EARCOS Seminar 2011 – Indexed Investing
1. Here are some books that I recommend, on indexed investing. I’ve categorized them from “Beginner books” to “Advanced Books” here.
2. If you’re interested in what some of the world’s greatest financial authorities say about indexed investing, you can see what I collected here.
3. Last year, I was asked to contribute a chapter for a book. The focus of my chapter was on personal finance for teachers. It was published by Michigan State University, and I tweaked it to apply to international school teachers here.
4. Last month, I was asked by one of the heads of United World College, in Singapore, to give a series of investment talks on indexed investing. One of the biggest questions I wanted to address dealt with how much money you’ll need to retire. I hope you find this post particularly useful, you can read it here.
5. This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it’s a sample of some American financial advisory groups that are doing the right thing. They provide index fund solutions for their clients.
The biggest of them all is Vanguard, the world’s largest supplier of index funds. What’s so impressive about Vanguard is that it’s a non-profit organization. Because nobody owns this company, fees are kept exceptionally low, and you can hire a Vanguard advisor to build you a portfolio of index funds. This is the top rated fund company in the United States, based on comparative fund performances. There are no annual fees and the individual investor doesn’t pay fees to either buy or sell their funds. You can see the comparative tables here.
Note that America’s top 2 fund companies (Vanguard and Dimensional Fund Advisors) are the two largest providers of index funds.
There’s one downside to using Vanguard for overseas American investors. If you’re living in the U.S., opening an account with Vanguard is easy. But if you live overseas, they’re sticky about account openings. You could try giving them a U.S. address (if you have one) and see if you get lucky.
Investment firms that build accounts of indexed funds for clients include:
- Vanguard (based in Pennsylvania)
- Assetbuilder (based in Texas)
- RW Investments (based in Maryland)
- Aperio Group (based in California)
- Evanson Asset Management (based in California)
Some of the firms above require minimum amounts to open accounts. For example, Assetbuilder doesn’t accept accounts with less than $50,000 in assets. Evanson Asset Management has an account minimum requirement of $500,000 although their website suggests that they do make exceptions.
6. Expatriates of other nationalities can create indexed accounts with exchange traded funds. Those in Hong Kong, Indonesia or Thailand can use the same broker that I use, DBS Vickers:
- DBS Vickers
Those in other countries can do something similar if they can find a brokerage allowing them access to either the New York Stock Exchange or the Toronto Stock Market Exchange. Consider these as “supermarkets” that will allow you access to a wide variety of indexes.
I’ve given some instructions for Singapore-based British, Australian and Canadian investors here:
The premise is the same for other nationalities as well. Please have a look.
I hope you find these links to be helpful.
If you have any comments or questions, I’d love to hear from you in the comments section. You can remain anonymous, if you like, but your comments and questions can help to build a learning community.
I’ll do my best to answer questions–as will some of my other readers.
And everyone can learn.