100 Level

Active vs. Passive Management

Active Investing:  Given that almost all money management is active, alpha is obviously added to the portfolio though this style of investing.  Not so quick.  While one would expect this assumption to be true, otherwise why is active management so popular. Active investors purchase securities they deem to be undervalued while the investor on the other side of the trade concludes … [Read More...]

Delta Factor After 400 Point Drop

ITA Wealth Management readers likely want to know what the Delta and Delta Factor projections are indicating after the 400 point drop yesterday.  The buying trend has started, although we still could be early in the cycle.  The reason I think we may be early is that it is not unusual for the Delta Factor to make projections a few months early.  Two time ranges are shown in the … [Read More...]

300 Level

Portfolio Construction: The Most Important Decisions

William J. Bernstein, in his most recent book, “The Investor’s Manifesto” writes, “Before diving into the most important issue faced by any investor–the asset allocation decision–you will need to understand four things: save as much as you can, make sure you have enough liquid taxable assets for emergencies, diversify widely, and do so with passive or index … [Read More...]

Retirement Portfolio: A Possible Asset Allocation

Beginning with 100 shares in each of 40 ETFs, the Efficient Frontier and Buy-Hold-Sell recommendations are presented for a portfolio with constraints set to tilt the asset allocation toward bonds and more conservative investments. This information is not available for publication elsewhere on the Internet. Efficient Frontier:  Allocating 100 shares to each ETF sets up a portfolio that is … [Read More...]

200 Level

What Are The Disadvantages of Index Funds?

This morning I noticed a reader was searching for disadvantages associated with index funds, so I decided to do a little internet searching to find some of the drawbacks, if any.  As soon as one delves into this question, up pops the issue of passive vs. active investing.  Here are a few resources I located that deal with the question - are there disadvantages to using index funds?  I include … [Read More...]

Retirement Planning: Closer Than You Think

Too many young folks think retirement is so far in the future it does not merit current attention.  From experience I can tell you that retirement arrives sooner than you realize, particularly if you are not properly prepared.  Once more, check out The Golden Rule of Investing.  If I want to scare myself into saving more I reread the following William Bernstein quote. "Each dollar you do not … [Read More...]

400 Level

Examination Periods of Risk Reduction Model Portfolios

Risk Reduction Examination Dates A number of readers have written to me asking if one needs to wait until the end of the month before examining where the price of the ETF or stock is compared to its Exponential Moving Average (EMA).  While the Faber-Richardson model, as explained in their "Ivy Portfolio" book, use end of the month in their research, I don't think it is all … [Read More...]

Managing Portfolio Uncertainty: How Does It Work?

In an effort to improve performance results and reduce portfolio volatility, a Tactical Asset Allocation (TAA) plan has been activated for both the Maxwell and Euclid portfolios.  Checking the latest Portfolio Performance data table, we see these two portfolios are trailing the VTSMX benchmark, an unacceptable condition.  Keep in mind this is an extreme strategy, but it is based on … [Read More...]