100 Level

News From Recent Conference

Two days ago I returned from a conference in St. Louis.  Our hotel overlooked Busch Stadium where the St. Louis Cardinals were playing the Washington Nationals in the first playoff series.  Walking on the streets among the fans was a blast as everyone was in a good mood and it was easy to talk with strangers, particularly when I mentioned Tommy Herr, a former second baseman with the … [Read More...]

The Bogleheads’ Guide to Investing

Bogleheads' Guide to Investing was missed by far too many ITA readers when first published back on July 21, 2010 and for that reason I am bringing it forward so newer members will pick it up.  Another investing book that should rank high on your reading list is "The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing," written by Taylor Larimore, Mel Lindauer, and Michael LeBoeuf.  I … [Read More...]

300 Level

Twelve ETF Portfolio

When designing a portfolio several goals need to be considered.  Here is a blueprint for portfolio construction. Build the portfolio using non=managed ETFs and index funds.  Don't over complicate by using too many ETFs. Keep costs low by using inexpensive ETFs.  For most investments we use Vanguard ETFs. When running a QPP analysis, set these standards. Projected … [Read More...]

Is It Worth 50 Basis Points? Part II

Yesterday, I posted a conservative portfolio built around index funds only available through qualified advisors.  The portfolio projections were based on the last five years of data.  The following screen shot presents future projections of the same portfolio using the last four years of data.  As readers will see, nothing really changes in the way of projections.  What does … [Read More...]

200 Level

Repositioning Madison Portfolio

ITA Wealth Management readers checking the latest Portfolio Performance* data table will observe that the Madison Portfolio is lagging the VTSMX benchmark.  In an effort to push this portfolio performance to a higher level, I am going to employ the ITA Risk Reduction (ITARR) model, or the same one being used for the Maxwell and Euclid portfolios.  This will require selling some current … [Read More...]

Cut the Fees

Fees matter!  Read this blog post by Geoff Considine and you will see why I am a nut when it comes to reducing fees.  They make a huge difference over a lifetime of investing.  When I began this investment journey many years ago, it was not unusual for mutual funds to charge an 8.5% load fee on all new money going into the fund.  What a scam. Usury is a better term.  Even … [Read More...]

400 Level

Delta Factor Shouts – The Market Is Over Valued!

Based on the most recent Delta Factor data, the current market is over-valued, and that is putting it mildly.  I don't think I've seen this many "red" projections since the market hit its 2007 highs.  What I did was take both equity and bond ETFs that are commission free for TDAmeritrade clients and use percentages not all that far removed from the recommendations that come out of the … [Read More...]

Seasonal Timing Strategy Update

Now that May is not far away articles and blog posts are springing up around the adage:  "Sell in May and go play" or "Sell in May and go away."  That is, play or stay out of the market until after Halloween.  I've written about this seasonal timing model myself, but is there anything to it?  After all, is the market not efficient?  If you Google Seasonal Timing Strategy a long list of articles … [Read More...]