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I am looking into purchasing (source: http://canadiancouchpotato.com/model-portfolios/):

Altamira Canadian Index (NBC814)
Altamira US Currency Neutral (NBC856)
Altamira Int’l Currency Neutral (NBC877)
TD Canadian Bond Index (TDB966)

While setting up my discount account with CIBC I was chatting with the banker I deal with and the topic of what I planned to invest in came up. I told her the above and how I wanted to stay away from high MER funds. She then said that as far as she knew every fund has either a FE or DSC charge. Is this true? Is there a website that I can find out what that is for these?

I guess I'm trying to figure out: if I invest $1000 into NBC814 (for example), what will it cost me upfront?
 

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Not all funds have deferred or front-end fees, and not all deferred fee schedules are the same. However, pretty much all retail funds have a fee which is, confusingly, referred to generally as a commission.

A deferred sales charge is paid to the advisor by the fund company (not you) upon purchase. If you sell units of the fund (beyond a certain number) before a certain time period (usually 5 years, but there are funds with lower up-front commissions and shorter schedules) has elapsed, you will be required to pay back a portion of those fees originally paid to the advisor. There are different ways in which the deferred fees can be calculated.

Or, you can buy fees with a front-end load. When you buy those funds, you pay an up-front fee directly, but you are not now "locked into" the fund.

So how much you pay in fees for a purchase of any particular fund depends on the "class" of fund you purchase. The info sheet for the fund, and the prospectus, will detail what the various classes are.
 

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I found morningstar.ca just now and when I punch in the above fund I get:
http://www.morningstar.ca/globalhome/quicktakes/Fund_Overview.asp?fundid=2854

Now, under the "Details" tab I find:
Maximum Sales Fee Actual Fees
Initial --- Management Fee 0.45%
Deferred --- Management Expense Ratio 0.52

So does that mean that this fund has no upfront or DSC fees?

What is the difference between the stated MER and the management fees? I had read somewhere that the mgmt fee is the base fee, and the MER includes oddball items like taxes etc. I guess what I'm trying to determine is, I wouldn't add the two together, would I? The MER just builds on the mgmt fee, right? Meaning, it is a more precise number of what it'll cost me per year.
 

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It's 2 columns. The left hand column refers to sales fees:
Initial - 0 (They should use a zero instead of blank spacer.)
Deferred - 0 (They should use a zero instead of blank spacer.)

You will note under Load Type: it says No Sales or Redemption Charge

The right hand column refers to annual expenses. I don't know why they call it "actual', as if a sales fee wouldn't be an actual fee.
"Management Fee" I believe is the actual fee charged for management.
"Management Expense Ratio" I believe the MER should include the Management Fee plus other administrative costs. If it doesn't then someone is stringing us along. But check the Altamira prospectus or see if Morningstar has a definition on their site.
 

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I hope that banker wasn't one of their investment advisors, because Banks are probably the largest sellers of No-Load funds around. You would think their front-line clientele would know at least that much as a selling point for their products.
 

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Some mutual funds are "F class" funds - mutual funds that include a management fee stripped of an advisor fee. These are, understandably, promoted less enthusiastically than "A class" funds, which have an embedded management+advisor fee. There are often A and F class versions of the same fund. Have you considered opening an account with bank that has its own ETFs? It looks like the funds you want would be offered through TD or BMO as low-cost index funds. The advantage is that banks often waive transaction fees if you buy their funds/ETFs.

See www.tdcanadatrust.com/mutualfunds/tdeseriesfunds/index.jsp
 
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