Author Topic: Returns so far this year, yay  (Read 11047 times)

KBecks2

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Returns so far this year, yay
« on: March 29, 2015, 07:30:41 AM »
My port is up 5.23%. Ytd,  s&p 500 is up .1%.

I am beating the market this year via individual stocks and options.
Thrilled.  I started getting serious about stock investing in summer 2013 and have been learning every day.

Dodge

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2015, 10:45:00 AM »
My port is up 5.23%. Ytd,  s&p 500 is up .1%.

I am beating the market this year via individual stocks and options.
Thrilled.  I started getting serious about stock investing in summer 2013 and have been learning every day.

That's great!  But make sure you're using the appropriate benchmark.  If you're using individual stocks and options, it's unlikely that the S&P500 (the biggest, and usually slowest moving stocks on the market) is the appropriate benchmark.  Either on a holding level, or a risk level.

Would any of these Vanguard funds fit better?

Health-Care - VGHCX - 10.49% YTD
Mid-Cap Growth Index - VMGMX - 5.44% YTD
Small-Cap Growth Index - VSGAX - 5.38% YTD
Total World Stock Index - VTWSX - 2.91% YTD
Total Stock Market Index - VTSAX - 1.32% YTD

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2015, 11:27:17 AM »
That's a good point, my port of individual stocks doesn't really match an index, it has some large cap and some medium / small cap, so it's a mix.  My main goal is to make money, moreso than beat certain indexes, and I'm happy with the returns so far this year.  Hopefully they will stick and grow further!

I have a little bit of Vanguard mid-cap and small cap index in an annuity fund (that cannot be invested in individual stocks, it's good to know they are doing well too).

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2015, 11:48:54 AM »
OK I had to go back and check, of my 26 individual stocks, 14 of them are in the S&P 500, so it's about half and half.
But my investing benchmark should be me against my goals, vs me against an index.  Right now I'm happy with how it's going.

TheAnonOne

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2015, 11:25:46 AM »
In before your individual stocks are down and the 500 is up 5% for the year....

While the stock-market in general is a sort of gamble, individual stocks are simply a riskier form of that.


I am glad you are currently beating the 500 but it only counts as long as you keep it up.

GGNoob

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2015, 11:29:23 AM »
If you actively trade and pay commissions, make sure to include that in your total return.

surfhb

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2015, 01:41:30 PM »
That's wonderful news !   

The bad news for you is that a retarded, blind monkey with a dart board could beat the street in current market.   :)     

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2015, 05:11:44 PM »
In before your individual stocks are down and the 500 is up 5% for the year....

While the stock-market in general is a sort of gamble, individual stocks are simply a riskier form of that.


I am glad you are currently beating the 500 but it only counts as long as you keep it up.

I don't understand your first sentence.   Right now I have a very good head start in beating the market for the year.  I will take that!

My returns include commissions paid. 

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2015, 05:18:35 PM »
That's wonderful news !   

The bad news for you is that a retarded, blind monkey with a dart board could beat the street in current market.   :)   

Excuse me?   The market is flat YTD and I am up >5%.  Hey, celebrate!    I don't care at all what monkeys could or could not do, I care about what I am getting done for my family.

The advisory service I work with is up 7.5% YTD.  I am under them but I am not in all the same positions.  I also know a person who is up 15.6% for the year.   

I try to hang out with great investors.

tj

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2015, 05:26:10 PM »
Your progress over 1 quarter of a 30+ year investment time horizon is irrelevant.

surfhb

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2015, 05:28:46 PM »
That's wonderful news !   

The bad news for you is that a retarded, blind monkey with a dart board could beat the street in current market.   :)   

Excuse me?   The market is flat YTD and I am up >5%.  Hey, celebrate!    I don't care at all what monkeys could or could not do, I care about what I am getting done for my family.

The advisory service I work with is up 7.5% YTD.  I am under them but I am not in all the same positions.  I also know a person who is up 15.6% for the year.   

I try to hang out with great investors.

You missed my point.     See post above :)

rpr

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2015, 05:29:26 PM »
But my investing benchmark should be me against my goals, vs me against an index.  Right now I'm happy with how it's going.

Good job. Then why compare with the S&P500 index?

My port is up 5.23%. Ytd,  s&p 500 is up .1%.

I am beating the market this year via individual stocks and options.

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2015, 05:33:29 PM »
Your progress over 1 quarter of a 30+ year investment time horizon is irrelevant.

