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Presidential order: Suggestion that eveyone have a living will is a good one by Robert Powell MarketWatch (7/30/2009). - Only 1/3 of adults in the US have a living will. President Obama says that if every adult had a living will health cost would be lowered. I don't know if it would lower health care coss but it is smart planning to have one and not just for the older people either. The companion planning document is a health care power of attorney. Both are very important for ones estate planning tool kit. This is a very good read about this area of estate planning.
Secular bear, cyclical bull: Commentary, adviser says that we're in a secular bear market by Mark Hulbert MarketWatch (7/30/2009). - An interesting article of one person's perspective about the current market. Will markets continue to expand over a long period of time (cyclical bull) or peter out pretty soon and continue the bear market (secular bear).
Questions To Ask Your New Financial Adviser by Mary Pilon The Wall Street Journal (7/30/2009). - A companion article to finding a new financial advisor below. Once you find one, what do you ask them in your initial meeting to figure out if they are a match for you.
Wary Investors Are Seeking Out Objective Voices by Anne Tergesen and Jane J. Kim The Wall Street Journal (7/29/2009). - A good primer on how to choose a financial advisor. Important subject especially after the bad year many have experienced in the finanical markets.
Video: Is the Global Economy on the Mend? with Joe Davis and Jonathan Lemco of Vanguard (7/21/2009). - If you have 16 minutes to spare this is an excellent overview of the outlook of the global economy for the rest of the year. Very informative.
Here comes another commission; Commentary, Congress looks in the crisis, but almost everyone is to blame by Irwin Keller MarketWatch (7/21/2009). - Very concise commentary on what caused the current financial crisis that we are currently experiencing if you did not already know. Mr Keller wonders why we need to have a commission look at it if we already know what caused the great recession. Save money and spend it elsewhere.
New products aim to sweetn long-term-care insurance by Robert Powell MarketWatch (7/16/2009). - Good primer on long-term-care insurance with many links to other articles about long-term-care insurance. Will help determine if LTCI is right for you.
Home Ownership Was Never a Road to Riches by Neal Templin The Wall Street Journal (7/16/2009). - Excellent article about home ownership providing a place to sleep rather than an investment. The housing bubble has brought us back down to earth about housing and its purpose.
Webcast: Second Quarter 2009 Review by Daniel Newhall Vanguard (7/15/2009). - Provides a good review through a webcast in an easily understood manner of the economy in the second quarter.
Bonds Face Future - and Cower by Larry Light The Wall Street Journal (7/14/2009). - Article talks about the end of the 28-year bond rally especially Treasurys. It might be the new day for stocks but no longer a can't miss for Treasurys.
Set yourself free; Financial freedom is within reach, if you adopt specific strategies to get there by Robert Powell MarketWatch (7/9/2009). - This is an article about financial independence and how to achieve financial freedom in retirement.
Lazy Portfolios seven-year winning streak, strategy keeps beating S&P 500 as well as popular actively managed funds by Paul B. Farrell MarketWatch (7/7/2009). - The title says it all. The advantages of diversification wins out most the time!
Below are a collection of articles that I thought would be of interest but have not been able to update website until now (7/3/09)..
Financial Planning Gets Personal by Janet Paskin The Wall Street Journal (6/30/2009). - This article provides insight about the current trend of some financial planners becoming life planners. I don't see me as ever being a life planner. If you want someone to listen to your problem other than financial and guide you along life's path I suggest you seek out a life planner, which is not my practice. Also review the three more on financial planning links including a guide in 'How to choose a financial planner'.
Going It Alone When Buying a Health Policy by Anna Wilde Mathews The Wall Street Journal (6/30/2009). - As more people are losing their employer health insurance coverage forcing them to find private health insurance coverage this article will help with the search for private health insurance on one's own or through an agent.
About Time: Regulation Based on Human Nature by Jason Zweig The Wall Street Journal (6/23/2009). - An article about the proposed new Consumer Financial Protection Agency and how it will use behavior finance techniques to help consumer understand complicated financial instruments. As the article says it is regulation that recognizes the limit of human rationality.
Saving Early for College Pays Later by Stacey L. Bradford The Wall Street Journal (6/13/2009). - A good introductory article about the tools to use to help fund children's college education costs including 529 plans.
