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Author: thomasbihn One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 39286  
Subject: Re: index funds Date: 6/16/2013 12:52 PM
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Hello worker99er,

You wrote that your reasoning for 2-3 funds was to pay fewer fees. This question isn't so much directed at you (unless, of course, you've found the answer in further research), but aren't the fees all a percentage basis, meaning that if an ETF charges .18% annual management fees and another one charges .18% management fees, assuming equal performance and equal investment in a tax-advantaged account and reinvestments of dividends, wouldn't the net expense for the two funds be equivalent? If so, I would say you probably would end up paying the same or less by spreading your investment out across more funds. I also believe though, that you have to be careful that you don't find yourself too heavily weighted in one industry or company by doing this, because some indexes will probably have overlap.

Also, if you haven't invested the bulk of it yet and are concerned with the market (especially given the most recent week), you may want to consider spreading the investment out by dollar-cost-averaging.

Personally, I've come to realize that cash, while not growing on its own is a form of "potential energy". By keeping some percentage of your portfolio in cash during bull runs, it may reduce your profit potential, but I think it reduces your risk by giving you a safety net of guaranteed money while also providing ammunition after a major down-turn to buy low.

Being only 10-15 years from your retirement goal, I would advise consulting the retirement boards (or even a professional financial advisor) for advice on recommended allocations as well. I personally won't want to have 100% equity allocation when I get to 10 years out on the off chance the market drops 50% and stays there into retirement.
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