Author Topic: one (investing) question at a time  (Read 73983 times)

MDM

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #200 on: May 16, 2015, 12:29:33 PM »
They said the percentage they provide gives the gain/loss percentage re: cost per unit at purchase date vs last night's closing.
The rep said I can:

1. Look up each month's statement.

2. Record unit cost of each purchase. e.g.,
January $1000 @ $3/unit
February $1300 @ $1/unit
March $800 @ $4/unit
April $2500 @ $3/unit


3. Total all unit prices ($11)

4. Divide by number of purchases ($11/4 = 2.75 average purchase price per unit)

The gain/loss percentage reflects the difference between the average purchase price per unit that I paid and the unit price at last night's closing.
...
The number provided by Waterhouse does not account for overall gain/loss personally, though, because its formula doesn't account for how many shares I bought at each unit price. Therefore, the percentage is very limited/near useless information?

Do I have that right so far?

Yes, you are right to say that formula provides "very limited/near useless information."  The simple average of each cost/unit ignores the amount spent at each time.  Using your numbers, the average cost per unit is $2.10 ($5,600 / 2666.67):

Month$ inCost/unitUnits
January$1,000 $3 333.33
February$1,300 $1 1300.00
March$800 $4 200.00
April$2,500 $3 833.33
$5,600 2666.67
Simple average =$2.75
Weighted average =$2.10

E.g., if you had invested a large amount at the $1 price:
Month$ inCost/unitUnits
January$1,000 $3 333.33
February$10,000 $1 10000.00
March$800 $4 200.00
April$2,500 $3 833.33
$14,300 11366.67
Simple average =$2.75
Weighted average =$1.26

Mr FrugalNL

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #201 on: May 17, 2015, 12:35:36 AM »
This reply also answers the above question:
Do a simple XIRR statement in excel, and you don't even need the market change in each period.
Just put in the date of each deposit, amount of deposit, and today's date and current total value.

Thanks a lot both of you! I'm now madly entering data in my Excel file.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #202 on: May 17, 2015, 09:14:40 AM »
Thanks a lot both of you! I'm now madly entering data in my Excel file.

Ditto! :)

I broke the spreadsheet yesterday, found my error, started again, broke it again, repeat. I think I have it now!

Question: How do I enter dividends into the spreadsheet? They are gains, but they are not reinvested (I'll be changing that) so an increase to the cash portion of the account.

arebelspy

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #203 on: May 17, 2015, 09:21:22 AM »
Thanks a lot both of you! I'm now madly entering data in my Excel file.

Ditto! :)

I broke the spreadsheet yesterday, found my error, started again, broke it again, repeat. I think I have it now!

Question: How do I enter dividends into the spreadsheet? They are gains, but they are not reinvested (I'll be changing that) so an increase to the cash portion of the account.

You don't.

You enter in your deposits where you transferred money into that account, and total current value of the account.

That tells you your return for your whole account.

The great thing is you don't have to enter individual buys, dividends, etc.  If you deposited your money and it sat for awhile (earning nothing) while you decided where to invest it, it accounts for that.  If the market dropped right after you bought (or right before, so you bought lower), it accounts for that.

It just takes "you deposited this much, on these days, and it's worth this now, so this was the total return on that money."

If you ever transferred money OUT, you can put those in as a positive number (same as the final value) along with the date.  Or if you received dividends (that weren't reinvested, or weren't left as cash in the account) as like a check to your house or something, and kept it, you can input that date and amount (as a positive number, because it was paid out to you).  But you only ever enter money going into or leaving the account -- internal stuff like stock splits, dividends, etc. don't matter, as they're taken into account via your total account value.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2015, 09:23:17 AM by arebelspy »
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scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #204 on: May 17, 2015, 09:29:22 AM »
Oh!!! I see! I get it now.

Totally separate from that, if I wanted to see the gain/loss on purchases/investments, could I do this:
Enter date and amount of each purchase.
Enter current value of invested portion.

