The Three-Fund Portfolio

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chatbotte
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby chatbotte » Mon Mar 06, 2017 4:04 am

Are you concerned about the currency risk of your portfolio? Factor models assume PPP holds, which isn't true. Should you adjust your allocations based on that?

kba1988
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby kba1988 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:30 pm

Setting up a brand new taxable investment portfolio at Fidelity. Definitely wanna keep it simple and just go with the 3fund asset allocation. Can some one help me understand the difference between Fidelity Total International Index(https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /31635V661) and FMI International Fund (https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /302933304) ?? One of these will end up being the "total international" portion of my 3fund portfolio. Thanks in advance :D :D

tj
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby tj » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:52 pm

kba1988 wrote:Setting up a brand new taxable investment portfolio at Fidelity. Definitely wanna keep it simple and just go with the 3fund asset allocation. Can some one help me understand the difference between Fidelity Total International Index(https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /31635V661) and FMI International Fund (https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /302933304) ?? One of these will end up being the "total international" portion of my 3fund portfolio. Thanks in advance :D :D



The second one is actively managed.

When I was at Fidelity, I used the following fund for International:

https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /316146141

spammagnet
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby spammagnet » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:28 pm

kba1988 wrote:Setting up a brand new taxable investment portfolio at Fidelity. Definitely wanna keep it simple and just go with the 3fund asset allocation. Can some one help me understand the difference between Fidelity Total International Index(https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /31635V661) and FMI International Fund (https://fundresearch.fidelity.com/mutua ... /302933304) ?? One of these will end up being the "total international" portion of my 3fund portfolio. Thanks in advance :D :D

Consider guidance found here:
https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Three-fund_portfolio#Other_than_Vanguard.2C_Boglehead-style

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busdriver
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby busdriver » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:58 pm



I thought general consensus was to use Fidelity Global Ex US Index Fund Investor Class (FSGUX) or Premium Class (FSGDX), rather than Fidelity Total International Index Fund Investor Class (FTIGX) or Premium Class (FTIPX)?

spammagnet
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby spammagnet » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:13 am

busdriver wrote:I thought general consensus was to use Fidelity Global Ex US Index Fund Investor Class (FSGUX) or Premium Class (FSGDX), rather than Fidelity Total International Index Fund Investor Class (FTIGX) or Premium Class (FTIPX)?

I'm not an expert on either but discussion on both can be found in the topics linked below:

FTIPX - New Fidelity offering [Total International Index Fund] (7/20/2016)
viewtopic.php?t=195753

Switching to Fidelity's new Total International Index (includes small cap!) (7/28/2016)
viewtopic.php?t=194213

Edit: I believe the wiki was updated around the time of those threads to reflect consensus that Total International conformed more closely to goals associated with a Three-Fund Portfolio.

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busdriver
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby busdriver » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:29 am

spammagnet wrote:
busdriver wrote:I thought general consensus was to use Fidelity Global Ex US Index Fund Investor Class (FSGUX) or Premium Class (FSGDX), rather than Fidelity Total International Index Fund Investor Class (FTIGX) or Premium Class (FTIPX)?

I'm not an expert on either but discussion on both can be found in the topics linked below:

FTIPX - New Fidelity offering [Total International Index Fund] (7/20/2016)
viewtopic.php?t=195753

Switching to Fidelity's new Total International Index (includes small cap!) (7/28/2016)
viewtopic.php?t=194213

Edit: I believe the wiki was updated around the time of those threads to reflect consensus that Total International conformed more closely to goals associated with a Three-Fund Portfolio.


Thanks much. I vaguely remember those threads and thought at the time, why would I need to switch to something new? I think I'll just stick with my FSGDX. :sharebeer

kba1988
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby kba1988 » Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:40 am

thanks for all the replies....and the articles!

Optician52
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Optician52 » Wed Mar 08, 2017 12:06 pm

In the 3 fund portfolio which is recommended ?
Vanguard Mutual Funds or Vanguard ETF'S ?

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CABob
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby CABob » Wed Mar 08, 2017 4:41 pm

In the 3 fund portfolio which is recommended ?
Vanguard Mutual Funds or Vanguard ETF'S ?


Either will work just fine. Which one would you prefer? You can also have some of both.
Bob

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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Jackson12 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:31 pm

We believe we have far too many individual municipal bonds in our portfolio ( chosen by a former AUM and inherited after a parent's death)

We. want to transition to a 3 fund portfolio consisting of an S&P index fund, an international index fund and a bond fund as relected in this thread.

The munis are nearly 50% of our current portfolio which is currently at $1,700,000 and the remainder has a mix of equities and bonds, I would list all the munis but there are well over 30 and We can't see the advantage of owning so many.

Perhaps we are missing something.perhaps,this is simpler than we know. The performance of the total portfolio has not come close to meeting benchmarks and th munis have had an especially low return.

