100 Level

Commodity Holdings: DBC vs. DJP

Faber and Richardson recommend using DBC as the commodity holding in their five and ten ETF portfolios.  I favor DJP, an Exchange Traded Notes (ETN) as the commodity placeholder.  Readers can look up the difference between and ETF and ETN on the Internet.  How do these two commodity holdings compare over a time duration of interest.  Since commodities have a rather short … [Read More...]

Why Take the Passive Path to Investing?

Let's step back a moment and examine some facts.  One of the longest bull markets of my life occurred from August of 1982 through 2007.  Some may say the bull market ended in March of 2000.  Blackstar Funds studied all common stocks that were traded on the NASDAQ, NYSE, and AMEX during the longer period (actually 1983 - 2007).  The universe of stocks numbered over 8,000 or stocks that qualified … [Read More...]

300 Level

Ranking of Basic ETFs One Might Use In Portfolio Construction

From time to time I post the rankings of basic ETFs one might use to build a portfolio.  I'm always interested in seeing which ETFs are performing better than VTI, the total U.S. Equities ETF.  While this list is only a small sampling from all the ETFs that are available to investors, most of these are commission free to TDAmeritrade clients. This is not a "real" or actual portfolio operating … [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

Curie Portfolio Update

Three parts of the Curie Portfolio are presented below as this portfolio is reviewed.  First, is the all important Dashboard.  Examining the overall Strategic Asset Allocation plan is essential to see where the portfolio stands with respect to the broad plan.  Second, is the rebalancing data table shown in each TLH spreadsheet.  This is a relatively new feature in the TLH as it … [Read More...]

Newton Portfolio Update: 7 February 2012

Once more it is time to update or review the Newton Portfolio.  Shares of RWX, VWO, VOT, and PCY were recently added to bring various asset classes into balance.  Most of the February dividends are included in this review.  As usual, the first order of business in any update is to go to the broker account and make sure all the latest transactions are recorded.  I've done … [Read More...]

400 Level

ITA Risk Reduction Model Positions

Investors following the ITA Risk Reduction model are currently in "neglect" mode.  This simply means we are not trading any commission free ETFs, but we are watching the price action of several key markets.  Let's focus on two REITs to illustrate this point.  In our portfolios we include both domestic (VNQ) and international (RWX) REITs.  In the following graph we … [Read More...]

Reference Portfolio Analyzed

Using an array of ETFs, primarily commission free with TDAmeritrade, I ran a Momentum-Optimization Model (MOM) analysis for the purpose of showing new and experienced investors how the MOM can be used  to manage a portfolio.  Not everyone will be interested in this model as it does require more monitoring than the buy and hold approach. Consider MOM to be one level up in sophistication as … [Read More...]