates offered by big banks often fall below 2%. However, in early 2024, three financial players emerged with a remarkable offer: a 4% interest rate on savings. Wealthsimple, Neo, and Wealth One Bank of Canada all provided this enticing opportunity. Additionally, Motive Financial went a step further, offering a 4.1% interest rate. While big banks may not match these rates, alternative banks typically offer interest rates ranging from 2.5% to 3.8%. It’s time to explore these higher-yield savings accounts and harness the power of compound interest.

Investment Savings Accounts: A Safe Haven with Attractive Returns

Investment Savings Accounts (ISAs) offer a unique blend of safety and attractive returns. Functioning like mutual funds, ISAs are accessible through online brokers. Most ISAs provide returns between 4.55% and 4.75%, offering a virtually risk-free investment option covered by deposit insurance. However, one standout ISA, the F-series version of the Scotiabank Investing Savings Account, symbol DYN6004, offers an impressive 5% return. Available to Scotia iTrade clients, this ISA presents an opportunity for investors seeking higher returns without sacrificing security.

No-Cost ETF Investing: The Key to Diversification Without Breaking the Bank

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have gained popularity as a cost-effective way to invest in the stock and bond markets. To maximize your investment potential in 2024, consider digital brokers that offer no-cost ETF investing. BMO InvestorLine, Qtrade Direct Investing, and Scotia iTrade provide a limited menu of commission-free ETFs, allowing you to build a diversified portfolio without incurring additional fees. CI Direct Trading and Questrade offer commission-free ETF purchases, with a small cost associated with selling. National Bank Direct Brokerage and Desjardins Online Brokerage eliminate commissions entirely for stocks and ETFs. Lastly, TD Easy Trade offers no-cost investing in TD’s family of ETFs through their mobile platform.

Asset Allocation ETFs: Simplifying Diversification with Low Costs

Asset Allocation ETFs are gaining traction for their simplicity and low costs. These ETFs offer fully diversified portfolios of bonds and stocks from Canada, the United States, and the rest of the world. By selecting your risk level – conservative, balanced, growth, or all-stocks – you can achieve diversification at a fraction of the cost. With expense ratios as low as 0.2%, compared to the typical 1.5% to 2% charged by balanced mutual funds, Asset Allocation ETFs present an opportunity to optimize your investment strategy while minimizing expenses.

Pre-Paid Bank Cards: Unlocking International Purchasing Power

When it comes to making purchases outside of Canada, most credit cards impose a 2.5% foreign currency fee. However, pre-paid bank cards issued by EQ Bank, Koho, Wealthsimple, and Wise offer a solution to this costly inconvenience. These prepaid cards are connected to major credit card networks, allowing them to be accepted wherever major cards are. Unlike the first generation of prepaid products, these cards come without excessive fees and expiry dates, providing a hassle-free way to make international purchases while saving on foreign currency fees.

Conclusion:

As we embark on a new year, it’s essential to explore the lesser-known financial deals that can significantly impact our financial well-being. From high-interest savings accounts to no-cost ETF investing, these hidden gems offer opportunities for growth, diversification, and savings. By seizing these opportunities, you can take control of your financial future and make 2024 a year of financial success. So, take a moment to investigate these hidden treasures and unlock the potential they hold for your financial journey.

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