My Road to Investment Success

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Taylor Larimore
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My Road to Investment Success

Post by Taylor Larimore » Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm

Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

Jacobi
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Jacobi » Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:49 pm

Taylor,

Firstly, thank you for helping to ground us in simplicity, especially in difficult times like this.

Secondly, I can't believe you are 96 years old, know how to use an internet forum, and regularly post cogent wisdom. Wow -- any health secrets while you're at it? :)

Cheers.

michoco911
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by michoco911 » Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:51 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm
Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."
What mainly lead to the success besides the portfolio and avoiding speculations?
1. Was it the saving % rate?
2. Steady regular investment?
3. Just time and compound interest?
4. Something else?
30% VWRD 30% VUSD 40% AGGG until further notice

dachshunddad
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by dachshunddad » Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:51 pm

Taylor,

Thank you for your wisdom and encouragement! I have cleaned up my portfolio to 3 funds and share your advice to all who listen.

:sharebeer

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birdog
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by birdog » Sat Apr 18, 2020 3:34 pm

Taylor,

Both the two-fund and three-fund portfolios are such blessings for the individual investor. Like you, I only wish I’d found out about them sooner!

Thank you for your continued input on this website. I hope it continues for many years to come! :sharebeer

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PoultryMan
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by PoultryMan » Sat Apr 18, 2020 3:36 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm
Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."

Taylor: would you mind sharing what your AA was each decade? Or better yet, if you had it to do all over again, what would your AA be through the decades?

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Barry Barnitz
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Barry Barnitz » Sat Apr 18, 2020 3:59 pm

Hi:

Taylor was gracious in granting us an interview regarding his history as an investor. Please see: Interview with Taylor Larimore: Taylor's investment journey.

Here you can learn about Taylor's experience with investment clubs, brokers, his newsletter, his move to Vanguard, and the subsequent evolution of his portfolio.

regards,
Additional administrative tasks: Financial Page bogleheads.org. blog; finiki the Canadian wiki; The Bogle Center for Financial Literacy site; Wiki Bogleheads® España.

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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by geerhardusvos » Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:07 pm

Thank you, Taylor! :beer
VTSAX and chill

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Sandtrap
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Sandtrap » Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:08 pm

No substitute for "real learnin'" through experience. . .

Thanks, Taylor.
Aloha,
jim :happy
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realfan
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by realfan » Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:15 pm

Dear Mr. Larimore,

You do not know me and it is unlikely that we will ever meet. However, the influence that you have had upon me, my immediate family and close circle of friends has been profound. I have an MBA from a top five US educational institution. I live in NY and have been in business management for almost three decades. I consider myself a technically sophisticated investor.

All of that said, I ran across this forum many years ago and it was your posts that convinced me to think about investing in a more simple and straightforward way. I opened my Vanguard account and have not looked back ever since. So far, so good as they say :happy

So that is my thank you for the guidance and advice that you have not only given me but also to thousands of others who traverse these same forums. Your consistent and patient answers are much appreciated and I am sure there are many like me who feel the same way but who have not posted a formal thank you here.

Now as I revisit some of my favorite threads and reread the advice you have given, imagine my surprise to have learned that not only are you a patient and learned individual who is willing to share his experience with others so that they may avoid errors of judgment, but that you are also a decorated World War II veteran who served our country in the most difficult of times and in the most dangerous of battles. I recently re-watched Band of Brothers and thought of you in the episode that covers the Battle of the Bulge.

So this is my second and more important thank you to you for serving our wonderful country. I appreciate from the bottom my heart everything you did then and everything you do now. Thank You for your service!!!

RudyS
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by RudyS » Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:23 pm

Thank you, Mr. Larimore, for your willingness share your proven wisdom with the rest of us.

jef
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by jef » Sat Apr 18, 2020 8:53 pm

Thank you Taylor.

Ferdinand2014
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Ferdinand2014 » Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:34 pm

realfan wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:15 pm
Dear Mr. Larimore,

You do not know me and it is unlikely that we will ever meet. However, the influence that you have had upon me, my immediate family and close circle of friends has been profound. I have an MBA from a top five US educational institution. I live in NY and have been in business management for almost three decades. I consider myself a technically sophisticated investor.

All of that said, I ran across this forum many years ago and it was your posts that convinced me to think about investing in a more simple and straightforward way. I opened my Vanguard account and have not looked back ever since. So far, so good as they say :happy

So that is my thank you for the guidance and advice that you have not only given me but also to thousands of others who traverse these same forums. Your consistent and patient answers are much appreciated and I am sure there are many like me who feel the same way but who have not posted a formal thank you here.

