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Island Investing

Riffs, rants, and the upside of investing from way off Wall Street

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Category: For Investors

Book Notes: Spend ‘Til The End, Part I

As mentioned previously, some notes from Spend ’til The End. Part I: Smooth Financial Plans There are three parts to an economics-based approach to financial planning: 1 – Maximizing your spending power. Making financial choices that provide you with more money to spend for the same effort. For instance, whether to collect a smaller Social […]

Book Notes: Spend ’til The End, Intro

“If you continue to do what you’ve always done, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got.” – Yogi Berra My firm provides only a small sliver of the entire spectrum of financial services. We manage two portfolios, and only in a pretty particular kind of way. So when friends and family started coming to […]

Links of Interest

Waiting for CNBC. Desperately seeking adult supervision. The Fed’s Trillion. An amazing graphic. Everything You Ever Really Wanted to Know About Personal Finance on Just One Page. Free ebook. Making It. Warren Buffett, Malcolm Gladwell and why talent is overrated. Musings from the Berkshire Hathaway meeting. Charlie Munger: “As I move close to the edge […]

Why I Built a Spoke Fund®

A year ago I was struggling to solve a challenging problem. After years of dreaming, I was finally going to start my own investment fund. The problem, though, was choosing the kind of fund I wanted to run. I wanted to build a firm that was independent of Wall Street, so I could manage my […]

What is a Spoke Fund® ?

A Spoke Fund® is a group of separate investor accounts linked to a portfolio containing most of the liquid net worth of that fund’s manager. “Spoke Fund®” is short for “hub and spoke” model. The portfolio manager’s money is the hub and the spokes lead to each investor’s account. Any changes in the hub are […]

The Superior Math of Value Investing

I believe value investing is the only rational way to invest. It’s two scoops of common sense, a healthy dollop of skepticism and a commitment to ordering off-menu entrees. While a certain level of analytical ability is required, investing intelligently is not nearly as difficult as Wall Street would like you to believe – if […]

Create Your Own Convertible

I don’t mean building a car – see this guy to do that. I’m referring to a bond that can be converted into stock. Convertibles are hybrid securities with the features of both stocks and bonds. They usually have lower yields than regular bonds, but an owner receives the right to convert the bond to […]

Build Your Own Annuity. Please.

Annuities seem to be enjoying a resurgence lately, thanks to the bear market. That’s a shame. Many companies sell annuity products that are so costly in terms of fees and penalties that they seem better suited for funding the salesperson’s retirement than the investor’s. Amazingly, some agents even recommend buying annuities inside an IRA, meaning […]

Signs of Life in Keys’ Real Estate?

From the front lines of the housing bubble, and direct from the father of Cale in the Keys, here is an update on the Key West real estate market. Dad doesn’t know I posted this, but he’s been putting these reports out every month for ten years and he’s got quite a following among the […]

This Week’s Sign the Lunatics are Running the Asylum

Kiplinger’s reports that expense ratios for stock mutual funds are rising, despite a horrific year of performance for most funds. As described in the article, when assets in a fund fall below certain “breakpoints,” management fees as a percentage of assets increase. So it could very well be the case that you, my dear mutual […]