Would that give me an accurate gain/loss percentage? Or would this need to be a different spreadsheet/formula?

arebelspy

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #205 on: May 17, 2015, 12:03:06 PM »
Oh!!! I see! I get it now.

Totally separate from that, if I wanted to see the gain/loss on purchases/investments, could I do this:
Enter date and amount of each purchase.
Enter current value of invested portion.

Would that give me an accurate gain/loss percentage? Or would this need to be a different spreadsheet/formula?

Sure, just do a separate XIRR sheet for that one particular investment (when you added money to that investment, and what it's worth now).

Again, if dividends are reinvested, you don't have to do anything, that will be reflected in the current value.

If they weren't, but were deposited to your account outside that or something, put in the amount and date as a positive number (since it was paid to you).

You can do it for a whole investment account or individual investment.

XIRR just takes dates and amounts of investments and current value, and figures out your return.  It's quite flexible. I use it for rental returns, I use it for flip returns, for notes, lots of real estate stuff, besides equity investments.
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scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #206 on: May 17, 2015, 02:19:31 PM »
Thanks again, arebelspy. (I'm in and out as my internet comes and goes for long stretches at a time. I can only get replies here, the data for my spreadsheet,  etc, when it's up.)

Do you maintain one spreadsheet for each of your projects/investments, or only develop a spreadsheet for an account if you're specifically curious in a moment about its return? I have six different investment accounts (RDSP, RDSP #2, TFSA, Trust, RESP, other) and Waterhouse seems to have no option for downloading transactions, so all manual entry. Is tracking rate of return a very helpful aspect of investing, or it is more just to satisfy curiousity/interest? (More on that from me in my upcoming question.)

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #207 on: May 17, 2015, 02:29:59 PM »
Question: If two people are invested in a fund that tracks the S&P500, can one person's go up and another's down at the same time?

Longer version: Different people on the forum invest differently, but I imagine a lot of us use the low-fee, super diversified options that track the S&P500. Lately, I have read at least two forum members say their investments are up [by 4%, 10%]. According to my spreadsheet, mine are down .01% in the 60 days since I started.

I know these things:

1. Sixty days is absolutely nothing in the grand scheme.

2. I must not panic and invest differently just because of this.

3. I followed the Canadian Couch Potato models for low fees and big diversity so I feel my choices are good.

4. Other members invested at different points in time, when a given fund had a lower price per unit.

These noted, I'm wondering how others can be up while I am down. When a person says their investments are up, are they usually referring to the lifetime of their investment, the last quarter, the last month? Although I don't think so, I'm wondering if somehow I invested "wrong" and want to be sure before I invest the next lump sum (shortly).

Cathy

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #208 on: May 17, 2015, 02:41:52 PM »
Assuming no cashflow, it's obviously not possible for two people in the same investments to have different performances over the same period.

However, if you incorporate cashflow into the calculation, as the IRR does, the performance won't necessarily be the same for two people -- one can even be up while the other is down.

For example, suppose that over the last 60 days, the underlying portfolio has risen by 10%, but in the middle of that, there was a massive crash that we have since recovered from. If somebody sold out a significant amount at the crash, their overall IRR over the 60 days might show depreciation, even though yours shows appreciation.

Or alternatively, suppose that there was a huge peak in the middle of the 60 days and somebody else invested a large amount of money there. In this case again, their IRR might show depreciation even though yours shows appreciation for the same 60 days.

I will leave this is an exercise, but it's possible to construct a set of cash flows such that the IRR would both show appreciation and not do so. As I mentioned, the IRR is not necessarily a unique value, and when it's not, all values are equally correct; you can't just choose the one you like most.

The IRR is really not a very meaningful metric to use to compare to other members on this forum, for reasons I explained in my previous post. If you use time-weighted returns instead, it will be the same as other members with the same portfolio regardless of cashflow decisions, assuming you quote it for the same time period.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2015, 02:58:48 PM by Cathy »

forummm

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #209 on: May 17, 2015, 02:53:53 PM »
I note you're Canadian. Another possibility is that stocks denominated in USD went up a certain amount in USD terms, but had a different outcome when denominated in CAD due to fluctuations in exchange rates.

