Author Topic: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?  (Read 7584 times)

soccerluvof4

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Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« on: February 28, 2014, 11:17:44 AM »

I am just curious if anyone is using Personal Capital to manage there accounts.  I recently a few weeks back via MMM started to use the service and Just went through the free advice blah blah blah which was very well presented. After all there fancy charts and stuff it just got me curious as to what your opinions are IF you have went through one of these free consults and if you decided to use them.  Or any other commentary you might have.

FYI i am using currently a 4 fund Vanguard Index fund.

Thanks in advance.

matchewed

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2014, 11:37:27 AM »
They have a great visualization on how much fees will cost you... but so does any fee calculator. Outside of that I'm not sure how much value they have provided me.

soccerluvof4

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2014, 12:45:39 PM »
They have a great visualization on how much fees will cost you... but so does any fee calculator. Outside of that I'm not sure how much value they have provided me.

But your not actually having them manage your money? that was my deeper question.  Basically, they are saying for .92% the will manage your money through ETF's and showed me all the charts which I can see Vanguards versions and others. I was just curious if anyone is using them for management purposes and if they prefer that over doing themselves etc.....

matchewed

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2014, 12:58:39 PM »
They have a great visualization on how much fees will cost you... but so does any fee calculator. Outside of that I'm not sure how much value they have provided me.

But your not actually having them manage your money? that was my deeper question.  Basically, they are saying for .92% the will manage your money through ETF's and showed me all the charts which I can see Vanguards versions and others. I was just curious if anyone is using them for management purposes and if they prefer that over doing themselves etc.....

Oh L-rd no. I strongly believe in DIY finances.

soccerluvof4

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2014, 01:06:34 PM »
They have a great visualization on how much fees will cost you... but so does any fee calculator. Outside of that I'm not sure how much value they have provided me.

But your not actually having them manage your money? that was my deeper question.  Basically, they are saying for .92% the will manage your money through ETF's and showed me all the charts which I can see Vanguards versions and others. I was just curious if anyone is using them for management purposes and if they prefer that over doing themselves etc.....



Agreed! just curious because I am sure with MMM recomending the site alot of peeps have been using the free service or mint.com so am interested if any takers out there and their experience.

Thanks for responding though!

Oh L-rd no. I strongly believe in DIY finances.

NWOutlier

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2014, 08:09:18 PM »
I use both MINT and Personal Capital.  Mint is great for aggregated high level info on account balances, transactions and net worth... Where Personal Capital not only gives you that, but also allows for drill down information that can uncover information that can help in your decisions, balancing, moving money around, controling costs, etc...

I only use personal capital for tracking, I do not use their investing services... I'm a DIY investor (Vanguard for DIY and Fidelity for 401k & Pension)


Here are some things I like with Personal Capital

1. From the main screen after login; select "Investing > Portfolio" (the default view here is "holdings")

2. Here you can see how you perform against the S&P, Dow, Foreign and US Bond
   a. you can also select by account and by time slice

3. At the top of your graph on this page, you can also select "Performance"
   a. this can show you your rate of return for a given time period (default is 30 days, all accounts)
   b. again this allows you to look at each account by selecting it from the left pane, or the entire portfolio
   c. I haven't dug into the rate of return, it isn't clear if it is actually calculating rate, or if the growth includes your deposits + appreciation of the asset

4. Also at the top "Allocation" is another important item; in the past, I had been moving money to Fidelity from Dean Witter and found they had left a significant portion in cash when I had them roll my money from Dean Witter to Fidelity
   a. this portion of cash, along with my personal set allocation of cash outside of Fidelity, highlighted that I was too heavy in cash, I fixed it due to this view in personal capital

5. Now, this is the one I really like; While still on the same page (Investing > Portfolio) - select just one of your accounts from the left pane under "investments"
   a. I have 6 separate accounts under investments
   b. I can select one account, then from the top of the graph, I can select "Income"
   c. modify the time slice from default of 90 days to 6 months, this year, last year or a custom date range
   d. this shows you your dividends paid

At this point, I have my allocation set how I want, everything is on auto-pilot, and now I'm addicted to monitoring... The monitoring over and over again allowed me to find the flaws and correct them... I believe I've caught them all - and now I'm trying to move away from monitoring and get a clear understanding of my tax strategy when it comes time to choose to not work at my current job any longer.

Anyway, enjoy the ride...


Best Regards,

Steve

foobar

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2014, 08:01:51 PM »
Their fees are pretty high compared to companies like Betterment or wealthfront (not recommending either but with ER at ~1/4 you would be crazy not to think about them before personal capital). If  you look at where most of their return comes from it is replacing 1.5% mutual funds with .1% ones. Giving back most of that gain by paying .9% is crazy.  I also consider some of their charts deceptive. For example they compare the S&P 500 to their "tactical weighting" that has small cap exposure. They really should be using a total market index. I also have concern that they show very short periods of time (1990-2012). How did those weights fair in the 60s,70,80s? Even then your looking at a very small data set. I would be concerned that they are matching to patterns that no longer exist.

The do make some very nice graphs though for figuring out where your money is invested.


They have a great visualization on how much fees will cost you... but so does any fee calculator. Outside of that I'm not sure how much value they have provided me.

