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Forbes Article: 60/40 Portfolio is dead (Comments)
Old 06-15-2016, 09:19 AM   #1
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Forbes Article: 60/40 Portfolio is dead (Comments)

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Just read a Forbes article stating investors should be more active because the 60/40 allocation is dead, and future growth of that allocation is below 3% per year. Appreciate your comments on this article. I do believe in dividends and writing options on the side.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:38 AM   #2
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I read several well regarded books on asset allocation, not to mention articles on that topic, when I was creating my own personal investment plans for the accumulation phase and for retirement. That was back in the early 2000's. My conclusion from all my inquiries and reading at that time told me a lot about the AA I needed in retirement for a conservative plan. I learned that for *me*, a retirement AA of 60/40 was dead and buried and the grass had grown over the gravesite, long, long before my 2009 retirement.

My post-retirement planned AA was initially 50/50, but shifted to 45/55 as retirement drew near.

Also, for *me* (being fairly conservative in my planning), honestly I never felt that an SWR over 3% would be acceptable. I read somewhere back around 2000 or 2002, that with roughly this AA and a WR of 3% one's money would last forever and I liked the sound of that. I don't think that's the case any more, though. Maybe 2.5%?

Anyway, I'm older now (68), and the chance that I would need a retirement lasting longer than 30 more years is pretty slim. Right now, I'm thinking that anywhere between 2%-3.5% would be perfectly OK for me from here on out.

I like to keep my withdrawals less than my dividends just for fun - - this is sort of a game that I play with myself. I have managed to do it every year so far except last year when I bought my house. This year, who knows. Dividends keep going down.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:47 AM   #3
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I also read the article, and he may be on to something, but you can't be sure. For safety, I agree that the old 4% WR is also a thing of the past, and we may have to go with 3% or less in the future. I am prepared for that.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:58 AM   #4
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Well, it seems that maybe he is proposing only 50% equities and not 60%, so no big difference there. He likes/prefers value and dividend paying equities (I do too - a lot of people do!).
He proposes "appropriate" alternative allocations instead of bonds. I don't disagree with some of those (real state, private equity, etc), but what he seems to ignore is RISK. There are very few things you can replace a treasury bond with unless you are prepared to take on vastly increased risk. Maybe that is his main point: those of us who need significant growth may need to be willing to take on more risk?
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:01 AM   #5
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... but what he seems to ignore is RISK.
That's what stood out to me as well. I'm surprised he didn't suggest buying Himalayan yak cheese futures.
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:05 AM   #6
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Predictions = noise (typical Forbes/MSM business section click bait). Thankfully, I landed on the last page of the "article" so I didn't waste any time out of my life reading the first two pages.

This"advice" is downright dangerous to most investors:

Quote:
Consider taking a more active approach to investing.

To the extent you invest in traditional stocks and bonds, don’t be a buy and hold index investor. Yes, low fees are great. But the fact that you paid Vanguard only 0.09% per year in management fees won’t really matter if you’re returns are still close to zero.

Instead, try a more active strategy, perhaps focusing on value or momentum. Or perhaps try a dividend focused strategy. With a dividend strategy, you can realize a cash return even if the market goes nowhere for years at a time.

Consider investing outside of the market.

If you’re willing to get your hands dirty, consider starting your own business or investing in a cash flowing rental property. Yes, there is more work involved, and there is the risk of failure. But there is also risk in trusting your savings to a fickle market when both stocks and bonds are both expensive by historical standards.
Active investors crash and burn, and only particular individuals have the temperament/personality to "start a business" or "invest in real estate". This "advice" is thrown out so casually like it's as easy to do any of these things as buying a pair of shoes. The best investors are the most conservative, thorough, and stick only to what they know (see Buffet/Charlie Munger's "too hard" pile concept). Perhaps returns will be lower going forward, but this in no way means taking on undue risk.