Now as I revisit some of my favorite threads and reread the advice you have given, imagine my surprise to have learned that not only are you a patient and learned individual who is willing to share his experience with others so that they may avoid errors of judgment, but that you are also a decorated World War II veteran who served our country in the most difficult of times and in the most dangerous of battles. I recently re-watched Band of Brothers and thought of you in the episode that covers the Battle of the Bulge.

So this is my second and more important thank you to you for serving our wonderful country. I appreciate from the bottom my heart everything you did then and everything you do now. Thank You for your service!!!
+1
“You only find out who is swimming naked when the tide goes out.“ — Warren Buffett

Normchad
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Normchad » Sat Apr 18, 2020 11:19 pm

Ferdinand2014 wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:34 pm
realfan wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:15 pm
Dear Mr. Larimore,

You do not know me and it is unlikely that we will ever meet. However, the influence that you have had upon me, my immediate family and close circle of friends has been profound. I have an MBA from a top five US educational institution. I live in NY and have been in business management for almost three decades. I consider myself a technically sophisticated investor.

All of that said, I ran across this forum many years ago and it was your posts that convinced me to think about investing in a more simple and straightforward way. I opened my Vanguard account and have not looked back ever since. So far, so good as they say :happy

So that is my thank you for the guidance and advice that you have not only given me but also to thousands of others who traverse these same forums. Your consistent and patient answers are much appreciated and I am sure there are many like me who feel the same way but who have not posted a formal thank you here.

Now as I revisit some of my favorite threads and reread the advice you have given, imagine my surprise to have learned that not only are you a patient and learned individual who is willing to share his experience with others so that they may avoid errors of judgment, but that you are also a decorated World War II veteran who served our country in the most difficult of times and in the most dangerous of battles. I recently re-watched Band of Brothers and thought of you in the episode that covers the Battle of the Bulge.

So this is my second and more important thank you to you for serving our wonderful country. I appreciate from the bottom my heart everything you did then and everything you do now. Thank You for your service!!!
+1
+1. This is how I feel, but you wrote it so beautifully. Thank you Taylor, your wisdom, kindness, and experience have touched many many people.

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Cubicle
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Cubicle » Sat Apr 18, 2020 11:31 pm

I hope if I even make it to 96 I'll be able to:

Manage my investments.
Get onto a computer.
Help others with their questions about anything, not just finance.

Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us. ✓✓✓
"Oh look another bajillion point declin-Ooooh!!! A coupon for pizza!!!!" <--- This is what everyone's IPS should be. ✓✓✓

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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Stef » Sun Apr 19, 2020 1:49 am

How frugal did you live? Do you regret some things that you can't experience today because of age?

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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by abuss368 » Sun Apr 19, 2020 10:17 am

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm
Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."
Hi Taylor -

Wow! An incredible journey! I have learned much from you and value the financial and non financial life lessons of simplicity.

Stay safe & healthy!
John C. Bogle: Two Fund Portfolio - Total Stock & Total Bond - “Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

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Stinky
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Stinky » Sun Apr 19, 2020 11:27 am

Taylor,

As I sit at my desk and look at my copies of "The Bogleheads' Guide to the Three-Fund Portfolio" and "The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing", I'm so thankful that you have shared the wisdom that you've gained over your long investing career.

I've given copies of your books to each of my children. I hope that they will learn as much from them as I did.
It's a GREAT day to be alive - Travis Tritt

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Taylor Larimore
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Taylor Larimore » Sun Apr 19, 2020 2:05 pm

PoultryMan wrote:Taylor: would you mind sharing what your AA was each decade? Or better yet, if you had it to do all over again, what would your AA be through the decades?
PoultryMan:

Sorry, I don't know what our AA was each decade. I throw away records that are not absolutely necessary. Today it is about 70% stocks and 30% bonds. Please don't use my asset-allocation for your asset-allocation because we have different goals, time-frame, risk tolerance and personal financial situations.

If I had to do it all over again (and with the benefit of hindsight) I would start with the Three-Fund Portfolio containing a 90% stock/bond allocation.

Best wishes.
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "The beauty of owning the market is that you eliminate individual stock risk, you eliminate market sector risk, and you eliminate manager risk."
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

justsomeguy2018
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by justsomeguy2018 » Sun Apr 19, 2020 2:51 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm
Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."
Mr. Larimore, thank you for your investing advice and wisdom passed on to us over the years. All the best to you.

