My portfolio: seeking advice

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Welcome to the non-US investors section of Bogleheads®. There are many knowledgeable and friendly investors in this online community. They freely share their time and expertise with new posters who are looking for help, but they cannot give good advice without knowing something about you.

Before posting a portfolio question, remember that investing starts with a plan. What are you saving for, when do you need the funds, and how much of a loss can you tolerate, among other things? If you are clear on these questions, you will receive better quality help.

Also, please be sure to check the Outline of Non-US domiciles section of the wiki, both for general investing information for non-US investors and for any pages that are specific to your country of residence.

It helps us to know some important things about you. This may include details about any investments you already have. This information will help us to avoid recommending unsuitable funds or ETFs, for example ones that overlap with your existing holdings, ones that have significant tax drawbacks, or ones that are too risky or too conservative for your situation.

To make sure you get the help you need, please consider the instructions on this page. You do not have to include details on every section, but the more information that you do give, the better the answers to your questions will become.

Canada flag.png Canada: Canadian investors are encouraged to join our sister forum Financial Wisdom Forum and create a topic using the My Portfolio: Seeking Advice format. Also see: My Portfolio: Seeking Advice - finiki, the Canadian financial wiki

Flag of Spain.svg Spain: Spanish investors are encouraged to join our brother forum Bogleheads® España - Inversión Pasiva, Indexada y Periódica.

Posting

When you have researched your investment options and have a list of the investments in your current portfolio, it is time to post. We do not need to know your name or the exact amount of money you have invested or anything else that will identify you. If we ask for information that you do not want to disclose for any reason, it is fine to leave it out.

Template for your post

  • Please create a post in the Non-US Investing forum. Put the name of your country of residence somewhere in the topic title.
  • Copy and paste the content below into the post and replace the placeholders.
  • Provide balance amounts either in US dollars (USD) or in one of the other most commonly traded currencies: European Euro (EUR), Japanese Yen (JPY), British Pound (GBP), Swiss Franc (CHF), Canadian Dollar (CAD), Australian Dollar (AUD), New Zealand Dollar (NZD), or South African Rand (ZAR). Please indicate clearly which currency you used when providing balances.
[b]Country of Residence:[/b] This is critical. It determines your exposure to US taxes for non-resident aliens, and your ability to use any US income tax and US estate tax treaties.

[b]International Lifestyle:[/b] Indicate if you expect to move country before retiring or in retirement, or if you regularly change country either for work or for other reasons.

[b]Currency:[/b] The currency you use for your investments (USD, EUR, JPY, GBP, CHF, CAD, AUD, NZD, ZAR). If none of these, please consider converting your currency into USD in your post (most forum members will be unfamiliar with many currencies, but USD is widely understood).

[b]Emergency funds:[/b] Three to six months of expenses (indicate if you have this, but it is generally not part of your asset allocation).

[b]Debt:[/b] Indicate if you have any debt (credit card, school loans, car loans, mortgage) and the interest rate you are paying on each loan.

[b]Age:[/b] (a range will be good enough)

[b]Desired Asset allocation:[/b] xx% stocks / xx% bonds (indicate if you are not sure)
Desired allocation to stocks outside your of country of residence: xx% of stocks (indicate if you are not sure)

Please provide a hint as to the size of your current total portfolio (as in high four-figures, mid five-figures, low six-figures, and so on). What might be appropriate for a very large portfolio might not be appropriate for a new investor.

Also, if you know the details of any state pension(s) you are entitled to and you wish to add them here, this can improve the accuracy of the replies you receive. 

_______________________________________________________________

If you already hold some investments, it can help to give us some details of your current investment portfolio. If you do not have a portfolio already, or if you do but you do not want to share it, please ignore this section.

Otherwise, please indicate your current portfolio including all investment and retirement accounts. It is often important to look at the portfolio as a unified whole rather than look at accounts in isolation. If you wish, you may repeat this information for your spouse or civil partner. Omit any sections where either you do not hold this account type, or it does not apply to your country of residence. If you have several accounts of the same type, show them separately.

Show each fund or holding as a percentage of the entire portfolio, [b]not as a percentage of the account that holding is in[/b]. If this instruction is not clear, see the example under the Key Points section below. For example: 

[u][b]Current retirement assets[/b][/u]

[b]General investment account, taxable[/b]
xx% cash (for investing – do not include emergency funds) 
xx% fund or ETF name (ticker symbol) (expense ratio)  
xx% stock company name (ticker symbol)

[b]Retirement savings account, tax deferred[/b] (indicate account type, such as UK SIPP, Canadian RRSP, or French PEA)
xx% cash (for investing – do not include emergency funds) 
xx% fund or ETF name (ticker symbol) (expense ratio)  
xx% stock company name (ticker symbol)

[b]Sheltered investment account, tax free[/b] (indicate account type, such as UK ISA or Canadian TFSA)
xx% cash (for investing – do not include emergency funds) 
xx% fund or ETF name (ticker symbol) (expense ratio)  
xx% stock company name (ticker symbol)

[b]Insurance investment account[/b] (indicate account type, such as French Contrat d’assurance-vie or Belgian Tak 21 or Tak 23)
xx% cash (for investing – do not include emergency funds) 
xx% fund or ETF name (ticker symbol) (expense ratio)  
xx% stock company name (ticker symbol)

[color=red]Note:[/color] Total percentage of all the above accounts together (not each account individually) should equal 100%.  
_______________________________________________________________

If you are currently investing into these accounts, it may help us to have an idea of how much you invest annually. As above, if this section does not apply to you, or if it does but you do not want to share this information, please ignore this section.

[u][b]New investments[/b][/u]

[b]New annual Contributions[/b]
xx General investment account (Amount invested annually into your taxable account, in the currency indicated above)
xx Retirement savings account (Amount invested annually into your tax deferred account, in the currency indicated above)
xx Sheltered investment account (Amount invested annually into your tax free account, in the currency indicated above)
xx Insurance investment account (Amount invested annually into your insurance account, in the currency indicated above)

_______________________________________________________________
[u][b]Questions[/b][/u]:
1. 

2.

Key Points

  • Please try to provide as much of the information requested above as you can. Leaving out important information often results in delays or longer exchanges.
  • Please post fund names, not just fund or ETF ticker symbols.
  • If you see several different expense ratios for a single fund, use the net expense ratio. In UCITS ETFs, this may be indicated as 'NAV', 'TER', or 'OCF', but is usually clear from the ETF's factsheet.
  • Please make sure that percentages add up to 100% across all of your accounts, not within each account. For example:

The percentage total of all funds (General investment account + Retirement savings account) is 100%.

Etiquette

Please remember to put the name of your country of residence somewhere in the title of your post. This will help to draw in fellow members also either living in that country or with specific knowledge of how to invest from within that country.

If asked to add additional information, please use the edit button (located at the upper right hand side of your post) to add the information to your original post.

Please make all responses and additions to your original post in the same conversation rather than creating a new topic. It helps everyone if the history of the discussion is available in one place.

Many replies ask a great deal of effort by the posters. We simply ask that if you receive replies, you go back and respond to them in some way. It is a hollow feeling for those of us who respond to questions to never hear back from the person who started the conversation. Remember, the purpose of this is to have a conversation! We are not expecting a thank-you necessarily, but feedback on what you found helpful, if anything. We appreciate hearing back from you.

USING CAPITALISED LETTERS is considered rude (it is shouting). Capitals are good for emphasis, but are hard to read. If you consistently post in CAPITALS, some people may not bother to read and respond to your questions.

Preparing to make a post can be a significant learning experience for you. We appreciate posts that show careful planning. This does not mean your questions must be complex or show extensive investment knowledge. We really enjoy simple ones and want beginning investors to feel very welcome. Our goal is to help.

See also

External links