I'm too lazy to dig up the endless studies/research showing the above Forbes "suggestions" are just plain wrong for most investors (aside from being based on faulty forecasting and subject to behavioral bias). Google it.
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:13 AM   #7
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That's what stood out to me as well. I'm surprised he didn't suggest buying Himalayan yak cheese futures.
Apparently, the author of the article decided to omit the obvious.
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:35 AM   #8
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Intern at Yahoo Finance suggests value over growth investing .... http://finance.yahoo.com/news/baml-9...FX6t0A4VNEDN04
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Old 06-15-2016, 11:02 AM   #9
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IMHO the earlier article on his own website the author of this piece provides is much more interesting than the Forbes piece:

The 60/40 Portfolio Is Dead. Here Is Its Replacement - Sizemore Insights

I especially appreciate the comparison of his approach with Harvard's endowment. On the other hand, claiming all of these assets are non-correlated immediately brings to mind what happened during the '08 crash, when my supposedly ultra-sophisticated, thoroughly backtested portfolio of "non-correlated" assets (essentially Bob Clyatt's RIP portfolio) all tanked in unison to the tune or ~-23%.

That said, I think he's right about stock valuations being high and bonds going nowhere, but rather than manage something anywhere near as complex and costly as what he proposes I'd rather put it all in Wellesley and live on 2-3% of whatever it returns.
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Old 06-15-2016, 06:19 PM   #10
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Predictions = noise (typical Forbes/MSM business section click bait). Thankfully, I landed on the last page of the "article" so I didn't waste any time out of my life reading the first two pages.

This"advice" is downright dangerous to most investors:



Active investors crash and burn, and only particular individuals have the temperament/personality to "start a business" or "invest in real estate". This "advice" is thrown out so casually like it's as easy to do any of these things as buying a pair of shoes. The best investors are the most conservative, thorough, and stick only to what they know (see Buffet/Charlie Munger's "too hard" pile concept). Perhaps returns will be lower going forward, but this in no way means taking on undue risk.

I'm too lazy to dig up the endless studies/research showing the above Forbes "suggestions" are just plain wrong for most investors (aside from being based on faulty forecasting and subject to behavioral bias). Google it.


An "investing decision" most likely to endanger my retirement would be "starting a business". With my ability, I could just see my precious stash of saved bills suddenly developing wings and flying away for good.....


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Old 06-15-2016, 06:36 PM   #11
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His suggestions are un-tested. Yale and Harvard use alternatives, yes. But I do not have $25B investable as does Yale. I can't directly emulate what they do.

I reckon Mr. Sizemore will help me find these unique opportunities, and help me find a home for my money. Nice of him to volunteer.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:15 PM   #12
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Now... lemme see... should I listen to this quack Sizemore or Warren Buffett

Quote:
My advice to the trustee couldn't be more simple: Put 10% of the cash in short-term government bonds and 90% in a very low-cost S&P 500 index fund. (I suggest Vanguard's.) I believe the trust's long-term results from this policy will be superior to those attained by most investors — whether pension funds, institutions or individuals — who employ high-fee managers.
If 90/10 is good enough for Warren, then 60/40 is good enough for me.

Besides.... the the S&P 500 index is trouncing some hedge fund managers in a relatively famous Warren Buffett bet and the hedge funds are just the sort of thing that this clown Sizemore advocates investing in. See Buffett's Bet with the Hedge Funds: Year Eight (BRK-A, BRK-B) | Investopedia

Also, Sizemore's premise of low returns is all wet... Vanguard's projected in December 2015 that the projected 10 year return for a 60//40 portfolio would be 6.2% nominal (4.3% real) and that is consistent with other credible projections I have seen and are much higher than Sizemore's 3.6% nominal return for a 60/40 portfolio.

Sizemore expresses an opinion with no support at all... gotta love the first amendment.... any moron can have an opinion.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:41 PM   #13
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Forbes Welcome

Just read a Forbes article stating investors should be more active because the 60/40 allocation is dead, and future growth of that allocation is below 3% per year. Appreciate your comments on this article. I do believe in dividends and writing options on the side.
1966 - 2016. Let me pinch myself. Yep both I and the portfolio are still alive.

What part of Mr Bogle's 'Stay The Course'. Or 'Hurry Up Just Stand There' does Forbes not understand?



heh heh heh - the 1966 - 1982 flat was a tad chewy. So where some of the dips.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:55 PM   #14
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Considering I do not have any bonds, I liked and agree with the article. Rental income has been my salvation and ticket to FIRE.

