Financial Advice for Retirement, Social Security, IRAs and Estate Planning

Bob's Blog on Retirement & Beyond

A Danger of Index Investing

April 28, 2017

A reason many people invest in index funds is to reduce some risks. They don’t want the risks that their manager is too heavily invested in a stock that goes bad, for example. But there are special risks of index investing. One of those risks is due to changes in the index or how it […]

Why We Pick the Wrong Fund Managers

April 28, 2017

Maybe the reason most investment managers underperform the indexes is that investors, both individual and institutional investors, do a poor job of selecting managers. That’s the thesis of this blog post from Ben Hunt of Salient Investors. He says that most investment decisions are made by engaging in data mining first and them developing a […]

A Subprime Auto Loan Warning

April 27, 2017

In last week’s Bob’s Journal I talked about the potential dangers in the auto loan market, especially for subprime auto loans. This week Bloomberg reported that two major banks are scaling back the subprime auto loans they’ll make. They’re increasing lending standards. At the same time, they’re helping raise cash for other subprime auto loan […]

Stocks at 1997 Levels?

April 27, 2017

You’ve probably seen a number of reports indicating that U.S. stock indexes have valuations above or near historic highs. Here’s an alternate view. The Leuthold Group uses six measures to value U.S. stocks. In aggregate these measures show that stock valuations are around the levels of 1997. That could mean the current rally has about […]

Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums Rise Again

April 27, 2017

This article reviews the latest survey of the market. It finds that premiums are rising (no surprise) and that more and more of those over age 50 aren’t purchasing because they believe the premiums are too high. But this tells only part of the picture. Many people are buying the hybrid annuities or life insurance […]

Asset Returns in Review

April 26, 2017

How have the different investment asset classes done this year, and since the election? Bespoke Investment Group has a table showing total returns of ETFs representing different financial assets and asset classes. Most assets, other than commodities, are up, but there’s a wide dispersion of returns. And trends have changed at different times, so the […]

Best and Worst Cities for Successful Aging

April 26, 2017

The Milken Institute’s rankings of localities is different from others directed at retirees. MI ranks areas based on successful aging. Unlike the others, it looks at a wide range of data that costs a lot to gather and process. It doesn’t focus on weather and activities, though those can be factors. A key distinction of […]

Best Places to Retire

April 26, 2017

Most people don’t move after they retire. But if you’re thinking of moving and can go anywhere, consider this list of best places to retire from It includes the home of one of my alma maters, Clemson, South Carolina. Unlike most such lists, it doesn’t rank the locations. Instead, it lists the editors’ top […]

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