Yeah, but it sure is nice to see our NW number steadily creeping up.

See you in 30 years then.

Indexer

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2015, 05:39:29 PM »
Congratulations!  You are outperforming the SP500 over a period of less than 1 quarter... 


During a time period where small/mid caps and international stocks are all outperforming large cap US stocks.  I'm also outperforming the SP500.... using the Vanguard Total Stock Index and Vanguard Total International Stock Index.

forummm

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2015, 06:36:51 PM »
That's wonderful news !   

The bad news for you is that a retarded, blind monkey with a dart board could beat the street in current market.   :)   

Excuse me?   The market is flat YTD and I am up >5%.  Hey, celebrate!    I don't care at all what monkeys could or could not do, I care about what I am getting done for my family.

The advisory service I work with is up 7.5% YTD.  I am under them but I am not in all the same positions.  I also know a person who is up 15.6% for the year.   

I try to hang out with great investors.

If your advisory service were so good, would it share their secrets with you for pocket change? Or would they keep them secret and make insane money just for them?

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2015, 10:33:38 PM »
Congratulations!  You are outperforming the SP500 over a period of less than 1 quarter... 


During a time period where small/mid caps and international stocks are all outperforming large cap US stocks.  I'm also outperforming the SP500.... using the Vanguard Total Stock Index and Vanguard Total International Stock Index.

I'm glad we're both doing well! 

KBecks2

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2015, 10:35:28 PM »

If your advisory service were so good, would it share their secrets with you for pocket change? Or would they keep them secret and make insane money just for them?

They can do both.  They can use their knowledge for their own portfolios, and they can share their knowledge for a fee.  It's both/and, not either/or.  Why not have it all?   

I subscribe to a good service that I'm happy with.  I'm not saying I'm a great investor or that I have the best system, I'm just happy with what I'm doing and having fun learning about investing. 

forummm

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2015, 11:10:25 AM »

If your advisory service were so good, would it share their secrets with you for pocket change? Or would they keep them secret and make insane money just for them?

They can do both.  They can use their knowledge for their own portfolios, and they can share their knowledge for a fee.  It's both/and, not either/or.  Why not have it all?   

I subscribe to a good service that I'm happy with.  I'm not saying I'm a great investor or that I have the best system, I'm just happy with what I'm doing and having fun learning about investing.

By telling you and the thousands of other people who subscribe, they reduce or eliminate the gains they could make from the strategies. Unless they are front-running you, in which case your actions are making them even richer.

Wolf359

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2015, 11:30:08 AM »
I've seen this movie before.  Actually, I've been in it.  There were sequels.  It took repeated beatings, but I eventually got the message. 

It is possible to beat the market over short time frames, but in the end, a well-diversified, low-cost index fund is a lot cheaper , a lot easier, and a lot less risky.

I did pretty well in tech stocks in the 90's.  I don't know who your advisory service is, but my advisor/newsletter service was "the Motley Fool."  They were from AOL Message Boards and graduated to their own website.  We all walked into a buzzsaw together.  90% declines.  My last survivor (Cisco) took 14 years to recover.  Much of my portfolio never recovered (bankruptcy).  Motley Fool is still around, and a little more conservative now (they no longer pooh-pooh indexes). But their discussion boards are a shadow of what they were in the 90's. And I no longer do IPOs or even individual stocks.

The reference to the blindfolded monkey wasn't an insult.  It was a quote from "A Random Walk On Wall Street."  The question was whether or not successful stock picks are due to luck or skill.  The blindfolded monkey obviously has no skill, so any success is due to luck.  In a bull market, random selections will beat the market.  (There have been multiple experiments confirming this.  Some of them involved actual monkeys.  The monkey portfolios beat 80% of professional Wall Street money managers.)

The caution is what happens when the bull market ends.  If you were invested from 2007-2009, then you're good to go.  You are likely to know what you're doing.  If all your investing experience is since mid 2009, then be very careful.  You've only seen a rising market. 

As an experiment, keep some portion of your portfolio in a Vanguard Balanced fund, or the Total Stock Market Index fund.  A single purchase provides diversification (you're buying several thousand stocks in one transaction).  Then, over time, see how your individual stock picks fares against that TSM index.