Do You Have Time to Get Back in the Black by Dave Kansas The Wall Street Journal (6/1/2009). - Looks at different ages and how they might fare in future in recovering from the excessive downturn in the financial markets. As it says there are no risk-free approaches to rebuild nest egg. Super safe feels good but won't rebuild assets. Annuities might play a major role for those nearing retirement.
The Best Online Tools for Personal Finance by Shelly Banjo The Wall Street Journal (6/9/2009). - These are touch times we live in but the Internet has valuable information that can assist. This article reviews some of the best online tools and recommendations from personal-finance pros. A very good article for those looking for some financial help using their computer.
Culture, Cash, and Common Sense by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog May 29, 2009. - People's money belief are being tested during this current financial downturn. Will we finally begin to save and not spend beyond our means? Our money culture is way more powerful than our common sense. The lower brain overpowers the upper brain.
The house that Jack built by Chuck Jaffe MarketWatch (5/28/2009). - As you probably know my investment hero is Jack (John) Bogle, founder of Vanguard. When ever Jack talks/writes I listen/read. Some in the investment community think that the buy-and-hold investment strategy is outmoted. Jack does not think so and I don't either. This article covers an interview with Jack.
If You Think Worst Is Over, Take Benjamin Graham's Advice by Jason Zweig The Wall Street Journal (5/25/2009). - Benjamin Graham was probably the great investor the world has ever known. This article marks the 50 year anniversary of one of the greatest investment books ever written, The Intellegent Investor. It discusses how his inversely emotional take on investing would apply in our current financial climate.
TIPS: Insurance Against Uncertainty by Brett Arends The Wall Street Journal (5/5/2009). - A good article about Treasury Inflation Protection Securities use in the current economic environment and how to purchase them. TIPS are secured against default and contain protection against rising prices. The best place to hold TIPS are in tax deferred accounts.
Coping with a changed landscape by Sam Mamudi MarketWatch (5/4/2009). - This article discusses what the current market volatility, most down, has done to investor psyche and how it has impacted what they are selling and buying. A change investory sentiment.
Time for Plan B by Scott Burns of AssetBuilder.com(5/4/09) - Scott explains why active managed mutual funds do not work, index fund are the way to go (Plan B). This article reenforces my belief that being average with investments in index funds will pay off in the long run partially due to lower costs and taking what the market provides. Thank You Scott.
The two articles below are looking at what might happen in the stock market in the near future. Will it continue on an upward trend or stagnate until the economic signs become more favorable? No one has a crystal ball? The recession continues either way but maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Wall Street's disconnect from Main Street by Russ Britt MarketWatch (4/16/2009).
Stress tests for investors coming soon; Commentary: After almost six weeks of gains, hurdles arrive by David Callaway MarketWatch (4/16/2009).
Hold the Line: Commentary - Market's rally shouldn't alter your investment policy by Chuck Jaffe MarketWatch (4/6/2009). - To weather the swings of the financial markets investors should have their own personal investment policy that they can refer to when emotions are running high and the thought of chasing performance becomes a factor. One must fall back on their investment policy to guide them through the pulls and tugs of the market.
Time For a Mutual-Fund Checkup by Dave Kansas The Wall Street Journal (4/4/2009). - Individual investors have seen their mutual funds take a beating. Article provides four steps one should take to reevaluate one's fund holdings.
Go Forth and Multiply Your Savings by Karen Blumenthal The Wall Street Journal (4/8/2009). - A self promotion of this person's new book but she does provide basic ideas about how to cut costs and put more money in one's pocket for additional savings.
What Do I Do Now? by Dave Kansas The Wall Street Journal (4/7/2009). - Another article on what one can do about their own financial situation with practical examples. Sets forth five things one should definately do and five things that definately should not be done. Good read!
6 Reason I'm calling a bottom and a new bull by Paul B. Farrell MarketWatch (3/30/2009). - Paul can be very pessimistic at time so it good to heard that he thinks we are at or near the bottom of the stock market and could be in a new bull. I hope he is right. I think so too. Only time will tell but don't be sitting on the sidelines and miss out.
How to save money when money is tight by Jonathan Burton MarketWatch (3/30/2009). - A good article about reminding us what we should be doing so we can be prepared for the next collapse of the markets which will happen with regularity. As they say, "Just do it".
Lock in a Lifetime of Income by Tom Lauricella The Wall Street Journal (3/28/2009). - This is an article about immediate annuities. I am a strong proponent of immediate annuities if one does not have a steady stream of income, beside social security, in retirement.
