Since I have started posting (after stalking the boards for a long time), I thought I should introduce myself. I am an Ohio boy in Kyoto. In all I have been here for 14 years. I am not on an expat package. I started teaching English in a conversation school factory and worked up from there.
My investing track record has not been great but is getting better. I started at a 300 year old Japanese full service broker which went under 3 months later. Then I went to Merrill Lynch. But they got their fanny spanked and pulled out of retail service in Japan after maybe 2 years. My wife then invested the money offshore with a British firm. We got pushed into some bad funds (and a couple of good ones) there but I really learned about fees. After a year, I got cold feet but the advisor held my hand so I wouldn’t bolt. They went out of business six months later. That was about six months ago. Floundering around, I read The Four Pillars and a couple of other books people recomended on this site.
Now I am pulling most of the money out of the underlying funds. I am in process of opening an account with Charles Schwab to buy mainly Vanguard Vipers. So you all may want to look out. These companies may soon be gone.*
Actually, we have been lucky. We weren’t saving any serious money and we got almost it all back. I am on a learning curve. I think I took my knocks and am stronger for it. I stabilized job wise last fall. We have bought an apartment. We got a 1.5% interest rate (just like telling everyone I meet that. I don’t know why). Now we are ratcheting up the savings and zooming towards early retirement.
One other thing is that I am losing my English so please bare with me
Nice to meet you all