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Old 05-20-2017, 08:30 AM   #1461
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As I've noted and folks should have noticed, my portfolio is a small-cap and value-tilted portfolio with something like 50% of the equities classified as small- and mid-cap leaving just about 50% classified as large-caps.

Small-cap value funds did great in 2016 with returns for buy-and-hold investors of between about 25% and 32%. But in 2017, these SCV funds are doing very poorly. Here are the YTD returns from morningstar.com of some ticker symbols:

-0.18% VSIAX
-0.25% VBR
-2.67% IJS
-2.88% IWN
and compared to Vanguard Total Stock Market Index fund:
+6.68% VTSAX

So my portfolio has about 15% in the above SCV ETFs which has really hurt returns so far in 2017. Readers can see that I've made a bunch of trades in IJS, IWN, and VBR in 2017. I should've sold them all and bought DGS. But followers will see that I sold DGS. Ugh!

Another way to think of this is that 15% of the portfolio didn't get a potential 7% return which means the portfolio got a return reduced by 0.15 x 7% = 1.05% just because of the overweight to SCV.

But you know I would not be posting this unless my trading in these ETFs had outperformed all the negative numbers above. Doing 3% better than a -2.88% return when large-caps are up 7% is small consolation, but I'll take it along with the good returns of international funds so far in 2017.
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Old 06-02-2017, 09:53 AM   #1462
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With more big gains in the past week, it is time to rebalance by selling something as the portfolio has hit a high trigger point. I intend to sell the last of my IJS (small-cap value) because I'm actually overweight in US small-cap value despite its horrid return so far for 2017. The last couple of days has made it shine.

I intend to buy VCSH with the proceeds.

I'll post an update when I get back from lunch.
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Update: I submitted a limit order and prices have steadily deteriorated, so they are no where near the limit price I set. I doubt the order will get executed now and I don't want to sell at current prices, so unless something pops now, I'll hold through the weekend at least.
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Old 06-09-2017, 07:53 AM   #1463
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Last Friday, I tried to unload the remaining IJS and was not able to sell at the price I wanted. The price waned after my last posting through this week until yesterday and this morning when it went back up to where it was last Friday.

So this morning, I carried out my plan and sold all remaining shares of IJS and bought VCSH. My asset allocation plan is now back within the range that I want it be.

Next up: The FOMC meeting is next week where FFR is expected to be raised. Also some quarterly dividends will be paid by many of my ETFs, so I will have to manually reinvest those.
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Update: Ack! Sold too soon!
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Old 06-14-2017, 07:45 AM   #1464
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Later today the FOMC will announce its foregone decision on FFR. I did not expect bond index funds to jump this morning by about 0.4%. Since bond funds do not usually go up in one day by 0.4% or more, I am thinking of selling some shares before the announcement if they are still up in a few hours with the intent to buy them back later in the week.

Because I have itchy fingers, I am going bike riding to be away from the internet. I'll post an update when I get back after I take a shower.
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Old 06-14-2017, 09:12 AM   #1465
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Later today the FOMC will announce its foregone decision on FFR. I did not expect bond index funds to jump this morning by about 0.4%. Since bond funds do not usually go up in one by 0.4% or more, I am thinking of selling some shares before the announcement if they are still up in a few hours with the intent to buy them back later in the week.

Because I have itchy fingers, I am going bike riding to be away from the internet. I'll post an update when I get back after I take a shower.
247
Monthly CPI came in at -0.1, a big surprise.
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Old 06-14-2017, 09:13 AM   #1466
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Trades completed. I made the trades in 2 separate tax-advantaged accounts. In an IRA I sold VCSH and bought VSS with the money. So I was doubled-up in VSS+VEA while I took a shower...
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... I am thinking of selling some shares before the announcement if they are still up in a few hours with the intent to buy them back later in the week.

... I'll post an update when I get back after I take a shower.
I guess you really aren't a dirty market timer.
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Old 06-14-2017, 09:40 AM   #1467
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Alright, I'm clean and refreshed. I see now that AGG and BND are trading up more than 0.5%, so I've sold all my BND and will look to sell have sold all my AGG in another account. [Note: I still own lots of AGG / VBTLX / etc in other accounts.]

I intend to buy back AGG in the account I sold BND in (to avoid the TDAmeritrade 30-day restriction) and to buy back BND in the account I sold AGG in --- but either after they are 0.25% lower or within a week or so. Or maybe I will buy BIV instead.

Actually, in case there is some bouncing around this afternoon to a lower price, I'm submitting limit orders now to buy back at those lower prices. And in case AGG goes up more this afternoon, I am submitting a limit order to sell even more AGG at a higher price. AGG is selling now a few cents below where I just sold it.
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Old 06-14-2017, 12:41 PM   #1468
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So far, so good. It looks like I caught the high prices of the day for AGG and BND. They are down about 0.20% since then. Only a little bit more to go ....