My spouse and I are nearing retirement and are in our mid 60s. We anticipate $2400 of Social Security before taxes.

How should we transition the munis to a 3 fund portfolio? We,have a transition plan for the rest of the portfolio, as tax advantaged as possible.

We are not experts in investing but do know something about rebalancing our portfolio once it is in place. Getting the munis into it is confusing us.

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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby LadyGeek » Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:17 pm

In order to give appropriate advice, it's best to keep all the information in one spot. Ask this question (and any others) in your earlier thread: Implementing 3 fund plan in this market and more

It would also be helpful if you posted what you have using the Asking Portfolio Questions format. It will make you think about the "big picture" while giving us the info we need to point you in the right direction.
To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Jackson12 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:28 pm

LadyGeek wrote:In order to give appropriate advice, it's best to keep all the information in one spot. Ask this question (and any others) in your earlier thread: Implementing 3 fund plan in this market and more

It would also be helpful if you posted what you have using the Asking Portfolio Questions format. It will make you think about the "big picture" while giving us the info we need to point you in the right direction.



Thank,you. I'll keep it in the other thread

kayanco
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby kayanco » Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:36 pm

I have three questions on the 3-fund portfolio please:

1.
If someone started with a 90/10 (stock/bond) based 3-fund portfolio, but then never ever rebalanced it, how terrible is that?

2.
Can i-bonds substitute for the bond portion of the 3-fund portfolio?

3.
If someone just has 100% Total International fund. How does that compare to the full 3-fund return%?
Any place I can look at a past performance compare? This is mostly just out of curiosity.

Thank you.

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Taylor Larimore
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio. Answer to questions

Postby Taylor Larimore » Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:03 pm

kayanco wrote:I have three questions on the 3-fund portfolio please[/url]

kayanco: I will try to answer your questions in blue:
1. If someone started with a 90/10 (stock/bond) based 3-fund portfolio, but then never ever rebalanced it, how terrible is that?

It might work, but it might not. You will need an iron stomach to stay-the-course when your life savings lose over 50% in a bad bear market. Also, when you retire, it is very important to keep what you've got. This is the reason all target funds increase their bond allocation as the investor gets older.
2. Can i-bonds substitute for the bond portion of the 3-fund portfolio?

Yes. Most fixed-income income investments (including I-bonds) are safe and will provide safety in a portfolio. I like Total Bond Market for its diversification, simplicity and safety (it's worst annual loss since inception was -2.66%).

3. If someone just has 100% Total International fund. How does that compare to the full 3-fund return%?
Any place I can look at a past performance compare? This is mostly just out of curiosity.

Past performance depends on the period chosen. It does not predict future performance. It is a terrible way to pick mutual funds. The government requires mutual funds to warn against it.

Best wishes.
Taylor
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

kayanco
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio. Answer to questions

Postby kayanco » Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:41 pm

Taylor Larimore wrote:
kayanco wrote:I have three questions on the 3-fund portfolio please[/url]

2. Can i-bonds substitute for the bond portion of the 3-fund portfolio?

Yes. Most fixed-income income investments (including I-bonds) are safe and will provide safety in a portfolio. I like Total Bond Market for its diversification, simplicity and safety (it's worst annual loss since inception was -2.66%).

3. If someone just has 100% Total International fund. How does that compare to the full 3-fund return%?
Any place I can look at a past performance compare? This is mostly just out of curiosity.

Past performance depends on the period chosen. It does not predict future performance. It is a terrible way to pick mutual funds. The government requires mutual funds to warn against it.

Best wishes.
Taylor


Thank you Taylor. I'm so grateful for your response.

Follow-up on 2:
So if one has both I-Bonds and Total Bond fund, would you add their percentages to get the total bond % for asset allocation?
As in, for a 90/10 ratio, the 10% would include both I-bond + Total Bond?
Also, if you hold the Total Bond fund, does it make I-bonds unnecessary?

Regarding 3:
I do understand past performance doesn't represent future performance. I was mainly curious by what magnitude would the two differ. Let's say over a couple of different 10 or 15 year periods, what would the returns be. Just wondering how much the returns would diverge?
If it's an easy answer, I'd be interested. Otherwise, it's not a big deal :)

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CABob
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby CABob » Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:58 pm

The bond allocation percentage would include any and all bond funds held.
Regarding comparison of bond funds Vanguard has a comparison tool and you could enter the Total Bond Fund [vbmfx] and compare it to the Inflation Protected Securities fund [vaipx] to get an idea. https://personal.vanguard.com/us/funds/ ... tingFrom=2
Bob

spammagnet
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby spammagnet » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:20 pm


deltaneutral83
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby deltaneutral83 » Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:23 am

Any major differences between Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Index Fund ETF Shares and Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund Investor Shares ? FTSE is $28B assets and the Total International is $250B but a higher ER than FTSE (0.11 vs. 0.18). Returns seem to be nearly identical and top ten holdings are.

