100 Level

Easy Investing

While few stock pickers are successful investors, the index investor or a passive oriented investor can do better than the majority of stock market participants by following a few simple rules.  One of those rules is simply - Don't build your portfolio by picking individual stocks.  Use index funds or index ETFs.  Investors saving small amounts of money each month are better off … [Read More...]

Review of ITA Investing Philosophy

Rule #1: Follow “The Golden Rule of Investing.” Save as much as you can as early as you can — and continue to save. Understand compound interest. This rule includes getting out of debt, paying off credit cards every month, and learning to be a miser when it comes to spending money on frivolous items.  There is no substitute for saving when it comes to building a … [Read More...]

300 Level

New Normal Portfolio Update

It has been several months since I last updated the "New Normal" portfolio so I am unsure as to whether this portfolio still contains the ETFs listed in the following QPP analysis.  Regardless, there are a number of positive possibilities in this portfolio as it is designed for bear market protection. This material is not available for publication elsewhere on the Internet. … [Read More...]

Thinking Through the Madison Portfolio

With the Madison Portfolio due for review tomorrow, what decisions are likely to be made based on the data from the Buy-Hold-Sell Recommendation table?  As you look over this table, think through the steps you would make if this were your portfolio.  No specific data is provided as to holdings or size of portfolio. Buy-Hold-Sell Recommendations:  Followers of the ITA Risk Reduction model will … [Read More...]

200 Level

American Workers Unprepared

ITA Wealth Management is not so much a blog of how to make money as it is a blog to help investors achieve retirement goals.  According to recent Department of Labor statistics on retirement sufficiency, U.S. workers retiring in the 2050s will have saved only enough in their 401(k) accounts to replace an average of 22% of their pre-retirement income.  What is staggering is that 37% will have no … [Read More...]

Portfolio Performance Update: 29 March 2013

Nearly a month passed since the last portfolio performance update.  Most of the portfolios did not change more than 10 to 20 basis points since the last update.  The VTSMX benchmark continued to move up leaving behind the performance of every portfolio.  In other words, diversification continues to be a negative when one is comparing portfolio performance with the VTSMX or total U.S. Equities … [Read More...]

400 Level

Delta Factor: Second Draft

Below is the second draft of additional Delta Factor calculations.  As one can see from this table, the trends or signals arrive early.  I'm still not satisfied with the algorithm used to generate the Buy, Hold, and Sell signals for these ETFs. Note the dramatic shift between 9/15/2008 and 10/15/2008.  When I see something like this I recheck my figures. … [Read More...]

Risk Defined

Portfolio Risk Risk is a messy word as it carries so many different meanings in the investing world.  In the most general sense, it means we don't know what is going to happen.  Here are several specific meanings of the term.  We will begin by defining "systematic" and "specific" risk. 1.  "Systematic" risk is risk we cannot avoid if we seek returns higher than the interest rates from a money … [Read More...]