100 Level

Downsides to ETFs

  ETF Negatives   There are a few, but not many, negatives to working with ETFs. A broker is required to purchase and sell ETFs.  I use TDAmeritrade and it costs me $7.00 to purchase and $7.00 to sell ETFs.  Now 101 ETFs are commission free with TDA. Therefore I generally deal in blocks of 100 shares or more.  This is done to keep commissions to a low percentage of … [Read More...]

Retirement: Five Asset Class Portfolio

  Five Asset Class Retirement Portfolio If you think many of the portfolios discussed on this blog are overly complicated, try this five asset class portfolio on for size and see if it meets your needs. This portfolio is only slightly more complicated than the "Second Grader" portfolio Allan S. Roth writes about in his book, "How a Second Grader Beats Wall Street." I thought I'd written a … [Read More...]

300 Level

Closer Examination of the ITA Index

What are the weaknesses in the ITA Index?  While the ITA Index is a major step forward in meeting all the qualifications of portfolio benchmarking, it does contain flaws.  The concept is sound, but the way it is handled within the TLH Spreadsheet is not completely accurate.  To understand the weaknesses requires the reader to "get into weeds" of the details of how the Internal Rate of Return (IRR) … [Read More...]

Benchmarking The Portfolio

Establishing an appropriate benchmark for a portfolio is essential if one is serious about investing.  Avoiding portfolio benchmarking is an act of self-deception, but all too common with the average investor.  Exactly what is the purpose of a benchmark and what are the requirements for a fair and reasonable benchmark.  Here is one definition of benchmarking. In the investing … [Read More...]

200 Level

My Twenty ETFs

Selecting 20 core ETFs is not all that difficult until one is down to the last five to seven tickers. While I could come up with my favorite 20 ETFs, that would be too simple.  Instead, my twenty will come from several major asset classes as outlined below. U.S. Equities Bonds International markets Real Estate Commodities ETFs from U.S. Equities in this search will include the "Big … [Read More...]

Constructing a Simple Seven ETF Portfolio

Looking for a conservative portfolio with reasonable QPP values?  Check out the following asset allocation plan that includes 40% allocated to bonds and income with an added bent toward value as advocated by Fama & French.  This portfolio covers the global market, both in equities and REITs.  The EFV ETF skews the portfolio toward the value side. … [Read More...]

400 Level

“New Normal” Portfolio Analyzed

Long-time readers of ITA Wealth Management are familiar with the "New Normal" portfolio, a risk oriented portfolio developed by a Platinum member.  Following is an analysis of an approximation of the NN portfolio.  Approximate in the sense that several tickers were combined into one as the "Ranking Software" will not handle more than twenty investments in one run.  In addition I substituted XOM … [Read More...]

The Delta Factor and International Markets

Recently I was looking at Price-195-Day EMA graphs for a number of international countries and I came upon one for Italy, a country in distress.  While I normally view this graph over a one-year period to gain additional clarity, I changed the scale to three years as that is the time frame I used for the QPP and Delta Factor analysis.  I noticed that EWI hit a peak around May of 2012.  As a … [Read More...]