Friday, June 16, 2023

Short Takes: BMO InvestorLine HISA Interest, Ford Breaking a New Vehicle Contract, and more

I mentioned a month ago that I was trying out BMO InvestorLine’s high-interest savings accounts (HISAs) that are structured as mutual funds (BMT104, BMT109, and BMT114).  They pay exactly the advertised rate of 4.35%, but I couldn’t tell this from the confusing list of transactions.  Looking at the month-end balances, I was able to determine that they pay 1/365 of the annual interest each day, accumulating as simple interest over a month, and the accumulated interest is paid each month.  So, longer months pay more interest than shorter months, which is different from most other interest-bearing accounts I’ve had in my life.

My most recent post is:

Bad Retirement Spending Plans

Here are some short takes and some weekend reading:

John Robertson signed for a new Ford vehicle, and now Ford is demanding an extra $4000.

Nathan Proctor says companies are using legal tricks to get us to pay extra in the form of subscriptions for products we’ve already bought.  He’s fighting back with right-to-repair legislation.

John Oliver’s takedown of Jim Cramer is hilarious, but it’s important to remember that Cramer is random, not consistently wrong.  I’d be thrilled to bet against his picks if he were wrong most of the time, but the truth is that his picks turn out well sometimes.  He spouts off with confident takes on matters he knows nothing about.  No matter how well you think you understand a company, only high-level insiders have any useful knowledge about its near-term stock movements, and they’re not supposed to use this inside information.

Preet Banerjee explains the history and consequences of the repeated debt-ceiling crises in the U.S.

Salman Ahmed at Steadyhand
explains how zero commission platforms make money off you.

John De Goey
points out that certain subjects aren’t covered by media aimed at financial advisors.  These subjects include the fact that some financial advice is bad, and that the cost of investment products matters.  Sadly, know-nothing advisors are usually the ones investing their clients’ money in expensive closet index funds that masquerade as actively-managed mutual funds or segregated funds.


  1. Is Steadyhand suggesting that the bid-ask spread is different between brokerages, and that the *brokerage* is taking that difference? That doesn't sound correct to me.

    1. Ahmed said that orders go to specific traders rather than going directly to the exchange. He wasn't specific about how these traders might give worse prices than the exchange, but they pay the trading platform to get order flow for some reason.