When a rose is not a rose

Don’t rely on a fund’s name to tell you what it invests in.

For example, some T-bill funds hold other assets besides Treasury bills, while some supposedly more broadly-based money market funds invest exclusively in Government of Canada Treasury bills.

Also, you’ll find several funds with the word “International” in their name, which technically means they invest only outside North America. But when you look into their portfolios, you’ll see they contain U.S. and Canadian stocks, which makes them “Global” funds.

Another example: Some so-called dividend funds are not that at all — they are actually just blue-chip stock funds.

So don’t judge the book by its cover. Ask to see a summary of the fund’s portfolio before putting in your money.