Money & Career

Five great financial gifts

These money-related prezzies will go a long way

1. Gold

Yes, an ounce of gold is costly and its value is subject to market swings, but the physical heft of gold brings stability in times of volatility. In the financial markets, it’s considered a store of value. Tell your lucky loved one to hold on to it (in a safety deposit box, of course) as a reminder of his or her own value and worth.

2. Stock certificates

Get your teen to take an interest in the financial markets by buying her a share or two of a company whose products she loves (Disney, Sony and Nike are all publicly traded companies). Then get her checking the stock quotes to see how it’s performing. As OneShare.com says, buying just one stock can “inspire a new generation of shareholders.”

3. A TSFA

Perfect for someone who could use a little, shall we say, incentive. Every Canadian over the age of 18 can contribute up to $5,000 per year in a TFSA and—here’s the gift from the government—have it grow tax-free. So why not start early (then tell your gift recipient they have to match it!)?

4. A session with a financial planner

You know the old saying about giving someone a fish versus teaching them how to fish? Here is a gift with some long-term love.

5. Invest in the financial well-being of others and the world economy at large

As a family, choose to give a mango tree ($12), a library in a box ($60) or even a goat ($75) to a community in an impoverished region of the world. Another gift we particularly love: literacy training for two women ($120). All are available from plancanada.ca. Better still, forget gifts for the extended family and give mango trees to everyone! It’s called ethical giving, and it will teach your children—and yourself—far more than a toy that quickly loses its lustre.