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Poll Archive

Street intelligence: see what your peers are thinking.


Low volatility 22.7%
Enhanced dividends/covered calls 27.3%
Quality 31.8%
Energy/materials 13.6%
Other: 4.5%

June 28, 2022

With inflation high and interest rates rising, what investment strategies are you suggesting for your clients?

Quality led the way as Advisors’ top recommended strategy for today’s high-inflation, rising rate environment. Narrowly trailing were Enhanced Dividends/Covered Calls in second place and Low Volatility in third. Energy/Materials came in fourth, while Other pulled up the rear. For insights into these strategies, check out these resources:

The Busy Advisor’s Guide to Building Quality Portfolios

Volatility, Schm-olatility… Just Earn Dividends.

Dividend Investing – Smoother Ride in a Volatile Market

Lottery Tickets and Volatility: Strategies to Protect Your Client Portfolios


1-5 44.4%
6-10 26.7%
11-20 11.1%
21+ 17.8%

May 30, 2022

How many client referrals did you receive in 2021?

Poll results were relatively spread out, with almost 45% of respondents saying they received between one and five referrals in 2021, the survey’s top response. Between six and 10 referrals landed in second place, while 21 or more referrals came third and 11 to 20 referrals came in last despite being the choice of almost 18% of participants. For more information on referral strategies, try these resources:

A Veteran Advisor’s 5-Step Growth Hack

The Key to Limitless Referrals

A Referral Strategy to Get Excited About

Success with the "aging solo” LGBTQ+, singles and couples


Email reminders 16.7%
Regular calls/conversations 83.3%
Incentives and rewards 0%
Other: 0%

May 16, 2022

What’s your strategy to keep referral sources engaged?

Regular phone calls and conversations was the clear leader among Advisors’ strategies for staying in touch with referral sources. Sending email reminders finished in second place, while incentives and rewards failed to garner support. Useful resources on obtaining referrals include:

A Referral Strategy to Get Excited About

The Key to Limitless Referrals

A LinkedIn Lead Strategy that Works

Embracing a Virtual COI Strategy


Networking (in-person or virtual) 60%
LinkedIn 12%
Asking for referrals 20%
Cold calling 4%
Direct mail 4%

April 25, 2022

Which prospecting method is currently working best for you?

Networking is the clear winner for Advisors’ go-to prospecting methods, with Referrals and LinkedIn following at a distant second and third. Check out our Business Building section to learn how you can better leverage your existing networks, tap into social media and build COI relationships. Some of the helpful resources you’ll find include:


Global equities 35.5%
Global/Canadian high quality dividend equities 32.3%
Tech companies 3.2%
Short duration government bonds 25.8%
Other: 3.2%

April 4, 2022

With interest rates on the rise, what do you feel is the best investment opportunity?

Global equities took the lead spot, followed closely by both global and Canadian dividend equities. Short duration government bonds were the other clear preference, with tech companies trailing at a distant fourth. Top related funds:


Infrastructure 40%
Real Estate 15%
Private Equity 10%
Private Debt 25%
Commodities 10%
Other: 0%

March 21, 2022

What’s your first choice when it comes to an alternative investment?

Based on the responses we received, infrastructure was the big winner with 40% of Advisors’ votes as their go-to alt asset class. Private debt finished in second place at 25%, which may be a surprise for some. If you’re looking for a unique infrastructure solution, our BMO Brookfield Global Renewables Infrastructure Fund and ETF may be the perfect choice – particularly given its focus on Green securities.


0-0.9% 28.1%
1-3.9% 9.4%
4-6.9% 18.8%
7-9.9% 15.6%
10% or more 28.1%

February 28, 2022

On average, what percentage of your client portfolios do you allocate to Alternative investments?

Clearly, there is some fairly divergent usage of alts amongst Advisors, as was highlighted in our latest poll results. For more information on Alternatives, please read our page dedicated to the launch of the BMO Brookfield Global Renewables Infrastructure & Global Real Estate Tech Funds.


Responsible investing and ESG 0%
Tax and estate planning 15.4%
Regulatory reform (e.g., CFR/KYP, etc.) 7.7%
New and innovative product solutions 30.8%
Benefits of active and passive investing 23.1%
Estate planning – segregated funds 23.1%
Other 0%

February 14, 2022

Which CE topics interest you most?

Estate planning and segregated funds was the most popular response given by Advisors in our latest poll on the question of hot-button topics for CE credits. For more information on this particular subject, read our recent article A Compelling Estate Planning Solution.

Additional estate planning articles:

You can also sign-up for a variety CE Courses, including those on estate planning.


COVID-19 developments and outcomes 4.9%
Inflation and interest rate hikes 78%
Government or corporate debt loads 2.4%
Geopolitical issues 7.3%
Valuations 7.3%
Other 0%

January 24, 2022

Which market event is most dominant with you and your clients in 2022?