And some people on the forum are definitely not invested in just the S&P 500. For example, I also have international index funds, and small cap index funds. Since you and I don't own exactly the same percentages of the same funds, our returns could be different in the short term. In the long term, any differences should be relatively small.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #210 on: May 17, 2015, 04:11:27 PM »
Thank you, both!

I think what I'll do when I read someone saying "I'm up x%!" is ask them what they're invested in and what time period they're referencing. That will help me assess. Having clear information is what will help me stay calm in my money's down moments.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #211 on: May 17, 2015, 11:51:23 PM »
I note you're Canadian. Another possibility is that stocks denominated in USD went up a certain amount in USD terms, but had a different outcome when denominated in CAD due to fluctuations in exchange rates.

Perhaps the above factors in to this next one:

Others are reporting an upswing in theirs tracking the S&P 500. My portion in TDB661, which is supposed to track same, has lost $2000 in 60 days. Why?

MDM

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #212 on: May 18, 2015, 12:06:04 AM »
I note you're Canadian. Another possibility is that stocks denominated in USD went up a certain amount in USD terms, but had a different outcome when denominated in CAD due to fluctuations in exchange rates.

Perhaps the above factors in to this next one:

Others are reporting an upswing in theirs tracking the S&P 500. My portion in TDB661, which is supposed to track same, has lost $2000 in 60 days. Why?

See http://quicken.intuit.com/investing/mutual-funds/MUTUAL%3ATDB661/US-Index-Fund and http://www.x-rates.com/graph/?from=USD&to=CAD&amount=1.

TDB661's total movement comes from the combination of the S&P500 and the Canadian/US dollar exchange rate.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #213 on: May 18, 2015, 12:18:48 AM »
Thank you, MDM! I had been looking at Waterhouse's version of the first chart; the one you've linked to is much more helpful and clear.

So...Is it:
(a) that I bought right before *both* the loonie and market dropped, or
(b) that I bought right before the loonie dropped, and that drags down any market effect?

Or, put another way:
That first chart shows this fund coming out way lower than the S&P 500, despite its plan to track it. Is that only because of the loonie's fall?
Is there a way for me (in Canada) to get the effect of the second column vs the first?
Is the Couch Potato idea that this will all even out in the end, somehow?

I'm doing reasonably well at not panicking, but I might as well use the horribleness to learn.
I've even managed to laugh -three times today- at my horrible timing!

MDM

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #214 on: May 18, 2015, 12:49:29 AM »
Is there a way for me (in Canada) to get the effect of the second column vs the first?
Are you sure you want the second column? ;)

See bolded entries in the table below from the Quicken link:
Timeframe   TDB661    S&P 500    US Equity
1 Month           -3.91%   0.96%    -3.61%
3 Month           -0.45%   5.07%    0.53%
Year-to-Date    5.85%   1.92%    4.89%
1 Year            23.22%   12.98%   20.02%
3 Year            23.66%   16.73%   20.50%
5 Year            17.32%   14.33%   14.77%
10 Year             7.01%   8.32%     6.28%


Or, put another way:
That first chart shows this fund coming out way lower than the S&P 500, despite its plan to track it. Is that only because of the loonie's fall?
I suspect the answer is "yes".  There can be tracking error in a fund "despite its plan to track [the index]," but said error is usually small - much less than recent currency movements.

Cathy

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #215 on: May 18, 2015, 12:52:32 AM »
scrubbyfish, for more information on these currency topics, you might want to review this earlier thread where I (and other posters) answered similar questions from you: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/investor-alley/why-invest-in-canada-(a-k-a-what-am-i-missing)/msg554252/#msg554252

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #216 on: May 18, 2015, 12:56:53 AM »
Is there a way for me (in Canada) to get the effect of the second column vs the first?
Are you sure you want the second column? ;)

See bolded entries in the table below from the Quicken link:
Timeframe   TDB661    S&P 500    US Equity
1 Month           -3.91%   0.96%    -3.61%
3 Month           -0.45%   5.07%    0.53%
Year-to-Date    5.85%   1.92%    4.89%
1 Year            23.22%   12.98%   20.02%
3 Year            23.66%   16.73%   20.50%
5 Year            17.32%   14.33%   14.77%
10 Year             7.01%   8.32%     6.28%

Oh! Ha! Yes, I didn't look down...  Interesting...

