100 Level

Benchmarking the Portfolio

Benchmarking 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. 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 world, the S&P 500 is … [Read More...]

Analyzing Return and Risk for U.S. Equity ETFs

We frequently read investment summaries as follows.  I pulled the following information from Harold Evensky's book, Wealth Management. Size is significant.  Small stocks have higher standard deviations than large stocks. Book value is significant.  Stocks with low Price/Book ratios have higher returns than stocks with high Price/Book ratios. Adjusted for book value … [Read More...]

300 Level

Portfolio Performance – 1 October 2010

TDAmeritrade came out with the September statements this afternoon so I was able to update many of the portfolios in greater detail that expected. In nearly every case, we made progress either by gaining on the benchmarks or reducing portfolio risk. Only in the case of the Schrodinger Portfolio, where we switched to the ITA Index benchmark for our SR and RR calculations, did we see significant … [Read More...]

Schrodinger Portfolio Update

No changes occurred within the Schrodinger this last month other than payment of a few dividends.  This is the boring, passively managed portfolio that has been in operation since late 2000.  Platinum readers can see this is a growth oriented portfolio with only 15% allocated to the bond and income asset class.  We do derive income from our REITs holdings, both domestic and … [Read More...]

200 Level

Which ETFs To Use When Constructing A New Portfolio

Which ETFs do I recommend for different asset classes when putting together that first portfolio?  The first move is to decide which asset classes to use.  Twenty-five months ago I posted this Asset Allocation blog and little has changed over that time.  One error in the table is the position of VEA.  That ETF should be included in the Developed International Equities box rather than the Emerging … [Read More...]

Portfolioist Portfolio: Looking For Additional Diversification

Before digging into the following Quantext Portfolio Planner (QPP) analysis too deeply, read Geoff Considine's articles on portfolio diversification.  The first article lays out the basic logic for diversification and the second article goes into more details.  In the following analysis, I take the portfolio and run it through the QPP wringer to see what projections are in store for … [Read More...]

400 Level

International “Delta Factor” Projections

Responding to a request to show the "Delta Factor" projections for international ETFs, here we have a much more interesting set of results.  As the reference for DF projections, I use EFA, the international iShares ETF. The following material is not available for publication elsewhere on the Internet. … [Read More...]

Preparing the Euclid Portfolio for Timing Model

Preparing the Maxwell and Euclid Portfolios Further preparation in the Euclid Portfolio took place this morning as shares of VBR were sold.  What I am doing is selling off holdings outside the basic ETFs we plan to use in this experiment.  These ETFs include VTI, VEU, VWO, VNQ, and RWX as these are the instruments I will use in this modified Faber-Richardson model.  I probably will … [Read More...]