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Hidden camera investigation uncovers ‘atrocious’ investment advice

Posted by GuruDan on April 29, 2014

CBC
CBC – Fri, 28 Feb, 2014 9:58 AM EST

People walk in Toronto's financial district in Toronto, on Oct. 29, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

As RRSP season closes and many Canadians prepare for tax time, a CBC Marketplace investigation reveals that financial advisers at some of Canada’s top banks and firms are giving consumers inaccurate, misleading and inappropriate advice.

Meanwhile, consumers face a complicated patchwork of regulatory bodies if they want to complain about bad investment advice, as some investor rights groups call for more robust consumer protection rules.

Since a third of Canadians rely on advisers to help them make financial decisions, Marketplace sent a person wearing hidden cameras to visit the five big banks and five popular investment firms in Ontario. The full investigation, Show Me The Money, reveals how individual banks and firms performed. The show, including practical tips on how to hire a financial adviser, airs Friday at 8:00 p.m. (8:30 p.m. NL) on CBC Television.

“That’s one of the worst pieces of advice I’ve ever heard in my life,” financial analyst and former adviser Preet Banerjee told Marketplace co-host Erica Johnson when shown hidden camera footage of one of the tests. “That was atrocious. That’s the only word to describe that advice.”

The tests revealed a wide range in the quality of advisers. Some performed well, giving clear answers and asking appropriate questions about the tester’s financial situation and risk tolerance. Other interactions, however, Banerjee found troubling.

In some cases, information was incorrect or misleading – even in response to direct questions, such as how fees are calculated. Some gave unrealistic promises about returns, including one adviser who said that a $50,000 investment should increase by $10,000, $15,000 or $20,000 in one year.

Others failed to adequately assess the customer’s risk profile, which advisers are supposed to use to ascertain the suitability of investment products they recommend to a person.

In an unusual twist, one firm tried to recruit the Marketplace tester to become an adviser herself. While some designations and certifications do require training, and individuals have to be licensed to sell specific products, “financial adviser” is not a protected term. There are currently about 100,000 advisers in Canada.

Several advisers in the Marketplace test neglected to include any conversation of paying down debt in their financial advice, which Banerjee says reveals a conflict of interest that most consumers don’t consider as they’re weighing the recommendations of an adviser.

“If you invest there’s a commission involved with that, or a percentage of assets,” he said. “But if you pay down debt, there’s no financial incentive for the adviser to do that. So that’s one of those conflicts of interests that people should know about.”

As a result of the Marketplace investigation, one firm suspended the employee and reported the behaviour to the regulatory body, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC).

The Marketplace test was similar to a broader mystery-shopper test in the UK by the Financial Services Authority. That test included 231 mystery shopping tests of investment advice at six major firms. The results of that test, made public last year, found that more than 25 per cent of investment advice was of poor quality because it was unsuitable or because the adviser did not collect enough information to be able to make the recommendations.

Ontario firms could face a test this year, as the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) conducts a mystery shop to determine the quality of investment advice. While the OSC declined to provide specific details about its test to Marketplace, the results are expected to become public later this year.

However, investor rights advocates are critical of slow-moving efforts to provide better consumer protection. In a letter to the OSC, the Investor Advisory Panel pressed for reform, including how fees are structured and how complaints are investigated. “We have debated, discussed and studied the issues and their solutions for many years. It is time for decisions that will lead to a more robust investor protection regime in Canada.”

Among the most pressing issues: Financial advisers are not in fact required to act in the client’s best interest.

“There’s a big debate raging about that very issue right now,” says Banerjee. “So, it seems in a couple of years they will be bound to do what’s in the client’s best interest. But right now that’s not actually regulation.”

That runs contrary to the very reason many Canadians turn to advisers in the first place.

"If you walk into a financial institution, I think the average person on the street assumes they’re going to have someone who’s going to take care of all their financial issues,” says Banerjee. “But on the other side of the desk, there’s a wide range of people that you could see. Some of them are just order-takers or salespeople and others are true financial planning professionals."

For consumers struggling with the consequences of bad investment advice, a confusing patchwork of organizations oversee complaints, including IIROC, the Mutual Fund Dealers Association (MFDA) and provincial securities associations. Each body oversees different types of complaints, depending on the nature of the complaint or the type of product the adviser is licensed to sell.

The Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments (OBSI) also investigates complaints, but only for participating banks and firms. And OBSI has limited enforcement powers, offering only non-binding recommendations, so it’s entirely up to the bank or firm to decide whether or not to comply.

OBSI’s 2013 report, released this week, reveals a sharp increase in the number of banks and firms refusing to compensate investors for mistakes.

According to the report, banks and investment firms refused to pay back investors even when OBSI found wrongdoing in 10 cases last year. In total, investors were denied more than $1.3 million in restitution. The OBSI report called this trend “disappointing.”

Marketplace notified all of the banks and firms about the test and approached some for interviews, but all declined. Some viewed the test as an isolated incident; others vowed to investigate and take appropriate measures.

Posted in Investment, Mortgages, Non-insurance, Retirement Planning, Tax Planning | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Benefits of Segregated Funds

Posted by GuruDan on March 27, 2013

Written by Independent Financial Concepts Group for Financial Advisors.

 

still_waiting

When it comes to selling insurance, many advisors are heavily focused on the standard insurance products that they are comfortable with and that they are versed at selling. Sure, when a client calls you, the chances are they are usually looking to invest in some form of insurance – for a variety of reasons – but if you are only providing one product or a limited range of products, your ability to provide the service that best meets their needs may be limited.

If you work with a managing general agent, you already know the importance of maintaining your independence, and hopefully how to garner the benefits that should come from this type of partnership. But has your managing general agent discussed the benefits of selling segregated funds? If not, here are some things that you should know!

There are many benefits for your clients when they invest in segregated funds. Since segregated funds can only be sold by insurance advisors, it makes sense to diversify as much as possible and to add these important investment tools to your arsenal.

One of the major benefits of segregated funds is the low risk. For those clients who may be a bit hesitant when it comes to investing, either because they shy away from the risk or because they have no investment experience, segregated funds offer an important opportunity. Since they are low risk, and managed effectively by an outside source, segregated funds may leave clients much more open-minded since their capital is protected.

Another benefit of segregated funds is that they have maturity dates. Clients are often unsure of how to approach investing and being able to provide them with a product that offers a timeline for their returns is useful. Being able to tell them that they are guaranteed a return if they hold a segregated fund until it reaches maturity will help those conservative investors realize that investing doesn’t necessarily need to be stressful. Also important, segregated funds guarantee a return on principle, and clients can lock in the market value every 3 years for the death benefit.

Your clients will also be happy to learn that segregated funds are guaranteed at death, so if they pass away, their beneficiary is able to claim benefits from their investment. This can be an important product for those clients looking to provide for their loved ones in the event of their death.

If you work with a managing general agent and only sell insurance, you are limiting yourself. There are major benefits to your clients to selling segregated funds, and since being able to provide the best, most diverse service to your clients is what will set you apart, offering segregated funds will only increase your credibility and reputation.

 

Posted in Insurance, Retirement Planning | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

DIY home selling: Wise or a fools’ folly?

Posted by GuruDan on June 18, 2012

By Liam Lahey | InsightTue, 12 Jun, 2012 2:11 PM EDT

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When selling one’s home, the desire to hire a real estate agent is waning in Canada, according to a new survey commissioned by PropertyGuys.com.

Canadians say real estate commissions are too high, agents don’t have their best interests in mind and bidding wars are engineered by the industry, say respondents in the survey conducted on the Angus Reid Forum.

The survey found:

  • 82 per cent of homeowners agree that the average five per cent commission real estate agents charge is too much.
  • Fifty per cent say that agents don’t have their best interests in mind when selling their home.
  • Another 60 per cent believe that property bidding wars are engineered by real estate agents.

"There’s an overwhelming sentiment that the status quo, and the commission rate that seems to sustain in Canada at around five per cent; folks don’t like that and they find it too much," says Walter Melanson, director of partnerships at PropertyGuys.com in Moncton, N.B.

"We know there’s a sentiment among Canadians to try something new and different … so many are disgruntled towards the amounts they paid in the past (to real estate agents) and they’re likely to consider alternatives."

Melanson says there’s a genuine consumer desire for change in the Canadian real estate industry.

"If we look at the traditional real estate industry, there hasn’t been any great deal of reform and the little box they built about 100 years ago operates quite the same as it did then.

"You’ve got an industry today that doesn’t want change and … those that suffer the most are the folks that choose traditional agents and are waiting for something big to happen within that space that helps them start to save money."

