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COVID-19 FAQs

COVID-19 Business Update 

We are an essential services business

At Keybase, we are monitoring global developments related to coronavirus very closely. We are taking precautionary measures with our own employees in order to minimize any potential risk of disruption to servicing our clients. As part of our plan, we have initiated a work-from-home capability that enables the majority of our employees to work remotely. Our team is working tirelessly to adapt to the ever-changing circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Canada Post has notified businesses of delivery delays while most major bank branches are restricting access and services. In light of these developments, we feel it is prudent to minimize the flow of any incoming and outgoing mail.

Client transactions sent via Canada Post may potentially be impacted due to the current situation. At this time, our mailroom has limited capacity to handle any correspondence mailed to our office or received by your financial advisor.  Faxes may also be impacted due to the reduced staff present to receive facsimiles at our location. There is no guarantee that your documents will be received in a timely manner which may result in a delay in processing your investment instructions. Keybase will make every effort to complete your requests, but if your trading instructions are delayed Keybase will not have any trade liability due to these extraordinary circumstances.

To minimize potential disruption to clients, we strongly recommend setting up electronic fund transfers (EFT) if you are expecting a cheque in the mail for things like RRIF payments, systematic withdrawals, or redemptions. EFT is the most effective way to ensure you receive redemption proceeds when expected. Alternatively, you may ask your Advisor to set up a onetime PAC to facilitate a lump sum purchase to your investment account. 

We appreciate the trust and confidence you place in us and we are doing everything in our power to assist our clients and prevent any disruption to our business operations, or client service.

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1.  Will Keybase remain open for business?

Financial services companies are considered essential businesses. Our head office operations will stay open, but more than 95% of our employees are working from home with seamless integration and job performance functionality. Our team is working to adapt to the ever-changing circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, so we can continue to help our clients invest and have access to their money. And yes, we are open for business. 

2.  Is my personal information still safe if Keybase employees are working from home?

We keep your personal information secure no matter where our employees are remotely located. Even though some employees are working from home, we haven’t changed the way we access, use and store your data. Our existing privacy and security controls are still in place to protect your personal information.

3. How can I meet with my advisor if social distancing guidelines are still in effect?

Don’t worry – there are many ways for you to connect with your Keybase advisor and their team.

By phone or email: Advisor office staff are working from home. They’re responding to phone calls and continuing with business virtually. 

By video chat: Your advisor can connect with you through a video chat. Call or email your advisor for more information and to schedule a session.

4.  The value of my investments have dropped. What should I do?

Don’t panic – acting in fear is rarely a good decision. The financial market disruption is only a reflection of this short moment in time caused by the health crisis. Moving all your assets without thinking it through may hurt you in the long run. Stay focused on your long-term plan so that you do not waver under uncertain circumstances.

Don’t try to “time the market” – it can be a gamble to move all your assets to safer investments because it is hard to time perfectly. You will most likely end up selling at a lower price and buying at a higher price later when you re-invest.

Strive to continue contributions – instead of selling assets, continuing contributions during down markets means you are purchasing more units at a lower cost. Consider evaluating your portfolio – market fluctuations may have caused your portfolio to shift from how you originally invested. 

If there’s no significant reason other than short term volatility in the market…hold your positions. You don’t want to be moving in and out of positions trying to time the market. You want to make sure that you continue to hold fundamentally strong investments.

5. For the time being would you suggest I invest in savings or deposit accounts?

Considering interest rates are at their lowest levels in recent history and unless you require to withdrawal funds in the next three to six months, this might not be the wisest investment decision. You need your money to grow and due to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis, there are many bargain investment opportunities to be had that can get you a better rate of return in the future, when the markets recover. 

Short-term market fluctuations can cause even the most experienced investor to panic. It's important to focus on your long-term investment goals and stick to a plan to avoid making decisions that may come from a reaction to drops in the market. 

Your Financial Advisor can discuss all the various options.

6. Is now a good time to invest more money to my investments, given unit prices and values are low?

The saying goes: buy low, sell high. It may be a good time to invest more but keep in mind that the markets could still go down further. All market conditions present opportunities and no one has been able to time the market precisely. 

Do you buy more of a product when the retailer puts it on sale? The same logic would apply. Yes, the discount could be more next week, but a good deal is a good deal. However, just because something is a good deal doesn’t mean that you can afford it. Whether markets are up or down you should always be investing within your risk tolerance. Consider setting up a PAC to benefit from dollar cost averaging.

7. What should I do with my RRSP and my retirement nest egg? I am worried I might lose it all.

Although most investments are not guaranteed, it's very unlikely that you will lose all of your money. Do remember though, that you do not or will not need all of your money during  the current unprecedented situation; we urge you to be calm, patient and do not let your emotions get the better of you. 

You will be retiring in the future and will be retired for many more years.Your investment plan doesn’t end the day you retire. In most cases, the majority of the growth your investments will achieve will be during your retirement. There is plenty of time for your investment portfolio to recover from the current downturn and for your investments to grow more normally. Having a balanced portfolio and staying the course during periods of uncertainty may help you in the long run.

8. What should investors do?

Over the past 12 months, markets have experienced both large gains and sharp reversals, which may have knocked portfolio allocations off course. Rebalancing back to long-term targets may be appropriate. Now would be an optimal time to develop a plan, or revisit your current one, if it’s been a while since the last review with your advisor.

9. Will I continue to receive cheques in the mail?

To minimize potential disruption to clients, we strongly recommend setting up electronic fund transfers (EFT) if you are expecting a cheque in the mail for things like RRIF payments, systematic withdrawals, or redemptions. EFT is the most effective way to ensure your receive redemption proceeds when expected. Alternatively, you may ask your Advisor to set up a one-time PAC to facilitate a lump sum purchase to your investment accounts.

10. What is being done to stabilize our economy and keep individuals safe?

So far, our Federal Government has announced a massive $107 billion Economic Recovery Stimulus Package to help individuals, displaced employees, businesses and employers through this health pandemic. In addition, each Provincial government is directing their own economic support and health prevention initiatives in leveling the spread of the COVID-19 virus. All these measures will help our community, our society and our country collectively. Things will get better in due time.

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