100 Level

Grandchildren: Use Index Funds

Build Your Portfolio Using Index Funds For most investors, what type of investment vehicles to use is a no-brainer.  Unless you are extremely skilled, stick to index mutual funds or index ETFs and stay away from selecting individual stocks as the way to build the core of your portfolio.  Become a passive investor or at the most, a Mosaic investor.  Educate yourself and then come to … [Read More...]

The Golden Rule of Investing

The Golden Rule of Investing is simply, “Save as much as you can as early as you can.” The operative word is early. William J. Bernstein lays it out in stark language in his book, “The Investor’s Manifesto“ where he writes, “Each dollar you do not save at 25 will mean two inflation-adjusted dollars that you will need to save if you start at age 35, four if you … [Read More...]

300 Level

Mosaic Portfolio Lookback – 31 March 2008

Moving from January of 2008 on to the end of the first quarter in 2008, what is the Mosaic Portfolio projecting?  The following QPP analysis continues to show strong returns and low volatility.  This gives rise to an above average Return/Uncertainty ratio of 0.66.  Remember that anything above 0.60 meets the desired target.  The diversification metric and portfolio … [Read More...]

Harry Browne’s Permanent Portfolio: What Is Behind The Asset Allocation?

The December 2012 issue of the American Association of Individual Investors Journal carried an interesting article, The Permanent Portfolio: Using Allocation to Build and Protect Wealth.  The article is all about Harry Browne's portfolio laid out several decades ago.  Browne recommended the follow asset allocation. 1. 25% in stocks. 2. 25% in bonds 3. 25% in cash 4. 25% in gold On … [Read More...]

200 Level

Portfolio Performance Data: 18 February 2012

All portfolios showed gains this week on an absolute scale, but the relative movement when measured against the different benchmarks was mixed.  The Kepler held par with respect to the VTSMX and picked up a few tenths of a percent on the ITA Index.  The Kenilworth pulled ahead of both benchmarks.  Seven of the eleven portfolios held their own or gained ground on the VTSMX.  … [Read More...]

Active vs. Passive Investing: Part 3

Section Three of the Active vs. Passive paper deals with the non-trivial problem of how to measure portfolio returns.  This is a nasty problem for mutual fund money managers as clients are moving cash in and out of their portfolios at different times.  This cash flow has nothing to do with the managers style of management.  To comply with the Association for Investment Management … [Read More...]

400 Level

Delta Factor: A First Look

Delta Factor: First Draft The question of when to buy or sell an ETF comes up frequently.  I've been working on this problem for a year or more and still do not have a definitive answer.  Perhaps there is no right answer, only one of probabilities.  Below is a data table of my first draft effort to quantize whether or not it is time to Buy, Hold, or Sell the primary ETFs.  … [Read More...]

Bullish Percent Indicator Update

In the Bullish Percent Indicator data table below, I want to draw your attention to several features.  1) Look at the latest data in the 06/01/12 row.  The left-hand number, 46.62, is the most important as that indicates the percent of stocks in the NYSE that are generating a bullish PnF graph. [Next time I will include the headers or titles in the screen shot.]  That percent … [Read More...]