But your not actually having them manage your money? that was my deeper question.  Basically, they are saying for .92% the will manage your money through ETF's and showed me all the charts which I can see Vanguards versions and others. I was just curious if anyone is using them for management purposes and if they prefer that over doing themselves etc.....

RobertBirnie

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2014, 01:09:39 AM »
Their fees are pretty high compared to companies like Betterment or wealthfront (not recommending either but with ER at ~1/4 you would be crazy not to think about them before personal capital). If  you look at where most of their return comes from it is replacing 1.5% mutual funds with .1% ones. Giving back most of that gain by paying .9% is crazy.  I also consider some of their charts deceptive. For example they compare the S&P 500 to their "tactical weighting" that has small cap exposure. They really should be using a total market index. I also have concern that they show very short periods of time (1990-2012). How did those weights fair in the 60s,70,80s? Even then your looking at a very small data set. I would be concerned that they are matching to patterns that no longer exist.

The do make some very nice graphs though for figuring out where your money is invested.


They have a great visualization on how much fees will cost you... but so does any fee calculator. Outside of that I'm not sure how much value they have provided me.

But your not actually having them manage your money? that was my deeper question.  Basically, they are saying for .92% the will manage your money through ETF's and showed me all the charts which I can see Vanguards versions and others. I was just curious if anyone is using them for management purposes and if they prefer that over doing themselves etc.....

Yes, I doubt I'd use them as Betterment or Wealthfront is the same for cheaper. I personally do use Wealthfront, although after bonus's from inviting people I've not actually paid them a penny yet. Since its free still I find it easier than Vanguard. If I had to pay for it I'd move to Vanguard. :D

That said, we really aren't their target market. For a non dollars and cents type of person who is bad with money (my wife!), I think they (and betterment/wealthfront) have a very compelling product, my wife's eyes would cross trying to figure what to invest in and she'd give her money to the first traveling "have I got an investment plan for you" salesman. There are much worse products out there, easily.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2014, 01:13:56 AM by RobertBirnie »

MilStachian

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2014, 07:13:20 AM »
I use both MINT and Personal Capital.  Mint is great for aggregated high level info on account balances, transactions and net worth... Where Personal Capital not only gives you that, but also allows for drill down information that can uncover information that can help in your decisions, balancing, moving money around, controling costs, etc...

I only use personal capital for tracking, I do not use their investing services... I'm a DIY investor (Vanguard for DIY and Fidelity for 401k & Pension)


Here are some things I like with Personal Capital

1. From the main screen after login; select "Investing > Portfolio" (the default view here is "holdings")

2. Here you can see how you perform against the S&P, Dow, Foreign and US Bond
   a. you can also select by account and by time slice

3. At the top of your graph on this page, you can also select "Performance"
   a. this can show you your rate of return for a given time period (default is 30 days, all accounts)
   b. again this allows you to look at each account by selecting it from the left pane, or the entire portfolio
   c. I haven't dug into the rate of return, it isn't clear if it is actually calculating rate, or if the growth includes your deposits + appreciation of the asset

4. Also at the top "Allocation" is another important item; in the past, I had been moving money to Fidelity from Dean Witter and found they had left a significant portion in cash when I had them roll my money from Dean Witter to Fidelity
   a. this portion of cash, along with my personal set allocation of cash outside of Fidelity, highlighted that I was too heavy in cash, I fixed it due to this view in personal capital

5. Now, this is the one I really like; While still on the same page (Investing > Portfolio) - select just one of your accounts from the left pane under "investments"
   a. I have 6 separate accounts under investments
   b. I can select one account, then from the top of the graph, I can select "Income"
   c. modify the time slice from default of 90 days to 6 months, this year, last year or a custom date range
   d. this shows you your dividends paid

At this point, I have my allocation set how I want, everything is on auto-pilot, and now I'm addicted to monitoring... The monitoring over and over again allowed me to find the flaws and correct them... I believe I've caught them all - and now I'm trying to move away from monitoring and get a clear understanding of my tax strategy when it comes time to choose to not work at my current job any longer.

Anyway, enjoy the ride...


Best Regards,

Steve

I do exactly this.  Well said Steve!

soccerluvof4

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2014, 04:48:33 AM »
Thank you guys for all the information. I will check into Mint.com as well. I prefer to stay a DIY investor and I agree everyone can make charts look good to benefit what there selling. I did cancel my appointment for today. The 1.5% basically that they showed me over the last 10 years I supposedly would of beat out using them 1% would of been wiped out by using there services and the nearly 1% fee.
We currently have been using quicken and Personal capital but will look into Mint.

Thanks,
DB

foobar

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2014, 09:25:57 AM »
I believe their 1.5% is after their fees. 

Thank you guys for all the information. I will check into Mint.com as well. I prefer to stay a DIY investor and I agree everyone can make charts look good to benefit what there selling. I did cancel my appointment for today. The 1.5% basically that they showed me over the last 10 years I supposedly would of beat out using them 1% would of been wiped out by using there services and the nearly 1% fee.
We currently have been using quicken and Personal capital but will look into Mint.

Thanks,
DB

soccerluvof4

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Re: Personal Capital/Vanguard etc...?
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2014, 11:54:53 AM »
 I cancelled the meeting with Personal Capital.