Want to go it alone? Here’s what you need to know

While it’s true you could sell your own home without a real estate agent, there are a number of factors to consider before doing so.

For starters, understand that real estate agents generally charge a five per cent fee for their services that include having forms and contracts approved by lawyers to execute a sale contract.

Real estate agents also advertise that your property is up for grabs beyond sticking a sign on your front lawn and they’re front and centre whenever a potential buyer shows up to take a tour of your house or property to highlight the unique features and/or renovations you’ve done to the building. And agents also handle the negotiations with a potential buyer.

"Buying or selling a home is the single largest investment a purchaser or seller will make in his or her lifetime. As such, the services of a full-time real estate professional are required to ensure the best possible outcome," says Christine Matysiewicz, director, RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada Inc. "Surprises can arise at any given time during the home buying/selling process. From legal issues such as easements, encroachments and grandfather clauses to the negotiation table, the process is not without pitfalls."

If you’re selling, your realtor will set a price based on comparable sales in the area. He or she will likely get a higher price for your property than if you tried to sell it yourself.

"Your home will also sell faster because of the exposure it will receive. Your realtor is also connected to your neighbourhood — he or she will continually assess market conditions and how they impact your property," she continues. "Your realtor is also a skilled negotiator and has been educated on the complex laws and regulations in real estate and is trained to put together a legally binding contract … and if you’re buying, your realtor can open doors to thousands of properties through the MLS system."

If considering alternatives, one should weigh their own needs and goals, as well as their own abilities, Matysiewicz advises. "They should know what level of personal involvement they are interested and available in having in the transaction process. Most of us have very busy lives," she points out.

Some questions consumers might want to ask themselves may include:

  • Do you have the time, energy, know-how and motivation to sell/buy on your own?
  • Will you be able to effectively market your home?
  • Do you feel comfortable showing you home to strangers and can you make your home available to potential purchasers when needed, given your hours of work and other commitments?
  • Will you be able to deal with a parade of potential bargain hunters and tire kickers?
  • Can you overcome the emotional attachment you have to the property? Would you be able to negotiate effectively and accept criticism of your home?

Are you able to manage technical issues related to contracts and negotiations?

If you’re selling and mulling over which realtor to turn to, Matysiewicz recommends touring your own neighbourhood to see who has a strong presence. It’s ideal to engage someone who is very active in the local marketplace.

"Doing so assures they’ll have the right mix of knowledge and experience to meet the challenges and identify the opportunities within that specific area. It’s also more likely that they have established links to potential buyers in the area as well," she adds. "Family, friends and colleagues can also be a great source for a referral. Visit the local real estate offices that services your area. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You can also ask for and check references for your own peace of mind."

Meanwhile, the PropertyGuys’ survey findings also shows 67 per cent of respondents agree traditional real estate agents, and their commission fees, are one of the factors contributing to home price inflation. In Ontario, this number was higher at 70 per cent.

This survey also finds:

  • 66 per cent of homeowners polled say alternatives to traditional real estate agents will benefit home sellers.
  • Only 19 per cent of homeowners think their real estate agent was definitely worth the commission paid.
  • 87 per cent believe that how much money they have at the end of the day is most important when selling a home.
  • 50 per cent of Canadians disagree that real estate agents have your best interest in mind when selling a home.

While those in the traditional agent/broker segment may want buyers and sellers to believe that it is dangerous not to use an agent, the truth is that the real estate market has changed and savvy consumers, with the right tools, technology and know how, can sell their home without the use of an agent, Melanson adds.

"The folks that connect best with our concept are those that are comfortable with showing their house themselves and in engaging with others," he says. "These are confident sellers. They lean more on process and systems than they do on people."

The Canadian Real Estate Association politely declined to be interviewed for this article. However, for undecided consumers, the CREA’s How Realtors Help website provides information about realtors and the services they provide.

 

Posted in Insurance related, Non-insurance, Real Estate | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Ontario boasts highest Auto Insurance premiums in Canada

Posted by GuruDan on October 5, 2011

Ontarians pay highest auto insurance premiums in Canada, Quebec drivers pay the least: study

By Jordan Chittley | Daily BrewMon, 3 Oct, 2011

Canadians looking to save money on auto insurance should head to Quebec. auto_insurance01

A new study finds that residents of la Belle Province pay the lowest premiums in the country, at an average of only $642 a year. While Ontarians, right on the other side of the Ottawa River, pay the highest premiums at $1,282 a year.