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2015, 11:35:57 AM »

I did pretty well in tech stocks in the 90's.  I don't know who your advisory service is, but my advisor/newsletter service was "the Motley Fool."  They were from AOL Message Boards and graduated to their own website.  We all walked into a buzzsaw together.  90% declines.  My last survivor (Cisco) took 14 years to recover.  Much of my portfolio never recovered (bankruptcy).  Motley Fool is still around, and a little more conservative now (they no longer pooh-pooh indexes). But their discussion boards are a shadow of what they were in the 90's. And I no longer do IPOs or even individual stocks.


Ha I had the same experience. Although by the late 90's I put 95% of the stock investments in the S&P 500 index, I did have 5% in these tech stocks favored by Motley Fool and they were destroyed.

forummm

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2015, 11:39:55 AM »

I did pretty well in tech stocks in the 90's.  I don't know who your advisory service is, but my advisor/newsletter service was "the Motley Fool."  They were from AOL Message Boards and graduated to their own website.  We all walked into a buzzsaw together.  90% declines.  My last survivor (Cisco) took 14 years to recover.  Much of my portfolio never recovered (bankruptcy).  Motley Fool is still around, and a little more conservative now (they no longer pooh-pooh indexes). But their discussion boards are a shadow of what they were in the 90's. And I no longer do IPOs or even individual stocks.


Ha I had the same experience. Although by the late 90's I put 95% of the stock investments in the S&P 500 index, I did have 5% in these tech stocks favored by Motley Fool and they were destroyed.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nY9iO2L0e2U

waltworks

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2015, 11:45:57 AM »
Check in in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years. Notice how there aren't any people checking in after those time periods with their awesome stock picking?

Yeah.

-W

boarder42

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #22 on: March 31, 2015, 11:46:59 AM »
I've seen this movie before.  Actually, I've been in it.  There were sequels.  It took repeated beatings, but I eventually got the message. 

It is possible to beat the market over short time frames, but in the end, a well-diversified, low-cost index fund is a lot cheaper , a lot easier, and a lot less risky.

I did pretty well in tech stocks in the 90's.  I don't know who your advisory service is, but my advisor/newsletter service was "the Motley Fool."  They were from AOL Message Boards and graduated to their own website.  We all walked into a buzzsaw together.  90% declines.  My last survivor (Cisco) took 14 years to recover.  Much of my portfolio never recovered (bankruptcy).  Motley Fool is still around, and a little more conservative now (they no longer pooh-pooh indexes). But their discussion boards are a shadow of what they were in the 90's. And I no longer do IPOs or even individual stocks.

The reference to the blindfolded monkey wasn't an insult.  It was a quote from "A Random Walk On Wall Street."  The question was whether or not successful stock picks are due to luck or skill.  The blindfolded monkey obviously has no skill, so any success is due to luck.  In a bull market, random selections will beat the market.  (There have been multiple experiments confirming this.  Some of them involved actual monkeys.  The monkey portfolios beat 80% of professional Wall Street money managers.)

The caution is what happens when the bull market ends.  If you were invested from 2007-2009, then you're good to go.  You are likely to know what you're doing.  If all your investing experience is since mid 2009, then be very careful.  You've only seen a rising market. 

As an experiment, keep some portion of your portfolio in a Vanguard Balanced fund, or the Total Stock Market Index fund.  A single purchase provides diversification (you're buying several thousand stocks in one transaction).  Then, over time, see how your individual stock picks fares against that TSM index.

Yep this is it to a T... the sooner the OP realizes they are in all likelihood wasting time money and resources the better off they will be.  I started trading 18 years ago.  took me 17 years and finding this site to realize i was a moron trying to pick individual stocks.  now i'm up around 3-4% this year on a mix of Vanguard funds...

OP yeah you can share your stoke but there are few here who will agree with how you got there.  You got there in a high risk way.  compared to the investing ideas followed here and by many other great investors

Warren Buffett himself - arguably the greatest investor ever - said the normal investor should just put their money in a low cost index fund. 

forummm

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #23 on: March 31, 2015, 12:42:10 PM »
I've seen this movie before.  Actually, I've been in it.  There were sequels.  It took repeated beatings, but I eventually got the message. 

It is possible to beat the market over short time frames, but in the end, a well-diversified, low-cost index fund is a lot cheaper , a lot easier, and a lot less risky.

