Investing – FUN with mutual FUNds

Anyone who reads this blog with regularity knows that one of the key reasons I want you to become debt-free is so you can invest more!  Investing means that Jenn and I will be able to achieve many of our hopes and dreams!  It means that our current sacrifice will allow us to purchase financial freedom for our future!  (Perhaps the number of “!” indicates my level of excitement about this!!!

Well, one of the most common questions I receive is “What mutual funds do you recommend?”

My answer is always, “I don’t recommend mutual funds.  I can only tell you what ones I own.  What you choose is up to you.”

So today, for those inquring minds who want to know, I am publishing some of the mutual funds/investments that I own.

As I prepared this list, I realized several things:

  • We have too many accounts.  We have a rollover 401(k), rollover 403(b), 529, Roth IRA, 401(k), and a SIMPLE IRA.
  • I am OK with some risk, but for some reason or other I have purchased some bond funds.  Maybe that is part of my inner-security needs bleeding out … ?
  • I can’t tell you exactly why I own all of these funds – that CAN’T be good.  I really hold to the belief that I should not own anything that I can’t tell you exactly why I own them.

Do you have any funds that you really like that you think I should be considering?

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  1. David Nanney on August 8, 2007 at 3:32 am

    Any of the Vanguard target retirement funds are good choices with low expense ratios. Also, T Rowe Price is highly recommended for the same reasons – good return at a low price. That is something you should check on all of your funds – the expense ratio!

    Here are some of what I have:

    Vanguard Mid-Cap Index Fund Investor Shares

    Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (the expense ratio is 0.9%)

  2. Moneymonk on August 8, 2007 at 8:21 am

    VHGEX or anything with Vanguard is good.

    You said those are just some of the funds you own. Wow! I hate to see the whole portfolio.

    And as David said VTSMX, has a low expense ratio

  3. Chris Swaney on August 8, 2007 at 1:52 pm

    You may want to look at some individual stocks. It si the best way to make money. Also you have way to many baskets.

  4. Andy on August 9, 2007 at 11:42 am

    Reiterating a bit of what the other posters have already said…

    It looks like you could do a bit of consolidating. Looking at your American Fund holdings, you have more Microsoft and Lowe’s than you may realize. FYI – has a Portfolio Manager tool that lets you analyze your portfolio.

    When choosing funds, I consider the following:
    – performance and risk measures – here are two good primers: and
    – costs – low expenses and no-load
    – ownership – are the fund managers investing in the fund?
    – stewardship
    – tax position/efficiency (important for funds held in taxable accounts) – is the fund sitting on large amounts of unrealized gains/losses?

    Here are a few of my favorite fund families:
    Vanguard, T. Rowe Price, Bridgeway, Royce, Dodge and Cox, Marsico, Oakmark, Third Avenue…

    Without a clear understanding of your goals and complete financial situation, I’ll refrain from giving any specific fund recommendations. That being said, if you really want an “EZ” portfolio, you might consider life-stage or target funds.

  5. Bill Smith on August 9, 2007 at 8:19 pm

    Can’t wait til I’m out of debt. Just about 17 months to go. All I have is 401k. I have it in;
    – Dodge & Cox (DODGX) 16.11% 5year Average Annual Total Return
    – Vanguard Primecap (VPMCX) 15.71% 5y Aver Ann Tot Ret
    – Vanguard Windsor II (VWNFX) 14.46% 5y Aver Ann Tot Ret
    – Amer Funds EuroPac (RERFX) 20.96% 5y Aver Ann Tot Ret

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