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Currently I think the best high yielding "balanced fund" is BMO Monthly Income D series, which is mentioned earlier in this thread. I think it yields a little over 3% yield so it's a bit of a yield boost versus most balanced funds.
Checked that out on BMOIL. (BMO31148). It seems to hold actual stocks. 1.02% MER. 3.44% trailing 12mo yield.
There is another Balanced ETF Portfolio BMO31703. 0.88% MER. 1.9% TTM yield.
and BMO Monthly High Income II D BMO31833, 5.37% TTM yield. 1.2% MER (Mostly Canadian)

Without digging further, I don't get good feeling about these or any mutual funds. Time to quit!

Just read this Vbal vs MAW104 - https://boomerandecho.com/vbal-vs-mawer-balanced-fund-for-one-stop-investing/
 

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Has anyone seen a recent comparison of the performance of balanced ETFs and MFs? In particular, for the calendar year 2019.

I am sure many of us have calculated how our own portfolios did in 2019. Our overall portfolio is essentially a balanced fund. Aim was 60/40, but due to strong equity markets, now something like 65/35. So interested to see how things would be if we start to move toward ETFs. Our "fund" had Total Return of just under 15% for 2019.

One reason to consider move to balanced funds, is that it is harder and harder to find individual corporate bonds and GIC rates are atill very low. Alternative may be something like ZDV+GIC as I just did in my TFSA.
 

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Discussion Starter #84
BMO Monthly Income, Series D was 14.81% in 2019

That's one I recommended to a few friends. My own allocation gained 13.3%
 

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Great, so buying a balanced fund may do no worse (or better) than my own DIY portfolio. At least based on past good year.
 

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Great, so buying a balanced fund may do no worse (or better) than my own DIY portfolio. At least based on past good year.
Morningstar posts annual performances for a wide range of such products. One can compare their own 'fund' to those balanced products for perhaps 10 years of data. The issue most times is investors have a different AA than most of the 'balanced' 60/40 products and thus nothing to compare with. The new AA ETFs will change that in time due to products with different AA ratios.
 

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Great, so buying a balanced fund may do no worse (or better) than my own DIY portfolio. At least based on past good year.
Mind you, those balanced funds have low distributions ~2%) So in times when markets are down, cash flow is low. My own "fund" spins off 2 1/2 times as much. Mind you, I was only thinking of using a balanced ETF for our registered accounts where it would replace a mix of equities, bonds and gics. Cash flow not as important there.
 

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Mind you, those balanced funds have low distributions ~2%) So in times when markets are down, cash flow is low. My own "fund" spins of 2 1/2 times as much. Mind you, I was only thinking of using a balanced ETF for our registered accounts where it would replace a mix of equities, bonds and gics. Cash flow not as important there.
Of course your own fund throws off many times as much as those balanced funds. For smart guys like you and others at CMF, funds are a compromise. All the smart people here can beat the system many times over.

ltr
 

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Discussion Starter #89
An individual can easily beat the yield, yes, but I'm not sure it's so easy to beat the long term returns of these funds. Some of these have very long track records and excellent total returns.

I can tell you that my own investments have underperformed these "good" balanced funds over the long term, and that's mainly because I made the mistake of changing my allocations over time. Heavy in stocks sometimes, very light in stocks other times. Short at times. What a mess... I shouldn't have done that.

Sure, my current investments are probably better, but it took me 15 years to get to the point where I can put together and follow through on a well structured strategy. There's a lot that can be said for a consistent, professionally managed portfolio over the long term.

I still prefer the DIY approach, and learning along the way.
 

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Of course your own fund throws off many times as much as those balanced funds. For smart guys like you and others at CMF, funds are a compromise. All the smart people here can beat the system many times over.

ltr
It's not smartness really. It is more the intent. But it would be interesting to look at the detail of a fund like VBAL and see why the yield is so low. MAW104 too, but it at least has a track record of maintaining a high Total Return. My current model of 60% ZDV plus 40% GIC for 3.78% yield instead of 2%. So do the non Canadian holdings drag down the yields on VBAL/MAW104?

