100 Level

Investment Book: Short Yet Essential

The Investment Answer Daniel C. Goldie and Gordon S. Murray have written a concise investment book of 80 pages that covers all the basic. What is unusual is that in this little book, Murray advocates a different (passive) investing style than the one he used to build his 25-year career. Here are a few references touting this book. Daily Finance PR Newswire Business … [Read More...]

Smartest Low Risk Portfolio

This is the first of four portfolios that run from low risk to high risk or aggressive growth.  One Quantext Portfolio Planner (QPP) analysis is already available on the Internet at Seeking Alpha for a medium risk portfolio.  That is the fifth portfolio in this series of analysis.  In the following example, I make a few changes in the ETFs as I prefer using the low-cost Vanguard … [Read More...]

300 Level

ITA Index: How to Initialize

The ITA Index is a customized benchmark found within the TLH Spreadsheet.  It makes little sense to compare portfolio performance of most portfolios with the very popular S&P 500 benchmark (VFINX) as most portfolios include asset classes other than large-cap stocks.  ITA portfolios, for example, include developed international markets (VEU), emerging markets (VWO), bonds (BND, HYG, … [Read More...]

Asset Allocation for Small Global Portfolios

If your portfolio is small and yet you want global diversification, this portfolio is one to consider.  This six asset class portfolio is built around asset allocation guidelines laid out by David Swensen in his book, "Unconventional Success."  Thirty percent of the portfolio is allocated to U.S. Treasury Bonds (TLT) and TIPs (TIP).  Domestic REITs are covered with the VNQ … [Read More...]

200 Level

Retirement Portfolio: What Are The Essential Asset Classes To Include?

A request came in from an ITA reader to put together a retirement portfolio that does not need to produce income since social security and a pension will cover those needs.  In other words, what should the retirement portfolio plan look like?  The first guideline is that this portfolio not include any individual stocks as that lays on an additional level of analysis.  I suspect most investors who … [Read More...]

Supercharging The Swensen Six Portfolio By Adding Three Stocks And Two More ETFs

A reader of ITA suggested adding three dividend stocks (T, JNJ, & PG) to see how it might enhance the "Swensen Six" portfolio.  I made those additions, changed the allocation between TLT and TIP, and added international real estate (RWX) and commodities (DBC) to the portfolio.  These changes enhanced the projections for the "Swensen Six" in all the major metrics. … [Read More...]

400 Level

Bond “Delta Factor” Summary

As promised, below is a screen shot of a "Delta Factor" data table for AGG, BIV, BSV, HYG, JNK, IEF, TLT, and TIP.  The reference bond ETF I use in this analysis is BND.  I've done almost no testing with bonds so I don't know the quality of the predictive powers when it comes to bonds. … [Read More...]

Tactical Asset Allocation

Trackers of the ITA Risk Reduction model will want to review the various ETFs we are using in a number of the experimental portfolios.  Examine the VEU graph below.  The current price is 5% to 6% below the 195-Day Exponential Moving Average (EMA).  In addition, the RSI is showing VEU is very close to the 30% buying opportunity.  If one waits until the price of the ETF moves … [Read More...]