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  • Market Timing Report: 10-20% Correction Due To Extreme Sentiment And Leverage [View article]
    Wasn't it Warren Buffet who said (paraphrasing): How do you become a millionaire in 2 easy steps? Step 1 -- Make a billion dollars. Step 2 -- Buy airline stocks.
    Oct 1, 2014. 08:59 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bill Gross PIMCO Exit Creates Unprecedented Value In CEFs [View article] has the discount/premium to NAV. According to that website, PCN had a positive premium at the start of the day larger than 6%. Yesterday the premium dropped below 1%.
    Sep 27, 2014. 09:15 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Retirees Please Don't Index, You Deserve Better Than Average [View article]
    "Over 85% or more specifically 47 out of the 55 Dividend Aristocrats outperformed the S&P 500 since 1996"

    This sounds like survivorship bias.

    This analysis would only be valid if it involved buying the Dividend Aristocrat list AS IT EXISTED back in 1996, then every time a company dropped off the list or got added to it, buying or selling the corresponding stock in that portfolio.
    Jun 8, 2014. 07:07 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Dividends Matter: A Review Of Recent Research [View article]
    Thanks Larry -- really appreciate it, and I really enjoyed your financial planning book. I'm looking forward to the upcoming "Swedroe Portfolio" book as well!
    Mar 5, 2014. 09:23 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Dividends Matter: A Review Of Recent Research [View article]
    Wow, what an amazing comments thread. This is A+ reading. Larry -- I just finished your book, "The Only Guide to the Right Financial Plan". You may just have a convert in terms of re-thinking stock picking vs. passive factor-based strategies. How do I learn more about the factor models, and which MF's apply them best?
    Mar 4, 2014. 09:14 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Big Five: Which Would You Be Willing To Own If They Closed The Market For 20 Years? [View article]
    dynazor -- Merry Christmas to you too.

    FWIW, I actually read the article and it was a good thought experiment to go through my list of holdings and ask what are characteristics of a sustainably great company. Good article.
    Dec 19, 2013. 10:29 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Do You Mean I Can't Beat The Market? [View article]
    Larry, reading your article and your comments ... you make a lot of sense and you clearly not only know your stuff but you also have the experience to go with it.

    But I can't get over the nagging thought that something is wrong here. I found myself nodding my head when reading Todd Renfro's comment. The indexing world seems ... just ... very complex. And seems like it would consume much more of my time to learn all the investing theory that you're talking about ... vs. sticking to the basics and investing slowly/wisely in "Graham and Doddsville".

    For me personally, I know I can keep my fees to nearly 0% while doing individual stock selection ... so automatically that puts me ahead of where I would be if I paid a money manager to do the stock selection (at least from a fee perspective). I also know I can select high-quality, fairly priced, low risk/volatility stocks and I can stick with them for a long time.

    I'm highly confident that my strategy will get me where I want to go... and quite honestly, wading into the index mutual fund world and trying to learn all the "factors" that need to be weighted and counter-weighted just seems very complicated and I seem to be much more likely to go astray with that approach.

    You are a full-time money professional ... and from a certain perspective you are an "index picker" who helps clients pick the indexes/factors that will give them the best risk-adjusted results.

    I'm not a full-time money professional, and I don't want to give any of my money to full-time money professionals... so why shouldn't I just buy good quality companies and compound the results over time? The risk-adjusted return on that style is exactly what I want, so why look further?

    If I can offer an analogy ... it's like processed foods vs. whole foods. I know that I can buy processed foods and read complex dietary labels to get the right amount of nutrition. (Then again, every couple months a new study will come out telling me to eat more of this, less of that, etc.) But, isn't it a lot simpler to just stop by the side of the road and buy some good ole' fresh fruits and veggies, take them home, chop them up, and have them for dinner? With the latter strategy, I KNOW that I'm going to be healthy and I know what I'm putting in my body. With the former, I'm just crossing my fingers that all the scientific theory behind those dietary labels is correct and isn't going to change next week. (Of course ... it WILL change next week ... and it seems that the investing theories will also keep changing.) Eating whole foods puts me closer to the action, and I can control my success better that way.
    Dec 10, 2013. 09:59 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Intel: Apple's A7 Chip Reveals Dangerous Trend [View article]
    familymisc -- There is a huge difference between saying that the commenters "say the author is wrong" vs. that they are "trying to trivialize" the author. The former suggests they simply disagree on a rational basis. The latter is insulting to them and suggests that they are not being completely honest in their disagreement.

