February 21, 2014
As I've said on numerous occasions, it isn't necessary—in fact, it's futile—to pretend that you know exactly how the drama of the financial markets will unfold in the months ahead.
Rather, you should focus on the relatively few things you do know with a fair degree of certainty, and map out your strategy from there. Here are two themes I believe we can count on to guide us for the rest of 2014.More »
January 23, 2014
Through the years, I've known many investors who have enjoyed excellent returns on real estate they personally owned and managed. If you're a hands-on individual, direct investing in property is still a great a way to build (or increase) a fortune.
However, most of us lack the time, energy or skills to be landlords. For us, it makes more sense to invest indirectly in property through real estate investment trusts (REITs).More »
December 5, 2013
Investors find themselves in a jolly mood as we head into the 2013 holiday home stretch. Folks have every reason to feel merry, too. Domestic stocks have soared this year, especially the more speculative names. The longer the roaring advance continues, however, the more questions it raises. Are we in another bubble?
In the December 2013 issue, I take an in-depth look at these issues. Here, I'll give you an preview of how to start taking defensive measures.More »
Thu, 06 Mar 2014 18:15:14 ET
We're almost home. In the March newsletter, I projected that the S&P 500 stock index would climb to new highs, 'possibly 1900 or a bit higher, by late April.' Today's close at 1877 puts our goal well within striking distance. So let's assume we get there, probably sooner rather than later. What then? More »
Tue, 04 Mar 2014 16:34:13 ET
Will the Ukraine crisis bring down the bull? For a few hours Monday morning, you could have made a plausible argument that a Russian torpedo was about to blast Wall Street. But those fears evaporated overnight -- proof again that it seldom pays to make radical portfolio changes in response to one day's news. Today, the S&P 500 index closed up 28 points (another record high!), repairing Monday's 14-point loss twice over. More »
Thu, 27 Feb 2014 19:13:22 ET
No sweat. Literally. It's all this doggone frigid winter weather that has slowed the U.S. economy, don't you see? So intimated Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen in her Senate testimony today (delayed, appropriately, by a snowstorm two weeks ago). Wall Street traders nodded like obedient children, and pushed the S&P 500 index up nine points, to its first closing high of the year since mid-January. More »
One by one, the signal flags are going up, cautioning us the U.S. stock market may face rougher seas later this year. There's no need to panic. A "perfect storm" on the order of 2008 doesn't seem likely. However, if you're a conservative investor who prefers a good night's sleep, you shouldn't just be thinking about what to buy. It's time to do some judicious selling, too.
In this month's visit, I'll show you how to balance these priorities. We certainly aren't running away from stocks—I've got four champion dividend payers for you that will easily survive any market turbulence ahead and come out even stronger on the other side. For safety, I'll also point you to three low-risk bond funds where you can park cash at a reasonable yield while you await the next big across-the-board buying opportunity for stocks. Later, we'll get down to the gritty business of selling, with three criteria that can tip you off to stocks you should sell. In addition, I'll name 18 risky stocks to unload now—big billion-dollar fish, not some penny-ante outfits you've never heard of. First, though, let's find out what those caution signs are that have popped up lately in the stock market, plus how you can navigate safely through the choppy waters I'm expecting in the middle months of 2014. More »
I am trying to buy or research a stock you discussed, but the ticker symbol you mentioned in Profitable Investing doesn't work. How can I find the right ticker symbol?
Unlike the common stocks and mutual funds most investors are used to, certain investments, including preferred stocks and international stocks, may have a welter of different ticker symbols depending on what quote lookup or brokerage service you look for them on. More »
Richard E. Band is the newsletter world's #1 authority on investing for low-risk growth. His flagship Total Return Portfolio has quintupled in value since its inception in 1990, while taking far less risk than the popular stock market index funds. More »
Dear Richard, I've been an avid subscriber for more than 10 years. With your guidance, as nerve-wracking as it was, I avoided selling in panic during the last meltdown when my portfolio was down 50%. Today, again due to your deep knowledge of the markets, my portfolio has not only recovered but stands at an all-time high. My sincerest thanks!
–John L., Seattle