Schwab offers this fund among its no-fee funds, but the 5 year record shows that Schwab's own SICNX has done slightly better, with almost half the expense ratio. For in-and-outers Schwab's ETF (SCHF) is another bet on international companies, though it looks better than the former 2 funds only in year-to-date gains (with a negligible .09% expense ratio. The safest bet is the S&P index fund, which is close to, or better than, the records of any of the other funds. (If you believe the USA is sinking (thanks to its "historically worst" leader), then you might wish to have the foreign exposure. The markets have been straight up for all of the Chief Exec's 6 years, but he has only 2 to go.)
Sure, this fund will shine during economic collapses like 2008, but that doesn't make it a prudent investment let alone a "winner." The fund is a bet on short odds, not a long-term investment in America's future. It's for investors who clip coupons and look for Walmart specials. If I were to play this game, I'd rather see 100% in cash, waiting for aggressive bottom-fishing at the "low point" (but when has market timing ever worked for anyone?) The worst option is putting a quarter of the cash horde in dead metals. This is a fund for those who have a few thousand extra to place in the hands of a market timer--or for doomsday prophets (i.e. "survivalists") who believe the apocalypse is upon us and in a global meltdown gold will somehow have meaningful value.
A closer look reveals that Schwab's two outstanding foreign investments--SCHF and SWOIX--are worthy of equal consideration. The first is an ETF (i.e. trades like a stock) and the 2nd a mutual fund. The first is tied to an international index; the 2nd is actively managed. The first has a minuscule, practically "invisible", fee ratio of .09%; the 2nd has a fairly "hefty" fee ratio of almost 1.5%. Both funds have no transaction costs to Schwab clients.
Comparing both to the 5-year market averages of the U.S. markets reveals that neither of these funds has, as yet, equaled let alone bested the S&P500 index. However, in the longer term (5 years) SWOIX has at least managed to match the S&P domestic index, whereas SCHF is trailing it by a wide margin. So, at this point, SCHF would appear to be the smartest choice for anyone wanting international exposure at minimal cost for the next 2 years. For the longer term (up to 5 years and longer), the actively managed SWOIX would appear, despite the inflated fee ratio, to be the better choice.
Schwab also offers a leading out-of-house actively managed fund, with fees and costs competitive with those of SWOIX: it's Artisan International Fund (ARTIX). These considerations apply only to investors who anticipate a resurgence in economies outside the U.S. and wish to initiate exposure to such a scenario. Without question, at present the very best investment is a domestic one. In fact, it's hard to beat the U.S. index Fund: SWPPX (over the past 12-18 months approximately 80% of all actively managed mutual funds have failed to match or exceed the S&P500 index).
As a non-transaction fee, 4-star fund based on the selection of leading money managers,SWOIX looks good on the surface. But it's so easy to collect more funds than necessary, some overlapping with others and at higher fee ratios. This one should be a solid investment, but a committee of stock pickers, however competent, can easily add up to diluted results. Too many cooks serving up an uninspiring plate-de-jour is insufficient justification for a higher fee ratio. Still, it's always a viable "buy" candidate.
As if the mediocre Amazon reviews weren't enough, now Consumers Reports declares the "Pill" precisely that--overpriced metal waste. The headphone did better. Will Apple surge because of an 11th place headphone (costing 200). Meanwhile, companies that Apple passed up--Sonos and Harman-JBL dominate the ratings (with Bose below them in the middle). 2 years ago Apple could have bought Harman Industries. But they're more clueless than the average consumer. (At least Beats has managed to get marquee space in Best Buiy stores--thanks to hard-hustle tactics.The public is unlikely to fall for it.)
Finally, this dog is returning to the levels at which it could have been sold without realizing any surplus from the promise of an impending $158. But this is the most aggravating merger I've ever experienced from the shareholder's perspective. And there's no finalization date--that is, if the merger is allowed to transpire.
Who is he? A football coach? He'd have to be Vince Lombardi or Mike Ditka to carry any weight with viewers in the Mid-West. Maybe they should try SuperBowl quarterbacks. Jim McMahon is still available.
Cook seemed realistic about limiting "innovation" in favor of a focus on the quality of current product. But by over-paying for a recent 3rd-rate audio marketing company and finagling with the stock price (set it under $100 to "guarantee" elevation to $100+), he has sullied the reputation of the company and, by association with Beats, reduced Apple to a mere "marketing scheme."
All of this could have been avoided by leaving the stock price alone and striking an alliance with a reputable audio company (Apple could have purchased venerable, mighty Harman Industries 2 years ago--or Logitech 1 year ago. Or they could have established an influential position in Harman with their 3 billion. Instead--the "Pill" is now looking like a "bomb."
The fickle world of consumer technology is now finding better deals for BT streaming than the Beats Pill--like the JBL Charge, offering great sound in a compact package plus charging capabilities and a lower price point. This item from "stodgy", "venerable" Harman Industries (JBL, Harman-Kardon) is getting better reviews from experts and consumers alike. The point is that Apple's throwing billions at a "faddish" headphone marketer and its manipulation of its stock price is not merely irrelevant: it's projecting an image that's the opposite of Steve Jobs' exclusive attention to: 1. innovation and 2. quality control. If the new CEO is clueless about the first priority, he should have enough sense to attend to the 2nd.