Not surprisingly, inflation and interest rate hikes are the biggest issues amongst Advisors and investors. How should you prepare? You can learn more by reviewing our best ideas for managing client portfolios against this continued pressure

10 Big Investment Trends for 2022 Fred Demers, Director, Multi-Asset Solutions, shares his views and predictions on the big investment trends shaping the economy, markets – and your clients’ portfolios over the coming year. Read

2022 Market Outlook Sadiq S. Adatia, CIO, provides his insights for the markets in the months ahead, including COVID expectations, interest rates and yields, consumer behaviours, valuations, value vs. growth fundamentals – and the opportunities for portfolio positioning. Read


Yes – Relying on active managers and managed solutions allows me to focus on client service and holistic financial planning. 43.8%
No – Outsourced management is too expensive and I prefer to conduct my own portfolio construction. 0%
Somewhat – I use managed solutions as a core holding in client portfolios. 37.5%
Somewhat – I trust active managers to provide satellite positions that enhance overall exposure. 18.8%

December 13, 2021

Do you delegate the investment management of client portfolios?

The majority of Advisors capitalize on managed solutions and active management to save time and help clients achieve their desired outcomes. For the latest insights from our dedicated Multi-Asset Solutions Team, click here. For additional product solutions, contact your BMO GAM Regional Sales Representative.


Increased volatility 37.5%
Continued recovery 25%
Weaker performance 37.5%
Outperformance of defensive strategies 0%

November 22, 2021

Advisors polled are somewhat cautious about the near-term outlook for equity and fixed income markets. To help navigate the difficult environment and stay ahead of market risks, read the latest insights, commentaries and actionable strategies from our experts:


I’m not worried, Inflation is transitory. Nothing to see here. 13.8%
I’m somewhat concerned and have begun to research products that will outperform in prolonged periods of high inflation. 24.1%
I’m concerned and have invested in high quality / dividend growth equities and lower duration fixed income solutions. 55.2%
I’m unsure what course of action to take. 6.9%

November 8, 2021

With inflation now at near two-decade highs, how are you addressing this issue within your investment models?

Not surprisingly, inflation is top-of-mind with most Advisors, who are recommending investment solutions to help mitigate risk and offer dividend growth in this challenging market environment. For more from our portfolio managers, read Concentrated Global Equity: Looking Past Inflation Fears, and ETF Portfolios: Actively Manage Inflation Risk. Also, check out our latest client-friendly inflation handout demonstrating the real rate of return adjusted for inflation for the BMO Balanced ETF Portfolio.


Retirement 45.5%
Tax and estate planning 30.3%
Insurance 0%
Budgeting and debt repayment 24.2%

October 25, 2021

What are your clients most pressing concerns?

Retirement is the biggest issue among investors, according to poll results. With the pandemic adding new challenges to Canadians’ retirement plans, learn why this unprecedented time provides a golden opportunity for Advisors to tackle the conversation in a new light. Need more? Read “Managing Risk Efficiently for Retirees,” by Mark Raes, for some solutions to get you started.


Top performing fund ideas 56.5%
Help simplify my business 17.4%
Help increase my revenue 4.3%
Provide regulatory guidance and support (KYP) 21.7%

September 28, 2021

How can a fund company provide maximum value to you moving forward?

Most Advisors are searching for the best product ideas to elevate their offering. If you’re in that majority, check out our Top Fund Ideas for an easy-to-navigate “hotlist” of key strategies and solutions. Additionally, nearly 23% of respondents seek regulatory guidance, particularly in light of client-focused reforms. To access our new KYP fund comparison tool (and generate customized reports tailored to your needs), contact your BMO Global Asset Management Sales Rep and also read CFRs: 5 changes you need to know about.


100% virtual 5.7%
50% virtual, 50% by phone 11.4%
50% virtual, 50% in person 74.3%
100% in person 0%
Other 8.6%

September 10 2021

How do you anticipate future client meetings to be conducted moving forward?

The majority of Advisors think it will be a hybrid of virtual and in-person meetings! To brush up on your virtual tactics, read wholesaler Sanjay Singla’s insider tips on how to differentiate yourself with a polished and professional online approach. Need more? Read “Embracing a Virtual COI Strategy” by Ben Jones, Head of Intermediary Distribution.


Planning/ Estate 31.3%
Alternative for GICs 12.5%
To help guarantee RIFF Income 6.3%
For clients looking for assured outcomes 18.8%
Creditor protection 6.3%
I have never used Seg Funds 25%

August 27, 2021

What role do segregated funds play in your business?

It’s estate planning for most. For Advisors looking to expand their business and bring new, value-add solutions to their clients, read Richard Poulin’s article on the “estate wedge” strategy and how it works to help achieve estate goals and protect against potentially compromising scenarios through segregated funds.


Planning tools 22.2%
Fund ideas and PM insights 38.9%
Practice management tips 22.2%
ESG integration strategies 16.7%
Other 0%

August 13, 2021

What resources are most useful for your practice?

