IRA

Beefing up Your Investment Portfolio’s Tactical Side in the Coronavirus Era

The Coronavirus outbreak has turned out to be more than just a Black Swan – it’s a totally random Black Piano from the sky that takes the Black Swan by complete surprise, landing on the poor bird. The global pandemic has penetrated nearly every element of society, totally upending healthcare, politics, business and education. What …

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Is Your Retirement Cushion Adequate?

As we get closer to retirement, we need to have an adequate cushion, or would I like to call, a margin of safety? Why? Well, because as we age, our investment time horizon compresses, meaning we have less time to recover should the stock market suffer a severe decline. Now, I’m not the one who …

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A Wonderful Fluke

One online dictionary defines the word “fluke” as an “unlikely chance occurrence, especially a surprising piece of luck.” Alternative descriptions include chance, coincidence, and accident. All of these synonyms are accurate adjectives for the cryptocurrency market. For the record, I am not cryptocurrency hater. In fact, my stake in Litecoin – a smaller cousin of Bitcoin – …

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4 Things to Understand about Your Portfolio’s Margin of Safety

Does your portfolio have a margin of safety? I ask that question because the total U.S. stock market (NYSEARCA:SCHB) has been rocky over the past few weeks and now has a year-to-date (YTD) loss of -1.23%. And since most investor underperform the stock market and the index ETFs tied to it, it’s fair to assume …

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The Cost of Investment Advice is Still Too High

There are 118 million U.S. households and 108 million have under $500,000 of investable assets while 100 million have less than $100,000 to invest. What does it mean? It means the vast majority of the investing public still doesn’t meet the dollar minimums required to work with a licensed financial advisor. And for those who …

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Portfolio Report Card: A $294,439 Retirement Plan with a Tax Threat

Some of us got started late at saving and investing for retirement. And while the financial services industry enjoys browbeating people who lack discipline, got distracted or got into trouble and temporarily paused saving money, I think empathy is due when empathy is warranted. This week’s Portfolio Report Card is for K.E., a 60-year old …

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Monster Tax Bills

Portfolio Report Card: Analyzing a Self-Managed $1.45 Million Investment Plan

What are the hallmarks of a well-built investment portfolio? Low cost, broad diversification, tax-efficiency, risk compatibility with the owner, and performance that matches or beats an apples-to-apples yardstick. My latest Portfolio Report Card is for a married couple, C.J. in Orange County, CA. He is 57, she is 58 and they asked me to grade their …

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Portfolio diversification

Portfolio Report Card: A Poorly Designed $863,309 Advisor Managed Account

How can a person tell the difference between a healthy and unhealthy investment portfolio? Naturally, it’s by how well (or poorly) a portfolio does at addressing crucial areas like taxes, cost, diversification, risk, and performance. Here’s the problem: Poorly constructed portfolios are usually ignorant about these first four things, which explain why unsatisfactory performance results …

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6 Really Bad and Sad Portfolio Types

We live in a Golden Era of misaligned investment portfolios. These are rogue, poorly designed portfolios (401k, IRA, Roth IRA, UGMA, 529 plans, etc.) that are architecturally unsound. And for whatever reason, the people who own them are intent on self-destruction. The Portfolio Report Card method I invented for analyzing and grading portfolios uncovers most …

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3 Telltale Signs of Disorderly Portfolio

Since mid-May, I along with a growing army of independent portfolio analysts, have already graded $10.6 million in investment portfolios. Some of the individual investors are old, some are young. Some have years of investment experience and others are novices. Some are risk averse, while others are not. I’ve analyzed 401(k) plans, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, 403(b) retirement …

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3 Big Shortcomings of Target Date Funds

Around 41% of all 401(k) savers have are using target-date mutual funds (TDFs) and the numbers keep rising. Experts in the financial services industry applaud this trend, but are target-date funds really the panacea to a secure retirement income? TDFs attempt to match a person’s age and risk tolerance with a projected retirement date. For …

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How Much Money is Enough for a Comfortable Retirement?

In 2011, the oldest members of the Baby Boom generation reached retirement age and over the next 15 years, around 8,000 Boomers per day will turn 65. And as more Americans contemplate life in retirement and preparing for it, they need to have a clearer picture of what their income (NYSEARCA:AGG) needs will be after …

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MyRA is Dead on Arrival

During his State of the Union address, President Obama unveiled his new plan to increase retirement savings. The plan is dubbed “MyRA” and is geared for people without a company sponsored retirement plan. Sadly, MyRA is more than a futile attempt at preventing people from retiring without money. It’s another shining example of grandstanding and …

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