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8.1 Introduction

An introduction to equity securities with a focus on common shares, comparing their long-term performance against bonds and inflation.

8.1 Introduction


Equity securities, particularly common shares, constitute a significant portion of many investors’ portfolios. Historical data indicate that the return on stocks surpasses that on bonds over prolonged periods. Moreover, in the long run, the returns on common stocks not only consistently outperform inflation but also offer lasting protection against the loss of purchasing power.

Key Takeaways

  • Equity Securities: These are financial instruments that signify ownership in a company, commonly in the form of shares.
  • Common Shares: A type of equity security that represents a claim on a portion of a company’s profits and assets.
  • Historical Returns: Long-term data shows that stocks typically yield higher returns compared to bonds.
  • Inflation Protection: Common stocks often offer protection against inflation, preserving the purchasing power of investors.


  • Equity Securities: Financial instruments signifying ownership interest in a company.
  • Common Shares: Units of ownership in a corporation, entitling the shareholder to a portion of the company’s earnings and assets.
  • Bonds: Fixed income instruments representing a loan made by an investor to a borrower.
  • Inflation: The rate at which the general level of prices for goods and services is rising, eroding purchasing power.
  • Purchasing Power: The quantity of goods or services that one unit of currency can buy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What are equity securities?

    Equity securities are financial instruments that represent ownership in a company. Common shares are the most popular type of equity securities.

  2. Why are common shares significant in an investment portfolio?

    Common shares often yield higher returns over the long term compared to bonds and also provide a hedge against inflation, thus protecting purchasing power.

  3. How do common stock returns compare to bond returns?

    Historically, returns on common stocks exceed those of bonds over extended periods. This trend makes common shares attractive for long-term investment.

  4. How do stocks help in protecting against inflation?

    Stocks generally offer returns that outpace inflation, helping to maintain or increase the purchasing power of an investment.

Chart: Historical Performance Comparison

    graph LR
	    A[Stocks] -- Higher Returns --> B{Investor Portfolio}
	    A -- Inflation Protection --> B
	    C[Bonds] -- Lower Returns --> B

The above chart illustrates that stocks generally offer higher returns and inflation protection compared to bonds, making them an essential part of an investor’s portfolio.

📚✨ Quiz Time! ✨📚

🧐 Assess and Solidify Your Understanding

Welcome to the Knowledge Checkpoint! You’ll find 10 carefully curated quizzes designed to reinforce the key concepts covered. These questions will help you gauge your grasp of the material, identify areas that need further review, and ensure you’re on the right track towards mastering the content for the Canadian Securities certification exams. Take your time, think critically, and use these quizzes as a tool to enhance your learning journey. 📘✨

Good luck! 🍀💪

## Why are equity securities, particularly common shares, crucial in investors' portfolios? - [ ] They provide guaranteed returns. - [ ] They are less risky than bonds. - [x] Their long-term returns exceed those on bonds. - [ ] They require minimal knowledge to invest in. > **Explanation:** Over the long term, the return on stocks (equity securities) exceeds the return on bonds, making them a crucial part of an investor's portfolio. ## How do long-term common stock returns compare to inflation? - [ ] They match inflation rates. - [x] They consistently outpace inflation. - [ ] They are often lower than inflation. - [ ] They only sometimes beat inflation. > **Explanation:** Long-term common stock returns consistently outpace inflation, providing protection from the loss of purchasing power. ## What is one historical advantage of investing in common shares? - [ ] They do not fluctuate in value. - [ ] They always provide immediate high returns. - [x] They provide long-term protection from the loss of purchasing power. - [ ] They do not expose investors to market risks. > **Explanation:** History shows that common shares provide long-term protection from the loss of purchasing power, as long-term returns exceed inflation. ## In terms of historical returns, which investment typically offers higher returns over time? - [ ] Bonds - [x] Common shares - [ ] Savings accounts - [ ] Gold > **Explanation:** Historically, common shares offer higher returns over time compared to bonds. ## Why might an investor choose common shares over bonds? - [ ] Common shares are always safer than bonds. - [ ] Bonds do not provide any returns. - [ ] Common shares are less expensive. - [x] Common shares have higher long-term returns. > **Explanation:** Investors might choose common shares over bonds for their higher long-term returns, despite higher risks. ## How does investing in common shares help with purchasing power? - [ ] Provides fixed returns. - [ ] Protects against market volatility. - [x] Outpaces inflation over the long term. - [ ] Ensures immediate liquidity. > **Explanation:** Common shares help maintain purchasing power by consistently outpacing inflation over the long term. ## What can long-term common stock returns provide that bond returns typically do not? - [ ] Immediate dividends - [x] Long-term protection from inflation - [ ] Fixed interest payments - [ ] Lower investment risk > **Explanation:** Long-term common stock returns provide protection from inflation, which bond returns may not typically offer. ## Which statement is true regarding the historical performance of stocks versus bonds? - [ ] Bonds outperform stocks over the long term. - [ ] Stocks have higher volatility and lower returns. - [ ] Bonds and stocks have the same returns over time. - [x] Stocks outperform bonds over the long term. > **Explanation:** History shows that stocks outperform bonds over the long term, making them an important part of investment portfolios. ## What is one risk associated with common shares despite their high returns? - [x] Market volatility and risk - [ ] Guaranteed losses - [ ] Fixed low returns - [ ] No tax benefits > **Explanation:** Despite high returns, common shares come with a risk of market volatility, impacting their value. ## What is a key reason common shares are included in most investors' portfolios? - [ ] They are risk-free. - [ ] They require no knowledge to invest. - [ ] They are less volatile than bonds. - [x] They provide higher long-term returns and protection against inflation. > **Explanation:** Equity securities like common shares are included in portfolios for their higher long-term returns and their ability to protect against inflation.

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Saturday, July 13, 2024