Regulators and the investment industry are making some big changes so it’s easier for investors to know how their investments are doing and what they are charged. The final changes will be in place for investors on July 15, 2016, however investors may not see updated statements immediately.
Your "investments" include the money you invested and any increases or decreases in the value of your investments. Your statement will show what your investments were worth at the beginning and the end of the statement period, any account deposits or withdrawals, and your return, using a money weighted rate of return.
In your own household, you bring in income and pay out expenses. Your profit is what’s left over. Investments are no different: your success depends just as much on what your expenses are as it does on how much your money earns.
Charges may include general operating charges for your account, and "transaction fees" when you buy or sell an investment. Other charges, which may include indirect charges such as "trailing commissions", are paid by third parties to your firm for ongoing services.
The upcoming changes to your statements will help you be a smarter investor. Take the time to understand them and ask questions of your advisor. More information can be found on GetSmarterAboutMoney.ca.