Unhappy with AGF funds

Q – I noticed that my AGF funds have fallen drastically in the last year. I wondered why the fund manager of AGF International Value has discontinued their contract and if this fund is headed for disaster.

The funds I am inquiring about are:

AGF Aggressive All Cap
AGF Aggressive Growth 
AGF Dividend
AGF Latin America 
AGF RSP International Value

I also have a question to ask about dividend funds being held in RRSP accounts. My personal advisor has never been keen upon me holding any but when I did buy some they went up 50% or more. If I had done more investing in them three years ago I would actually have a healthy account compared to the loss overall I have maintained from his choices.

What do you think of Nesbitt Burns as advisors, and what would you recommend in regards to holding dividend funds?  – M.H.

A – I have shown the current rating of each of your funds as per our On-line Mutual Funds Database. If you would like to enter a subscription to this Database for on-going reference and to read the full commentary on each fund, please visit our web site for details. The sca is $ (worst) to $$$$ (best).

AGF Aggressive All Cap – $
AGF Aggressive Growth – $$
AGF Dividend – $$$
AGF Latin America – $
AGF RSP International Value – $$$ (due to pending manager change)

The Charles Brandes organization resigned the AGF account so they would be free to launch their own mutual fund line in Canada. AGF is currently searching for a replacement. Our advice on the Brandes-managed funds is hold for now.

Re: dividend funds, I see no problem in holding them in a registered plan as long as it is clearly understood that the tax benefits of the dividend tax credit are lost by doing so.

Recommendations on the best dividend funds to own now can be found in my Mutual Funds Update newsletter, the On-Line Mutual Funds Database, or Gordon Pape’s 2002 Buyer’s Guide to Mutual Funds.

I can’t comment on the effectiveness of Nesbitt Burns or any other brokerage firm. So much depends on the client/advisor personal relationship. – G.P.