You know the Vanguard 500 Index thanks to him. And someday, if a Mount Rushmore for investor legends is carved into a mountain side, Jack Bogle will be there front and center. Mr. Bogle passed away yesterday at the age of 89. He will be remembered for the low cost index fund—an idea he made […]
“Meltdown? Absolutely baked into the cake as I write to you, and becoming more of a deep midterm concern for me as time passes,” wrote Dick Young in Intelligence Report back in July 2015. And here we are a short way into 2016 and the speculative NASDAQ index is down over 8%. As Dick notes, “In recent issues, my goal has been to work especially hard at providing you intelligence that will keep you safe and dividend-centric during what I consider the inevitable coming meltdown.”
Safe and dividend-centric—sort of has a ring to it, does it not? It does to me. Those words have been pounded into my head for all the years I’ve worked with my father-in-law, Dick Young, founder, and with my brother-in-law Matt Young, president and CEO of Richard C. Young & Co., Ltd. In addition to our family bond, the three of us studied, at different times, at our shared alma mater, Babson College. But it was Dick who studied charts (much to the dismay of his teachers, I’m guessing) as a student at Shaker Heights High School. As you can see, there’s a lot of history when Dick writes, “I have tweaked my original work on dividends and interest, along with my long-time interest in gold (I have held my original 1982 China Gold Pandas for decades) to produce what I call the ‘Maximizers’.”
The Maximizers is a diversified portfolio, a “Retirement Ark,” if you will, of dividend-paying and dividend-increasing (for 10-consecutive years or more) common stocks, high-grade bonds, and gold. A simple enough sounding strategy for sure, but a strategy that is difficult to follow, especially in times like these when legendary investor Jack Bogle would likely advise the twitching masses to “just don’t do something, stand there.”
And stand there should you, as Yoda might say. Because it is my belief that you might lose a couple battles here and there with a Maximizers styled approach, but you will win the war. An inside baseball look reveals that the speculative NASDAQ beat the Maximizers in 8 of 15 years this century, versus 7 outperformers for the Maximizers. A pitcher with a 7-and-8 Major League Baseball starting record would be banished to the bullpen. But despite a 7 and 8 record, the final results have been incredible over the complete 21st Century.
The Maximizers win by a long shot. At the same time, the Maximizers offer you the peace of mind and comfort you deserve. The maximum deviation between the best and worst year for the Maximizers is a tiny 10 percentage points. For the outgunned and outmanned NASDAQ, the deviation is an unsettling, if not breathtaking, 91 percentage points. And the bone-chilling NASDAQ record includes five down years, four of which were bruisers. No half-sensible retirement investor is going to sign on for that backbreaking volatility. Never forget Dick Young’s cardinal rule of portfolio crafting: Always analyze risk before worrying about potential returns.
Since FANG stocks peaked on June 20th of last year, (we cautioned readers against the group in our Peak Greater Fool piece on June 15, 2018), the ultra-conservative Dynamic Maximizers® portfolio has outperformed the group by 30 percentage points. FANG stocks have no place in conservative, retired, or soon-to-be retired investors’ portfolios. For those of you interested […]
Back in June of 1992 and today, I stress to my readers the importance of balance and diversity in their portfolios. Back then I wrote: Fine Balance From a Master Chef Did you happen to see the McIlhenny & Co. recent advertisement for the company’s Tabasco brand pepper sauce? The ad caught my eye because […]
Originally posted on August 22, 2017. After meeting monthly strategy report deadlines since 1978, I have decided it’s time to switch gears. The name Intelligence Report will survive, but with no contribution from Richard C. Young. Instead, I am transitioning aggressively to full-time research on behalf of private clients of our family investment management firm, […]
The new year is here, and America’s stock markets are weathering some turmoil after ending 2018 mired in volatility. There are some concerns about the future earnings potential of companies currently making up big parts of the major stock indexes. Apple’s current trouble is just the most recent example. Back in September of 2012, I […]
Since FANG stocks peaked on June 20th of last year, (we cautioned readers against the group in our Peak Greater Fool piece on June 15, 2018), the ultra-conservative Dynamic Maximizers® portfolio has outperformed the group by 30 percentage points. FANG stocks have no place in conservative, retired, or soon-to-be retired investors’ portfolios. For those of […]
Tucker Carlson hits the nail on the head when talking about America’s leaders and power brokers. Prompted by the former equity fund boss Mitt Romney’s editorial in the Washington Post, Tucker makes the case that leaders in Washington D.C. and on Wall Street aren’t ruling for the happiness of the people they serve on Main […]
That’s my investment creed. I don’t mind when markets are down as long as I’m still getting paid. Regular dividends and interest are succor to any investor when capital appreciation is wiped out at the whim of the markets. In January of 2012, I explained my investment creed, writing: So the investment environment today is […]
Two years ago I told readers the story of John Maynard Keynes’ lectures on compound interest in the late 20s. Keynes told the story then of Queen Elizabeth I and her impetuous and insightful use of compounding to build the British Empire. I wrote: Compound Interest, the Foundation of an Empire In a series of […]
As you know our concerns about Vanguard continue to mount. Yesterday, a reader wrote: “[Dick] used to be big on Wellington and Wellesley, given their longevity and resistance to tail risk over time. Also, it seemed to me that Wellington Management’s fixed income expertise would be an asset in this part of the cycle. I’m […]