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #217 on: May 18, 2015, 01:00:19 AM »
scrubbyfish, for more information on these currency topics, you might want to review this earlier thread where I (and other posters) answered similar questions from you: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/investor-alley/why-invest-in-canada-(a-k-a-what-am-i-missing)/msg554252/#msg554252

Yeah, as this particular piece seems to be circling back to that narrower one, I've been remembering and keeping in mind that conversation. It's not forgotten. But my brain sometimes only grasps things in this format (question, effort, new question, testing period, question), so sometimes I have to revert to this route.

Heckler

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #218 on: May 18, 2015, 01:19:26 AM »
I own XEF that  I bought last year for $24. It up 15.74% at $27.76.

My wife owns XEF she bought in the last two months for $27.87. It's down -0.38% at $27.76. 

So yes, return is entirely based on your individual purchase cost and time passed.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #219 on: May 18, 2015, 07:32:40 AM »
Wow, great example, thanks Heckler!!

smilla

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #220 on: May 18, 2015, 11:27:40 AM »
Scrubbyfish, it's a bit of bad luck that you invested right before a bit of a drop but keep in mind the big picture.

IIRC your equity allocation is divided equally between Can/US/Intl so you are well diversified.
You have minimized your fees.
You have an investment plan that is simple (but not always easy).
Now you need to let time and money do their work.
 
I'm not sure it's wise to compare your returns to other people's as there are so many variables. The main thing is to be confident in your plan and your fund choices and I see no reason why you shouldn't be. Don't second guess yourself.

I wish I could find it now but I once saw a graph that showed the difference between always unluckily investing at high points in the market, always luckily hitting low points and dollar cost averaging and iirc being unlucky every time was scarcely worse than DCA.  The point was that since you won't be unlucky every time it's much better to invest as soon as you have the money.


scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #221 on: May 21, 2015, 04:13:53 PM »
Thanks so much, smilla! I read this shortly after you posted, and was very comforted by it. I'm quite calm about it -disappointed, but calm and keeping the big picture in mind.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #222 on: May 21, 2015, 04:45:52 PM »
My portion in TDB661, which is supposed to track same, has lost $2000 in 60 days. Why?

Dudes (male and female)! Today it's "only" down $1,172.84. Whacky.

Again, I know not to worry about the ups and downs, but I'm very curious to learn what makes a starting point of $56,000 drop by $2000 then increase by $800, over a matter of days/weeks. Maybe tomorrow afternoon I will have $8,722,756.23.

forummm

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #223 on: May 21, 2015, 04:53:57 PM »
The market just moves up and down every day. Some days I lose 2 months salary. Other days I make 10 weeks salary. But it doesn't matter. It's really best not to look at it at all. Just keep investing automatically. The number will get very large over time.

arebelspy

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #224 on: May 21, 2015, 06:35:14 PM »
Yes, you need to stop checking your balance is so frequently. Figure out your AA, invest accordingly, and don't bother to check the balance. You'll end up with lots of money. :)
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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #225 on: May 21, 2015, 06:43:55 PM »
The market just moves up and down every day. Some days I lose 2 months salary. Other days I make 10 weeks salary. But it doesn't matter. It's really best not to look at it at all. Just keep investing automatically. The number will get very large over time.

+1...but if you wake up tomorrow with 8m, PM me and tell me your secret!

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #226 on: May 21, 2015, 10:52:14 PM »
Yes, you need to stop checking your balance is so frequently. Figure out your AA, invest accordingly, and don't bother to check the balance.

