Investment Policy


Passed July 22, 1980

The purpose of this policy is to set forth the conditions under which Woodsworth Housing Co- operative will engage in investment activity.


  1. The investment of funds must be conducted in a manner that does not risk the financial stability of the Co-operative.
  2. Money earned on investments is to accrue to the benefit of the Co-operative as a whole and may not be allocated to individual members.
  3. No individual involved in the investment activity may profit from the use of Co-operative funds.
  4. No funds should be invested with institutions whose activities knowingly conflict with the goals and principles of the Co-operative Movement, and our investments should be placed in some section of the Co-op movement unless in the opinion of the Finance Committee there are urgent and compelling reasons not to.
  5. The investment fund principal may not be applied to offset ordinary operating expenses.


  1. To maximize the monies earned on surplus working capital and member's deposits within the limitations of the above principles.
  2. To apply money earned towards offsetting inflationary increases.
  3. To provide the property manager with adequate working capital to meet the operating expenses of the Co-operative.
  4. To maintain a reserve fund to meet any unforseen major emergency.


The actual investment will be undertaken by an Investment Sub-committee of the Finance Committee. The structure and guidelines for this committee are set out in Appendix "A".

The Property Manager has the responsibility for the maintenance of minimum balances in the current and savings accounts. The manager has the authority to transfer funds between the savings (demand) and current accounts. Any surplus or shortages in these operating funds must be reported to the

Finance Committee on a regular basis and to the Treasurer in case of emergency. The manager must ensure that current detailed records of all funds and investments are maintained.

The Finance Committee is responsible to the Board of Directors for the development and maintenance of investment policy. The Chair has the authority to convene a special meeting of the Committee to deal with any investment or cash-flow problems that may arise and to make recommendations to the Board of Directors.

It is the Treasurer's responsibility to keep the general membership advised of all investment activity. The Treasurer (or his/her designated representative) must chair all meetings of the Investment Sub- Committee. The Treasurer has the authority to make decisions and give directives in an emergency situation. Other Board members must be advised immediately of any such decisions.

The Board of Directors has the authority to approve or over-rule all investment decisions within the limits of this policy.

The Investment Policy may not be changed without the approval by majority vote of the Membership present at a general meeting.

Any changes in portfolio will be published in the newsletter.


The terms of reference for the Investment Subcommittee of the Woodsworth Housing Co-operative Finance Committee are as follows:

COMPOSITION: The Investment Subcommittee shall be comprised of —

  1. The Treasurer, (Chairman and liaison with the Board of Directors)
  2. Two members appointed from the Finance Committee.
  3. The property manager (co-ordinator, and non-voting member)


  1. Members' last month's housing charges and maintenance deposits
  2. Accumulated operating surplus prior to the mortgage agreement.
  3. Reserves as required by C.M.H.C.
  4. Net operating surplus.

The Investment Subcommittee is to receive reports concerning the current status of investments and consult with its agents regarding changes in investments. The Finance Committee will have the authority to suggest changes in investment policy and have these changes approved by the members.

The monies may be invested in long or short term debts, securities, equities, and mortgages, with due regard to maintaining a portfolio that is flexible in the face of changing market conditions. Not withstanding the foregoing:

  1. No investment will be made or continue to be held unless the Committee carries out appropriate analysts of, and is fully conversant with, the salient characteristics of each investment. In the case of publicly traded bond investments a regular review is required.
  2. No investment will be made in any security that does not comply with the relevant provisions of any legislation governing Co-operative Societies.


Investments in fixed income securities should average A+ or better, and none should be rated below B++, as rated by the Canadian Bond Rating Service or the Dominion Bond Rating Service.


  1. BONDS AND DEBENTURES (book value):(a)  Issued or guaranteed by the Government of Canada … NO LIMIT.

    (b)  Issued or guaranteed by the Provincial Governments…a limit of 50% of the total bond holdings provided that such holdings are bonds of the provinces of Ontario, Alberta, or Saskatchewan.

    (c)  Municipal bonds are to be limited to 10% of the total bond holdings

    (d)  Corporate bonds may not exceed 65% of the total bond holdings. The total exposure to any one corporate name, including associations, must not exceed 8% of total bond holdings.

  2. EQUITIES (Canadian, at market value):(a)  Maximum holding of a particular security must not exceed 8% of the total equity holdings. This will include convertible debentures and convertible preferred shares.

    (b)  Maximum holding in any of the TSE major group indices must not exceed the TSE weighting by more than 5%.

  3. MORTGAGES:The fund may be invested in conventional first mortgages that do not exceed 75% of the property value or in insured mortgages at the discretion of the Committee. A minimum of 50% of the outstanding book value of all mortgages shall be invested in renewable term residential mortgages of 5 years or less. The term "insured mortgages" means those insured under the National Housing Act (NHA) or by the Mortgage Insurance Company of Canada (MICC).


Foreign investments will be confined to United States securities and must not exceed a limitation of 10% of total assets or book value.


The asset mix will be delineated under three headings:page4image2944

i)  Equities
– Canadian
– United States

ii)  Fixed Income
– bonds
– mortgages

iii)  Cash Reserves
– including short term items.

Each time the Sub-Committee on Investments meets it will examine the current asset mix and determine whether market conditions warrant any changes. Any recommendations will be presented to the Finance Committee for approval. Details of recommendations approved will be logged in the "ASSET MIX LOG" and remain in force until the Finance Committee approves further changes. In the eventuality of a sudden change in market condition a variance allowance of 15% will be permitted in the asset mix. If a wider variance is required the Subcommittee must seek advice by requesting that the Chairman of the Finance Committee convene an emergency meeting of the Finance Committee.


Consolidated by the By-law Committee – April 2010)