June 24, 2016

Investments

Investments are at the core of what we do, and here is some commentary on various aspects of the financial markets.

Narrowly Framed Questions Fail to Meet Life Goals

Narrowly Framed Questions Fail to Meet Life Goals

Purchasing investment products in isolation from the larger context of your specific situation is like pushing random buttons on a vending machine in order to provide a Thanksgiving dinner for your family.

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Bloomberg Article Gets Asset Allocation Exactly Wrong

Bloomberg Article Gets Asset Allocation Exactly Wrong

Investors should not have to deal with financial reporters that misunderstand the field they write about.

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A Guide to Investing in REITs

A Guide to Investing in REITs

REITs are one way to get some of the benefit of investing in real estate without as much of the risk.

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Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

You can learn a lot about financial management from snapping turtles.

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What Are The Problems With Illiquid Alternative Investments?

What Are The Problems With Illiquid Alternative Investments?

If you happen to hold alternative investments and can find a fair price for them, we recommend that you liquidate them.

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What Is Settlement Date And Why Does It Matter?

What Is Settlement Date And Why Does It Matter?

Most investors think that whenever you buy or sell a security the money is immediately deducted or deposited into your account. This is not true.

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Guidelines for Using Margin

Guidelines for Using Margin

Too much leverage is risky because it endangers meeting your goals.

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Fund Analyzer Shows Value Of Lower Fees

Fund Analyzer Shows Value Of Lower Fees

Continually curating a list of low cost funds is valuable for long term investors.

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What is Margin?

What is Margin?

We don’t normally recommend being on margin, but we recommend having the option in case it is needed.

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Investing Strategies for an Irrational Brain

Investing Strategies for an Irrational Brain

Recency bias is perhaps the most difficult natural bias to overcome.

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Dimensional On: Staying in the Market

Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

“It is always a difficult experience for investors to stay in markets.”

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Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

“Historically there has been a wide variety of returns from US and International stocks, and when one does poorly often another does well.”

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How Long Should I Give An Investment Plan?

How Long Should I Give An Investment Plan?

Even the most brilliantly crafted investment plan has to be given time to work.

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The Complete Guide to Creating an Investment Plan

The Science of the Rebalancing Bonus

This is a summary of the six steps required to create a well-crafted investment plan.

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Why We Do Not Use Active Management

Why We Do Not Use Active Fund Managers

Index investing seeks to track the return of a portion of the market. The opposite is active management.

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Radio: Three Investing Mistakes

three geese

David John Marotta was interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show discussing three big investing mistakes.

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Mailbag: Why Doesn’t Everyone Want High-Yield Bonds?

Mailbag: Why Doesn't Everyone Want High-Yield Bonds?

We don’t recommend high yield bonds because they do nothing good for your overall portfolio.

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Radio: Market Returns for 2015

2015 Asset Class Returns

David John Marotta was interviewed on the Schilling Show discussing how the markets performed last year and lists 4 mistakes to avoid.

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Why Gold Has Utterly Failed as a “Safe Haven”

Why Gold Has Utterly Failed as a "Safe Haven"

Gold sounds like it should provide a safe haven of your purchasing power much more than it has actually done so.

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Investing Mistake: Forgetting About Inflation

Investing Mistake: Forgetting About Inflation

Taking inflation into account changes nearly everything about financial planning.

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A Case Study In Volatility

A Case Study In Volatility

While volatility can make a fund more attractive on the way up, it can also make a fund less attractive on the way down.

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Asset Allocations for UVA Retirement Plans at Fidelity

Asset Allocations for UVA Retirement Plans at Fidelity

The University of Virginia plan includes funds sufficient to produce these excellent portfolios.

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Marotta’s 2016 UVA Fidelity 403(b) Calculator

University of Virginia's Serpentine Walls

Age appropriate asset allocation for 2016 using the choices available in the University of Virginia’s Fidelity 403(b) Tax Deferred Savings Plan (TDSP).

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Marotta’s 2016 UVA Fidelity 401(a) Plans Calculator

UVA Fidelity 401(a) Plans Calculator

Age appropriate asset allocation for 2016 using the choices available in several of the University of Virginia’s Fidelity Retirement Plans.

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What Are The Odds That The Stock Market Will Go Up This Year?

What Are The Odds That The Stock Market Will Go Up This Year?

The stock is more likely to go up than down, but how volatile are the markets really?

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Marotta’s 2016 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio

Marotta’s 2016 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio

Here is a review of Marotta’s 2015 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio and a description of our changes for 2016.

