Investing Articles for Beginners and Pros Alike

Here you'll find our articles on investing. We cover everything from asset allocation to mutual fund selection to investing in 401k, IRA and other retirement accounts. The goal is to help you become a better, more successful investor.

DR 108: Should You Pay Off Your Mortgage or Invest for Retirement?

Imagine you’ve just inherited some money. The amount just happens to match the outstanding balance on your mortgage. Now you have a decision. Do you pay off the mortgage or invest the money for retirement. That’s the question facing a podcast listener named Shelly. Here is her email to me: Great job on your podcasts. […]

Published or Updated: September 23, 2014

DR 107: Monthly Investment Update–September 2014

It’s time for our monthly investment portfolio update. In each update I run through the tools I use and the results of my investments. I show you the good and the bad. We’ll even cover some mistakes I’ve made and what I’ve learned from those mistakes. Let’s start with the tools and a high level […]

Published or Updated: September 21, 2014

DR 102: 4 Times Recharacterizing an IRA Conversion or Contribution Can Save Your Bacon (Literally)

One of the best retirement savings tools is often overlooked. The tool can save you thousands of dollars in taxes and sleepless nights if you made a mistake with your IRA. And yet according to a 2010 study by Fidelity less than one-third of investors are aware of this tool. I’m referring to what’s called […]

Published or Updated: September 3, 2014

How to Calculate Investment Returns–A Simple Approach

I‘ve had several readers email me about how to calculate investment returns. It seems like it should be a simple task. We all have ready access to our mutual fund and brokerage accounts. These accounts often report a performance measure of some sort. Surely we can bring all of this information into one place to […]

Published or Updated: August 28, 2014

DR 099: 5 Gotchas with Commissioned Based Brokers

A reader we’ll call Frank recently emailed me about his advisor (we covered part of his email about dividends here). She had placed him in A shares of American Fund mutual funds. This told me he was working with a commissioned-based broker, as these mutual funds charge a sales fee of 5.75% to compensate the […]

Published or Updated: August 16, 2014

DR 098: Dividend Investing (Part 2): Mutual Funds and Dividends

We began our series on dividend investing by examining the ins and outs of dividends. Today we continue the series by looking at how dividends work with mutual funds and whether the yield on a fund should be a key consideration in our investing decisions. This topic came to light from an email I received […]

Published or Updated: August 12, 2014

DR 096: Dividend Investing (Part 1)–What are Stock Dividends?

One of my favorite aspects of investing is receiving a dividend payment. Each month I look to see how much I earned in dividends, and I track this amount yearly. In fact, dividends play a significant role in my investment policy related to individual stocks. With the exception of Berkshire Hathaway, every business whose shares […]

Published or Updated: August 16, 2014

DR 093: 401(k)s vs. IRAs: What are the Pros and Cons?

In the world of tax-advantaged retirement savings accounts, there are plenty of options. But the two most commonly-used options are the 401(k) and the IRA. Both come in traditional (save taxes on contributions) and Roth (save taxes on withdrawals) options. While there are many similarities between a 401k and an IRA, there are also some […]

Published or Updated: July 25, 2014

DR 092: How One Doctor is Learning to Invest Like a Pro

It all started with a simple question about dividends and mutual fund fees. A listener to the podcast named Stephanie wanted to know if a fund’s returns were after fees and dividends. (They are.) After I learned more about Stephanie’s finances and career through several email exchanges, I popped the question. No, not that question. […]

Published or Updated: December 4, 2014

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