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International ETF choice and % in portfolio
Old 11-09-2020, 02:51 PM   #1
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International ETF choice and % in portfolio

What is the ONE international ETF in your portfolio and % of allocation in your total portfolio? We have quite a bit domestic ETF and would like to diversify a bit more.
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Old 11-09-2020, 04:47 PM   #2
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What is the ONE international ETF in your portfolio and % of allocation in your total portfolio? We have quite a bit domestic ETF and would like to diversify a bit more.
Any of the total international market, low fee funds will do. Vanguard is always the first place to start looking. We don't have a fund like you want because we hold VTWAX, which is worldwide with no country or sector bias. Currently that means about 45% international but it varies as markets wax and wane.

For your allocation, here is a good paper: Vanguard "Global equity investing:The benefits of diversification and sizing your allocation" https://www.vanguard.com/pdf/ISGGEB.pdf

and here is a good (and short) video by one of the top investment gurus: Dr. Kenneth French on International: https://famafrench.dimensional.com/v...home-bias.aspx
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Old 11-09-2020, 07:04 PM   #3
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We hold VTIAX, and it is about 5% of the portfolio (with the entire portfolio roughly 65/30/5). We are underweighted for international equities, which we recognize is a problem. We are slowly trying to bump it up annually via rebalancing. I’m also somewhat of a homebody/“invest in what you know” kind of guy. I have no idea what the market is like in Malaysia, for example, so holding a piece of it never really concerned me. But from a risk diversification point of view, we have ended up with a US-dominated portfolio which, again, isn’t ideal.
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Old 11-09-2020, 07:55 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by OldShooter View Post
Any of the total international market, low fee funds will do. Vanguard is always the first place to start looking. We don't have a fund like you want because we hold VTWAX, which is worldwide with no country or sector bias. Currently that means about 45% international but it varies as markets wax and wane.

For your allocation, here is a good paper: Vanguard "Global equity investing:The benefits of diversification and sizing your allocation" https://www.vanguard.com/pdf/ISGGEB.pdf

and here is a good (and short) video by one of the top investment gurus: Dr. Kenneth French on International: https://famafrench.dimensional.com/v...home-bias.aspx

Seems from the paper that the sweet spot is 20-60% international as part of your equity mix. You donít get much more benefit in terms of volatility from anything in this range. That offers about -5% volatility. Does the other graph show an increase in returns too for a portfolio of all ex-US portfolio.
Certainly makes the case for maybe a 15-20% allocation if it lowers variance and increases returns.

Iíve always been of the mindset that the big cap names have enough diversification since they are international but maybe a little international funds might be a way forward. Will think more about this.
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Old 11-09-2020, 08:06 PM   #5
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We donít invest directly in international, with the exception of one ADR Chinese stock NIO. No ETFs or funds. We also feel many American companies are heavily invested overseas to cover us.
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Old 11-09-2020, 09:11 PM   #6
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We have most of our Intl in IHDG--1,3 &5 yr total returns of 8.20, 6.70, and 8.33%. Compare to Vanguard Total Intl (VXUS) returns 3.68, 2.01 and 6.09%.
If you want Vanguard, VIGI also beats VXUS--10.5, 7.07, but not around long enuf for 5 yr results. VEA which is limited to Developed Mkt but 1 & 3 yr well behind VIGI, and 5 yr total ret only 5.27%
Our international share is 7%, 40% domestic, rest in bonds and ST
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Old 11-09-2020, 11:51 PM   #7
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I have many, just because of the way I've accumulated them, and I try never to sell.

But I prefer VXUS. Roughly 20% of my stock allocation.
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Old 11-10-2020, 12:03 AM   #8
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I prefer VXUS.

I have very low foreign allocation, probably 2->3% Looking to increase it to 10% slowly.
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Old 11-10-2020, 06:13 AM   #9
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A Fido customer here, so we hold FZILX, FSGGX and IXUS.

There are more than one due to tax loss harvesting over the years.
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Old 11-10-2020, 06:25 AM   #10
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A Fido customer here, so we hold FZILX, FSGGX and IXUS.

There are more than one due to tax loss harvesting over the years.
That has been the main advantage to international funds lately, tax loss harvesting. I harvested 30,000 in losses this year alone. I would be fine with not having that advantage!!!
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Old 11-10-2020, 07:17 AM   #11
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What is the ONE international ETF in your portfolio and % of allocation in your total portfolio?
That's an "interesting" way of phrasing the question. Sounds like we must have one, and only one, international ETF.

Anyway, I used to hold VTIAX, and tried to keep it at about 35-40% of my equities. Sold it off earlier this year for tax loss harvesting, and because the amount of dividends had pushed me to the brink of the ACA cliff last year.
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Old 11-10-2020, 10:28 AM   #12
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... Iíve always been of the mindset that the big cap names have enough diversification since they are international ...
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... We also feel many American companies are heavily invested overseas to cover us.
@Prague, responses like this are very common in these international threads. Remember though, that the majority of world commerce is done by non-US companies. Among the stocks people are missing with a US only portfolio are: Astrazeneca, Nestlť, BP, Toyota, Volkswagen, Cemex, AB Inbev, ArcelorMittal, etc. None of the three biggest auto manufacturers is domiciled in the US. Even good old Medtronic is domiciled in Ireland. Not to say these are good or bad investments today, but they are typical of the many companies of worldwide importance that are not domiciled in the US. And that list is without looking at the world's second biggest economy, China, at all.

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That's an "interesting" way of phrasing the question. Sounds like we must have one, and only one, international ETF. ...
I dunno. Makes sense to me. Any of several broad-based international index funds will do the deed and owning more than one is needless redundancy -- they all own the same stuff.

(One important reason to talk broad-based index with internationals is that China is classed as an "emerging market," and hence is not included in quasi-international indices like the EAFE.)
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Old 11-10-2020, 11:11 AM   #13
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It just sounded funny the way it was worded, almost like an interrogation.
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Old 11-10-2020, 11:27 AM   #14
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It just sounded funny the way it was worded, almost like an interrogation.
Not meant to be interrogation, but as @OldShooter mentioned, recognizing that folks could have multiple international ETFs in their portfolio and many of them could be duplicative in some sense, so trying to get info on the most important one that they (would) have if they want to keep it simple.
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Old 11-15-2020, 02:57 PM   #15
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I have 0% International ETF % in my portfolio. I don't prefer to add this risk to my portfolio. I'm happy without it.
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Old 11-15-2020, 03:03 PM   #16
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We donít invest directly in international, with the exception of one ADR Chinese stock NIO. No ETFs or funds. We also feel many American companies are heavily invested overseas to cover us.
The only problem with this tack is you pay US price earnings multiples. Stocks sold on international exchanges are cheaper on average than US stocks.

Having said that, anyone investing very widely in the US does have a chunk of international business baked in.
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Old 11-15-2020, 08:28 PM   #17
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What is the ONE international ETF in your portfolio and % of allocation in your total portfolio? We have quite a bit domestic ETF and would like to diversify a bit more.
We have two, sorry. 5% FPADX (mutual fund) for EM and 5% SCZ (etf) in international small cap. 50% US and 40% FUAMX
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Old 11-16-2020, 06:08 PM   #18
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I hold a small percentage of VEU (ETF) in my portfolio for diversification purposes. It has been doing well over the last few weeks.
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Old 11-17-2020, 09:57 PM   #19
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25% of equities in FTIHX.

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