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Subject:  Re: Army Guy needs Stock Advice Date:  8/18/2005  9:32 AM
Author:  DeltaOne81 Number:  47292 of 88534

I am very disappointed that I switched to Sharebuilder now bc they only offer stocks and ETF's.

ETFs are as good as funds, well, they are funds. If you can find what you want there, you can stick with sharebuilder, unless the commissions bother you.

Oh and, if the funds in general are two 'boring' for you, there's no reason you can't invest in an individual stock or two or three on the side, once you get your capital you have to invest in each up to about $1000 or more (may wish to invest in two $500 chunks so you can follow it and pick up more on a price drop - with sharebuilder this will still keep your commissions below 1%).

Heck, if it's fun and you're interested in it and have the time, there's absolutely no reason not to invest in some individual stocks. You'll learn a lot and it'd make you that much better informed and more experienced to decide if you want to go that way later on. But yeah, I wouldn't make it your primary savings vehicle right now with your current level of capital.

As for the Vanguard funds, the target 2045 still seems a little conservative for my taste. As you've previously stated I'm young and can afford risk in my retirement acct. so what funds do I need to concentrate on? I want growth- growth- growth.

I agree, the 'lifestyle' funds tend to err more conservatively. Can't blame them really, they don't wanna be the bad news story.

Hmmm, some recommendations:
- A total market / Wilshire 5000 index - the 5000 biggest companies (which starts getting pretty mid to small)
- or you could put some in the S&P 500 and then more in the Wilshire 4500 (the 5000 minus the S&P 500)
- Russell 2000 small cap, or even small cap grwoth index
- international index - MSCI EAFE
- or you could consider a small cap foreign or emerging market foreign
- what's your opinion on the current real estate situation? There are some REIT index funds out there

Here's a very rough estimate of a very aggressive portfolio, play with the numbers as you feel comfortable:
~60% domestic with a leaning towards smaller
~30% foreign
~10% REIT or high-yield bonds or something to diversify

Also the funds in the TSP are pretty limited, and they aren't Vanguard.

The TSP funds are actually very good funds. I think the expense ratio is like 0.06%, better than Vanguard. But since you're probably in a lowish tax bracket right now, it very well could be a Roth is your best deal. Since there's no matching, go with what style you feel fits your situation best. Do realize
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