Indexing with muscle: Sizing up iShares’ Portfolio Builders ETFs


Do you want active money management for the price of an index?

If so, you might like reading about these iShares builders.

image by pixabay

Read my article in the Globe and Mail

onlinetaxman free consultation - US expat taxes made easy

Andrew Hallam

I’m a financial columnist for Canada’s national paper, The Globe and Mail, as well as for AssetBuilder, a financial service firm based in Texas. I’m also the author of Millionaire Teacher: The Nine Rules of Wealth You Should Have Learned in School (2nd Ed. Wiley 2017) and The Global Expatriate’s Guide To Investing: From Millionaire Teacher to Millionaire Expat (Wiley 2015). My mission is to educate, motivate and inspire people on basic retirement planning and best practices for investing, using evidence-based strategies. I'm happy to comment on your questions. However, please read the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and the Comments Policy.

You may also like...

5 Responses

  1. bookatel - search hundreds of travel sites instantly

  2. Liam says:

    Hi Andrew,

    I’m a British expatriate teacher working in Indonesia. I am planning to open a trading account in the next few weeks

    Given the change of fees at DBS Vickers, is this still the best option for me? If not, who should I look to open an account with in Singapore?

    • Hi Liam,

      While DBS Vickers is still a good option, it’s easier to send and wire your money to TD International, based in Luxembourg. You could open the account easily, without traveling there or taking a test (unlike with Singapore) Here’s the link:

      • Liam says:

        Hi andrew,

        Sorry for the duplication!

        TD international wont accept applications in Indonesia. I think I am still registered as a british resident too, would I be ok to give my residential address in the UK or does that mean I lose the offshore benefits?

        If not, I am visiting singapore next weekend and I can open the DBS Vickers account…..

        I really don’t know which is best!

        Thanks so much again!

  3. Lance Parry says:

    Great stuff, Andrew!

    I always wonder what tools/websites you use to easily calculate your test portfolio returns?

    ie) “Between Nov. 13, 2008 (the Portfolio Builders inception date) and Sept. 3, 2013, such an unbalanced collection of ETFs would have gained 48.2 per cent.”


    • Hi Lance,

      I used the iShares website for the details above. They have excellent tracking charts for each of their ETFs. For American fund tracking (including U.S. based ETFs) I use Morningstar. And I have used Globefund to track Canadian mutual fund performances.


Leave a Reply

For your privacy we strongly recommend you do not use your full real name. While your email address will not be published, it may reveal your photo or a recognizable image if it is associated with It is strongly suggested you do not use a corporate or ISP email address. Before your comment is published you will receive an email asking you to confirm your email address. Select "Notify me of follow-up comments via email" to receive notifications of replies and be able to adjust your subscription. Published comments will not be deleted.

By clicking "Post Comment" you confirm you have read and agree to the conditions on the Legal Page; including the Privacy Policy, the Cookie Policy, and the Comments Policy.  We reserve the right to not publish comments that do not meet guidelines.