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CABob
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby CABob » Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:57 am

spammagnet wrote:

Broken link

Thanks for pointing out the problem. I thought I was pointing to a page comparing two funds on the Vanguard site. I got there by seeing the list of all funds and selecting two that i wanted to compare. Apparently that is a page that cannot be used as a reference link.
Bob

mongstradamus
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby mongstradamus » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:02 am

deltaneutral83 wrote:Any major differences between Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Index Fund ETF Shares and Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund Investor Shares ? FTSE is $28B assets and the Total International is $250B but a higher ER than FTSE (0.11 vs. 0.18). Returns seem to be nearly identical and top ten holdings are.


If I recall VEU doesn't contain small caps somebody can correct me if I am incorrect. I believe its only a large cap international blend fund.

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Taylor Larimore
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Off topic discussions

Postby Taylor Larimore » Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:11 pm

Bogleheads:

Please confine this topic to The Three-Fund Portfolio.

Thank you and best wishes.
Taylor
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

groho
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby groho » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:54 pm

regarding the three fund portfolio as it applies to today's market and the prime rate increase today. I have little or no experience in the financial market and try to follow this golden rule diversifying between stock, international, and bonds. So far its served me well. We're in a scenario now where the market is breaking records, interest rates are very low, and international is looking volatile with brexit, etc. Again, i'm not an expert, just asking. Typically when interest rates go up, bonds go down. Market is in my opinion ripe for a serious correction. Do we have the rare situation brewing where both market and bonds could be decline simultaneously given the low interest rates. I believe this happened in 1940 and 1970, correct? How does a three fund portfolio protect against this?

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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby dbr » Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:32 pm

groho wrote:regarding the three fund portfolio as it applies to today's market and the prime rate increase today. I have little or no experience in the financial market and try to follow this golden rule diversifying between stock, international, and bonds. So far its served me well. We're in a scenario now where the market is breaking records, interest rates are very low, and international is looking volatile with brexit, etc. Again, i'm not an expert, just asking. Typically when interest rates go up, bonds go down. Market is in my opinion ripe for a serious correction. Do we have the rare situation brewing where both market and bonds could be decline simultaneously given the low interest rates. I believe this happened in 1940 and 1970, correct? How does a three fund portfolio protect against this?


It makes a great deal of difference how much the two investments go down. Down for stocks is very different from down for bonds. (Also, some commentary about bonds means long term bonds whereas most people here invest in short to intermediate bonds.)

The correct analysis is the return and risk of the whole portfolio taking into account the risk and return of the parts and the possible correlation or lack of same among the parts. There is no portfolio that offers significant return and no risk.

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Taylor Larimore
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Taylor Larimore » Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:44 pm

groho wrote: Do we have the rare situation brewing where both market and bonds could be decline simultaneously given the low interest rates. I believe this happened in 1940 and 1970, correct? How does a three fund portfolio protect against this?

groho:

It is impossible to forecast what the stock and bond markets will do as evidenced by the number of wrong forecasts in our annual Boglehead Contest. The Three-Fund Portfolio allows you to easily adjust each of the three fund categories to whatever weighting you want (even zero).

Best wishes.
Taylor
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Duffydog1 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:28 am

This is the best and most observant question that I have seen on the subject of the 3 fund portfolio or on any other portfolio. It is particularly relevant to those of us who are older and have high allocations in the Total Bond Index. I am also not an expert but it would seem that our bond portfolio should receive some adjustment to short term bonds. How much of an adjustment I have no clue.In my last conversation last week with a Vanguard Flagship Advisor, I was told not to be too concerned because over time the bond index will start to pick up higher yield bonds which will ensure to our benefit. However at 77 years of age I may not be here to witness such an event. Thus short term corporates start looking more realistic for us older folks. I can't wait for 4% CDs and get out of this market just like the old days.


groho wrote:regarding the three fund portfolio as it applies to today's market and the prime rate increase today. I have little or no experience in the financial market and try to follow this golden rule diversifying between stock, international, and bonds. So far its served me well. We're in a scenario now where the market is breaking records, interest rates are very low, and international is looking volatile with brexit, etc. Again, i'm not an expert, just asking. Typically when interest rates go up, bonds go down. Market is in my opinion ripe for a serious correction. Do we have the rare situation brewing where both market and bonds could be decline simultaneously given the low interest rates. I believe this happened in 1940 and 1970, correct? How does a three fund portfolio protect against this?

