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...]

Keys to Successful Investing

One does not need to comprehend quantum mechanics or string theory to be a successful investor.  However, there are several key principles to keep in mind and implement if one wishes to avoid the errors that thousands of investors make year after year.  Readers of ITA Wealth Management will find these fundamental ideas dotted all over this blog.  Here are my key ideas. Save as … [Read More...]

300 Level

Benchmarking a Portfolio: Essential to Portfolio Management

Waterford, Virginia ITA Wealth Management readers know I am passionate about portfolio benchmarking and portfolio risk analysis.  To my knowledge, there is no better software program for the small investor than the TLH Spreadsheet, provided to all Platinum members.  We use two primary benchmarks in this spreadsheet, although four are available.  One is Vanguard's Total Stock … [Read More...]

Merging The Swensen And Faber Portfolios

Swensen and Faber-Richardson Portfolios Merging the Swensen and Faber-Richardson portfolios is an effort to extract the excellent logic behind the "Swensen Six" portfolio and expand the number of asset classes as advocated in the "Faber-Richardson Ten" portfolio.  Parts of the logic behind the "Swensen Six" can be found in this Seeking Alpha article.  In … [Read More...]

200 Level

ITA Portfolio Performance: 28 January 2012

What a great week for the eleven ITA Wealth Management portfolios!  All showed both absolute and relative positive performance returns.  Every portfolio gained ground on the VTSMX benchmark.  The simple reason is due to rising prices in developed international markets (VEU), emerging markets (VWO), and international REITs (RWX).  In other words, our globally diversified … [Read More...]

Starting From Scratch: The Logic Behind the “Swensen Six” Portfolio

When it comes to building a portfolio, David Swensen's general guidelines provide numerous strong starting points.  His portfolio satisfies requirements of numerical diversification, equity orientation, and functional diversification.  While Swensen does not recommend specific tickers in his book, Unconventional Success, he lays out basic guidelines I consider vital to portfolio … [Read More...]

400 Level

Retirement Portfolio: Part Five

If one is willing to add a few individual stocks to a sample retirement portfolio, what does the allocation look like when optimized?  In the following portfolio I added several ETFs to what one might consider the basic group.  These include SLV, DVY, and IDV where the latter two are dividend generators. Special Note:  The assumed growth rate of the S&P 500 was lowered from 7.0% to 6.0% for … [Read More...]

Bullish Percent Indicators: 12 October 2012

Major Indexes:  The single major change this week is the move out of the overbought zone for the NYSE BPI.  That is the column that somehow was changed to 68.  That should read, NYSE.  Of less importance is the transportation average moving from defense to offense.  Nevertheless, that move is positive.   Sectors:  There were no significant changes in the 10 … [Read More...]