Beating the market using mutual funds isn’t easy. The hope of finding fund managers who steadily beat their benchmarks may seem like a worthwhile venture, but the only people who seem to earn steady profits from active mutual fund strategies are companies selling products. A persistent “performance gap” exists between investor returns and the returns of the funds they invest in.
I love you man, but you’re wrong! Legionary Fidelity Magellan fund manager Peter Lynch wrote “buy what you know” in his classic book, One Up on Wall Street: How to use what you already know to make money in the market. The basic principle is simple: you’re more likely to be successful in the market if you buy what you’re familiar with. Peter Lynch was wrong; or at least he wasn’t quite right.
I’m an index fund investor, but I don’t invest in S&P 500 index funds. It’s not the type of index I want in my portfolio, unless I’m in a pinch. Here’s why. The S&P 500 is arguably the most important stock market index on the planet. It represents the free-float value of 500 major corporations [...]
I’m a diehard index fund fan. I’ve written books on index funds, lectured on index funds, co-authored an award-winning paper on portfolios of index funds, and Forbes even named me “The Indexer” when I began writing for them several years ago. The problem with being “The Indexer” is that I don’t invest in all index funds. Truth be told, my portfolio is a combination of funds that follow indexes, quantitative funds that don’t follow indexes and actively managed funds. I don’t even consider following an index as being paramount in portfolio management as long as you’re capturing the risk premiums you’re seeking in a low-cost and efficient manner.
I tilt. Do you tilt? It’s OK to tilt. Many people tilt. I’m not talking about posture or politics – I’m talking about portfolio design. A portfolio “tilt” is industry slang for an investment strategy that overweighs a particular investment style. An example would be tilting to small-cap stocks or value stocks that have historically [...]