Napa Mountain Man
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Napa Mountain Man » Sun May 24, 2020 11:22 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sun Apr 19, 2020 2:05 pm
PoultryMan wrote:Taylor: would you mind sharing what your AA was each decade? Or better yet, if you had it to do all over again, what would your AA be through the decades?
PoultryMan:

Sorry, I don't know what our AA was each decade. I throw away records that are not absolutely necessary. Today it is about 70% stocks and 30% bonds. Please don't use my asset-allocation for your asset-allocation because we have different goals, time-frame, risk tolerance and personal financial situations.

If I had to do it all over again (and with the benefit of hindsight) I would start with the Three-Fund Portfolio containing a 90% stock/bond allocation.

Best wishes.
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "The beauty of owning the market is that you eliminate individual stock risk, you eliminate market sector risk, and you eliminate manager risk."
Dear Mr. Larimore:

Will you please explain why you would choose the 90/10 equity/bond allocation if you could do it all over again?

In particular, why would you choose the 90/10 equity/bond allocation over a 100/0 equity/bond allocation?

Would you choose 90/10 if you could do it all over again because it may result in higher returns but at the same time also let you pass the sleep test or are there other reasons?

I currently have a 90/10 equity/bond allocation and am seriously considering a 100/0 equity/bond allocation. (As for my equity allocation, 80% is domestic and 20% is international.)

Like you, my grandfather served in WWII. I will be thinking of him and all others who served and either did not make it home or did make it home but are no longer with us (like my grandfather). I appreciate all that you do. We all do.

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Taylor Larimore
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Taylor Larimore » Mon May 25, 2020 10:29 am

Dear Mr. Larimore:
"Will you please explain why you would choose the 90/10 equity/bond allocation if you could do it all over again?"
My answers are in blue:

I started investing in 1950 at the age of 26. I was young, single, and I had time to recoup if stocks plunged. Stocks have a higher expected long-term return than bonds.
In particular, why would you choose the 90/10 equity/bond allocation over a 100/0 equity/bond allocation?
Bonds are very difficult to understand. For example, a bond Indenture is about 50 pages of legaleze. A 10% bond allocation affords an opportunity to learn about bonds and how they interact with stocks. As I got older and could not afford to lose, I would increase my bond allocation.
Would you choose 90/10 if you could do it all over again because it may result in higher returns but at the same time also let you pass the sleep test or are there other reasons?
See above.
I currently have a 90/10 equity/bond allocation and am seriously considering a 100/0 equity/bond allocation. (As for my equity allocation, 80% is domestic and 20% is international.)
If your 90/10 equity/bond allocation is invested in total stock markets and a total bond market index fund, I would stay-the-course with your Three-Fund Portfolio.
Like you, my grandfather served in WWII. I will be thinking of him and all others who served and either did not make it home or did make it home but are no longer with us (like my grandfather). I appreciate all that you do. We all do.
Thank you.

Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "The Three-Fund Portfolio will help you to develop a sound asset allocation strategy, make smart investment selections, and guide the implementation of your plan."
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

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nedsaid
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by nedsaid » Mon May 25, 2020 10:41 am

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sun Apr 19, 2020 2:05 pm
PoultryMan wrote:Taylor: would you mind sharing what your AA was each decade? Or better yet, if you had it to do all over again, what would your AA be through the decades?
PoultryMan:

Sorry, I don't know what our AA was each decade. I throw away records that are not absolutely necessary. Today it is about 70% stocks and 30% bonds. Please don't use my asset-allocation for your asset-allocation because we have different goals, time-frame, risk tolerance and personal financial situations.

If I had to do it all over again (and with the benefit of hindsight) I would start with the Three-Fund Portfolio containing a 90% stock/bond allocation.

Best wishes.
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "The beauty of owning the market is that you eliminate individual stock risk, you eliminate market sector risk, and you eliminate manager risk."
Taylor, you should also point out to your readers that you purchased Single Premium Immediate Annuities, a decision you and your late wife were quite pleased with. Your portfolio is a lot less risky than a 70% stock/30% bond portfolio as you are enjoying annuity income. I think you are probably investing for your heirs with the remainder. In any case, you are living rather comfortably because of wise decisions that you made.
A fool and his money are good for business.