Stop Payment; Commentary: Test your ability to weather a financial crisis before it hits by Chuck Jaffe MarketWatch (3/29/2009). - Good read to see where you are with your personal finances and how they might be holding up during this economic downturn.
The Flight Over Who Will Guard Your Nest Egg by Jason Zweig The Wall Street Journal (3/30/2009). - A good look at two sides to the potential changes in the financial regulatory environment that will come because of the turmoil in the financial markets. I am obviously on the side of the financial planners that have a higher standard to the client of being a fiduciary and putting the client first.
Act contrary to popular belief, don't be scared to buy stocks when the 'smart money' is on the sidelines by Jonathan Burton MarketWatch (3/29/2009). - This article discusses risk and fear during these current difficult times in the stock market. Can you overcome the risk and fear that is inherently there all the time but especially now and get back into the market?
You Still Need to Be in the Market by Dave Kansas The Wall Street Journal (3/22/2009). - No one knows when the markets will turn for good and get out of their current major slump. One must be in the market for the long term when the market change course. This will happen quickly. Don't think you know when to jump in and out. Be there when the market streaks up while experiencing the long haul.
Stock Markets: When Will the Bull Return? by David Henry BusinessWeek (3/5/2009). - How much longer will the bear market last? How low will the averages go? And when might investors get their money back? This article attempts to provide some clarity to these questions.
Steps to Take While You're Holding On by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog February 27, 2009. - Practical things that one can do to weather the coming years.
After the Crash, Stocks May Face Long Road Back by Jason Zweig The Wall Street Journal (2/25/2009). - This is the 3rd article I have recently read about this market not recovering very quickly. If this comes to be true it is not good news. My original belief was that when the market rebounds it will be pretty quick over short span recovering mostly all that was previously lost from its peak. The thinking now is starting from the lows and seeing growth anywhere from 7 to 9% with no big immediate uptick. With slow growth it could take 5 to 9 years to get back to the high point. Not exactly encouraging but maybe reality. We will see.
Trying Time for Long-Term Investors The Wall Street Journal (2/25/2009). Second Article; Have we Hit Bottom? Answers Short and Long The Wall Street Journal (2/24/2009). - both articles by Brett Arends. They both have to do with this dismal financial market. When will it turn around and what does history say?
What Henry Kaufman sees ahead by Marshall Loeb MarketWatch (02/22/09). - Like the last article I just posted this interview gives another perspective to the economic recovery. It is not very optimistic but reality.
One Word for Playing This Market - 'Defense!' by Tom Lauricella The Wall Street Journal (2/16/2009). - I thought this was a good article that recaps where we are and sees the turnaround not happening quickly. I have read and heard a number of articles that we are now looking at the economic recovery not until 2010. This is a long ways off and will pose major problems for those planning on retiring during this time frame. Hang in there, it will get better.
Structural Support; Four ways you can shore up your retirement nest egg by Ruth Mantell MarketWatch (02/08/09). - The four ideas would be ones that I would have set forth if I had written a similar article. It is a good review of what to do or not do during these shakey economic times.
If You Play the Odds, It's Time to Buy by Scott Burns of AssetBuilder.com(1/30/09) - This is a good article to read to encourage one to get back into the market or if one is using a buy and hold strategy to stick with it. The markets will turn around and when they do one better have some skin in the game.
Put Down the Piggy Bank and Back Away Slowly by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog January 23, 2009. - This is a must read about the current economic climate and the reason for sticking in the market no matter how painful it is. The market will rebound and when it does it will reward those with guts not emotion.
Across the universe; Commentary-Portfolio diversification is still the best investment strategy by John Prestbo MarketWatch (01/16/09). - 2008 was a difficult year for the stock market and intially looking at the returns of a diversified portfolio one might say that diversification did not work. Is this so? If you read this article you will come away with a different perspective especially related to the long-term. Diversification still applies!
'Noah's Ark Survival Kit' for stormy 2009 seas by Paul B. Ferrell MarketWatch (12/22/08). - Takes the Noah's Ark analogy and uses it to set a course for 2009. It is a very positive article about what one can do during these choppy market seas. Sometime Paul can be a little negative but this is a very upbeat article.
Waiting For the Next Financial Guru by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog November 28, 2008. - Good article about buy and hold strategy during there turbulent times compared to market timers.
