An ETF is an opened ended investment fund that is a mutual fund listed on a stock, providing intra-day liquidity, much the same way as a regular stock.

An exchange-traded fund (ETF) is an opened investment fund that has many of the same features as a mutual fund. But unlike mutual funds, ETFs are bought and sold on a stock exchange the same way that a regular stock is. One of the main differences between ETFs and individual stocks traded on an exchange is that the outstanding ETF shares can be increased or reduced as needed, which allows the ETF to be valued at or near NAV. If there’s a demand for an ETF, an Authorized Participating Dealer (aka Designated Broker) can “create” new shares directly with the ETF, at any time. One of the unique features and differences of an ETF is that it allows the Authorized Participating Dealer to acquire additional shares by either delivering the underlying securities (the “basket”) or cash. If there is an oversupply, they can “redeem” shares by doing the reverse.

Management Expense Ratio (MER) is the cost of management of the fund. Under the proposed Total Cost of ownership, a proposed new ratio called fund expense ratio (FER) will add both MER and Trading Expense Ratio (TER) to come up with FER which would equate to the US Total Expense Ratio (TER).

If you are looking to invest in Investment Funds, ETFs provide a low-cost alternative to other products, and it fits within your portfolio appropriately.

Any Canadian resident can invest in ETFs. You can do so by using a DIY service or a full-service dealer/broker.

Canadian ETF Association (CETFA) tries to provide all up-to-date information on our website but if you are using a dealer/broker – they can all provide the information required.

Both ETF and Mutual funds are either structured as a trust or a corporation, assuming they meet the test, from a tax perspective, most are either a Mutual Fund Trust (MFT) or a Mutual Fund Corporation (MFC).

The main difference is that investors can buy and sell mutual fund units directly with the fund company (primary market) whereas with an ETF an investor buys and sells on a stock exchange (secondary market).

Because shares of ETFs trade like stocks, the most common way for individual investors to buy and sell ETFs is through a broker. However, you can also invest in ETFs with a discount broker brokerage account.

Because ETFs are traded like stocks, you typically pay a commission to buy and sell them, which ranges depending on the firm you use.

ETFs are great for stock market beginners and experts alike. They’re relatively inexpensive, available through robot advisors as well as traditional brokerages, and tend to be less risky than investing individual stocks.

You are able to find almost any type of ETF that you will need to create a portfolio.

A creation unit is a block of new shares sold by an exchange-traded fund (ETF) company to a broker-dealer for sale on the open market. Creation unit blocks typically range in size, anywhere from 25,000 to 600,000 shares. Broker-dealers can buy the shares in either a cash purchase or through an in-kind transaction.

The daily NAV of a mutual fund is disclosed after deducting the expenses.

Tracking error is the variation between the performance of a portfolio and the performance of the portfolio’s benchmark over time.

42 Investment Fund Managers in Canada offer ETFs, either as standalone products or a series of mutual funds.

You must have an account with either a brokerage firm or discount broker – and then once you have funds in your account, you can trade.


From the Links page on our website, you will find links to two helpful ETF screeners: the TMX Group ETF Investor Centre and the Cboe Canada Canadian ETF Market. If you search online, you may find others as well.

For ETFs listed on the TSX, visit the TSX New Company Listings and for ETFs listed on NEO, visit NEO’s Listing Directory under Funds.

Corporate class ETFs are connected and belong to the same parent corporation and therefore taxes are all managed as one single entity. As a result, corporate class ETFs can share income, expenses, gains, losses, and loss carry-forwards to reduce taxable distributions generated by the corporation as a whole.

This is an ETF that tracks a specific Index passively.

An actively managed ETF is one that has a manager or team making decisions on the underlying portfolio allocation, otherwise not adhering to a passive investment strategy.

It will have a benchmark index, but managers may change sector allocations, market-time trades, or deviate from the index as they see fit. This produces investment returns that do not perfectly mirror the underlying index.

You have two options. First, you can sell your holdings. Until the ETF stops trading, you can sell shares like usual. The fund will continue to track its underlying index, which helps ensure its price won’t plummet to zero just because of the closure announcement. You could also wait for liquidation. The managers will sell all holdings in the fund, settle other obligations and divvy up the balance among remaining shareholders.

Yes, depending on their portfolio makeup and investment objectives, they can pay distributions monthly, quarterly or annually.

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