TriDelta Insight
September 2012
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Dear reader,
The global recovery remains 'intact' although a long and bumpy road lies ahead. Our recent blog 'Tired of rolling the dice?' outlines some of our thoughts on portfolio management in these uncertain times.

Our lead article examines life satisfaction in numerous countries, including our own. As you will learn from it 'Happiness is Canada'.

We have a number of other short articles including a largely undiscovered wealth strategy for business owners, your home as a retirement plan, a really cool NASA Mars travel update, making sense of what bread we should be eating and our popular book & movie picks.

Enjoy and be well,

TriDelta Financial

Life satisfaction
Life satisfaction measures how people evaluate their life as a whole rather than their current feelings. It captures a reflective assessment of which life circumstances and conditions are important for subjective well-being. When asked to rate their general satisfaction with life on a scale from 0 to 10, people across the OECD (Organisation for Economic
Co-operation and Development) gave it a 6.7 grade.

On the low end are countries such as Hungary, Portugal, Turkey and Greece. The highest satisfaction scores were from countries such as Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands and Switzerland. Canada was however not far behind the winners and ranked 6th out of 36 countries measured.

In Canada, 80% of people reported having more positive experiences in an average day (feelings of rest, pride in accomplishment, enjoyment, etc) than negative ones (pain, worry, sadness, boredom, etc). This figure is higher than the OECD average of 72%, and makes Canada one of the happiest countries in the OECD.

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Great Wealth Strategy to Share
At TriDelta we have a client who is a doctor in his early 60s. We have just saved him roughly $400,000 by implementing a relatively simple but little known planning strategy. We call it PCIS - or Personal Corporate Insurance Swap.

This is a strategy that can add significant wealth - even though most people who could benefit, are unaware of it.

PCIS is one of those strategies that certainly doesn't apply to everyone - but the great thing is that you probably know someone who can benefit. Here is your chance to do them a great favour by putting this article in front of them.

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Can a house be a retirement plan?
The love of houses, whether they be single family dwellings, townhouses, condominium apartments or anything in between, has been pretty strong in recent months. Interest rates are low, house prices have been rising and some people, still turned off by the market volatility of the past couple of years, are viewing a home purchase as
an alternative to investing in financial assets such as stocks or bonds.

I am often asked the question: Should I invest in my home, pay off my mortgage or should I save and invest for retirement? Let me say right up front that comparing the investment value of a home with the investment value of financial investments is a complicated, tedious and often inconclusive process and I have deliberately left the tax considerations to the tax experts. Regardless, I think it is useful to review some of the key issues.

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We know that this is a little beyond your annual travel budget, costing $2.5 billion, but we can all dream.

NASA put the official landing time of Curiosity, touted as the first full-fledged mobile science laboratory sent to a distant world, at 10:32 p.m. Pacific time.

This video deals with the trip itself, how to get to Mar's and ends with the unveiling of the NASA rover 'Curiosity' which will explore and provide us with new data to feed our fascination of this plant called Mar's.

The NASA craft was launched on November 26, 2011 and sailed through space for more than eight months covering 566 million kilometres, before piercing Mars' thin atmosphere at 20,921km per hour - 17 times the speed of sound. It has only recently landed, Aug 5, 2012.

NASA has a fascinating website where you can see images and track developments, see

Buying Bread Boggles The Mind
When you went to the supermarket recently did you wonder what has happened in our bread aisle, loaf upon loaf upon loaf now greet us, what used to be a simple task has now turned into a mammoth mission involving a lot of patience, concentration and a good pair of reading glasses. It's hard to tell what is good for you and has the most nutrition.

To help you along here is what you need to know:

What is the difference between whole grain, whole wheat and Multigrain:

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Claire's reading pick
New York
by Edward Rutherfurd.

History tends to become more interesting the older you get; when you long to understand how things became the way they are. While climate can be a tremendous influence it is most often the inhabitants of a country and city that shape it and mould it to be what it is today. Coming from a new country like Canada one can appreciate how immigrants from different countries have left their indelible mark on our country and especially on cities like Toronto.

Edward Rutherfurd, in this remarkable book New York, tells the fascinating story of how New York rose from being a small Indian trading post to becoming one of the greatest cities in the world. By using real and fictitious characters from various generations of immigrants he makes us understand how New York became a monument to the bold and adventurous character of Americans and why those with less influence still remain at the low end of the economic ladder in some districts.

Edward Rutherfurd takes you into the households of the rich and powerful and also into the squalor in the slums of the 'Bowery'. It takes you on a journey through family fueds, local and national conflicts and international alliances, and 'upstairs and downstairs' in the Mansions of 5th Avenue.

This is my first time reading an Edward Rutherfurd novel and I thoroughly enjoyed it and can't wait to delve into his other accounts of London and Dublin told in a similar fashion.

I highly recommend this book to all, especially those that love New York the way that I do. I can guarantee that you will look at the Big Apple a little differently the next time you pop down to sightsee or shop.

By Claire Corrie - Director, Client Service.
Claire's viewing pick
Hope Springs

I wanted to go and see this movie initially because of the stars, Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones and Steve Carell. Wonderful actors with a great track record of movies such as, The Fugitive, Julia Julia, The Bridges of Madison County and It's Complicated to name a few.

The Trailer for Hope Springs might lead you to believe it's a romantic comedy about a couple trying to jumpstart their sexless marriage, the film is a disarming mixture of deeply intimate confessions by a married couple in the privacy of a therapists office. The couple are there trying to reconnect physically and mentally, by being surprisingly honest and frank.

The story starts out with Kay (Meryl Streep) and Arnold (Tommy Lee Jones) practically living separate lives after the kids have moved out. Every night he falls asleep in his lounger while watching a golf show on TV and then they head off to separate bedrooms. Every morning she greets him with bacon and eggs and a smile he doesn't return. You see the disappointment in Kay's face, something has to give and it does.

They eventually end up at a therapists office (Steve Carrell) where Kay and Arnold get to discuss all their marital drama, accusations and disappointments. The added unmentionable of Kay and Arnold's age, adds that much more to the conversation and makes their raw emotions and attempts at intimacy hard to watch.

This movie pushes some boundaries but eventually makes up for it with a happy ending when they re-ignite the spark that caused them to fall for each other in the first place. The acting is superb and even though this movie was not as lighthearted as I would have hoped, it was still very refreshing with it's down to earth candor.

By Claire Corrie - Director, Client Service.