The Ultimate Buy and Hold Strategy

by Paul Merriman on July 17, 2013

We should all have an "ultimate strategy," based on the best way we know how to do something. This podcast presents the best way I've found to position yourself for the future. The ultimate strategy must have a long history of success, be able to be managed simply, offer better rates of return on investment and no more exposure to risk you're willing to take. It should also allow you to rest assured that your strategy works in good times and bad. No matter what times are like, this is the "Ultimate Buy and Hold Strategy" for the long haul.

Recommendation: Before listening to this podcast, Paul recommends that you print the pie graphs (or have them available to reference). You can find them at:

For more information, read Paul's "Ultimate Buy and Hold" article found on the Home Page of his website, and read Paul's MarketWatch article by the same name.

Commission-Free ETF Portfolios

by Paul Merriman on July 10, 2013

Commission-free ETFs at Vanguard, Fidelity and Charles Schwab, offer investors a great way to take advantage of diversification and asset allocation, even with just a small amount of money to begin. Paul introduces listeners to these ETF portfolios, along with the pros and cons of ETFs and the advantages and disadvantages at each company. See Paul's updated ETF recommendations at For those using Paul's older recommended portfolios at Schwab, for example, you may wish to modifying using these updates. 
Stay tuned in the coming months for another podcast that will answering the questions on this subject posed by listeners.


Fund Ratings: Garbage In, Garbage Out

by Paul Merriman on July 3, 2013

Fund family rating lists can lead us to erroneous conclusions. Paul offers practical ways to think about and assess fund performance that will help you make the best decisions. 


by Paul Merriman on June 26, 2013

This podcast is aimed at the first-time investor. Paul suggests you share with your children, grandchildren and other young adults in your life. He believes that if these 10 decisions are made correctly, an investor is almost assured a successful investing career.  


What If I Am Wrong?

by Paul Merriman on June 19, 2013

Paul explores the implications of making investment recommendations that are wrong. Contrary to what he recommends, it may be that large will beat small, growth will beat value, and U.S. will beat international. How will investors make out if everything goes wrong? This is an important question to ask about any portfolio. Paul faces the possibility and concludes that being wrong is not necessarily bad.


Are You Getting Your Share?

by Paul Merriman on June 12, 2013

Paul admits to being excited about the release of the annual DALBAR report that compares what funds report returns vs. the actual real-time return investors receive. This report shows the impact of pairing emotional investors with high-cost funds. Paul promises that some of the results are hard to believe, but there is no question that investors can do better with a little education.

Do You Need Real or Hypothetical Results?

by Paul Merriman on June 5, 2013


Paul sees red when he hears people attacking the use of hypothetical results, because they let you see how bad a fund or asset class can be. He considers the short-term results of actual performance to be more misleading than hypothetical long-term returns. A bigger problem than the use of hypothetical profits, says Paul, are funds not reporting the built-in hypothetical future losses.


The Impact Of Inflation On Your Investments

by Paul Merriman on May 29, 2013



Paul believes inflation is one of the most overlooked risks for investors. He compares the after-inflation returns of the S&P500, small-cap value and several fixed-income securities. While bonds are considered very safe by most investors, it may be that stocks are by far the safer asset class.


Should I Use Bonds Or Bond Funds?

by Paul Merriman on May 22, 2013



Paul discusses the pros and cons of bond funds in his list of 15 different considerations in determining which is better: bonds or bond funds?


The Huge Need For Financial Literacy

by admin on May 15, 2013



Paul discusses his latest financial education program at Western Washington University and the results of a national financial literacy survey that indicates a huge need, even for people who are confident of their knowledge of financial topics. Paul gives his listeners the five easy questions that the survey listed. While he believes his listeners will get all 5 right, less than 10% of adults in the survey did.