Top 25 Holdings of ZDV (Look familiar :) )
% of Net Asset Value

Sun Life Financial Inc. ......................................................... 3.3
Enbridge Inc. ................................................................... 3.3
National Bank of Canada ................................................... 3.3
Inter Pipeline Ltd...............................................................3.2
Power Corporation of Canada ..............................................3.1
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce ..................................3.0
Manulife Financial Corporation..............................................3.0
Canadian Natural Resources Limited ......................................2.9
BCE Inc.......................................................................... ....2.9
Magna International Inc. ...................................................... 2.9
Bank of Nova Scotia, The,..................................................... 2.8
Great-West Lifeco Inc. ......................................................... 2.8
Toronto-Dominion Bank, The, ................................................2.8
Pembina Pipeline Corporation ................................................ 2.7
TC Energy Corporation ......................................................... 2.7
Brookfield Property Partners L.P. ............................................2.6
Emera Incorporated............................................................. 2.5
Royal Bank of Canada ......................................................... .2.5
Bank of Montreal .............................................................. ...2.4
TELUS Corporation.............................................................. 2.3
Keyera Corp. ................................................................... ..2.2
Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. .......................................... 2.2
Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited, Class A..............................2.1
Shaw Communications Inc., Class B ....................................... 2.1
Thomson Reuters Corporation................................................. 2.1
Top Holdings as a Percentage of Total Net Asset Value.............. 67.7
 

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VBAL has 18% Cdn equities. As a global balanced fund, it is not meant to be compared to 60% Cdn equities in a 60/40 portfolio. The point is?
 

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Mawer Balanced Fund (MAW104)
MER 0.92%. Allocation is 17% Canada, 41% foreign. The 10 year return is 8.06% cagr, far above average for global balanced funds. Available through TDDI.

Tangerine Balanced Portfolio (INI120)
MER 1.07%. Allocation is 18% Canada, 42% foreign. The 10 year return is 5.24% cagr.

BMO Monthly Income, Series D (GGF31148)
MER 1.02%. Allocation is 32% Canada, 26% foreign. This is a newer low cost series so you can look at performance of the parent fund and add +0.55% cagr return due to MER drop. That puts 10 year return at 5.63% cagr and 15 year return at 6.52% cagr. Available through TDDI.

Vanguard VBAL
MER 0.25% (estimated). Allocation is 18% Canada, 42% foreign. This is a new fund and doesn't yet have a track record, but presumably it would perform similarly to something like Tangerine but with a lower cost, and theoretically, higher performance. Available through all discount brokerages since it's an ETF.
Anyone compared these funds to see how they are holding up to recent events?
 

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^ Curious about this too. Most of my wife's NW is in Tangerine Balanced. Been wondering if it's worthwhile to start coaxing her towards a broker and a BAL etf or couch potato of some sorts, or if I should just let it be.
 

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Cash flow yield percentage as noted by Agent99 above is a red herring in a balanced portfolio AND a cash reserve/buffer. For a retiree, a 1 year HISA cash reserve would take care of the hiccup shown in Cavinvest's 6 month chart above. Simply draw from the HISA rather than the portfolio for March, April, May of this year, and potentially another few months yet to come. Want more conservatism? Then 2 years of HISA or cash equivalents to take one will into 2021 and replenish once equity markets recover.

I know many CMFers roll their own for a number of reasons, e.g. boost portfolio cash yield, but that is really personality and desire of control, rather than longer term outcomes. It is almost certainly not going to make any difference in the long run. I roll my own as well for the most part (TFSA excepted which is MAW104) with a 3% portfolio yield rather than a 2% yield from a balanced fund, but I know that is nothing more than my own personality and behavioural traits, not because it is likely ultimately better from a strictly numbers assessment. We will all do as we want to do, but we should at least recognize, and perhaps admit, our own biases.
 
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