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bertilak
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby bertilak » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:51 am

Duffydog1 wrote:This is the best and most observant question that I have seen on the subject of the 3 fund portfolio or on any other portfolio. It is particularly relevant to those of us who are older and have high allocations in the Total Bond Index. I am also not an expert but it would seem that our bond portfolio should receive some adjustment to short term bonds. How much of an adjustment I have no clue.In my last conversation last week with a Vanguard Flagship Advisor, I was told not to be too concerned because over time the bond index will start to pick up higher yield bonds which will ensure to our benefit. However at 77 years of age I may not be here to witness such an event. Thus short term corporates start looking more realistic for us older folks. I can't wait for 4% CDs and get out of this market just like the old days.

If you have significant bond holdings late in life perhaps it is time to think about those bonds being for your heirs and not for you. Presumably they have a much longer investment horizon so the issues you raise do not apply. If you are living off the income from the bonds, longer term bonds should have higher dividends. In any case, TBM index has a wide variety of maturities.

If you DON'T have significant bond holdings it little matters what kind of bonds they are.
I have a strong moral sense - by my standards. | -- Rex Stout

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Munir
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Munir » Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:35 pm

Duffydog1 wrote:This is the best and most observant question that I have seen on the subject of the 3 fund portfolio or on any other portfolio. It is particularly relevant to those of us who are older and have high allocations in the Total Bond Index. I am also not an expert but it would seem that our bond portfolio should receive some adjustment to short term bonds. How much of an adjustment I have no clue.In my last conversation last week with a Vanguard Flagship Advisor, I was told not to be too concerned because over time the bond index will start to pick up higher yield bonds which will ensure to our benefit. However at 77 years of age I may not be here to witness such an event. Thus short term corporates start looking more realistic for us older folks. I can't wait for 4% CDs and get out of this market just like the old days.


I am 79 with 70% fixed income in my portfolio. I totally agree with Duffydog and have already shifted assets from my intermediate bond funds to a short term bond fund (VFSUX) and cash in an online savings account. The majority of the bond funds still are intermediate but mostly in VFIDX (Intermediate investment Grade).
Last edited by Munir on Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

bob_m10
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby bob_m10 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:07 pm

Hi, my wife is 50 and would like to use the three fund portfolio with her work 401K. She has the following available. Can she substitute the 500 index fund for the Total Stock? thanks

Vanguard 500 Index Fund
Total International Stock Index Fund
Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund

Other VG funds available:
Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund
Vanguard Inflation Protected Securities

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Pranav
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby Pranav » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:52 pm

bob_m10 wrote:Hi, my wife is 50 and would like to use the three fund portfolio with her work 401K. She has the following available. Can she substitute the 500 index fund for the Total Stock? thanks

Vanguard 500 Index Fund
Total International Stock Index Fund
Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund

Other VG funds available:
Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund
Vanguard Inflation Protected Securities


I substitute 500 index for the Total Stock in my 401(k). It simplifies portfolio management. Also, their performances are highly correlated anyway.
Pranav

bob_m10
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby bob_m10 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:57 pm

Pranav wrote:
bob_m10 wrote:Hi, my wife is 50 and would like to use the three fund portfolio with her work 401K. She has the following available. Can she substitute the 500 index fund for the Total Stock? thanks

Vanguard 500 Index Fund
Total International Stock Index Fund
Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund

Other VG funds available:
Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund
Vanguard Inflation Protected Securities


I substitute 500 index for the Total Stock in my 401(k). It simplifies portfolio management. Also, their performances are highly correlated anyway.
thanks, should I give any thought to using the Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund in combination with the 500 index?

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packet
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby packet » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:15 am

bob_m10 wrote:thanks, should I give any thought to using the Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund in combination with the 500 index?

Yes, you should think about it!
But don't stress over it by any means.

If you combine the 500 and the extended funds in a 80/20 ratio, you'll pretty much match the total US fund. How important is that 20% to you?

:beerCheers,
packet
First round’s on me.

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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby bob_m10 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:46 am

packet wrote:
bob_m10 wrote:thanks, should I give any thought to using the Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund in combination with the 500 index?

Yes, you should think about it!
But don't stress over it by any means.

If you combine the 500 and the extended funds in a 80/20 ratio, you'll pretty much match the total US fund. How important is that 20% to you?

:beerCheers,
packet
Ok and I just read that in the Wiki as well. It does seem important given the general recommendation here is to use Total Stock. Why not simulate it with the two available? Thanks for your help

tj
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Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Postby tj » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:23 pm

bob_m10 wrote:
packet wrote:
bob_m10 wrote:thanks, should I give any thought to using the Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund in combination with the 500 index?

Yes, you should think about it!
But don't stress over it by any means.

If you combine the 500 and the extended funds in a 80/20 ratio, you'll pretty much match the total US fund. How important is that 20% to you?

:beerCheers,
packet
Ok and I just read that in the Wiki as well. It does seem important given the general recommendation here is to use Total Stock. Why not simulate it with the two available? Thanks for your help


.
It's not going to make much of a difference either way. Pick a choice and stick to it...


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