BMO’s Top 10 ETFs to Consider for RRSPs in 2024

Feb. 20, 2024


The Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) contribution deadline is fast approaching. Any contributions made on or before February 29, 2024 will count toward the 2023 tax year. 

RRSPs contributions are tax deductible, potentially reducing the taxes owed on the current year’s tax return by the amount contributed. Also, any investment income, dividends, and capital gains are deferred until you receive payments from the plan.

Here are some long-term investment solutions you want to consider when investing in your RRSP.


BMO Low Volatility Canadian Equity ETF (Ticker: ZLB)

  • Provides exposure to a diversified portfolio of Canadian stocks that are less volatile than the market. Stocks are measured by beta (volatility relative to the market) and weighted, with lower beta stocks having a higher weight in the portfolio. Limits are also placed on sectors and individual stocks to limit concentration risk. 
  • Low volatility strategies allow investors to take a more defensive approach to investing. Managing downside risk enables investors to potentially enhance risk-adjusted returns over the long term. 
  • Distribution Yield:1 2.66%
  • Management fee: 0.35%

BMO MSCI All Country World High Quality Index ETF (Ticker: ZGQ)

  • Provides exposure to a portfolio of global high-quality stocks. This ETF is an efficient way for investors to access some of the best blue-chip companies in the world in one ETF. 
  • This ETF screens stocks for high return on equity (ROE), low earnings variability, and low financial leverage. Screening for these metrics allows the portfolio to identify companies with competitive advantages in their respective industries. 
  • Distribution Yield:1 1.27%
  • Management fee: 0.45%

BMO Nasdaq 100 Equity Index ETF (Ticker: ZNQ)/BMO Nasdaq 100 Equity Hedged to CAD Index ETF (Ticker: ZQQ)

  • Provides exposure to the Nasdaq-100 Index, which provides exposure to U.S. higher-growth non-financial companies. 
  • This ETF is suitable for investors with a longer-term horizon, as it comprises companies with higher growth potential but may also be more volatile than the S&P 500 Composite. 
  • Distribution Yield:1 0.30%
  • Management fee: 0.35%

BMO Equal Weight Banks Index ETF (Ticker: ZEB)

  • Provides equal weight exposure to the Big-Six” Canadian banks. 
  • Canadian banks are often resilient compared to their global peers, given they tend to be conservatively managed, independently regulated and have high barriers to entry. 
  • Canadian banks have a strong track record of paying dividends, with several having a more than 100-plus year history of doing so.2 The last time any Big-Six” Canadian bank cut a dividend was in 1992
  • Distribution Yield:1 4.89%
  • Management fee: 0.25%

Fixed Income:

BMO Aggregate Bond Index ETF (Ticker: ZAG)

  • This ETF provides exposure to the FTSE/TMX Canada Universe, which measures the Canadian bond market. The bonds in the portfolio are investment grade (BBB or higher) and comprise federal, provincial and corporate bonds across the term spectrum. 
  • This ETF is one of Canada’s largest and most liquid bond funds.3
  • Management fee: 0.08%

All-in-One Solutions

  • All-in-one ETFs or Asset Allocation ETFs allow investors to get a one-ticket solution that comprises various ETFs based on different asset allocation mixes built for different risk profiles. 
  • These ETFs are well-suited for small accounts or investors who want simplicity without worrying about managing their investments. Asset allocation ETFs are professionally managed and regularly rebalanced.

The Asset Allocation ETFs are listed below from the most conservative to the most growth-oriented:

Fund Performance (%)

1 Yr

2 Yr

3 Yr

5 Yr

10 Yr


Inception Date








October 212011








November 52014








January 192010








February 152019








October 202009

BMO Global Asset Management, as of January 312024.

1Distribution Yield: This yield is calculated by taking the most recent regular distribution, or expected distribution, (excluding additional year end distributions) annualized for frequency, divided by current NAV. The yield calculation does not include reinvested distributions. As of February 92024.

2Nasdaq Dividend History Database.

3CETFA: Monthly Report, as at December 312023.

Advisor Use Only.

Distribution yields are calculated by using the most recent regular distribution, or expected distribution, (which may be based on income, dividends, return of capital, and option premiums, as applicable) and excluding additional year end distributions, and special reinvested distributions annualized for frequency, divided by current net asset value (NAV). The yield calculation does not include reinvested distributions. Distributions are not guaranteed, may fluctuate and are subject to change and/​or elimination. Distribution rates may change without notice (up or down) depending on market conditions and NAV fluctuations. The payment of distributions should not be confused with the BMO ETF’s performance, rate of return or yield. If distributions paid by a BMO ETF are greater than the performance of the investment fund, your original investment will shrink. Distributions paid as a result of capital gains realized by a BMO ETF, and income and dividends earned by a BMO ETF, are taxable in your hands in the year they are paid. Your adjusted cost base will be reduced by the amount of any returns of capital. If your adjusted cost base goes below zero, you will have to pay capital gains tax on the amount below zero. 

Cash distributions, if any, on units of a BMO ETF (other than accumulating units or units subject to a distribution reinvestment plan) are expected to be paid primarily out of dividends or distributions, and other income or gains, received by the BMO ETF less the expenses of the BMO ETF, but may also consist of non-taxable amounts including returns of capital, which may be paid in the manager’s sole discretion. To the extent that the expenses of a BMO ETF exceed the income generated by such BMO ETF in any given month, quarter, or year, as the case may be, it is not expected that a monthly, quarterly, or annual distribution will be paid. Distributions, if any, in respect of the accumulating units of BMO Short Corporate Bond Index ETF, BMO Short Federal Bond Index ETF, BMO Short Provincial Bond Index ETF, BMO Ultra Short-Term Bond ETF and BMO Ultra Short-Term US Bond ETF will be automatically reinvested in additional accumulating units of the applicable BMO ETF. Following each distribution, the number of accumulating units of the applicable BMO ETF will be immediately consolidated so that the number of outstanding accumulating units of the applicable BMO ETF will be the same as the number of outstanding accumulating units before the distribution. Non-resident unitholders may have the number of securities reduced due to withholding tax. Certain BMO ETFs have adopted a distribution reinvestment plan, which provides that a unitholder may elect to automatically reinvest all cash distributions paid on units held by that unitholder in additional units of the applicable BMO ETF in accordance with the terms of the distribution reinvestment plan. For further information, see the distribution policy in the BMO ETFs’ prospectus.

The ETF is not in any way sponsored, endorsed, sold or promoted by, FTSE Global Debt Capital Markets Inc. (“FTSE Canada”) or Frank Russell Company (“Russell”) (together the Licensor Parties”). The Licensor Parties make no claim, prediction, warranty or representation whatsoever, expressly or impliedly, either as to (i) the results to be obtained from the use of the FTSE Canada Index(es) or the Russell Index(es), (ii) and/​or the figure at which the said FTSE Canada Index(es) or Russell Index(es) stands at any particular time on any particular day or otherwise, or (iii) the suitability of the FTSE Canada Index(es) and/​or the Russell Index(es) for the purpose to which it is being put in connection with the ETF mentioned herein. The FTSE Canada Index(es) is/​are compiled and calculated by and all copyright in the Index values and constituent list vests in FTSE Canada. The Russell Index(es) is/​are calculated by Russell or its agent. The Licensor Parties shall not be liable (whether in negligence or otherwise) to any person for any error in the Index and the Licensor Parties shall not be under any obligation to advise any person of any error therein. Russell®” is a trademark of Frank Russell Company.

Nasdaq®, Nasdaq 100 Index®, Nasdaq 100®, NDX are registered trademarks of Nasdaq, Inc. (which with its affiliates is referred to as the Corporations”) and are licensed for use by BMO Investments Inc. The Product(s) have not been passed on by the Corporations as to their legality or suitability. The Product(s) are not issued, endorsed, sold, or promoted by the Corporations. THE CORPORATIONS MAKE NO WARRANTIES AND BEAR NO LIABILITY WITH RESPECT TO THE PRODUCT(S).

The ETF referred to herein is not sponsored, endorsed, or promoted by MSCI and MSCI bears no liability with respect to the ETF or any index on which such ETF is based. The ETF’s prospectus contains a more detailed description of the limited relationship MSCI has with the Manager and any related ETF.

Commissions, management fees and expenses all may be associated with investments in exchange traded funds. Please read the ETF Facts or prospectus of the BMO ETFs before investing. The indicated rates of return are the historical annual compounded total returns including changes in unit value and reinvestment of all dividends or distributions and do not take into account sales, redemption, distribution or optional charges or income taxes payable by any unitholder that would have reduced returns. Exchange traded funds are not guaranteed, their values change frequently and past performance may not be repeated.

For a summary of the risks of an investment in the BMO ETFs, please see the specific risks set out in the BMO ETF’s prospectus. BMO ETFs trade like stocks, fluctuate in market value and may trade at a discount to their net asset value, which may increase the risk of loss. Distributions are not guaranteed and are subject to change and/​or elimination.

BMO ETFs are managed by BMO Asset Management Inc., which is an investment fund manager and a portfolio manager, and a separate legal entity from Bank of Montreal.

Any statement that necessarily depends on future events may be a forward-looking statement. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of performance. They involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Although such statements are based on assumptions that are believed to be reasonable, there can be no assurance that actual results will not differ materially from expectations. Investors are cautioned not to rely unduly on any forward-looking statements. In connection with any forward-looking statements, investors should carefully consider the areas of risk described in the most recent simplified prospectus.

The viewpoints expressed by the Portfolio Manager represents their assessment of the markets at the time of publication. Those views are subject to change without notice at any time without any kind of notice. The information provided herein does not constitute a solicitation of an offer to buy, or an offer to sell securities nor should the information be relied upon as investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. This communication is intended for informational purposes only.

The communication is for information purposes. The information contained herein is not, and should not be construed as, investment, tax or legal advice to any party. Particular investments and/​or trading strategies should be evaluated relative to the individual’s investment objectives and professional advice should be obtained with respect to any circumstance.

BMO Global Asset Management is a brand name under which BMO Asset Management Inc. and BMO Investments Inc. operate.

®/TM Registered trademarks/​trademark of Bank of Montreal, used under licence.