The Taxes You May Be Paying on Your Investments

Depending on what you invest in, this may be a year where you both incur a loss of portfolio value and owe capital gains taxes. This is particularly true if you hold actively managed mutual funds in a taxable account. Even if you don’t hold mutual funds in a taxable account, the new tax law…

 

November AAII Asset Allocation Survey: Cash Exposure Rises to a 33-Month High

Individual investors’ exposure to cash rose to its highest level in nearly three years last month. The November AAII Asset Allocation Survey also shows an increase in fixed-income exposure and a drop in equity allocations. Stock and stock fund allocations fell 4.9 percentage points to 64.6%. Equity allocations were last lower in July 2016 (64.1%)….

 

How We Define Risk

The potential of losing money by investing in the stock market has become front and center over the past several weeks. The decline in the S&P 500 index and the bigger drops in other indexes and stocks has drawn attention. It has also led to the usual chatter about what the downside volatility means and…

 

September AAII Asset Allocation Survey: Four-Month High for Exposure to Equities

Individual investors’ exposure to equities reached a four-month high last month. The September AAII Asset Allocation Survey also shows declines in fixed-income and cash allocations. Stock and stock fund allocations rose 1.4 percentage points to 69.9%. This is the highest level since May 2018 (70.0%). September was the 66th consecutive month with equity allocations above…

 

Helpful Steps My Late Father-in-Law Took

Special note: This commentary originally ran in March 2017. I received more feedback about it than any other Investor Update column I’ve written over the past eight years. Since many of you found it helpful and I’m out of the office this week, I decided to republish it. My father-in-law passed last week. Les was…

 

August AAII Asset Allocation Survey: Stocks and Cash Allocations Increase

Individual investors’ fixed-income allocations declined compared to last month, according to the August AAII Asset Allocation Survey. While fixed-income allocations decreased, equity and cash allocations increased. Stock and stock fund allocations increased by 0.2 percentage points to 68.5%. While the overall stock allocation increased, it’s worth noting that stock fund allocations increased 0.9 percentage points,…

 

Seeking More Than One Factor Can Boost Returns

One of the current trends within the investment industry is to focus on factors. Also referred to by the monikers “smart beta” and “strategic beta,” factor investing involves buying stocks with certain, quantifiable characteristics. Factors include low valuation, small size, price momentum and many others. There has also been a proliferation of factor exchange-traded funds…

 

July AAII Asset Allocation Survey: Only Slight Changes

Individual investors’ allocations changed just slightly last month, according to the July AAII Asset Allocation Survey. Equity allocations decreased modestly, while fixed-income and cash allocations were marginally higher. Stock and stock fund allocations declined by 0.3 percentage points to 68.3%. Nonetheless, equity allocations remained above their historical average of 61.0% for the 64th consecutive month….