Advanced Mutual Funds Advice (AMFA) Program

What will you learn about?

The Advanced Mutual Funds Advice Program consists of the following seven courses covering the major competencies of an advisor who deals with mutual fund clients:

  • Client Discovery
  • Tax Planning
  • Retirement Planning
  • Estate Planning
  • Foundations of Investment Management
  • Retirement Planning Income and Products
  • Practice Management for Mutual Fund Representatives

What is the course syllabus?

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Course 1: Client Discovery

Topics covered in this module:

  • Information Required by Regulation and Law
  • Going Beyond the Regulatory and Legal Minimum
  • The Client Discovery Process
  • Analyzing Personal Financial Statements and Savings Plan
  • Credit Planning
  • What Is Behavioural Finance?
  • The Relevance of Behavioural Finance to the Advisor
  • Risk Tolerance Questionnaires and Their Limitation
  • What Are Investor Biases?
  • What Are Investor Personality Types?
  • How an Advisor can Apply Bias Diagnoses When structuring an Asset Allocation Program

Course 2: Tax Planning

Topics covered in this module:

  • Financial Planning and Taxation
  • Personal Income Tax Returns
  • Taxation of Investment Income
  • Taxable and Non-Taxable Employee Benefits
  • Techniques to Minimize Taxes
  • Registered Plans Used for Non-Retirement Goals
  • Incorporation

Course 3: Retirement Planning

Topics covered in this module:

  • Employer-Sponsored Registered Retirement Plans
  • Funding Retirement
  • Preparing to Fund Retirement
  • An Overview of Registered Retirement Savings Plans
  • Registered Retirement Savings Plan Contribution Rules
  • Management of RRSP Accounts What Clients Should Know About their Registered Retirement Savings Plans
  • Employer-Sponsored Registered Retirement Plans
  • Funding Retirement
  • Government Pension Plans

Course 4: Estate Planning

Topics covered in this module:

  • Strategic Wealth Preservation: The Big Picture
  • Risk in the Context of Strategic Wealth Management
  • Measuring Risk
  • Identifying Risk within a Client’s Net Worth
  • The Family Life Cycle
  • The Personal Risk Management Process
  • Passing on the Estate
  • Other Factors to Consider when Making a Will
  • Probate Procedures to Validate a Will
  • Powers of Attorney and Living Wills (Advance Health Care Directives)
  • Getting the Family Involved
  • Simple Rules
  • Starting a Discussion on Family Issues
  • Specific Family Wealth Transfer Planning Issues
  • Family Law Issues That Could Affect the Transfer of Wealth
  • The Wealth Transfer Team
  • The Family Conference
  • Trusts
  • Taxation
  • General Issues to Consider for Estate Planning

Course 5: Foundations of Investment Management

Topics covered in this module:

  • A Systematic Approach to Investment Management
  • Portfolio Theory
  • International Investing
  • Asset Allocation
  • Strategic Asset Allocation
  • Rebalancing
  • Tactical Asset Allocation
  • Volatility in Mutual Fund Returns
  • The Steps in Selecting a Mutual Fund
  • People
  • Process
  • Philosophy
  • Performance
  • The Regulation and Structure of Exchange-Traded Funds
  • Key Features of Exchange-Traded Funds
  • The Various Types of Exchange-Traded Funds
  • The Risks of Investing in Exchange-Traded Funds
  • Alternative Investments
  • Benefits and Risks of Investing in Alternatives
  • Alternative Investment Structures
  • Alternative Investment Risk Drivers and Suitability

Course 6: Retirement Planning Income and Products

Topics covered in this module:

  • The Impact of Market History
  • The Role of Dividends
  • The Time Value of Fluctuations
  • Loss Recovery
  • Monetization Strategies, Reverse Mortgages, and Other Strategies to Generate Income Using the Home
  • Fixed Income Risks
  • Fixed Income Strategies
  • Covered Call Writing
  • Preferred Shares
  • High-Yield Fixed Income Funds
  • Real Return Bonds
  • Exchange-Traded Funds
  • Life-Cycle Funds
  • Index-Linked Guaranteed Investment Certificates
  • Mortgage-Backed Securities
  • Understanding Annuities
  • Types of Annuities
  • Segregated Funds
  • Guaranteed Minimum Withdrawal Benefit Contracts

Course 7: Practice Management for Mutual Fund Representatives

Topics covered in this module:

  • Goal Setting and Self-Management
  • Marketing and Campaigns
  • Business Organization
  • Time Management and Client Service
  • Business Management
  • Action Plan
  • The Dealer Relationship
  • Know your Client and Know Your Product
  • Conflicts of Interest
  • Complaint Resolutions

How you’ll learn?

Each course consists of a series of modules (2 to 4 modules depending on the course) covering specialized mutual fund topics. The modules range in length from 5 to 10 hours. Each module concludes with an online test. Completion of that test earns the learner multi-jurisdictional CE credits. Students thus earn CE credits incrementally as they work their way through the program.

Course Completion and Digital Badge

Completion of all online tests within a course earns the learner a course completion notice along with a micro-certificate which is represented to the student in the form of a digital badge. For example, learners who complete the Client Discovery course will receive a congratulatory note indicating they have earned a Micro-Certificate in Client Discovery which will allow them to share their verified CSI credential online on email signatures, digital resumes, websites, and social media channels.

In addition, learners who complete this course are also on the path to earning the Certificate in Financial Services Advice (CFSA), the Certificate in Advanced Financial Advice, and the Personal Financial Planner (PFP®) designation.