Co-author and Fraser Institute director Neil Mohindra says this is because of rampant fraud in Ontario.

"(It) comes as a result of higher claims costs per vehicle stemming from high levels of insurance fraud, and relatively severe regulations in rate-setting as well as mandatory minimum liability and accident benefit laws," he says in a statement.

The study conducted by the Fraser Institute, a right-leaning think tank, goes on to say that fraud investigators consider Toronto to be the centre of organized crime rings. Ontario announced reforms in November of 2009, but the study uses the most recent price information, also from 2009. The province’s reforms are expected to lower premiums.

The study explains that Quebec consistently has the lowest premiums because it has a government-run provider that has a monopoly over selling basic coverage. They also have a no-fault system that prevents injured people from suing drivers at fault for pain and suffering.

However, the public provider in Quebec ran a deficit in 2009 of $2.6 billion and in some provinces taxpayers, including those who don’t drive, subsidize government auto insurers to keep premiums lower.

Government intervention is not always the answer, however, as seen by high premiums in B.C., Saskatchewan and Manitoba, according to the report. These three provinces rank second through fourth on the list.

"These results are consistent with previous reports that suggest government-run auto insurance monopolies are less efficient than auto insurance provided by a regulated, competitive market," says Mohindra in a statement. "Drivers in B.C., Saskatchewan, and Manitoba should be asking why their governments have eliminated consumer choice and are forcing them to purchase auto insurance at rates higher than necessary."

Average auto insurance premiums by province
Ontario                                        $1,281
British Columbia                           $1,113
Saskatchewan                              $1,049
Manitoba                                      $1,027
Alberta                                        $1,004
Newfoundland and Labrador             $749
Nova Scotia                                    $736
New Brunswick                               $728
Prince Edward Island                       $695
Quebec                                          $642

(Getty Images)

Posted in Insurance | 1 Comment »

HSBC launches sale of non-life insurance business: sources

Posted by GuruDan on September 13, 2011

By Denny Thomas and Kelvin Soh
HONG KONG | Mon Sep 12, 2011 6:56am EDT

 

hsbc01

(Reuters) – HSBC Holdings Plc (HSBA.L)(0005.HK) has launched the sale of its non-life insurance business, sources told Reuters on Monday, a global division worth about $1 billion and now part of the bank’s plan to strip away non-core units.

HSBC, Europe’s biggest bank with a large presence across Asia, had sent out an information memorandum to potential buyers, with first round bids due by mid-October, a source said.

HSBC operates non-life insurance businesses in Britain, France, Hong Kong and Singapore. The Hong Kong and Singapore operations alone bring about $400 million in annual premiums, the source said.

HSBC’s non-life insurance businesses earned profit before tax of about $1 billion in 2010, according to a presentation made by HSBC in June.

"We do not comment on market rumors or speculation," a Hong Kong-based HSBC spokeswoman said.

The sources declined to be identified as the sale process was not public.

HSBC’s 16 percent stake in Ping An Insurance (Group) Co of China Ltd (2318.HK)(601318.SS) and 18 percent stake in Bao Vietnam, a domestic financial institution, were not part of the sale, the source said.

HSBC’s investment banking arm was running the sale process, the source added.

In May, HSBC announced plans to sell non-core businesses, which included shrinking its network of 475 U.S. branches to focus on the international business of U.S. clients and the sale of several European retail banking businesses including those in Poland and Russia.

(Reporting by Denny Thomas; Additional reporting by Kelvin Soh; Editing by Michael Flaherty and Chris Lewis)

Posted in Insurance, Insurance related | 1 Comment »

Pet Insurance

Posted by GuruDan on September 12, 2011

Is Pet Insurance Really Worth It?

by Dr. Doug Kenney, PetMD.

If you listen to consumer watch groups or read publications like Consumer Reports, you might decide that pet insurance just isn’t worth it.

pets01

In their latest study, Consumer Reports concluded that pet owners with mostly healthy dogs or cats will not receive back in reimbursements what they pay in premiums. But, pet owners with dogs or cats that have major illnesses or chronic diseases that result in large or frequent claims are more likely to benefit from pet insurance. Is a study really needed to figure that out?

It is true that most pet owners who purchase pet insurance will not receive back in benefits what they pay in premiums. Pet insurance companies have to take in (premiums) more than they pay out (reimbursements). Otherwise, they couldn’t stay in business. But, this is true with virtually every other type of insurance you buy.