I am doing more indexed ETF dividend plays. I am bulking up my IVV and more recently am focusing on DVY, having purchased ~$90K in indexed equities this year alone. TTM Dividend yield is 2.25% for IVV and 3.16% for DVY. Paltry, but pretty good in relative terms.


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This final point is really my specialty. To the extent I can, I am eliminating traditional bonds from the portfolios of most of my clients and replacing them with non-correlated (or at least minimally-correlated) alternative investments. A standard 60/40 stock / bond portfolio might instead become a 50/50 dividend stocks / alternative investments portfolio.
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:01 PM   #15
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I am very skeptical of anyone who thinks they know what "the right" asset allocation is. It depends on (among other things) what you have, what you are trying to achieve, and what allows you to sleep well at night. The notion that there is a one-size-fits-all asset allocation seems silly to me.
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Old 06-16-2016, 03:04 AM   #16
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Let's see:
  • He recommends 50% of your portfolio in alternative investments, and his firm just happens to specialize in them. Sizemore Capital "Specializing in income portfolios and alternative investments for high net worth individuals and families" http://sizemorecapital.com
  • And when asked whether his AA will outperform a traditional AA, he 'doesn't know, no one does.'
Sounds like more, you can't do this without our help (chasing returns), it's too complicated - another self-serving article sales pitch. Pass...
Quote:
Consider a truly alternative asset allocation.

This final point is really my specialty. To the extent I can, I am eliminating traditional bonds from the portfolios of most of my clients and replacing them with non-correlated (or at least minimally-correlated) alternative investments. A standard 60/40 stock / bond portfolio might instead become a 50/50 dividend stocks / alternative investments portfolio.

“Alternative investments” is a generic term that can mean just about anything. In practice, for me it has meant a combination of long/short strategies, options writing strategies, absolute return hedge funds, and liquid alternative portfolios. I’ve even incorporated a liquid alternative robo advisor into the mix.

Will a non-traditional portfolio like this outperform over time?

Frankly, I don’t know. No one does. We’ve never seen a market like today’s.

But to me, it’s the only move that makes sense. Taking the traditional path is a virtual guarantee of disappointment. Incorporating alternatives into the portfolio at least give us the potential for solid returns.
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Old 06-16-2016, 03:08 AM   #17
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I am very skeptical of anyone who thinks they know what "the right" asset allocation is.
Determining the optimum asset allocation is simple. . . retrospectively.
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Old 06-16-2016, 09:24 AM   #18
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See also this on Jim Cramer (yet another "authoritative" huckster's hype peeled back revealing a track record of bad advice):

Mad Money. Questionable Ethics.

Quote:
Cramer apologists don’t argue with the data (because they can’t), but often claim he is “just an entertainer.” The implication is that no one should take his stock-picking advice seriously.
The same could be said for the author of this Forbes article (as well s Jane Bryant Quinn's latest fluff piece about planning to celebrate your 101st birthday). Read MSM business rubbish with care. Better yet, don't read it all.
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Old 06-16-2016, 09:29 AM   #19
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Now... lemme see... should I listen to this quack Sizemore or Warren Buffett


Buffet of course

I guess I got in the wrong career

Looking back, seem like I should have gone for a CFP/CFA (trivial compared with what I had to go through) and shot from the hip all day, except for Wednesdays and Fridays when I'd be playing golf
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Old 06-16-2016, 09:32 AM   #20
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Let's see:
  • He recommends 50% of your portfolio in alternative investments, and his firm just happens to specialize in them. Sizemore Capital "Specializing in income portfolios and alternative investments for high net worth individuals and families" Sizemore Capital
  • And when asked whether his AA will outperform a traditional AA, he 'doesn't know, no one does.'
Sounds like more, you can't do this without our help (chasing returns), it's too complicated - another self-serving article sales pitch. Pass...
Yep. I am mad that I spent the 180 seconds reading it when I could have been more productive watching this:



Bottom line: Diversify and stay off of Forbes.com
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