Well, I'm not trying to check it, lol. I'm just moving money in frequently and see the balances and up and down arrows every time I do :)   That $2000 drop caused me pause, left me wondering if I'd accidentally done something terribly wrong, put it in a totally different fund than I'd intended to.

Workinghard

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #227 on: May 22, 2015, 03:46:47 AM »
I like checking balances daily and looking at my phone app to see if the market is up or down when I'm at a red light.   It's conditioning me to get use to fluctuations and bothers me less and less as time goes on. Course it helps having reached our "number." This last year of working will pay for a newer vehicle, some trips coming up, and give us more of a cushion.

forummm

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #228 on: May 22, 2015, 06:39:18 AM »
Checking your account daily is dangerous if you're prone to worry about the value.

Checking your account daily while driving only adds to that danger :)

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #229 on: May 22, 2015, 06:42:30 AM »
Yes, you need to stop checking your balance is so frequently. Figure out your AA, invest accordingly, and don't bother to check the balance.

Well, I'm not trying to check it, lol. I'm just moving money in frequently and see the balances and up and down arrows every time I do :)   That $2000 drop caused me pause, left me wondering if I'd accidentally done something terribly wrong, put it in a totally different fund than I'd intended to.

I'm actually happy when the market goes down. That means stocks are on sale. When I buy, I'm buying much more than when they are expensive. I would much rather the market had been flat for the last 5 years, and then suddenly jumped up to where it is now. In that scenario I would have enough to FIRE today, vs having to work at least a few more years now.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #230 on: May 22, 2015, 09:09:06 AM »
I'm actually happy when the market goes down. That means stocks are on sale.

Yeah, noting this down and up made me realize that if I'd put the money in a few days before or a few days later, it would be a different scenario. It leaves me tempted to do a form of DCA with lump sums, but over just one week or month (not months or a year). It also shows me the value of getting any money in on as many dates as possible, i.e., Not saving up $56000 then allocating it, but putting in $300 the day it arrives, $800 the day it arrives, and so on.

forummm

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #231 on: May 22, 2015, 09:12:56 AM »
I'm actually happy when the market goes down. That means stocks are on sale.

Yeah, noting this down and up made me realize that if I'd put the money in a few days before or a few days later, it would be a different scenario. It leaves me tempted to do a form of DCA with lump sums, but over just one week or month (not months or a year). It also shows me the value of getting any money in on as many dates as possible, i.e., Not saving up $56000 then allocating it, but putting in $300 the day it arrives, $800 the day it arrives, and so on.

DCA is overrated. Just invest as soon as you have the money to invest. You can't predict what the market will do one day or the next. I buy automatically each time I get paid. I don't have to do anything.

arebelspy

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #232 on: May 22, 2015, 01:33:16 PM »
I'm actually happy when the market goes down. That means stocks are on sale.

Yeah, noting this down and up made me realize that if I'd put the money in a few days before or a few days later, it would be a different scenario. It leaves me tempted to do a form of DCA with lump sums, but over just one week or month (not months or a year). It also shows me the value of getting any money in on as many dates as possible, i.e., Not saving up $56000 then allocating it, but putting in $300 the day it arrives, $800 the day it arrives, and so on.

DCA is overrated.

Mathematically it is, but for someone worrying the way scrubby is right now, it may be worth it for the peace of mind of not regretting investing a day early or late or whatever.  :)
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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #233 on: May 22, 2015, 01:36:57 PM »
I'm actually happy when the market goes down. That means stocks are on sale.

Yeah, noting this down and up made me realize that if I'd put the money in a few days before or a few days later, it would be a different scenario. It leaves me tempted to do a form of DCA with lump sums, but over just one week or month (not months or a year). It also shows me the value of getting any money in on as many dates as possible, i.e., Not saving up $56000 then allocating it, but putting in $300 the day it arrives, $800 the day it arrives, and so on.

DCA is overrated. Just invest as soon as you have the money to invest. You can't predict what the market will do one day or the next. I buy automatically each time I get paid. I don't have to do anything.

Well... this is exactly DCA.

