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The coming correction and other questions

1. Is a portfolio of 90% equities and 10% bonds too aggressive for a 38-year-old? 2. Do you still recommend using Dimensional Funds even though one must pay an advisor to access them? 3. What do you recommend to overcome my fear of a market crash so I can start investing? For a good start […]


What you probably don’t know about Paul Merriman

In this interview with financial advisor Joshua J. Sheats, of Radical Personal Finance, Paul speaks of his early ventures on Wall Street and in manufacturing, what it was like to build an advisory firm in the 1980s, his life’s challenges, and the goals, affirmations and philosophies that continue to motivate his work with the financial education foundation he […]


What is the best Vanguard balanced fund?

Paul answers your questions about Vanguard balanced funds, including the pros and cons, how to select the best balanced funds, and how to match them to your investment goals and risk tolerance. He references the S&P 500 Equity Portfolio Fine-Tuning Table Vanguard funds: Balanced Index (VBINX) Life Strategy Income (VSCGX) Life Strategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX) Life […]


Small-Cap Value: What Are The Risks?

This podcast was produced with an accompanying slideshow. Listen and watch here: Small Cap Value: What Could Go Wrong. Paul examines the historical and possible future risks and returns of small-cap value stocks as an asset class to help you determine its role in your portfolio – whether a young investor, in your working years, or a […]


Small-Cap Value: What Are The Risks?

This podcast was produced with an accompanying slideshow. Listen and watch here: ________. Paul examines the historical and possible future risks and returns of small-cap value stocks as an asset class to help you determine its role in your portfolio – whether a young investor, in your working years, or a retiree. Referenced are additional articles and […]


How will you change your Vanguard ETF portfolios?

Last week Vanguard announced they are adding 1,800 commission-free ETFs to their present line up. In this podcast Paul answers what this may mean for investors and three other questions from his listeners and readers: 1. What impact t will the new ETFs have on the Vanguard portfolios? 2. What is the risk in a […]


The truth of market timing and more

In this interview with Pure Financial‘s “Today on Your Money, Your Wealth”, Paul discusses the truth on market timing vs. buy-and-hold – and explains why he still does both. Plus, he answers questions on collecting Social Security and a pension, rolling and converting IRA money, and whether there are financial perks to waiting until after the first of the […]


Are great value returns a thing of the past? And nine other Q&A’s

Paul answers questions from his readers and listeners. 1. Can you recommend a portfolio of DFA funds? 2. How does an investor choose between all value and worldwide equity portfolio? Paul references the following Tables: S&P 500 Equity Portfolio, The Ultimate Buy-and-Hold Worldwide Equity Portfolio The Ultimate Buy-and-Hold All-Value Equity Portfolio 3. Which is better […]


Investing Myths

Paul discusses 15 investment myths that can cost investors a lot of money, with Ken Roberts, host of ‘Ken’s Bulls and Bears’, The myths include: • Investing is just another form of gambling. • You don’t lose money if you don’t sell. You should sell your losers and let your winners run. • Almost nobody […]


Preparing for retirement

In an interview with Jason R. Parker – author of Sound Retirement Planning, a blog and radio show by the same name, and president of Parker Financial LLC, a fee based wealth management firm – Paul discusses retirement, staying the course, fixed income, the value of intermediate-term bonds, building your portfolio for your personal risk tolerance and age, how often […]


A huge reason to invest in small-cap value

For many years I’ve sung the praises of small-cap value for all investors. Of course, that would be a relatively small percentage for retirees and a lot for first-time investors. I have used this table of 1-, 15- and 40-year returns for large-cap blend, large-cap value, small-cap blend and small-cap value so investors can easily compare […]


Should we get out now? Plus 9 Q&A

My recent opportunities to educate investors have been extremely satisfying, including a presentation to teenagers and their parents on Bainbridge Island, mostly-retired investors at the AAII chapter in Portland, OR and to 200 students at Western Washington University. The following are questions that came rolling in from the groups, as well as emails from […]


The Truth about Market Timing

Do you think the market is close to the top and you should be considering an exit strategy? Let’s talk about market timing, as it seems a lot of investors are concerned with it, judging from the number of questions I am receiving about timing subsequent to my interview with Meb Faber and Bogleheads’ comments after my interview with […]


Those who come out ahead have put their trust in the system over the long term

I had the recent pleasure of being interviewed by Meb Faber, co-founder and the Chief Investment Officer of Cambria Investment Management, and author of five books. We covered a lot of ground, speaking in some detail about my “Ultimate Buy & Hold Portfolio,” the power of diversification, and the pitfalls of emotional investing. We discussed the […]


What rate of return should I use in my retirement plan?

One of the toughest decisions in a financial plan is the assumption of returns for the equity part of the portfolio. This presentation is intended to help you in that decision. I just received my copy of the annual Dimensional Funds Matrix. This book contains 90 pages of return tables for more than 30 […]


Investing for Life: Dr. Jim Dahle of White Coat Investing interviews Paul Merriman

In this interview with Jim Dahle, M.D., Paul covers about a wide range of investment topics, from getting started to retirement planning and distributions. This is an excellent introduction to Paul’s work, including buy-and-hold, market timing, bonds, Bogleheads, the work of the Merriman Financial Educational Foundation, DFA and portfolio management, Do-It-Yourselfers, and much more. While Jim, […]


The ultimate distribution strategy: 2018 update

Paul’s favorite distribution strateg Each year Paul updates his favorite distribution strategy. In this discussion listeners will want to have copies of distribution tables 3 and 12. These tables reflect a 5% initial distribution plus annual increases for inflation. Tables 17 and 16 also start with a $50,000 distribution, but the distribution is […]


Fixed Distribution Strategies-2018 Update

The decision to establish a fixed distribution strategy can help ensure your peace of mind in retirement. This strategy is designed for people who retire with “enough” to meet minimum cash flow needs, including future adjustments for inflation. If you are new to our work, please read “The Ultimate Buy-and-Hold portfolio, 2018 edition” and the latest Fine Tuning Your […]


The most important lesson from “Save $1000 a year. Retire with millions”

The most important lesson from “Save $1000 a year. Retire with millions” Paul begins this podcast in response to tough critiques from some readers about this very popular article and podcast. He speaks to what he thinks are the most important lesson for investors. He also answers 4 Q&As: 1. Will you create recommended portfolios for popular HSAs? […]


Building a million dollar portfolio with $1000 a year

For over 20 years Paul has been producing articles and podcasts on 3 important decisions investors must make. The first is The Ultimate Buy-and-Hold Strategy, a discussion of the equity asset classes that Paul recommends investors use in their portfolio. The second is Fine Tuning Your Asset Allocation. The third, on Distributions in retirement is in the process […]