|Expense Ratio (net)||0.04%|
|Last Cap Gain||0.00|
|Morningstar Risk Rating||Average|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||1.00|
|5y Average Return||N/A|
|Average for Category||N/A|
|Inception Date||Nov 13, 2000|
Fees and expenses are no longer one of the most important factors to consider when choosing an index fund. Financial advisers will inevitably get lots of inquiries from investors wanting to shift their index fund dollars into Fidelity’s new funds.
Fidelity shook the investment landscape last week when it announced that it would offer two index funds with zero expense ratios: Fidelity Zero Total Market Index FZROX and Fidelity Zero International Index FZILX . Schwab and Fidelity can afford to offer index funds below their cost because they will make it up with all the other funds and brokerage services that clients will buy.
At their core, mutual funds should be lower-risk investments. With mutual funds, you may lose some or all of the money you invest because the securities held by a fund can go down in value. Indeed, an array of low-risk mutual funds spanning multiple asset classes are currently available to investors.
Among the questions asked of my July 4 column about Taylor Larimore's three-fund portfolio was its historic performance. How would investors have fared had they implemented that idea 20 years ago? Easy to answer, particularly with Morningstar Direct's handy-dandy hypotheticals tool.
Indeed, the Federal Reserve's interest-rate hikes--two in 2018's first half with two more likely on the way before the year is over--are the primary explanation for performance in my bucket retirement portfolios so far this year. Despite decent, albeit unspectacular, returns in the portfolios' equity holdings, those gainers were offset by more rate-sensitive bond positions. Before we delve into the Bucket portfolios' performance, let's first review what the Bucket approach is designed to do.
Last week's column profiled Taylor Larimore's recommended three-fund portfolio, which consists of three Vanguard offerings: Total Stock Market Index VTSAX , Total International Stock Index VTIAX , and Total Bond Market Index VBTLX . My tax expertise starts and ends with realizing that if I own shares of Berkshire Hathaway BRK.B , I will be tax-free until I sell that position, since the company does not pay a dividend, and stocks, unlike mutual funds, are not forced to distribute their realized net capital gains. The Total International Stock fund would go into my taxable account (two reasons--I can then recover all or most of the foreign tax withholding as a tax credit on the 1040 and second I will get the qualified dividend rate).
In 2007, Warren Buffett famously bet $1 million that the broad market would beat the average hedge fund over the next decade. Ted Seides of Protégé Partners LLC stepped up to the challenge. Despite the vicious market plunge that followed shortly after, Buffett managed to win the bet by a mile.