Then why buy pet insurance? You purchase pet insurance for the unexpected major or chronic problems that you would have trouble paying for out-of-pocket, like a fracture that requires surgery, gastrointestinal foreign body, Cushings disease, diabetes or arthritis. I often tell pet owners that pet insurance isn’t for the $150 urinary tract infection, but for the $3500 fracture repair, etc.

In the study, Consumer Reports compared premiums with reimbursements, from puppyhood until Roxy was ten years old. But many of the chronic and costly diseases that pets get occur during their senior years. Remember, if your pet lives long enough, it is inevitable that he or she will develop one or more chronic diseases that can usually be managed successfully with either surgery or medication — sometimes over several years. Cumulatively, this can sometimes add up to a significant expense.

Trupanion was the only newer company that they included in the study, and they reimbursed the most when compared to the other three companies. I think it would have been interesting to see how all of the newer companies would have fared in the study.

Consumer Report’s overall recommendation is that pet owners should open a savings account to pay for their pet’s healthcare expenses instead of buying a pet insurance policy. People who have lost sight of the primary purpose of pet insurance usually make this recommendation. I addressed this in a previous blog post.

Is the decision to purchase pet insurance always just a matter of dollars and cents? I think not, because many pet owners who purchase pet insurance realize that it’s possible they won’t ever be reimbursed the amount they pay in premiums. They do it for the peace of mind – knowing that they will be able to treat their beloved pet just in case something unexpected and costly does occur.

If we could just get Consumer Reports to use their crystal ball to forecast for pet owners who may be interested in purchasing pet insurance whether their pet will be mostly healthy or not — now that would be really helpful!

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Posted in Insurance | 1 Comment »

Journey to Toronto… One city… Many nations…

Posted by GuruDan on June 25, 2009

The Canadian Association of Insurance Women (CAIW/ACFA) held its 43rd (2009) Annual Meeting and Convention in Toronto this year. Hosted by the Toronto Insurance Women’s Association (TIWA), the Toronto chapter of the CAIW, its theme was an astounding tribute to the multicultural mosaic of the rich heritage of this incredible Canadian city… One City…Many nations… It goes without saying that Toronto has evolved as the largest diversified populated metropolis in Canada… in the words of TIWA “ Toronto is Canada’s largest city, the heart of the nation’s commercial, financial, industrial and cultural life, and is one of the world’s most livable urban centres”, an acknowledgment of which all Torontonians, and Canadians, can be proud.

The CAIW/ACFA AGM/Convention was held at the Toronto Delta Chelsea for the period June 3-7, 2009. The entire event, from the opening ceremonies to the closing banquet, was filled with that pure nostalgic essence that only the Chelsea could provide… for those of you who are familiar with Leonard Cohen’s “I remember you well at the Chelsea hotel” can attest to the state of emotions at this sensational gathering. Laughter was laughed…talks were talked…speeches were delivered…jokes were made, feasting was abundant, drinks were drank, shooters were shot, dances were danced, friendships were formed and rekindled, and tears were shed, and ABBAmania rocked… all in all, there was a mixture of gaiety, education, learning, comraderie, and absolute Canadiana protocols. This was a gala to absolutely must attend.

CAIW/ACFA

History

CAIW/ACFA was formed in 1966. Original membership consisted of representative associations from Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa, Saint John, Toronto, Windsor, Winnipeg and Hamilton.
Mission Statement
To preserve and enhance the value of our member Associations through education, networking and the fostering of personal growth.
Aims and Purposes
To provide and encourage education programs on a national level and to assist member associations with their programs.
To cultivate good fellowship, loyalty and networking among its members.
To make its members more responsive to the requirements of the Canadian Insurance Industry as a whole.
Chapters include
Insurance Professionals of Calgary (IPC) 
Edmonton Insurance Association (EIA)
Hamilton District Insurance Association
London Insurance Professionals Association 
Manitoba Association of Insurance Professionals 
Association des Femmes d’Assurance de Montreal (AFAM)
Northwestern Ontario Insurance Professionals 
Nova Scotia Insurance Women’s Association (NSIWA) 
Toronto Insurance Women’s Association (TIWA) 
Insurance Women’s Association of Western Manitoba (IWAWM)

TIWA

Founded in 1960, TIWA is a not-for-profit association of members of the insurance industry who meet in a social atmosphere to educate members and help them reach their potential both professionally and personally. TIWA also promotes the spirit of friendship and service in the industry and high ethical standards in business and social relations.
Any person working within the insurance industry is eligible for membership in TIWA.
Joining TIWA is an affirmation to your peers, the industry and the consumer, whom you ultimately serve, of your dedication to the industry through your professional and personal growth.

