Investment products

Some of the most common types of investments include the following:

Risk and return

Risk involves the possibility of an investment’s actual return differing from its expected return and the potential to lose some or all of the money you have invested.


If you hold a diversified portfolio with a variety of different investments, it’s much less likely that all of your investments will perform badly at the same time.

The profits you earn on the investments that perform well offset the losses on those that perform poorly.

One way to diversify your portfolio is to have a mix of investment classes in different asset classes. Investments that share similar risk and return characteristics are grouped by asset class. There are three main asset classes:

Include savings accounts, fixed-term deposits such as guaranteed investment certificates (GICs), currency, money market funds and government and corporate bonds maturing in less than one year.

Include government and corporate bonds maturing in more than one year, preferred shares and other debt instruments.

Include common stocks, some derivatives (rights, warrants, options), convertible bonds and convertible preferred shares.

Types of investment risks

View this chart to see the risk-reward trade-off for different types of investments.

Interactive investment chart

Getting advice

If you’re not sure how to choose investments that can help you reach your financial goals, you might want to work with an advisor.

Choosing the right advisor depends on what help you need. If you need specialized advice, look for an advisor with expertise in that area.

Advisors can help with:

  1. Investing
  2. Financial planning
  3. Insurance
  4. Tax planning
  5. Estate planning

Ask your friends and family if there is an advisor they recommend. Meet with several potential advisors. Check their registration category. Choose one that you’re confident has the experience, expertise and credentials to help you reach your financial goals.

Learn more about getting advice