Planning For The Future – What About Bond Yields?

Adjustments for Current Bond Yields An important consideration is that current interest rates are lower than the historical averages. The historical average return is not relevant for someone seeking to estimate future market returns from today’s starting point. The general problem with attempting to gain insights from the historical outcomes is that future market returns…

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What To Do When Markets Plummet – Investor Behavior Gap

Another concern is whether investors are disciplined enough to stay the course with the investment strategy in order to earn the underlying index market returns. Studies on retirement spending from investment portfolios typically assume that retirees are rational investors who rebalance right on schedule each year to their rather aggressive stock allocations. They never panic…

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Making Your Investments Work For You: Things To Consider

Inflation We must remove inflation so the numbers allow for a better understanding of purchasing power growth. Real returns will be less because they preserve the purchasing power of wealth over time. Providing the discussion in terms of real returns allows us to plan for the assumption that future spending will grow with inflation. Even…

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How Much Should We Depend On The Stock Market?

Simple analyses, which look to historical returns as estimates for what retirees should expect in the future, tend to provide an incomplete picture that may overstate the potential for stocks relative to other strategies. We will investigate some of the adjustments that should be made to historical returns to obtain a better idea about the…

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Inflation, Deflation, Confiscation & Devastation- The Four Horsemen Of Risk

Noted financial advisor and historian William Bernstein makes a compelling case for stocks in his e-book Deep Risk: How History Informs Portfolio Design. In the introduction, Bernstein begins by offering an operational definition of risk. Risk is the size of real capital loss times the duration of real capital loss. This gets at the idea…

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The Case for Stocks

The case for using an aggressive investment portfolio with a high stock allocation to fund retirement expenses rests on the idea that it will probably work. Stocks are expected to outperform bonds, and if and when that happens, a retiree will be able to spend more from their asset base in retirement. For example, in…

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Modern Portfolio Theory – Part Two

This article is part of a series; click here to read Part One. Efficient frontier diagrams do not actually show the asset allocations of portfolios on the efficient frontier, but this information is also available. Exhibit 1.3 provides an example of ten portfolios on the efficient frontier shown in Exhibit 1.2. These range from the…

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Modern Portfolio Theory

Before shifting into further discussion about whether these historical numbers provide the most appropriate assumptions for future market performance, it is worth understanding how to choose an asset allocation and put together an investment portfolio while assuming that these historical numbers are the right ones to use. The more basic point is that any assumptions…

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Historical Market Returns – Part Two

This article is part of a series; click here to read Part One. Moving to bonds, Morningstar data shows that since 1926, the average return from intermediate-term government bonds was 5.2 percent with a standard deviation of 5.6 percent. With the lower volatility, the compounded return is only slightly less at 5.1 percent. For long-term…

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