Update: Bought BND and BIV after they had dropped 0.25% from where I sold things earlier today and they have gone up a few cents since. Double win!
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Old 06-16-2017, 06:01 PM   #1469
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It was a good week for market timing. Because of the intraday trading I don't think backtesting could've spotted the bond ETF trades in advance just from looking at closing prices. Also, one couldn't do it with mutual funds.

Here's the chart:

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Old 06-27-2017, 08:24 AM   #1470
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A few minutes ago I sold all the IWN that I had bought back on 5/17. I cannot give a good reason to do so. It was up since yesterday, but it has gone up even more since I sold it. Other small-cap value ETFs (IJS, VBR) were down when I sold it and so was the general market. I guess I was thinking that I would buy more total US stock market with the money in order to keep my asset allocation to stocks and US stocks about the same.

So with the money, I will buy more VTI if it drops more from here (it is down little bit so far today) and report back when that happens.
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Old 06-27-2017, 08:58 AM   #1471
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So I did buy some VTI (total US stock market), but I bought some more shares of the bond ETF BIV since it had dropped by almost 0.4%. I picked a number of shares that allowed me to round-up the total number of shares to the nearest thousand.

Does anybody else buy shares just to get to a nice round number?
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Old 06-27-2017, 10:36 AM   #1472
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[QUOTE=LOL!;1900722....

Does anybody else buy shares just to get to a nice round number?[/QUOTE]

Yep, but I wait and include the amount in a bigger purchase , today I did a 130 share buy instead of 100, just to round up to 500 even.
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Old 06-27-2017, 11:57 AM   #1473
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It's a habit of mine, but I always deal in round lots. Makes no sense, but habits die hard.

It does allow me to write contracts on all the shares when I want to though.
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Old 06-27-2017, 02:00 PM   #1474
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Yes, it is nice own a nice round number of shares, but ...

I have found that buying odd lots often gets a decent price because the broker has to be fair, but does not need to "publish" the order. This is particularly useful for buying something like DGS which does not trade a lot of shares and thus has a wider spread. A limit order for a round lot for DGS at halfway between the bid and ask prices will just sit and sit while a market order for an odd lot will execute right away around the halfway point or better --- at least at my brokers.

And today unfolds nicely. IWN will close lower than I sold it for, BIV will close above where I bought some shares. Even VTI is not too far below where I bought some shares. And in an odd twist, I sold on odd lot of VTI in another account just to reduce the number of holdings in that account earlier near its high of the day or about 0.8% higher than it will close at.

All this looks like it will help me gain on my benchmarks.
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Old 06-28-2017, 08:17 AM   #1475
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IWN is up 1% this morning and BIV has lost money. I would have been better off not making any of those trades yesterday.

Or I should have bought back IWN at the end of the day instead of buying VTI and BIV.
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Old 06-29-2017, 09:30 AM   #1476
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Wrote a bunch of out-of-the-money covered call options yesterday.

Last year, I made an extra 1% return doing that, and only on a few selected stocks+ETFs. So far this year, I have made 0.5%. It was more than enough to pay for my travel.

I am looking to do more call writing, now that the market appears to top out. Yes, I am a market timer, a chicken one though because an audacious timer would sell stocks and not do the chicken-feed covered call writing.
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Old 06-29-2017, 10:27 AM   #1477
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I used to do covered calls ages ago when I owned some individual stocks. I can say that my last for calls expired worthless, so I made money.

Have you written calls on ETFs? I only own ETFs now in my brokerage accounts, so I would have to explore how that would work. I expect the volatility would be less than a stock, so the premium would probably not be worth it.
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Old 06-30-2017, 01:27 PM   #1478
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I write calls on ETFs all the time. Yes, the premium is lower on ETFs, so I tend to do that only on sectors like bio, semiconductor, EM, etc..., which are more volatile and the premium is correspondingly higher.
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Old 07-06-2017, 12:34 PM   #1479
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I have been writing more out-of-the-money covered calls. Got about $6K worth of premium. If the market just treads water for the next two months, that's my money to keep, and I still have my stocks too. Not getting rich off this, but that helps pay for food (and electric bills!).

I may keep writing more calls. Have a lot more stocks to do this with.
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Old 07-07-2017, 08:22 AM   #1480
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I could use a little bit of that $6K premium now.

I wanted to do a little post-mortem on my last transactions while it looks like the outcome is now not as bad as it was a few days ago.

First, I would have been better off not selling IWN on 6/27 and not buying VTI and BIV with the proceeds.

Second, I would have been better off selling IWN on 7/3 after it rose 2% since I sold it.

Third, IWN (taking into account its dividend, too) has now dropped below where I sold it, so that's some consolation, but VTI and BIV have dropped even more from where I bought them.

The portfolio performance was ahead of all its benchmarks before these last trades and would still be ahead if they had not been made, but now it trails the top performing benchmark by about 0.15% and remains above all the others. The portfolio has less intermediate-term bonds and more short-term bonds than the benchmarks, so about the only way to get ahead is for bond funds to keep dropping.

This post is mostly to remind myself not to tinker and to be patient.
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