J295
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by J295 » Mon May 25, 2020 10:43 am

Taylor = Class Act

Napa Mountain Man
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Napa Mountain Man » Mon May 25, 2020 3:43 pm

Mr. Larimore, first, thank you. I will stick with the 90/10 allocation. I am invested as you suggest in your book and above, although with some minor tweaks based on the funds available in my employer-sponsored plan (Thrift Savings Plan). I still have some kinks to work out before I feel like I am on the right course.

For instance, the only international equity fund available in my employer-sponsored plan - which is the Thrift Savings Plan - is the I-Fund. But the I-Fund tracks the MSCI EAFE index, which means I lack exposure to emerging markets. I am considering putting as much of my international equity as possible in my Vanguard Roth IRA, where I would have access to the Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund.

Next, my TSP account includes both traditional and Roth funds. While I understand the G-fund is excellent for bonds, I hate the idea of having any of my Roth balance in bonds (which is currently the case). I am considering placing all of our bond allocation in my spouse's traditional 401K plan, where we have access to Vanguard's Total Bond Market Index Fund. That way, all of our bonds are in traditional funds, not any Roth funds. And it would make rebalancing a whole lot easier. (Rebalancing within the TSP is problematic because an interfund transfer will move a proportional amount from each type of money into the funds that I select; I cannot just choose to move traditional funds or Roth funds, unfortunately.) Is the G-fund so valuable that it's worth it to have some Roth money in the G-fund? Shoot, the Total Bond Market Index Fund works for thousands of people - why not me?

Finally, the TSP does not have a Total Stock Market fund. Instead, it only has the C-fund (SP500) and S-fund (Dow Jones U.S. Completion Total Stock Market). I have followed the advice of other Bogleheads, who have said I can put 80% in the C-fund and 20% in the S-fund to replicate the Total Stock Market. I am wondering if I should just go with the C-fund only for simplicity. I prefer simplicity (although splitting the C-fund and S-fund in the manner I describe is not that difficult).

I plan to post this to get advice from other Bogleheads. This is such an amazing forum. Thank you and to everyone else who makes all of this possible.

Sincerely,

Napa Mountain Man

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1789
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by 1789 » Mon May 25, 2020 4:23 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm
Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."
Hi Taylor,

Of course! I don't see any reason as why one wants to do same mistakes that a lot of experienced investors have done. When inputs are the same, outcome of the experiment should be the same. Expecting different result would be foolish. Thank YOU and all experienced BHs for teaching me these early in my investing journey.
"My conscience wants vegetarianism to win over the world. And my subconscious is yearning for a piece of juicy meat. But what do i want?" (Andrei Tarkovsky)

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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by tennisplyr » Mon May 25, 2020 4:35 pm

As always, thank you for your generous advice. If you would, what would you say surprised you the most about your success as an investor?
Those who move forward with a happy spirit will find that things always work out.

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Taylor Larimore
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Less is More

Post by Taylor Larimore » Mon May 25, 2020 4:49 pm

tennisplyr wrote:
Mon May 25, 2020 4:35 pm
As always, thank you for your generous advice. If you would, what would you say surprised you the most about your success as an investor?
Less is more.

Best wishes.
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Never underrate either the majesty of simplicity or its proven effectiveness as a long-term strategy for productive investing."
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

Blue456
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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by Blue456 » Mon May 25, 2020 5:00 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:46 pm
Bogleheads:

I began investing in individual stocks at the age of 26. Looking back 70 years, I realize I was a slow learner:

I stopped betting on individual stocks many decades ago (I'm now 96).

I stopped betting on individual funds many years after that.

I stopped betting on style categories after that.

My portfolio steadily improved!

The Three-Fund Portfolio

I hope that you will benefit from my experience.

Thank you, Jack.

Best wishes
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Investors seem hell-bent on carrying out the search for the winning funds of the future, no matter how futile the search has proven to be."
Not to derail topic but I didn’t know you were a veteran from World War II. I want to personally thank you from helping to free my country in Europe. I literally wouldn’t be here otherwise.

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Taylor Larimore
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A very lucky man

Post by Taylor Larimore » Mon May 25, 2020 5:07 pm

Blue456:

I am grateful to you and all the other Bogleheads who honor me with your kind words.

I am a very lucky man!

Thank you and best wishes.
Taylor
Jack Bogle's Words of Wisdom: "Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts."
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

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Re: My Road to Investment Success

Post by abuss368 » Wed May 27, 2020 2:38 pm

I agree and have found over the years I don't need this fund and that fund, all asset classes, and much more complexity.

Simplicity has won!
John C. Bogle: Two Fund Portfolio - Total Stock & Total Bond - “Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

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