November 25, 2015

Heading into the Final Stretch

November doesn't end until Monday night, but we've got less than 12 hours of trading left before the markets open for the final month of 2015. It's been a volatile (though not that volatile) year which in the end hasn't left us up or down much from where we started. However, you and I have had some good successes. All in all, I'd say we have plenty to be thankful for this Thanksgiving eve. Read More »

November 2015 PDF

Many Tricks, but More Treats

As bad as August and September were for stocks, October was a treat, with the S&P 500 index gaining 8.3% and the Dow up 8.5%. Total Stock Market Index gained 7.8%, its best monthly gain since October 2011's 11.5% rise. Total International Stock Index is off 1.0%, and Total Bond Market Index is up 1.0%. But for all the ups and downs, Total Stock Market has only ground out a 1.8% gain for the year to date. This year could end up much like 2011, with little to show for all the day-to-day action.

In any case, investing is hard, and the notion that you can find your way through the morass with a simple online questionnaire is ludicrous. In this month's issue, I'll show you the problems with the quizzes and robo-advice you'll find on and similar sites. Also this month, Jeff and I have a full-blown look at Vanguard's foreign and global funds. Please do yourself a favor and read it carefully before you take Vanguard's recommendation to allocate as much as 40% to 50% of your equity portfolio to foreign shares. Plus, we've got a closer look at Global ex-U.S. Real Estate and Short-Term Inflation-Protected Securities Index, both of which have been rather disappointing so far. Meanwhile, as many of you know, it's time for both October Hot Hands and Tech Winter. Do these two momentum strategies warrant a change in our portfolios this year? Find out in the issue. Read More »

October 19, 2015

Vanguard's Gift To Money Fund Shareholders: $112 Million and Counting

Big news for Vanguard money market fund shareholders: Vanguard has now explicitly said that its money market funds (meaning shareholders) will not have to pay back the more than $112 million in fees that it has waived over the past five-plus years. In the just-released annual report for its three taxable money funds, Vanguard has added language that says, '… the fund is not obligated to repay this [fee waiver] back to Vanguard.' The language clarifies that Vanguard won't try to claw back millions in fees, something that other mutual fund complexes may be forced to emulate. Read More »

Most Recent Forum Threads
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Re: Moving to Cash

JWL39 (11-28-2015) wrote: Excellent question, Scott Read More »


Re: Moving to Cash

teresi (11-28-2015) wrote: Who is forecasting a coming downturn? What is their track record over the last 20+ years? Scott Read More »


Re: Moving to Cash

mf102 (11-28-2015) wrote: Not Law stole my question.... Just set you asset asset allocation such that you have enough emergency money to last you if/when a big correction should happen along.... if you can not sleep because of worry about what you currently hold then by all means cut back on your... Read More »

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"America's leading expert on investing in Vanguard funds"

Daniel P. Wiener is editor of The Independent Adviser for Vanguard Investors, a monthly newsletter that keeps abreast of recent developments at Vanguard, and the annual FFSA Independent Guide to the Vanguard Funds. Through his newsletter and guide book, Dan helps tens of thousands of Vanguard investors choose wisely among more than 100 Vanguard mutual funds. The Adviser is a five-time winner of the Newsletter Publishers Foundation's Editorial Excellence Award. View More »

Vanguard Funds Correlation
What's This?
Model Portfolio Performance
Models October 2015
Growth 6.7% 2.5%
Conservative Growth 6.3% 2.2%
Income 5.3% 2.7%
Growth Index 6.5% 1.3%
The average
Vanguard investor
4.9% 0.9%
Past Performance »