Your employer is just limiting when you can put your money into your investments by only paying you 1x or 2x per month instead of a lump sum at the beginning of the year (or end of the year, after the work has been completed).

forummm

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #234 on: May 22, 2015, 01:39:21 PM »
I'm actually happy when the market goes down. That means stocks are on sale.

Yeah, noting this down and up made me realize that if I'd put the money in a few days before or a few days later, it would be a different scenario. It leaves me tempted to do a form of DCA with lump sums, but over just one week or month (not months or a year). It also shows me the value of getting any money in on as many dates as possible, i.e., Not saving up $56000 then allocating it, but putting in $300 the day it arrives, $800 the day it arrives, and so on.

DCA is overrated. Just invest as soon as you have the money to invest. You can't predict what the market will do one day or the next. I buy automatically each time I get paid. I don't have to do anything.

Well... this is exactly DCA.

Your employer is just limiting when you can put your money into your investments by only paying you 1x or 2x per month instead of a lump sum at the beginning of the year (or end of the year, after the work has been completed).

Scrubby was talking about splitting funds they already had into even smaller chunks. I said just to put it all in whenever she got it.

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #235 on: May 22, 2015, 02:12:19 PM »
gotcha!

Scrubby, don't worry about fluctuations. As long as you are well diversified (index accounts) it will go back up long before you need it.

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #236 on: May 25, 2015, 03:05:25 PM »
Got stuck on a different investing thing, and heard you guys urging me to make a spreadsheet, so did: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/investor-alley/canada-closely-mimicking-eseries-%28rbc-td-nat%27l-bank%29/msg673032/#msg673032   Yay!

Next Question: How often to invest?

Related to the most recent conversation here, but more specific...

I came to MMM with a lump sum invested very poorly, spent ages preparing to move it, started this thread, dumped it all into smart things, watched it drop, watched it mellow. Okay.

Once we've invested our starting amounts, and if we are not bothering with DCA, how often do we buy? Right now, I have excess cash -in widely varying amounts- coming in 3-4x per month. Should I be making investment purchases each of those 3-4x per month? Or just 1x/mo or so? Based on what I just observed -value flying up and down from one day to the next- I think I should be doing my buying each of the 3-4x per month. On the other hand, that's a LOT of math (takes me a couple of hours per buying session), plus $10 per purchase.

eta: I often say, "Well, there is $3000 available to invest right now, but there's some more coming in five days, so I guess I'll wait for that to arrive then move it all." When it does, I say, "Oh, there is another amount coming shortly, so I'll just wait for that." Part of this is the weariness of transferring money, part is the horror I feel about doing math (for correct allocations/balance), and part is my effort to minimize transactions so there are fewer accounting errors at year end for taxes, etc.

Thoughts?
« Last Edit: May 25, 2015, 03:18:24 PM by scrubbyfish »

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #237 on: May 25, 2015, 03:57:58 PM »
I'd just do it once a month. Easy to remember, less hassle, and it shouldn't make a big difference in the long run.
Aren't you with TD or did you switch to something else? There shouldn't be a transaction fee.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #238 on: May 25, 2015, 04:15:46 PM »
I'd just do it once a month. Easy to remember, less hassle, and it shouldn't make a big difference in the long run.
Aren't you with TD or did you switch to something else? There shouldn't be a transaction fee.

Yeah, TD, but Vanguard ETFs = $10 per purchase.

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #239 on: May 25, 2015, 04:43:08 PM »
I'd just do it once a month. Easy to remember, less hassle, and it shouldn't make a big difference in the long run.
Aren't you with TD or did you switch to something else? There shouldn't be a transaction fee.