SPEAKERS:
1) Mary Lou O’Reilly, IBC, Vice President, Public Affairs and Marketing
Assisted by Agota (Agi) Gabor, The Gabor Group, Journalist, Television Producer, Agency Executive, Entrepreneur
2) Jean Jacques Henchez, Swiss Reinsurance Company Ltd., Managing Director
4) Glenn McGillivray, Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR), Managing Director
5) Charles Sebourin, Steamatic Canada, General Manager
6) Tracey Moore, City TV, Television Show Host

EXHIBITORS:
1 ) AKA New Media, Toronto ON, Contact: Erin McKeever. Tel. (416) 323-3490
2 ) Avis Budget Group, Toronto ON, Contact: Phil Wayland, Tel. (416) 646-7814
3 ) Belron Canada/Speedy Glass, Concord ON, Contact: Joe Celima, Tel. (905) 932-0404
4 ) Compu-Quote Inc., Windsor ON, Contacts: Suzana Leslie, Pam Stoehr and Debbie Summers, Tel. (519) 974-7283
5 ) Custom Software Solutions Inc., Virden MB, Contact: Brent Cuthbert, Tel. (877) 281-6944
6 ) Disaster Kleenup Canada Limited, Mississauga ON, Contact: Phil Moore, Tel. (905) 820-0188
7 ) Encon Group Inc., Ottawa ON, Contact: Joanne M. Hawthorne, Tel. (613) 786-2000
8 ) First General Services Canada, Toronto ON, Contact: Michael Flatt, Tel. (416) 665-6680
9 ) Fortify Solutions, Pottageville ON, Contacts: Ian Barrett and Jacques Fortin, Tel. (905) 939-8133
10) Insurance Institute of Canada, Toronto ON, Contact: Zina Tofano, Tel. (416) 362-8586 Ext.2226
11) K & K Insurance Canada, Mississauga ON, Contact: Joanne Greco, Tel. (905) 214-6049
12) MEA Forensics Engineers & Scientists, Mississauga ON, Contact: Lucy Zhao, Tel. (905) 507-1844
13) Steamatic Canada Inc., Ajax ON, Contacts: Tim Small and Carl Wilson, Tel. (905) 686-5854
14) Steamatic Canada Inc., Georgetown ON, Contacts: Upla and Saga Gunasinghe, Tel. (905) 877-2320
15) Steamatic Canada Inc., Toronto ON, Contact: Amanda Small, Tel. (416) 684-0822
16) Winmar, London ON, Contact: Debbie Matz, Tel. (905) 637-8246

CONTRIBUTORS:
1) DigitalOffset Creations, Div. of Tramca Group Inc., for signage and large format printing, Toronto ON, Contact: Danny Ramsundar, Tel. (416) 855-4327 Email: dr.ramsundar@tramca.com Website: http://www.tramca.com
2) Thanks to all contributors of gifts, prizes, awards and miscellaneous cornucopia that completed the convention…you know who you are…for credit in this article please see the footnotes for contact information…

NOTES:
(a) Information on membership to TIWA can be obtained from its website, www.tiwa.org OR contacting Cathy S. Ramsundar at 1-866-527-8645 or her website, www.csrinsurance.ca
(b) To all members of all the chapters of CAIW who wish to share their convention experience and photos/videos…please go to the Ontario Insurance Network at http://oingroup.ning.com/?xgi=gewf6JV and join, update your page, and upload your photos/videos to share with the world of insurance…
(c) For any omissions/errors/inquiries please email to the author at
dr.ramsundar@tramca.com

THE CONVENTION…
What follows is a pictorial story of what transpired…absolute discretion is called to order…due to the tribute to “many nations”…

Posted in Insurance | Leave a Comment »

Presidential Appointment for Toronto Insurance Women’s Association (TIWA)

Posted by GuruDan on June 2, 2009

Press Releases for TIWA – June 1st 2009

DURHAM RESIDENT APPOINTED PRESIDENT

Cathy S. Ramsundar, a resident of Durham, was appointed President of the Toronto Insurance Women’s Association (TIWA), the Toronto Chapter of the Canadian Association of Insurance Women (CAIW), at the Annual General Meeting held at the Toronto Board of Trade, First Canadian Place, on May 19, 2009. Her very first duty was the appointment of her Executive Board.