Fund ideas and PM insights! To learn more on strategies to build a balanced, resilient portfolio, check out our Top Fund Ideas and PM Corner
sections for direct access to our managers’ latest commentary and trade tips.


How their current investments rank from an ESG perspective 26.7%
How do ESG criteria impact investment decisions and portfolio construction 6.7%
How would portfolio allocations have differed over the past year if ESG hadn’t been factored into the investment decision-making process? 20%
I haven’t discussed ESG with my clients 40%
Other 6.7%

July 30, 2021

What about ESG interests your clients?

According to the results, most Advisors haven’t discussed ESG with their clients. We can help! To integrate broader ESG themes and engage in deeper, quality conversations, BMO Global Asset Management has developed the digital MyESGTM quiz. Requiring just 2 minutes of a client’s time, the quiz yields insightful information on their ESG values, drawn from statistical analysis on investor beliefs and behaviours. Together with our Quick Start Guide to the ESG Advisor Toolkit and Discussion Guide, these practical resources help to segment your clients, and frame conversations accordingly, with relevant talking points, cues, power tips and FAQ answers. It’s also an innovative way for you to proactively introduce ESG if it hasn’t come up already!


Save time 21.2%
Lower client costs 9.1%
Bring in net new assets 54.5%
Increase revenue on existing assets 15.2%
Other 0%

July 12, 2021

In the next 3 months, a business partner can add the most value by helping with actionable strategies to...

Bring in net new assets! Nearly 55% of Advisors said that is where partners can add the most value. For help with virtual prospecting, and growing your business online, explore BMO Global Asset Management's tailor-made LinkedIn guide for the "Always On Advisor" - featuring step-by-step instructions on new features.


I am active on social media by posting on trends in the industry. 10%
I use tools to monitor my activity. 13.3%
I create my own content that is relevant to my clients and target audience. 23.3%
I do not have a social media presence but I am interested in learning more. 36.7%
Other 16.7%

June 18, 2021

How would you describe your social media presence for your practice?

A whopping 37% of Advisors said they are not active on social media, but are interested in learning more! For help connecting with clients online, listen to our exclusive 3-Part, Advisor Virtual Event Series featuring Sarano Kelley, which includes a dedicated webinar on building relationships through social.


I believe CAD is currently overvalued and I see an opportunity to benefit from a possible reversal (USD appreciation) 33.3%
I like the reduced volatility and downside protection typically provided by unhedged USD exposure 13.7%
I’m not trying to predict currency movements. I believe it is a zero sum game over the long term. 45.1%
Other: 7.8%

June 4, 2021

When choosing an unhedged exposure to USD, what is the main reason behind your decision?

According to the results, 45% of Advisors said they are not trying to predict currency movements, while 33% said they believed the Canadian dollar was overvalued and they saw an opportunity to benefit from a possible reversal. To learn more about our comprehensive suite of unhedged USD exposures, contact your BMO Global Asset Management Regional Representative, and explore our newest fund in the field – BMO U.S. All Cap Equity Fund – managed by Brian Belski.


Finding growth 22.2%
Sourcing income 8.3%
Inflation risk 36.1%
Market valuations 8.3%
Reducing volatility 16.7%
Other 8.3%

April 19, 2021

What are you focused on with client portfolios now?

Inflation risk is the biggest concern right now for Advisors – and clients. For fund ideas to actively manage this, check out our ETF Portfolios, and read more about how they use our Five Lenses philosophy here.


Reducing volatility 16.7%
Fixed income 22.2%
ESG-focused funds 30.6%
Canadian equities 13.9%
Segregated Funds/GIFs 5.6%
Other 11.1%

April 15, 2021

What portfolio strategies would you like to explore further?

ESG-focused funds were the answer of the day! To learn more about our 30+ year responsible investing heritage, and our dedicated ESG funds, browse through our new ESG hub for new information, and related tools and resources.


Social media marketing 15.4%
Niche client segments 23.1%
Buying or selling a book of business 26.9%
Estate and succession planning 11.5%
Referral strategies 15.4%
Other 7.7%

March 14, 2021

What practice management topics would you like to read about?

Buying or selling a book of business! That’s no surprise based on our website metrics. Delve into our Advisor Stories section for articles on the popular topic including, Buying Book After Book: A Strategic Growth Story and From One Book, to Three: Making Every Transition Count articles.


Yes, I have all the resources I need to start 18.4%
Yes, but I require additional training 24.5%
No, but I’m willing to learn 46.9%
I’m not interested 6.1%
Other 4.1%

March 9, 2021

Do you feel equipped to deploy a LinkedIn strategy for business building?

An overwhelming number of Advisors polled said they don’t feel LinkedIn-ready, but are willing to learn. For help navigating this social media outlet, read our article that features author, trainer and coach Sarano Kelley, who breaks down his comprehensive process for generating leads through LinkedIn. To get further ahead, explore BMO Global Asset Management’s tailor-made LinkedIn guide for Advisors.

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