Sector Watch: Spotlight on Healthcare

The Healthcare and Biotechnology Industries present interesting investment opportunities for long-term investors.

How healthy is your portfolio? Diversifying your investments means more than just owning a lot of different securities. It’s a matter of owning securities that don’t all move together when markets fluctuate. So it helps to know what’s going on with the different market sectors. And right now the healthcare sector is one that has… Read More

Investments in Tax-Advantaged Accounts

Open an IRA, Roth IRA, or 401(k) investment account to take advantage of taxable account benefits.

Tax-advantaged accounts, such as IRAs and 401(k) plans, provide a great way to save for retirement. And if your only investments are in tax-advantaged accounts, then your primary focus should be on diversifying appropriately for your specific goals and risk tolerance. However, if you have assets in both non-tax-advantaged accounts as well as tax-advantaged accounts,… Read More

Investors Leading a Low Cost Revolution

Investors are leading a low cost investing revolution by demanding more from their investment brokerage.

Shopping around can save you money at the grocery store, the car dealership, and perhaps most importantly, in your investment portfolio. More investors than ever realize that one of the keys to a successful investment experience is managing costs. Need evidence? Mutual fund expense ratios—the annual charges paid to cover management fees as well as… Read More

Factoring Sequence Risk into Retirement Planning

Be sure to factor sequence risk into retirement planning.

When building your retirement portfolio, investing in a routine, systematic way can ensure that you purchase assets at random prices over time. So long as the market moves higher in the long run, any temporary declines, or even major corrections, will provide you with the chance to buy assets on sale. The same cannot be… Read More

Smart-Beta ETFs: Offering Headway or Hype?

Are Smart-Beta ETFs here to stay in investor's investment portfolios? Time will tell with these ETFs.

We have written in the past about new trends in the ETF marketplace and one of those trends is the emerging popularity of “smart-beta ETFs.” Smart-beta ETFs weight holdings by factors other than market cap—factors such as dividends or earnings—in an attempt to produce superior long-term results. According to the July, 2015 issue of ETF… Read More

Analyzing ETF and Mutual Fund Options for Your Investment Portfolio

Analyzing mutual funds and ETFs for your investment portfolio.

Sorting through your list of 401(k) options or looking at ads for mutual funds or exchange-traded funds (ETFs), you may feel overwhelmed by all the choices. But knowing how to approach basic fund analysis can make the universe of fund options a little less daunting to navigate. Let’s say you hear about a broad market… Read More

5 Ways to Improve Your Cash Flow and Invest More

There are multiple ways to increase your cash flow to invest more.

For some people, deciding how to invest is the hard part. But for others, finding extra money to put toward investments is even harder. You know investing is important, and you know the more consistently you do it, the better off you’ll be over time. Luckily, there are steps you can take to make that… Read More

Are Equal-Weight ETFs Here to Stay?

Are Equal-Weight ETFs here to stay?

Given the growing number and popularity of ETFs—and given their reputation as a low-cost tool for diversification—it’s important to understand how these investments track the indexes they represent. You may have an ETF that invests in the S&P 500, the Nasdaq 100, or the Russell 2000. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re sufficiently diversified in… Read More

Better Choices for Investors Help Put the Squeeze on Mutual Fund Fees

Mutual fund fees appear to be on the decline in recent years

With all the talk about how fees can negatively impact investment returns, particularly over the long run, it’s nice to see the new research showing that mutual fund fees have started to come down. According to a recent article in Morningstar magazine (March, 2015), the average investor in open-ended mutual funds paid 0.71% in expenses… Read More

ETF Expense Ratios: Their Impact on Long-Term Performance

ETF Expense Ratio

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are commonly recognized as a low-cost way to achieve a diversified portfolio. That makes sense: because ETFs are passively managed, they don’t incur the research and analysis expenses borne by actively managed mutual funds. It’s important to keep in mind, though, that not all ETFs cost the same. In fact, some charge… Read More