An interview with John Bogle on the current market conditions and his new book Enough from the Rational Angle (10/5/08). - As you know my now that John Bogle is my hero when it comes to investing. He is the founder of Vanguard and has written numerous books. He has always had the concern of the individual investor in mind.
Below are a collection of articles related to the economic crisis we are facing.
Where bottom of the market is isn't clear by The Associated Press MSNBC.com (11/20/08). - Stocks continue to plow downward as investors try to predict a bottom.
How to invest well and sleep better, in good markets or bad by Jonathan Burton MarketWatch (11/18/08). - In this devastated market, "risk tolerance" is an oxymoron.
Five rules for investing in an unruly market by Chuck Jaffe MarketWatch (11/16/08). - Don't peek at your post-peak portfolio. Five rules from John Bogle to be a sucessful long-term investor.
Weathering the stormy market by Howard Gold MarketWatch (11/14/08). - Forget market timing; hold some cash and diversify. Survival.
Irrational exuberance redux by Mark Hulbert MarketWatch (11/12/08). - Stock now lag T-bills for the trailing 12-year period. One might have to endure a number of years in which one is worse off than a money market fund return.
Stick to the Plan by Chuck Jaffe MarketWatch (11/05/08). - Vanguard founder John Bogle urges simple approach to investing. Don't let the market distract you from your needs, goals and time horizon.
The high price of panic by Jonathan Burton MarketWatch (11/03/08). - Dumping stocks now locks in losses and risks missing the market's best days. If you didn't see the market's meltdown coming, you have plenty of company. If you're selling now, it's probably too late.
Even the Great Depression Couldn't Keep Stocks Down by James B. Stewart The Wall Street Journal (10/29/08). - Let's play this week's favorite parlor game: Are we in another Great Depression? Find out.
Overpowered by the market's funk by Chuck Jaffe MarketWatch (10/28/08). - Investors face the ultimate clash: Should I stay or go? "If I go there will be trouble ... And if I stay it will be double".
To sell or not to sell by Jonathan Burton MarketWatch (10/26/08). - Unloading stocks in bear-market rallies will only lock in your losses.
Keep Your Money in the Market by Burton G. Malkeil The Wall Street Journal (10/13/08). - Renown Princeton University Professor shares his thoughts about the current market crisis. He is the author of the best selling bookA Random Walk Down Wall Street
What History Tells Us About the Market by Jason Zweig The Wall Street Journal (10/13/08). - Looks at the experience from the Great Depression which helps put into perpective where we are now.
A Brief History of Crashes by Brett Arends of The Wall Street Journal (10/19/08). - Would you believe I have been on vacation during this meltdown. Good planning or avoidance? This is a great article about our current financial crisis compared to previous ones. It puts our current situation into historical perspective. I enjoyed how the author used one of Yogi Berra'a famous quotes - "90% of the game is 1/2 mental" - to our emotional state during this finanical crisis that leads to panic selling (making an already weak market weaker).
Opportunity is Knocking by Brett Arends The Wall Street Journal (10/13/08). - The current financial situation has turned the markets upside down and created many opportunities.
For Investors, Dealing With a Loss of Control by Jason Zweig The Wall Street Journal (10/7/08). - So do you feel like quiting yet? What we are feeling is a loss of control we sense when we are faced with anything that is frightening, inexplicable and important.______________________________________________________________________________________________________
New Lazy Portfolios online update are here! by Paul B. Ferrell MarketWatch (10/14/08). - This article describe where my lazy investment philosphy come from. There is a link in this document plus now on the site/calculator page of this website where one can track the eight sample Lazy Portfolios online in real time. This article also reviews the principles of lazy investing. It is an important read if you want to find an easy way to learn how to do your own investing.
Are Annuities At Risk Now? Some Answers by M.P. McQueen The Wall Street Journal (10/28/08). - A good primer on annuities and how they are fairing in the current financial turmoil. Should you be concerned if you have an annuity? Read on.
Your Cash: How Safe is Safe? by Jane J. Kim of The Wall Street Journal (9/18/08). - Very timely article given the crisis in the financial markets. Provides different options to safely protecting deposits.
Advice you can bank on; Commentary: Uninsured deposits have no guarantees if your bank fails by Bill Donoghue of MarketWatch (9/11/08). - This is an important article to read if you have exceeded the FDIC-insured limits with your deposits in any FDIC-insured bank accounts. It is very sobering the liability you are facing if you are exceeding these limits. If you are, you need to take action!