I did pretty well in tech stocks in the 90's.  I don't know who your advisory service is, but my advisor/newsletter service was "the Motley Fool."  They were from AOL Message Boards and graduated to their own website.  We all walked into a buzzsaw together.  90% declines.  My last survivor (Cisco) took 14 years to recover.  Much of my portfolio never recovered (bankruptcy).  Motley Fool is still around, and a little more conservative now (they no longer pooh-pooh indexes). But their discussion boards are a shadow of what they were in the 90's. And I no longer do IPOs or even individual stocks.

The reference to the blindfolded monkey wasn't an insult.  It was a quote from "A Random Walk On Wall Street."  The question was whether or not successful stock picks are due to luck or skill.  The blindfolded monkey obviously has no skill, so any success is due to luck.  In a bull market, random selections will beat the market.  (There have been multiple experiments confirming this.  Some of them involved actual monkeys.  The monkey portfolios beat 80% of professional Wall Street money managers.)

The caution is what happens when the bull market ends.  If you were invested from 2007-2009, then you're good to go.  You are likely to know what you're doing.  If all your investing experience is since mid 2009, then be very careful.  You've only seen a rising market. 

As an experiment, keep some portion of your portfolio in a Vanguard Balanced fund, or the Total Stock Market Index fund.  A single purchase provides diversification (you're buying several thousand stocks in one transaction).  Then, over time, see how your individual stock picks fares against that TSM index.

Yep this is it to a T... the sooner the OP realizes they are in all likelihood wasting time money and resources the better off they will be.  I started trading 18 years ago.  took me 17 years and finding this site to realize i was a moron trying to pick individual stocks.  now i'm up around 3-4% this year on a mix of Vanguard funds...

OP yeah you can share your stoke but there are few here who will agree with how you got there.  You got there in a high risk way.  compared to the investing ideas followed here and by many other great investors

Warren Buffett himself - arguably the greatest investor ever - said the normal investor should just put their money in a low cost index fund.

Even Buffett is basically matching the S&P500 lately. He had to change his metric from book value to market performance because book value wasn't doing so well anymore.

neil

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #24 on: March 31, 2015, 01:44:36 PM »
(There have been multiple experiments confirming this.  Some of them involved actual monkeys.  The monkey portfolios beat 80% of professional Wall Street money managers.)

Did they factor in the cost of bananas?

Dodge

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #25 on: March 31, 2015, 02:20:43 PM »

If your advisory service were so good, would it share their secrets with you for pocket change? Or would they keep them secret and make insane money just for them?

They can do both.  They can use their knowledge for their own portfolios, and they can share their knowledge for a fee.  It's both/and, not either/or.  Why not have it all?   

I subscribe to a good service that I'm happy with.  I'm not saying I'm a great investor or that I have the best system, I'm just happy with what I'm doing and having fun learning about investing.

By telling you and the thousands of other people who subscribe, they reduce or eliminate the gains they could make from the strategies. Unless they are front-running you, in which case your actions are making them even richer.

Correct.  This is pretty well documented.  A Random Walk Down Wall Street has a great example of this.  Stocks used to rise every year, due to people practicing tax avoidance amongst other things, in the first week of Jan.  Once this phenomenon starting getting some press, more people tried to get in on the action, and so prices started rising the last week of December instead.  After a few years, the press started saying, "The January bump was detected...in the days before Thanksgiving (third week of November)."

There are many other stories of millions/billions being made from individuals finding inefficiencies in how stock options are priced...etc.  Since the strategy was kept secret, they were able to amass almost unlimited riches from taking advantage of those who didn't have that knowledge.  This is a common theme in the book.

Either they're lying, ignorant, or stupid.  This is the question you have to ask yourself, if you found a billion dollar market inefficiency, would you ride it for all it's worth?  Or would you sell it...for $15 a month?

Wolf359

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #26 on: March 31, 2015, 03:06:25 PM »
Link to a more recent monkey study from 2012.  This one had 100 simulated monkeys.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/rickferri/2012/12/20/any-monkey-can-beat-the-market/

There's an alternative to my suggestion for buying an index fund.  Go back to the first time you invested in individual stocks.  Look up the price for Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSAX) on that day, and calculate what it would be worth now if you put the same amount of money there.  How'd you do?  Beat it? Congratulations!

Every year compare against that benchmark and see how you did. 

When people are saying to buy an index fund, that's one of the three they usually mean (Boglehead 3-fund portfolio).  It consists of Total Stock Market (VTSAX), Total International Stock Market (VTIAX), and a Total Bond Index fund (VBTLX).  You adjust the ratios of stocks to bonds depending on your risk tolerance.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2015, 04:00:38 PM by Wolf359 »

The Beacon

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #27 on: April 01, 2015, 07:17:51 AM »
My port is up 5.23%. Ytd,  s&p 500 is up .1%.

