Friday, November 4, 2016

Short Takes: Smart Beta Verdict, Shrinking Closet Indexing, and more

Here are my posts for the past two weeks:

Crazy Mortgages

Investing Lessons from Gambling on Coin Flips

Faulty Investment Assumptions

Here are some short takes and some weekend reading:

Canadian Couch Potato has been running a long series about smart beta that ends with this post summing up his opinions. His fans who feared he’d gone to the dark side can rest easy. I appreciate his approach of keeping an open mind when looking into new ideas. We can’t learn anything new if we automatically reject all new ideas. I would never have taken up index investing if I hadn’t given it a chance. Although it seems unlikely I will make significant changes to my investing approach in the future, I won’t rule it out. One could argue that I have taken a small step toward smart beta by owning VBR (Vanguard’s U.S. small cap value ETF). However, nothing I’ve seen about smart beta has persuaded me to go any further than this.

Barry Ritholtz quotes Bill Miller saying that the shift from active to passive investing isn’t what it seems. The real shift is from expensive closet indexers to low-cost indexing.

The Blunt Bean Counter explains important changes to the Principal Residence Exemption (PRE) for capital gains on your home or cottage. Under the new rules, it is important to declare home sales on your taxes, even if you don’t have to pay any extra taxes. Based on my experience trying to explain such things to non-experts, I predict that many people will decide that these complications don’t apply to them and they will ignore it. In many cases, ignoring these new rules will end expensively.

Canadian Portfolio Manager has begun a series of video tutorials explaining the mechanics of setting up an ETF portfolio at discount brokers (including screenshots). This video is for BMO Investorline. Be sure to read the article as well because it describes some minor slip-ups made in the video.

Jason Heath takes some financial details from a couple and looks at whether they can retire. I find Heath’s approach to analyzing this case more interesting than most articles of this type. A good quote: “Anyone can retire at any age ... It’s just a matter of whether or not you can live comfortably based on your existing financial resources.”

Tom Bradley at Steadyhand says that a TV show about sensible investing would be “the worst TV show ever.” I’m pretty sure I’d watch at least one episode.

Preet Banerjee has some money-saving tips for traveling abroad in this “Drawing Conclusions” video. He also brings us an interesting interview with accountant Mark Goodfield, a.k.a. The Blunt Bean Counter.

Big Cajun Man managed to get a trading account transferred from TD to Questrade in only 10 days.

Boomer and Echo say the Feds aren’t killing the housing market.

My Own Advisor is thinking about minimalism to reduce clutter, costs, and other things that distract from the things we truly enjoy in life.

Million Dollar Journey describes the experience of transferring a defined-contribution pension from a former employer to a self-directed Locked-in Retirement Account (LIRA).

1 comment:

  1. At the end of it, it took a little more than 10 days, after having to fill in forms correctly, but still seemed quicker than most banks I have dealt with.

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