"I have found that the importance of having an investment philosophy—one that is robust and that you can stick with— cannot be overstated. David Booth The US stock market has delivered an average annual return of around 10% since 1926. But short-term results may vary, and in any given period stock returns can be positive, negative, or flat. When setting expectations, it's helpful to see the range of outcomes experienced by investors historically. For example, how often … [Read more...] about The Uncommon Average
The argument that increased usage of index funds may be distorting market prices hinges on the premise that indexing reduces the efficacy of price discovery. But should the rise of index funds be a cause of concern for investors? Over the last several years, index funds have received increased attention from investors and the financial media. Some have even made claims that the increased usage of index funds may be distorting market prices. For many, this argument hinges on the premise … [Read more...] about The Index Bogeyman
While the Dow and other indices are frequently interpreted as indicators of broader market performance, the stocks composing these indices may not be representative of an investor's total portfolio. A quick online search for "Dow rallies 500 points" yields a cascade of news stories with similar titles, as does a similar search for "Dow drops 500 points." These types of headlines may make little sense to some investors, given that a "point" for the Dow and what it means to an individual's … [Read more...] about Getting to the Point of a Point
Investment fads are nothing new. When selecting strategies for their portfolios, investors are often tempted to seek out the latest and greatest investment opportunities. Over the years, these approaches have sought to capitalize on developments such as the perceived relative strength of particular geographic regions, technological changes in the economy, or the popularity of different natural resources. But long-term investors should be aware that letting short-term trends influence their … [Read more...] about Déjà Vu All Over Again
After logging strong returns in 2017, global equity markets delivered negative returns in US dollar terms in 2018. Common news stories in 2018 included reports on global economic growth, corporate earnings, record low unemployment in the US, the implementation of Brexit, US trade wars with China and other countries, and a flattening US Treasury yield curve. Global equity markets delivered positive returns through September, followed by a decline in the fourth quarter, resulting in a -4.4% return … [Read more...] about 2018 Market Review
As 2019 approaches, and with US stocks outperforming non-US stocks in recent years, some investors have again turned their attention towards the role that global diversification plays in their portfolios. For the five-year period ending October 31, 2018, the S&P 500 Index had an annualized return of 11.34% while the MSCI World ex USA Index returned 1.86%, and the MSCI Emerging Markets Index returned 0.78%. As US stocks have outperformed international and emerging markets stocks over the last … [Read more...] about Why Should You Diversify?