100 Level

Portfolio Construction, Maintenance, & Monitoring

To be a successful investor, the trio of portfolio construction, maintenance, and monitoring are all essential.  While the importance of portfolio construction is receiving less attention than it did in the 1990s, detailed research is yet to be conducted on its significance.  The research I've read is too broad with a focus on stocks, bonds, and cash.  Due to its complexity, it … [Read More...]

Buy and Sell Guidelines: A General Overview

Armed with analysis tools such as the Quantext Portfolio Planner (QPP), TLH Spreadsheet, Hoadley Optimizer and expanded worksheets, it is possible to outline some basic guidelines for buying, holding and selling ETFs.  As always, individual judgments are required and I'll attempt to explain those when transactions occur.  As always, we make investment decisions in the context of broad market … [Read More...]

300 Level

Is It Worth 50 Basis Points? Part III

Example three in this series uses the last three years of data for the return and volatility projections.  As in the last two blog posts, not much changes. The projected Return/Uncertainty ratio remains at 0.49.  Part of the reason for little change is that 40% of this portfolio is made up of bond and income assets and they tend to dominate the portfolio.  Tamping down volatility is … [Read More...]

New Normal Portfolio Update

It has been several months since I last updated the "New Normal" portfolio so I am unsure as to whether this portfolio still contains the ETFs listed in the following QPP analysis.  Regardless, there are a number of positive possibilities in this portfolio as it is designed for bear market protection. This material is not available for publication elsewhere on the Internet. … [Read More...]

200 Level

Super Smart Portfolios from Solin

Daniel Solin, in his "Smartest Portfolios" book, recommends these nine index funds or ETFs when putting together smart portfolios.  While my preference is to use ETFs instead of index mutual funds, here are his recommendations. … [Read More...]

An Optimized 18 ETF Sample Portfolio

In response to concerns over the allocations to specific ETFs shown in the "Maximize Return/Risk" sample portfolio, below is an optimized revision.  Removed are the individual stocks as they always require an additional layer of complex analysis.  In their place I added VFH, the financial sector ETF that is currently showing a buy based on "Delta Factor" analysis.  I also replaced GLD with another … [Read More...]

400 Level

Is It Time To Hedge This Market?

Hedging or shorting the market is a high risk game and I'm not about to tell anyone what to do.  Shorting is the ultimate in market timing, and most of us know the pitfalls associated with such activities.  Having waved those red warning flags, let's take a look at the data.  As I mentioned in a recent comment, investors are in a quandary when it comes to holding down portfolio volatility.  To … [Read More...]

Beyond the Sortino Ratio

      This article was published two years ago, but most readers missed it.  That is why I am bringing it forward again, with a few edits. Frank Sortino begins Chapter 3 of his "The Sortino Framework..." book with this sentence. "This chapter begins with the development of the Sortino ratio and why I discarded it for the upside potential ratio and Desired … [Read More...]