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Monday, December 13, 2010

How can a margin account at TD Waterhouse can help simplify your budget?

My non registered portfolio is currently at 73 049.09$, which represent a nice increase of somewhere close to 2 000$ compare to my latest update on date of December 2nd. My online broker account in Canadian dollars is now registered under margin. The transformation is now completed.

Dividend from Just Energy Income Fund (JE.UN)

I had received 80.21$ in dividend from Just Energy Income Fund (JE.UN). I had received this dividend payment in my cash account, so I had to call to place the transfer. Having a margin mess up my broker account, but once you get it, its pretty easy to find your way.

Budgeting made easy using margin money to pay off debt at a higher interest rate

I own several credit products that I use for leverage. This meaning that I use money available on credit lines and credit card balance transfer to invest. So far, I had been successful doing so. But one problem being the interest rate paid on the money borrowed.

Here are my debt:

9 671.43$ at 4.75% (RRSP credit line) = 459.39$ in annual interest.
Minimum monthly payment required: 108$

4 900$ at 4% (credit line) = 196$ in annual interest.
Minimum monthly payment required: 100$

7 957.05$ at 4.9% ending in April 2011 = 389.90$ in annual interest
Minimum monthly payment required: 44$

4 911$ at 8.75% (credit line) = 429.71$ in annual interest
Minimum monthly payment required: 150$

7 943.01$ at 5.50% (student loan) = 436.87$ in annual interest
Minimum monthly payment required: 98$

10 000$ at 7.27% (credit line) = 727$ in annual interest
Minimum monthly payment required: 60.58$

TOTAL in debt: 45 382.49$
TOTAL in annual interest: 2 638.87$
TOTAL in minimum payment required: 560.58$

Currently at TD Waterhouse, unless you own a President account, the interest rate on margin is of 4.5%. The latest product I had apply for is a credit line of 10 000$ at RBC Royal Bank. Luckily, I only have the interest to pay as a monthly payment. As you can see, the interest rate of my credit product is relatively reasonable. My 10 000$ credit line at RBC Royal Bank is a bit high (7.27%). But my 5 000$ credit line own at TD Canada Trust is quite at a high interest rate. We are talking here of an interest rate of more than 8%, for an amount of 429.71$ in annual interest! That's way too much! Currently, that credit line is at 4 833.88$, almost full. So here's what I am planning to do: withdraw the 166.12$ to pay on my BMO Bank of Montreal credit line (where I need to pay 100$, and keep the remaining 66.12$ for Boxing Day shopping. And what's going to happen next? Well, I am going to transfer 5 000$ from my margin to entirely pay my credit line!

So forget about the Louis Vuitton purse, because there won't be any Louis Vuitton purse anytime soon, despite that 43 653.66$ that I have available on my margin account. Having a 43 653.66$ available in my margin account mean that I currently have 43 653.66$ to do whatever I want - or almost. Currently, the plan is to use some of the margin money to pay off some of my debt that are at higher interest rate.

I spoke to many TD Waterhouse representatives about margin and once advice that I had been provided was not to use more than 30% of the money available on my margin in other to avoid any catastrophic margin call. I knew from the start that I shouldn't use all the margin money available, even if its to pay off debt. In case of a margin call, I just transfer the money from my credit line to the margin account. And voilà. That's pretty easy right? Yeah but still, I think I will stick to the 30% for now. Before, I didn't come with a straight % of the margin that I should used. But just to be in good standard, I decided to stick to the 30% usage of my margin account because it make good common sense. My 30% limit on a 43 653.66$ margin account money is giving me the amount of 13 097$. So I do I plan to use that 13 097$? Here are the projects:

Purchase of 200 units of Horizons Gold Yield Fund (HGY.UN)
Amount: 2 000$

Yeah, I know. I know that previously before, I wrote that I wasn't going to use margin money to invest, but this is the only exception because this is about gold and dividend. Horizons Gold Yield Fund (HGY.UN) plan to provide a 6.5% dividend yield (for a monthly dividend earning of 10.83$).

Pay off my 5 000$ credit line at TD Canada Trust at 8.75%
Amount: 5 000$

That's sit, bye bye high interest rate!!!

And I am not even done yet. I have left 6 097$...

Pay 6 097$ on my 10 000$ credit line at 7.27%

That's pretty good stuff isn't? Well, its not over yet. Those little changes will bring a great improvement on my budget. Let's check on the before and the after:

My budget BEFORE margin use:

Internet: 51$
Rent: 555$
RRSP credit line: 108$
Credit line: 100$
Credit card balance transfer: 44$
Credit line: 150$
Student loan: 98$
Credit line: 60.58$
Usual banking fees: 5.15$

TOTAL: 1 171.73$

My budget AFTER margin use:

Internet: 51$
Rent: 555$
RRSP credit line: 108$
Credit line: 100$
Credit card balance transfer: 44$
Student loan: 98$
Credit line: 23.65$
Usual banking fees: 5.15$
Payment of the 4.5% interest rate on the amount of 13 097$: 49.12$

TOTAL: 1 033.91$

And if we continue the calculation, 1 033.91$ + 250$ (groceries and other) = 1 283.91$

Every month, I transfer 100$ of my credit line at 4% over to pay my credit card...

1 283.91$ - 100$ = 1 183.91$

While using 30% of my margin account, I can easily make a comfortable living under 1 200$. All extra money can go straight on investment.

At the end of what, I am going to end this the same way Maryse Ouellet: BE SEXY. But to this, I will add my own personal touch: BE MARGIN SEXY. But do not more than 30% of your margin, and you'll be even sexier...

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