Yeah, TD, but Vanguard ETFs = $10 per purchase.
Not with Questrade, that is where I buy Vanguard ETF's without paying 10$ per purchase. I think Questrade is for canadians only, not sure. If it is, well I am pretty sure in the US there is an online trader website that doesn't charge for ETF purchases.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2015, 04:44:59 PM by fb132 »

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #240 on: May 25, 2015, 05:06:01 PM »
I'm in Canada, but decided on TD vs Questrade per learning curve. It's been really steep and complex as it is, so I let myself keep a couple of things lighter for me.

fb132

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #241 on: May 25, 2015, 05:13:59 PM »
I'm in Canada, but decided on TD vs Questrade per learning curve. It's been really steep and complex as it is, so I let myself keep a couple of things lighter for me.
I know how you feel, it took me 3 weeks to understand Questrade before going for it and investing in Vanguard ETF's, it takes alot more time to learn Questrade than TD, I give you that. But wether you chose TD or Vanguard ETF, the end result is almost the same, so you are still doing a good thing. I only wanted to point out Questrade, because it isn't entirely true to say "ETF's cost 10$ per purchase".
« Last Edit: May 25, 2015, 05:16:04 PM by fb132 »

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #242 on: May 25, 2015, 05:15:35 PM »
I know how you feel, it took me 3 weeks to understand Questrade before going for it and investing in Vanguard ETF's, it takes alot more time to learn Questrade than TD, I give you that. But wether you chose TD or Vanguard ETF, the end result is the same.

Yep :)   I don't mind the $10 fee if that's what it takes to get me investing at all, and it has. Whew.

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #243 on: May 25, 2015, 08:07:32 PM »
I would just invest whenever you have the money. However, if you can save $10 by waiting a few days, that's not terrible. But don't look at the values of your account or what the market did. Just keep shoveling money over there. In 10 years you'll be amazed at how big the balance is.

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #244 on: May 25, 2015, 08:30:38 PM »
I use to buy once a month but now, I buy once or twice a year in each account for an average buy of 10k$. The trick to lower trading fees is to get the "corresponding" index fund you need, when it get +/- 10k$, then you get rid of it and buy the ETF few days later. Read CCP about this, he is better than me!!

fb132

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #245 on: May 26, 2015, 04:58:53 AM »
I use to buy once a month but now, I buy once or twice a year in each account for an average buy of 10k$. The trick to lower trading fees is to get the "corresponding" index fund you need, when it get +/- 10k$, then you get rid of it and buy the ETF few days later. Read CCP about this, he is better than me!!
I thought CCP said to invest when you have a big lump-sump only if you pay 10$ in ETF purchases (like RBC Direct Investing), but if you are with Questrade, you can purchase ETF monthly (since buying ETF's are free) if you want unless I missed something.

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #246 on: May 26, 2015, 10:32:11 AM »
I guess what we're saying, then, is "it depends how much money and how much in fees and how much one can be bothered".

If I had $10 available to invest, it would make no sense to pay $10 to invest it, obviously. And paying $10 to invest $100 is an immediate loss of 10%. But $10 for $3000? I think worth it. (Does anyone think that's not?)

And I think spending 2 hours every week or 2 weeks might actually feel worth it to me. And I'll get faster at it every time, as I understand more.


Le Barbu

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #247 on: May 26, 2015, 11:38:30 AM »
In your 3,000$ example, you also got to know the timeframe. 10$/3,000$ may worth if you buy once a year. If we talk about 3k$ every 3 months, then I would wait for more. Between these buys, get the TD index funds for free (even with MERs, you will get ahead)

scrubbyfish

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #248 on: May 26, 2015, 03:26:15 PM »
Ah, good point, Le Barbu. As it happens, I can only buy ETFs for our RDSP accounts, and I make my contribution to those annually. The rest goes into the other index funds throughout the year, and are free to buy. So, that works out nicely in my case.

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Re: one (investing) question at a time
« Reply #249 on: May 27, 2015, 09:09:39 AM »
Ah, good point, Le Barbu. As it happens, I can only buy ETFs for our RDSP accounts, and I make my contribution to those annually. The rest goes into the other index funds throughout the year, and are free to buy. So, that works out nicely in my case.

Perfect then!

In my own situation, I trade once/year in each of my accounts. One is a 15k$/trade, another is 6k$/trade and the last one is 3k/trade. So, 3 trades to invest 24k$ for an average of 8k$/trade. Or 0.125%.

Keep up Scrubby!