A Dependable Retirement Paycheck by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog September 5, 2008. - What to think about when retire and begin spending down assets; the deaccumulation phase. Most of our live the focus has been on accumulating weath now what to do when this phase of life is over. Good, concise article.
Should You Fear the Ostrich Effect? by Jason Zweig of The Wall Street Journal (9/15/08). - This is a great article about what happens to most people when the markets are way down. They put their heads in the sand and try not to think about how poorly their investments are fairing. Is this the best approach? Check this article out and find out that this approach is not all bad.
It's an Election Year; Is Your Will Updated? by Karen Blumenthal of The Wall Street Journal (8/26/08). - This article provides very helpful information related to estate planning and what issues need to be covered. Check it out and make sure your estate plan is up-to-date.
Will Your Money Last as Long as You Will?; by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog August 8, 2008. - Contains information about a couple websites that hone in on your life expectancy and real age. They both involve very indepth surveys that should give you a better estimate of how long you will live and what your real age. These two sites also provide helpful tips for improving your health which in the long run will increase your likelyhood of living longer and reduce your real age.
Easier Social Security Estimate by Glenn Ruffenbach of The Wall Street Journal (8/2/08). - Talks about the new Social Security Administration's Retirement Estimator (socialsecurity.gov/estimator) that is tied to one's actual earning history. It also allows for different stop working ages.
'Lazy Portfolios' 8 winners for a bear-recession; Protect your retirement; major indexes crashing far below 2000 peaks by Paul B. Farrell of MarketWatch (7/14/08). - Provides an update of seven passive investment approaches and how they compare with the S&P 500 now that it is down 20% from it's peak over 1, 3 and 5 years. In all passive, lazy, approaches the performance has been better than the S&P 500. As I have said, lazy, is always better. Read on.
The bears of summer; Commentary: Look past the gloom for intelligent buying opportunities by Irwin Kellner of MarketWatch (7/15/08). - Reinforces the buy low, sell high rule of thumb which is hard to contemplate when the bear market is heading full steam down. His reminder about being an investor;(1)Buys and Holds, (2)Buy when everyone else is selling (like now), and (3)If you liked the stock at $20 you should really like it at $10 if it's still making money and paying dividends. Now is a time to buy more.
Keep Your Money Safe by Brett Arends of The Wall Street Journal (7/14/08). - Just a reminder about the current run on banks that your mooney is insured to the first $100,000 ($200,000 for a jointly-held account) held in CDs, checking and saving accounts. This FDIC insurance was put into place to assure depositors that their money is safe growing out of the great depression. The reason for a run on the bank: Zero.
Stop Worrying, and Learn to Love the Bear by Jason Zweig of The Wall Street Journal (7/14/08). - This is a great article to put in perspective the current bear stock market compared to previous down markets. Here is an interesting quote from the article that caught my attention; "This new column takes its name from the classic book by Benjamin Graham, who wrote that 'the investor's chief problem - and even his worst enemy - is likely to be himself.' I hope to help you understand the chaotic markets around you, and the even more treacherous enemy within. For, as Mr. Buffett has also pointed out, investing is much like dieting: It is simple, but not easy. Everyone knows what it takes to lose weight. (Eat less, exercise more.) Nothing could be simpler, but few things are harder in a world of chocolate cake and Cheetos." How profectic that is.
When to Think About Tomorrow by Suzanne Barlyn of The Wall Street Journal (7/13/08). - Good article about what life changes should cause you to seek financial help and whom to look for to help you. Very helpful information for picking a financial planner and when to do it. Only 50% of American have a financial plan which is higher than I actually thought.
Your Broker is a Hammer, Don't be a Nail by Scott Burns of AssetBuilder.com(7/9/08) - Excellent article about the cost of using a broker that has to use high cost investments to make a living makes it very difficult to out perform passive investments.
As Returns Sag, Fund Investors Focus on Fees by Eleanor Laise of The Wall Street Journal (6/25/08). - In these times of dismal investment returns this article is timely with its discussion of mutual fund fees. See the first article I posted here from Money Magazine in the November 2007 issue about the importance of low fees. This article explains further how expenses are the most important factor in determining long-term investment results.