I am beating the market this year via individual stocks and options.
Thrilled.  I started getting serious about stock investing in summer 2013 and have been learning every day.

I hope it does not give you a false sense of "I am a great investor".  If you just started in 2013, you have not seen anything real yet.  Other posters are dead right about short term beating the market, including that retarded and blind monkey..  I am not trying to discourage you. Just stay alert all the time.

forummm

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #28 on: April 01, 2015, 08:16:05 AM »
Link to a more recent monkey study from 2012.  This one had 100 simulated monkeys.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/rickferri/2012/12/20/any-monkey-can-beat-the-market/

There's an alternative to my suggestion for buying an index fund.  Go back to the first time you invested in individual stocks.  Look up the price for Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSAX) on that day, and calculate what it would be worth now if you put the same amount of money there.  How'd you do?  Beat it? Congratulations!

Every year compare against that benchmark and see how you did. 

When people are saying to buy an index fund, that's one of the three they usually mean (Boglehead 3-fund portfolio).  It consists of Total Stock Market (VTSAX), Total International Stock Market (VTIAX), and a Total Bond Index fund (VBTLX).  You adjust the ratios of stocks to bonds depending on your risk tolerance.

If comparing to VTSAX, you'd need to add back in dividends as well to get the total return. Morningstar can do the total return function for you.

Wolf359

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #29 on: April 01, 2015, 08:53:42 PM »
The original Monkeydex made it into the Guiness Book of World Records. http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/world-records/most-successful-chimpanzee-on-wall-street

If you stay invested in individual stocks, I suggest that you put a similar amount or at least half of that amount into a total bond index fund. This will cut your risk if the market does tank. Make sure that you don't risk any amounts that you can't afford to lose.

I know I sound conservative and stodgy, but it was kind of a painful lesson for me.

brooklynmoney

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #30 on: April 05, 2015, 10:44:46 AM »
Be very careful with leverage (options) you can end up upside down rally fast on them and face a nasty margin call. In sure you area aware of that since you have some experience but like others are saying its a different game in a bear market.

Hey It's Me

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #31 on: April 05, 2015, 11:23:40 AM »
You may not agree with his investment choice, but let's step back the nastiness just a bit. We're not in a cult for index funds here. If you disagree with the investment, state it and move on. At this point, I think we've all heard how risky individual stocks are.

dividendman

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #32 on: April 05, 2015, 12:20:46 PM »
When people are saying to buy an index fund, that's one of the three they usually mean (Boglehead 3-fund portfolio).  It consists of Total Stock Market (VTSAX), Total International Stock Market (VTIAX), and a Total Bond Index fund (VBTLX).  You adjust the ratios of stocks to bonds depending on your risk tolerance.

Yeah, I have pretty much this with 50% VTI, 30% VEU and 20% BND... I'm also "beating" the S&P 500 YTD. In fact, my Spartan S&P 500 fund I use in my 401k (since there is nothing else good) is beating the S&P 500 due to the bi-weekly contributions (dollar cost averaging) since the index has been bouncing up and down.

My Own Advisor

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #33 on: April 08, 2015, 04:49:05 PM »
Check in in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years. Notice how there aren't any people checking in after those time periods with their awesome stock picking?

Yeah.

-W

Good point.

Over last 5 years I've averaged just north of 9% for CDN funds and close to 15% for U.S. funds.  Happy to take that.

Dodge

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #34 on: April 08, 2015, 05:30:46 PM »
Check in in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years. Notice how there aren't any people checking in after those time periods with their awesome stock picking?

Yeah.

-W

Good point.

Over last 5 years I've averaged just north of 9% for CDN funds and close to 15% for U.S. funds.  Happy to take that.

Happy that your hard work didn't pay off?


FIPurpose

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #35 on: April 08, 2015, 05:42:04 PM »
My 401k's asset allocation is

35% small cap
30% large cap
20% International (bounced back about 7% this year so far)
15% Total Bond

And I have around a 4% return so far. Hmm 80% of the return with basically none of the risk. I'll take it.

My Own Advisor

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Re: Returns so far this year, yay
« Reply #36 on: April 08, 2015, 05:54:10 PM »
Note the word averaged :)

I didn't work hard at all, most of it was indexed.