Build Investment Asset Buffers to Protect Yourself from Market Volatility
Build Investment Asset Buffers to Protect Yourself from Market Volatility
You may be just as nervous as the next person is about investment risk. However, the coverage of your future expenses by your accumulated assets will determine whether you can actually manage, when risk really happens.
A previous article, “The Solution – ONLY follow financial strategies that are scientific, passive, diversified, savings focused, risk controlled, low cost, and tax efficient,” suggested that individuals are much better off with a well-considered financial viewpoint. A stable set of financial beliefs can help you to keep focused and on track throughout your life. This follow-up article discusses the need to build asset buffers to anticipate future turbulence in asset market values and personal income.
Securities markets have more often delivered good rather than bad returns, which makes them worth participating in, if you can tolerate the volatility.
However, sometimes the equity markets in particular can decline in a very nasty manner. You can never tell when this will happen or whether it will be quick or slow. Rates of subsequent recovery in equity market values are similarly unpredictable.
Therefore, one requirement of investing is to ensure that you can ride out these negative equity market vicissitudes without being forced to liquidate or sell in a panic. More substantial asset buffers and better knowledge of the projected coverage of your expenses by your less volatile cash and fixed income assets will help you to ride out these bad times.
How VeriPlan can help: VeriPlan projects the safety margin that your cash and fixed income assets may provide to cover your projected expenses. This feature compares your projected expenses against the projected value of your cash and shorter-term fixed income assets. It simulates the situation when, simultaneously, the equity markets decline significantly and you lose all earned and retirement income sources. However unlikely this may seem, it tells you how strong you boat could be.
Personal Financial Planning
- American Funds – Growth Fund of America – Class A Shares (AGTHX) collect a +2 Fund Authority Score (
The investment fund objective of American Funds' Growth Fund of America
With 4.4 million shareholder accounts, the Growth Fund of America (AGTHX) is the largest actively managed stock mutual fund in the United States. According to American Funds prospectus, the investment objective of the Growth Fund of America "is to provide you with growth of capital."
- What Is Investment Portfolio Diversification? (From the perspective of holding a well-diversified investment portfolio according to scientific investment principles, the objective of diversification is to minimize or eliminate ‘unsystematic risk’ or those risks that are not related to the price volatility of the overall securities markets.
When people speak of investment diversification, they may mean different things. Therefore, clear definitions are [...])
- The Lifetime Value You Have Lost by Paying Investment Sales Loads (VeriPlan can estimate the lost lifetime value of investment sales loads that you have already paid in the past
Your personal investment portfolio losses related to past investment sales load payments can and should be measured, when you evaluate the cost-efficiency of your investment strategy.
However, you cannot recapture any of the lost returns (past or future) [...])
- 10 Lower Cost S and P 500 Index Mutual Funds (10 Lower Cost S&P 500 Index Mutual Funds
Regular readers know that The Skilled Investor advocates a very boring, low cost, broad market, passive index investment strategy. Costs less. Gets the broad market return -- whatever that will be. Narrows the range of outcomes and therefore the risk to your long-term personal financial plan. Takes far [...])
- Factors Favoring Roth IRA and Roth 401k Plan Contributions (Factors that tend to favor Roth IRA and Roth 401k tax-advantaged plan contributions
In a recent article, "Traditional versus Roth tax-advantaged plan contributions," The Skilled Investor discussed why the average taxpayer would tend to benefit more by contributing to traditional rather than to tax-advantaged Roth IRA and Roth 401(k) retirement plans. This follow-up article in two-parts [...])
- Use Caution with Classical Investment Books (Use Caution with Classical Investment Books - A Tip from The Skilled Investor
Individual investors should exercise caution when applying the tactics of classical investment books to current markets. The more handcrafted, seat-of-the-pants, and individual actor approach to the securities markets in the pre-computer, pre-networking era has given way to different practices. What might have worked [...])
- Part 3 of the Never-Do List – What Not to Do with a Financial Advisor (
Part 3 of the The Never-Do List - 22 Good Ways to Avoid Financial Advisor and Investment Counselor Frauds and Scams
This article discusses things that you should "never do" with a financial planner or investment advisor, and it covers unsolicited advice, sales pressure, and account decision-making discretion.
You should never do certain things with a financial [...])
- American Funds – Washington Mutual Investors Fund – Class A Shares (AWSHX) acquire a +2 Fund Authority Score (Fund Authority Scores rate mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs) on the most important economic factors that influence individual investors' net long term diversified investment fund performance. The Skilled Investor developed the Fund Authority Score system to provide individual investors with concise and objective summaries of mutual funds and ETFs for comparisons within investment [...])
- When to Take Social Security Retirement Benefits (When to Take Social Security Retirement Benefits?
Concerning when to take Social Security retirement benefits, the Boston College Center for Retirement Research has some research in their publications section that addresses this subject. In particular, see "SHOULD WE RAISE SOCIAL SECURITY’S EARLIEST ELIGIBILITY AGE" by Alicia H. Munnell, Kevin B. Meme, Natalia A. Jivan, and Kevin [...])
- American Funds – Capital World Growth and Income Fund – Class A Shares (CWGIX) warrant a +2 Fund Authority Score (Fund Authority Scores rate mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs) on the most important economic factors that influence individual investors' net long term diversified investment fund performance. The Skilled Investor developed the Fund Authority Score system to provide individual investors with concise and objective summaries of mutual funds and ETFs for comparisons within investment [...])
- American Funds – Capital Income Builder Fund – Class A Shares (CAIBX) attain a +4 Fund Authority Score (Fund Authority Scores rate mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs) on the most important economic factors that influence individual investors' net long term diversified investment fund performance. The Skilled Investor developed the Fund Authority Score system to provide individual investors with concise and objective summaries of mutual funds and ETFs for comparisons within investment [...])
- Vantagepoint 500 Stock Index mutual fund Class II Shares (VPSKX) rate a +9 Fund Authority Score (Here is some really good news for you. The Skilled Investor has published an article about lower cost S&P 500 index mutual funds that you can read, entitled: Low Cost S&P 500 Index Mutual Funds. The Standard & Poors 500 stock index is the most common equity index fund benchmark in the U.S. The S [...])
- State Street Global Advisors S&P 500 Index Fund (SVSPX) wins the Best +10 Fund Authority Score (The table below in this article presents The Skilled Investor's Fund Authority Score and other information for the SSgA S & P 500 Index Fund (SVSPX). The Skilled Investor has also published an article about lower cost S&P 500 index mutual funds that you can read, which is entitled: Low Cost S&P 500 Index Mutual [...])
- Own Investment Mutual Funds and ETFs – Not Individual Securities (Own Investment Mutual Funds and ETFs - Not Individual Securities
Owning individual stock and bond securities is just a big waste of your valuable time and money
Individual investors tend to be terrible investment portfolio managers. Almost everyone can hire an index fund manager to do a much better job for far less time, money, risk, and [...])
- Choose Lower Mutual Fund and ETF Management Fees (Choose mutual funds and ETFs with MUCH LOWER investment management expenses
Investment fund management fees can only be justified by individual investors, if higher net returns more than compensate for these fees. Sadly, this is most often not the case with actively managed equity and bond mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). In addition, you have [...])
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