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Marotta’s 2016 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

Marotta's 2015 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

If you are using Vanguard, we have created a gone fishing portfolio using only low-cost Vanguard mutual funds to help save money on transaction costs.

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Marotta’s 2016 Gone-Fishing Portfolio

Gone Fishing

The gone-fishing portfolio provides suggested asset allocations for investors up to age 70 and up to $1 million.

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Marotta’s 2016 Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

The fishes

A gone-fishing portfolio has a limited number of investments with a balanced asset allocation that should do well with dampened volatility.

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Why Invest In Chile?

Why Invest In Chile?

Adding a little bit of Chile to your portfolio can boost returns and reduce volatility.

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Mailbag: Stop Before Using Stop Orders

Mailbag: Stop Before Using Stop Orders

We do not recommend using stop loss orders. Now, it appears that the New York Stock Exchange agrees.

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A Fund Selection Case Study

A Fund Selection Case Study

We’ve written about how to select securities but in this article we are going to apply those principles to the process of selecting a specific fund for a specific sector of the economy.

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Investors Want Non-Correlated Assets Until They Experience Non-Correlation

Investors Want Non-Correlated Assets Until They Experience Non-Correlation

While many investors say they want a low-correlation portfolio, they don’t want to actually experience a low-correlation portfolio.

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Is There A Christmas Rally In the Markets?

Is There A Christmas Rally In the Markets?

While Santa Claus usually brings something positive for the markets, it isn’t enough to worry about jumping in and out of your investments.

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Don’t Mistake Volatility For Loss

Don't Mistake Volatility For Loss

“Nothing has provided greater risk control over the long term than equities, which are historically without principal risk over 30-year periods…”

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An Immediate Annuity Is Probably Never The Right Answer

An Immediate Annuity Is Probably Never The Right Answer

The Journal of Financial Planning featured a nice column by Harold Evensky entitled “These Innovative Research Papers Deserve Your Attention.”

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October 2015 and Year-to-Date Returns for Our 6 Asset Classes

Q3 2015 6 Asset Class Returns

October showed a sharp reversal of the movements of Resource Stocks.

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Baby Bear: The Bear Market of 1966

Baby Bear: The Bear Market of 1966

Examining past Bear Markets can help provide some context when we experience the next one.

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The Kennedy Slide Bear: The Bear Market of 1962

The Kennedy Slide Bear: The Bear Market of 1962

Here are seven sage investing lessons from the J. Paul Getty era.

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Teddy Bear: The Bear Market of 1957

Teddy Bear: The Bear Market of 1957

The lessons of each bear market are visible with the wisdom of 20/20 hindsight.

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Lessons from the Crash of 2007-2008

Lessons from the Crash of 2007-2008

For a calm investor, a crash will just mean that the stocks you would have bought anyway are temporarily on sale.

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How Common Is A Stock Market Crash?

How Common Is A Stock Market Crash?

A crash is defined as an index dropping at least 50% from some previous high. Since 1950, there has been exactly 1 stock market crash in the S&P 500 Price Index.

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Sage Advice After Stock Market Drop

Sage Advice After Stock Market Drop

When the market drops, resist the impulse to “do something.”

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U.S. Growth Stocks Stand Their Ground in 2015

US Growth Stocks Stand Their Ground in 2015

This year, almost every U.S. asset class is in the red except for growth stocks. When the market is throwing punches, you need a tactical defense.

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How to Help Clients Cope With Scary Markets

How to Help Clients Cope With Scary Markets

Staying the course when an index investment is down is very uncomfortable in the short-term but usually the best course of action in the long run.

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Radio Interview: How Volatile Are the Markets?

Singapore Skyline

David John Marotta was interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show discussing market volatility.

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How To Protect Yourself From Investment Rip Offs

How To Protect Yourself From Investment Rip Offs

Six ideas to make sure you aren’t falling victim to commission-based products and services.

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Which Emerging Markets ETF Should I Buy: VWO or EEM?

Which Emerging Markets ETF Should I Buy: VWO or EEM?

They are based on different indexes and have different expense ratios.

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How Frequently Do New S&P 500 Highs Stick?

How Frequently Do New S&P 500 Highs Stick?

Every time the S&P 500 hits new highs everyone wonders if these new highs will stick.

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Mailbag: What’s Better At Predicting Future Returns Than Morningstar Stars?

Mailbag: What's Better At Predicting Future Returns Than Morningstar Stars?

How often did it pay to heed the star rating? Most of the time, with a few exceptions. Is there a better method to use?

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