This is the first time in the past 15 years as an investor that I've begun to have negative feelings toward the company and its stock price. And most of my malaise is centered on the Beats deal--3 Big Bills (Billion) for the latest headphone phenomenon. How can Apple be trusted to deploy its capital wisely--in the interest of both its product and shareholders--when it throws money at a recent company that supposedly is a marketing whiz and has "connections" with powerful gurus who have access to the extra cash of GenX successors?
5 years ago Apple could have bought Harman Industries. Even as recently as 14 months ago Apple could have established a large, influential position in this venerable, admired industry leader (JBL, Harman Kardon), which in addition to competing with Bose and Sonos for the "home space" is now the leader in supplying audio equipment and streaming capabilities in the automotive industry.
Nothing wrong with the split--though I'd agree that "cosmetically" it may look to some investors like Apple is, contrary to the fairly high prices commanded by its products, concerned about the price of its stock when instead it should be focused on almost exclusively on its product and reputation for innovation and quality control.
What would worry me far more than the split is the Beats deal--doesn't Apple sense the disproportion between the price they paid (3 Billion--yes, that's a capital B, not an M) for a Johnny-Come-Lately headphones company that got lucky with a couple of shrewd and savvy marketing moves. In retrospect, that 3B may look like an extravagant waste, especially when opportunities with leaders in the audio industry--Bose, Sonos and above all Harman Industries (remember the Harman iSub?) were passed over. Less than 2 years ago Apple could bought the venerable, still influential Harman--before the stock exploded after gaining control of the booming automobile audio market.
I wasn't aware of this fund until recently. I see that it's receiving 4 rather than 3 stars from Morningstar. Enough cause for a Thrivent investor to shift, say, 50,000 from AAMBX to this one?
The rumor is that Apple's incomprehensible 3.2 billion deal for the late-arriving headphones marketer was all about changing the audio plugs on iPod / iPhone headphones to Lightning connectors, thus forcing users to buy Beats phones. Please say it ain't so, Apple! Any good reputation, let alone good will, Apple has built up since Steve came back would go up in smoke.
I think a "base" of defensive blue chips makes sense for long term investing (formerly, I would have added bonds--but the low inflation since Obama has made them losers). I'd go with a cheap index fund (like John Bogle recommends at Vanguard ) or, better, a Schwab ETF that follows the market averages. It's when the markets are "hot" (and who would have guessed that the upward trend of 2009 would still be going strong by mid-2014?) that you want do go with a few high fliers (carefully selected natural gas stocks or consumer tech stocks--but not necessarily the "A-rated" ones. I do best with the unloved F-rated companies).
Long-term, nothing has come close to my investment in a single household necessity: CL (Colgate toothpaste).
Yachtman's safe and defensive fund, an exercise in slow growth and patience, has paid off well enough during the first 8 years of the present century to earn it a Morningstar rating of 5 stars and a description of "boring but beautiful." But with Obama and six years of a bull market (the first since the Clinton years), Yacktman is starting to lag. It's been dropped to 4 stars by Morningstar, especially after failing to match the market averages over the past 2 years--but not before Yacktman raised the fund's fee ratio to an above-average 1.5%. So now the "amateur" investor may wish to emulate Yachtman's own approach and invest directly in hi-yield dividend blue chips. Just sit back, enjoy your Coke and make as few adjustments as possible.
If you're hesitant to pick and purchase your own stocks, most brokerages offer no-commission funds (ETFs and mutuals) with expense ratios that are not 1.5% but a mere .05%! (Suddenly, you should have a better picture of how much of your investment is going to the fund manager.)
Don't you mean OxyTocin? That's what Don Draper should have sprayed up his nose when Megan tried for a 3-some with Don and her girl-friend in last night's episode.
You lose credibility with your 2nd repetition, then your 3rd. But by now you have none left to lose. You're a shill for your stock alerts scam. Here's a free tip: Mortgage the house and put everything in HSY. Then learn to be patient--play video games or help thy neighbor. 10 years from now you'll be a rich man (or at least beat Berkshire-Hathaway).
Stoned, coy, ecstatic--who gives a sh...? "What" did he say (not "how" did it say it) that might account for the stock's 8% drop on a record-breaking day for the market? It's within 20 cents of my stop loss. I've got to decide whether to lower it to 4 or take minor punshiment at 4.50. (It's not clear to me why Yahoo has a link to some voodoo laser therapy in today's news about PTIE.)
SEP has dropped precipitously in the last 5 days. The Street's rating of it is A+ but that's admittedly a minority report. The stock is still in the upper range of its yearly rise. But is this a temporary pause or a retracing back to the 30 dollar range? (Anadarko has yet to succumb to the swoon of other energy stocks.)