    Keep it friendly, man. There is no reason to insult people here.
    Oct 13, 2013. 11:57 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Growth Investing Needs Some Loving Too! [View article]
    B&H -- I agree this is a good way to either generate some income on your cash or pick up shares at a small discount to current market value.

    Keep in mind that for many people (including me), this strategy would carry a heavy load in terms of trading costs. That problem goes away if you're trading in larger #'s of contracts, but for me that wouldn't be feasible.
    Aug 24, 2013. 09:29 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Disaster Scenario For Treasury Bonds [View article]
    "But, we know that rates will rise at some point."

    How exactly do we know that? (Other than they've been trending lower for decades and that trend can't continue forever...)
    Jul 29, 2013. 10:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A High Income, Lower Risk CEF Portfolio For Retirees [View article]
    Some CEF's (e.g. the ones that sell covered calls) are designed so that most of their distributions are classified by the IRS as ROC. That's intentional, for tax purposes. (That's why they sometimes label themselves tax-managed or tax-advantaged.) At some point in the future you'll have a large taxable capital gain in the fund ... so, it's a way of deferring taxes into the future.

    If you look at the NAV performance for these funds, you can see clearly whether the ROC is "destructive" (i.e. diminishing the net asset value of the fund). Destructive ROC is certainly something to be avoided.
    Jul 24, 2013. 12:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A High Income, Lower Risk CEF Portfolio For Retirees [View article]
    Does volatility = risk? I think of risk as "what are the odds I'll take a significant capital loss as a result of this investment?". Seems like volatility doesn't necessarily answer that question?
    Jul 24, 2013. 12:39 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Your 401-K In All The Right Places? [View article]
    Hi Bill, thanks for the article -- but I do disagree for my own 401k style. I'm satisfied with mid-range returns and the stability of having a mix of different asset classes. I'm not swinging for the fences with my 401k, and I can't predict when a particular asset class will see a trend reversal. In the meantime, I'm happy if my 401k posts an average return of about 7% across a variety of market conditions.

    (With my taxable accounts, it's a different story. I use a more active strategy -- nearly 100% individual equities, with a mix of income, growth, and dividend growth, which I monitor closely.)

    One huge caveat with the 401k is that I believe it's important to re-balance when asset classes run in different directions for a while. This effectively enables you to increase your stock exposure when bonds have recently outperformed ... and vice versa when stocks have done well. It always "feels" like the wrong thing to do, but that's the point ... it cuts out the emotions.

    Also, I could certainly be wrong, but I don't believe a train is heading for bonds -- there is simply not yet a big enough catalyst to drive rates significantly higher. Rates have been in a downtrend for 30+ years ... and I don't see any reason at present why it should reverse (at least not in a big way, or not quickly enough to severely damage a conservatively managed bond portfolio).

    I use Pimco funds for my bond component, and it doesn't bother me a bit to see a drop in NAV. The beauty of bond investing is that a NAV drop is accompanied by an interest rate increase, so your next round of invested dollars gets a higher rate. You win either way, as long as the interest rate increase isn't so fast and violent that it wipes out your capital. But if that happens, there's a consolation prize... the stock component is usually more than compensating in that environment.
    Jul 23, 2013. 09:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Equity CEFs: Top And Bottom Fund Performers Through July 12 [View article]
    Hi Doug, I recently discovered your articles on seeking alpha ..... and .... WOW .... my understanding of CEF's has skyrocketed as I went back through many of your older articles.

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

    Bought some NIE and ETB today thanks to your insights. (Also bought PML... happy to be able to buy it at a discount to NAV finally.)
    Jul 16, 2013. 04:27 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Annaly Capital: Down And Out Or Just Getting Started? [View article]
    I'm not an expert here -- but based on previous articles on SA, I believe mREIT's enjoy the most benefit when the interest rate environment is "steady state" and makes no major moves one way or the other. Part of this (I think) is the way they juggle short and long durations which is too costly to re-shuffle as the rates change.
    Jun 25, 2013. 09:46 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment