Q: I am a 19 year old freshman in college and want to start building credit, but my dad refuses to cosign for me. Not for any particular reason, it’s just that he and I are not that close. Can I apply for a student credit card by myself? A: You’ll be happy to hear [...]
The 12 stock for 10 years portfolio consists of stocks I would be comfortable putting into an IRA for 10 years. The main criteria is for companies with a history of large positive cash flow, that seemed likely to continue that trend.
Since April of 2005 the portfolio Marketocracy* calculated annualized rate or return (which excludes Tesco) is 7.5% (the S&P 500 annualized return for the period is 6.8%).
Marketocracy subtracts the equivalent of 2% of assets annually to simulate management fees – as though the portfolio were a mutual fund – so without that (it is not like this portfolio takes much management), the return beats the S&P 500 annual return by about 270 basis points annually (9.5% to 6.8%). And I think the 270 basis point “beat” of the S&P rate is really under-counting as the 200 basis point “deduction” removes what would be assets that would be increasing (so the gains that would have been made on the non-existing deductions in the real world – are missing). Tesco reduces the return, still I believe the rate would stay close to a 200 basis point advantage.
I make some adjustments (selling of buying a bit of the stocks depending on large price movements – this rebalances and also lets me sell a bit if I think things are getting highly priced and buy a bit if they are getting to be a better bargin). So I have sold some Amazon and Google as they have increased greatly and bought some Toyota as it declined (and now sold a bit of Toyota as it soared). This purchases and sales are fairly small. Those plus changes (selling Dell and buying Apple for example) have resulted in a annual turnover rate under 5%.
I am strongly considering buying ABBV and maybe ABT. Abbot recently split into these 2 separate companies. I probably would have added this last year but I wasn’t sure what to do given the breakup so I waited (luckily I bought it, personally, as they have performed quite well) I may also sell some or all of Tesco and PetroChina.
The current stocks, in order of return:
The current marketocracy results can be seen on the Sleep Well marketocracy portfolio page.
Related: 12 Stocks for 10 Years: Oct 2012 Update – 12 Stocks for 10 Years, July 2011 Update – 12 Stocks for 10 Years, July 2009 Update – hand selected articles on investing
While I am very positive on the companies that I have set the largest holdings for I am less strongly positive on the rest of the stocks (compared the the top stocks now, and compared to the rest of the stocks 5 years ago).
I would still consider replacing PetroChina and Pfizer: I like both sectors more than I like the companies themselves. Still as part of the portfolio I think they are valuable. I would like a bit more exposure to commodities and health care but I haven’t found the right companies to add to this (though maybe ABT and RYN could work).
In order to comply with the marketocracy diversification rules and deal with not being able to buy Tesco (in marketocracy) I own fairly small amounts of several other stocks in the portfolio (that are included in the marketocracy return). I only have: RYN and USG plus a bit of ABBV.
* In order to track performance created a marketocracy portfolio but had to make some minor adjustments (and marketocracy doesn’t allow Tesco to be purchased, though it is easily available as an ADR to anyone in the USA to buy in real life – it is based in England). The portfolio has 7% in cash (only 3% if you figure 4% of total is in Tesco but not shown in Marketocracy).
High interest rates and 0% promotions with retroactive interest charges are just a couple reasons why I hate store credit cards. But there’s something even worse… bankruptcy. No, I’m not talking about you going bankrupt, but if the store goes bankrupt. What happens to your store card in BK? Back in December of 2011, RoomStore [...]
Q: When my father-in-law paid for dinner he accidentally pulled out a Honda rewards credit card from his wallet, which he then quickly put back in. I didn’t say anything at the time but the next day I tried to look it up and can’t find any evidence of this card even existing! Can you [...]
It’s well known that the American Express Membership Rewards program allows you to transfer points to frequent flyer miles on a number of airlines. But don’t forget about the hotel transfer partners, too. As I write this (May 2013) the list of participating hotel programs are: Best Western: 1,000 Membership Rewards Points = 1,000 Best [...]
I was just taking a look at a couple of properties in Zillow and found it interesting how big the real estate tax bite can be. I have 2 rental properties and the real estate tax cost is 15% and 12% of the rental income. At least for my area Zillow underestimate rent rates (the vacancy rate is very low and properties in general rent within days or weeks – at rates 10%+ higher than Zillow estimates on average -based on my very limited sample of just what I happen to notice).
I thought I would look at the real estate tax to property value estimate and rent estimate by Zillow in Various locations.
Arlington, Virginia – real estate taxes were 1% of estimated property value and 17.5% of rental estimate.
This is just an anecdotal look, I didn’t try to get a basket of homes in each market I just looked at about 1-5 homes so there is plenty of room for misleading information. But this is just a quick look and was interesting to me so I thought I would share it. While the taxes are deductible (from the profit of the rental property) they are a fixed expense, whether the house is rented or not that expense must be paid.
A high tax rate to rental rate is a cash flow risk – you have to make that payment no matter what.
In my opinion one of the most important aspects of rental property is keeping the units rented. The vacancy rate for similar properties is an extremely important piece of data. Arlington, Virginia has an extremely low vacancy rate. I am not sure about the other locations.
I wanted to use Park Slope, Brooklyn, NYC but the data was confusing/limited… so I skipped it; the taxes seemed super low.
Related: USA Housing Rents Increased 5.4% in the Last Year (Sep 2012) – USA Apartment Market in 2011 – Top Markets in the USA for Buying Rental Property (2011) –
I could probably make a lot of money advertising First Premier Bank cards on this website, but I refuse to. This is the reason why… If you want to waste your money on something – even if I disagree with the product – ultimately it’s your right to spend your money how you want, right? [...]
Q: I had gotten a credit card with 24 months of no interest back in 2011. It’s now 2013 and the economy is better than it was back then, so you would think that the transfer offers would be comparable or even better. But everything I’m seeing is shorter… what gives? How can I get [...]