Insuring for a long life; Longevity insurance solves problems of outliving assets, but there are downsides by Robert Powell of MarketWatch (6/26/08). - People are living longer and many of them are outliving their saving (Longevity Risk). A new product has recently come to the market (Longevity Insurance) to protect one from outliving assets. This article explains this new insurance; what is good about it and what is not.
Close Your Eyes and Invest by Brett Arends of The Wall Street Journal (6/26/08). - Is now the time to investment with the market down more than 20% from it's peak? Yes, through the buy low and sell high approach. Most investors end up making poor investment decisions that are contrary to the buy low sell high mantra. One must take risks and invest because of the need for money in retirement and inflation.
Four ways to pay off debt by Marshall Loeb of MarketWatch (6/12/08). - This article originally appeared in the Montley Fool. Very practical tips for paying off debt. If you are in debt (credit cards) then pay it off as quickly as possible. The longer you wait, the more excessive it can become.
Set it and forget it; Follow the financial news doesn't mean you have to trade on it by Andrea Coombes of MarketWatch (6/17/08). - Personal testimony in action from a buy-and-hold investor that follows the lazy investment approach that I advocate. She provide steps for "What to do" to invest in this manner.
Brainwashing 101 for Dummies (and investors!); Eleven reasons passive investors let Wall Street steal their money by Paul Farrell of MarketWatch (6/16/08). - Paul never pulls any punches. He tells it like it is. As Paul says "Yes, Wall Street's got a great con game going, but it only works because America's 95 million investors are willing victims .. allowing Wall Street to get away with it". Wake up people - learn about the great con.
How to Bulletproof Your Nest Egg by Kelly Green of The Wall Street Journal (6/16/08). - For those approaching retirement and those retired how does one safeguard savings during tough times? This article provides different strategies from the financial planning community. I am a proponent of the first one; creating a cash reserve. Provides very helpful information!
Learn a lession - before you get one; Ten rules to remember about investing in the stock market by Jonathan Burton of MarketWatch (6/8/08). - Rules may be meant to be broken, but with investing ignoring the rules can break you. 10 rules to follow during volatile markets such as the one we are currently in from legendary Wall Street veteran, Bob Farrell.
Where Does Your Money Go? Find Out. by Douglas R. Sease of The Wall Street Journal (5/31/08). - For most people they have no clue where their money goes each month. Without knowing where money goes becomes a stubbling block for most people but it is so important to know especially for retirement planning and figuring out how to save more for retirement. This article presents another way to determine your expenditures by using 3 x 5 cards. If you don't know where your money goes each month then give this a try. It will have a long term impact on your financial future.
Just a few more years, Three or four extra years at work may solve retirement income issue for many by Robert Powell of MarketWatch (5/29/08). - There has been much written lately as the first baby boomer reach age 62 and begin thinking about retirement about how to make income last in retirement. This article reviews a new book that postulate that the income problem can be solved pretty easily if boomers only will work a few more years. It will not be that easy for most because their bent for retiring early and taking social security. It is possible to change this attitude. I hope so.
Risk Management, the top five risks you face in retirement, and tips on how to handle them by Robert Powell of MarketWatch (5/21/08). - He boils down a list of 15 retirement risks from the Society of Actuaries to five and how to manage these risks. The five risks are inflation, outliving one's assets, loss of spouse, declining health and medical expenses. Good article, read on.
Six reasons 'Lazy Portfolios' beat market timing by Paul B. Farrell of MarketWatch (5/12/08). - Another solid argument for Lazy Investing and it's merits over trying to time the market. Six reasons why market-timing is a loser's game for the vast majority of passive investors plus his editoral comment about current treasury secretary.
The Only 7 Investments You Need Now by Michael Sivy, Carla Fried, Carolyn Bigda and George Mannes in Money Magazine June 2008 – Good article about 7 investments for good times and bad. These investments are all passive index funds. Discusses these 7 investments for appropriate diversification and then examples of asset allocation between these investments during different stages of life. It reenforces my approach to "Lazy Investing". Tune out the Wall Street hype and one's own emotions and just be average is just fine!
Point of of no return; For many investors, risk-taking isn't worth the emotional cost by Chuck Jaffe of MarketWatch (5/6/08). - This is a good primer on understand the different types of risk. There is more than just market risk. There are many other risks that must be taken into consideration when looking at one's investment portfolio. Too much of your investments in cash could be detremental especially in light of purchasing power risk (inflation).