tiwa_exec_2009

 

Picture shows the newly appointed Executive Board for the term 2009-2010. Standing from left to right are Lori Duclos, CAIW Director; Yvonne Hird, Executive Officer; Jacqueline Butler, Recording Secretary; Amanda Small, Executive Officer; Mary Lisi, Immediate Past President; Michele Mallet, Treasurer; and sitting left to right are Nancy Carnahan, First Vice President; Cathy S. Ramsundar, President and Michelle Cole-Kennedy, Second Vice President.

 

 Cathy S. Ramsundar is a Risk Management Professional specializing in Risk Analysis and Insurance Solutions for Automobiles, Homes, and Businesses. She attended Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, as an undergraduate in Computer Science with a Business major. She continues to pursue professional courses and seminars to hone her knowledge and skills as an insurance broker. She is currently an Independent Insurance Broker, duly and legally licensed in the Province of Ontario, Canada, and operates as an Associate Insurance Broker of Mitchell Sandham Inc.

She has been in the general insurance arena since 1974. In addition to being an Associate Insurance Broker of Mitchell Sandham, Cathy acts as a public relations liaison between Mitchell Sandham and its many insurance suppliers it represents. She is always prepared to help with your insurance problems.

Cathy Lives in Pickering with her husband, two daughters, son-in-law, and two dogs, Oz and Jasper. Her office is located in Ajax.
Since moving to Ontario in 1988 Cathy has been a member, in excellent standing, with

· RIBO – Registered Insurance Brokers of Ontario

· Insurance Brokers Association of Durham Region

· IBAO – Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario

· TIWA – Toronto Insurance Women’s Association

She has been an active member of the Toronto Insurance Women’s Association (TIWA) for almost ten years where she holds the position of President for the term 2009-2010, and heads the Executive Board.

Founded in 1960, TIWA is a not-for-profit association of members of the insurance industry who meet in a social atmosphere to educate members and help them reach their potential both professionally and personally. TIWA also promotes the spirit of friendship and service in the industry and high ethical standards in business and social relations.
Any person working within the insurance industry is eligible for membership in TIWA.
Joining TIWA is an affirmation to your peers, the industry and the consumer, whom you ultimately serve, of your dedication to the industry through your professional and personal growth.
The rewards are many and immediate. As a member of TIWA, you will have the opportunity to:
(a) belong to a dynamic, professional insurance industry association
(b) cultivate self-confidence, friendship, loyalty and networking
(c) meet your peers in the industry and keep current with the latest industry developments and events
(d) participate in special events such as Insurance Information Week and the regular Association meetings
(e) bring to fellow members your knowledge and expertise
(f) challenge yourself personally by competing in the annual public speaking and essay writing contest
(g) learn through RIBO accredited educational speakers, workshops and articles designed to broaden your knowledge, enhance your position and meet professional needs
(h) develop team leadership and working skills by working on one of the many TIWA committees.

TIWA will be hosting the CAIW 2009 Convention (Journey to Toronto – One city many nations) to be held at the Delta Chelsea Hotel in Toronto on June 3-7, 2009.

Information on membership can be obtained from its website, www.tiwa.org OR contacting Cathy S. Ramsundar at 1-866-527-8645 or her website, www.csrinsurance.ca

tiwa_peterM

 

 

 

Picture shows Cathy with Peter Mitchell,
President of Mitchell Sandham Insurance Brokers.

 

 

 

tiwa_cathy_fam

 

Cathy with her family at the TIWA AGM – from left to right: Amara Ramsundar-Machado, daughter and TIWA member, Danny R. Ramsundar, husband, Cathy, and Charisse Ramsundar, daughter – the dogs, Oz and Jasper, were not allowed to attend even though Cathy wanted them to be there.

 

 

A NOTE to all personnel of insurance and insurance-related companies wishing to network within the insurance industry in Ontario…you are invited to join the Ontario Insurance Network. This network brings together all insurance and insurance-related networking under one roof.
Join , update your free membership profile, post your resume, photos, blogs, etc…make new connections, keep up to date on what’s happening in the insurance and insurance-related industries…whatever…whenever…business…more…Let’s stay connected!

Posted in Insurance | 2 Comments »

 
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