The Truth about Income Taxes by Scott Burns (5/2/08) - This article explains that the average person does not pay all that much in income taxes. The rich really do pay a much higher percentage of income taxes with the top 1% paying over $315 billion in taxes in 2005. Interesting perspective on who really pays income taxes.
Stimulate Savings, Not Spending; For Heaven's sake, America, start saving money again! by Brett Arends of The Wall Street Journal (5/1/08). - With stimulus checks now hitting peoples bank accounts this article explains the reason why the "stimulus check" should be used for savings not spending. Since figures have been record American households saved at the lowest amount just $2 out of each $1,000 in the first 3 months of this year. We are not making the grade if there is intention of having anything when one retires. It prescribes 5 ways to save the "stimulus check".
Clip Job; Still bashing annuities after all these years, with good reason by Paul B. Farrell of MarketWatch (4/28/08). - In this article Paul is talking about variable and equity fixed annuities not fixed annuities. As they say annuities are sold not bought. As this article points out very high commissions are paid on selling annuities which attracts aggressive sales people with questionnable ethics. In most situations there are better options. Think twice when you are being sold a variable annuity.
The ultimate buy and hold strategy - 2008 update; by Paul Merriman of FundAdvice.com;- This is an update to Chapter 6 of his excellent investment book entitled Live It Up without Outliving Your Money!;April 16, 2008. It shows how to build the ultimate investment portfolio with different asset classifications and how the adding more diversity increased the historical performance from 1970 to 2007.
The Wise Investor's Mantra: Diversify, Diversify, Diversity; by Richard Kahler, CFP® of Kahler Financial Group; His Financial AwakeningsTM blog April 18, 2008. - I enjoyed this edition of his weekly blog having to do with diversification and investment performance especially in this volatile/down market. He also touches on the impact of investors’ emotions many times leading to poor decisions making. Check out his other blogs, highly recommended.
Seeking Stability; by Craig L. Israelsen of Financial Planning Magazine April 2008 issue. - A diversified retirement portfolio of several asset classes is key, even during the withdrawal period. This article helps explain why it is important to have a broadly diversified investment portfolio to fight the effects of inflations. It looks at several different assets combinations over a 38 year period ending December 31, 2007.
'Lazy Portfolio' Update; Good News by Paul B. Farrell of MarketWatch (4/8/08). - 8 winning portfolios in bull & bear markets, best strategy for passive investors. These portfolios are virtually "zero maintenance". Get them & Forget Them. All 8 portfolios beat the S&P performance over one, three and five years. This is an update of the performance to Paul's orginal work put forth in his book back a few year ago; The Lazy Person's Guide to Investing. I highly recommend that you pick up a copy to find out what Wall Street does not want you to know!
Six Rules for Lazy Investors by Paul B. Farrell of MarketWatch (4/3/08). - Build a million dollar portfolio the easy, boring way. This is the foundation of Lazy investing for Revelation Financial Planning clents.
And It All Comes Down To This by Jonathan Clements of The Wall Street Journal (4/5/08). - Sage advice from someone that has covered personal finance for the Journal for two decades. This is his last Sunday column. He provides eight simple suggestions. If only we could take heed.
When should you take Social Security by Rande Spiegelman of Schwab Investment Insights (3/20/08). - an excellent article to help one determine when to take Social Security. The normal age for receiving Social Security retirement benefits is a moving target. You can still elect to take benefits early at age 62, or wait as late as age 70. But before you conside whether it makes sense to take Social Security benefits earlier or later, read this article to take a look at some of the rules.
Five ways to stay cool in down market by Marshall Loeb of MarketWatch (3/21/08). - An easy read about what to do and not to do during the volatile investment markets we find ourselves in.
Fees & the top & bottom 25% by Scott Burns (3/14/08) - A great article explaining the long-term impact of expenses on investment return.
10 questions with Sherly Garrett (3/08) - She answers why we need 400,000 financial planning to aid the middle market in the March issue of The Journal of Financial Planning. I am a strong follower of her philosophy. Read it and you will understand more about my financial planning Philosphy.
The Joy of Building Own Portfolio(3/8/08) – This is a good introductory article on creating your own investment portfolio. It is written Jonathan Clements and appeared in the Wall Street Journal on March 8th and re-reported in MarketWatch.
20 timless money rules (11/07) – I thought this was a great article that appeared in Money Magazine in the fall of 2007. I am a strong believer in the rules especially when it comes to investing.