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Author: BuildMWell Big gold star, 5000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 74759  
Subject: Re: Annuity-calculating NPV Date: 10/5/2003 7:58 PM
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"Since NPV is a negative number, meaning with this investment I'm starting with $199,000 or $30k more than I should I should pull out...have I got this right now?"

Yep, you are on the money. The AMEX deal nets you a return of about 3.52% based on the growth less expenses over 7 years. The Vanguard fund returns 4.42% over the same 7 year period. I would not like either choice. You can do far better than either of these.

Let's assume you just buy SPY (S&P 500) and hold the shares for 7 years. If the market grows at 8%, your $199,000 will be worth $341,000 in 7 years. Of course you lose the insurance you gain with an annuity and the fees you give up with Vanguard. In either case you are paying someone else to do the work that an index fund does automatically at much lower fees with no surrender charges...except brokers fees which should be minimal if you have an on-line brokerage.

Now, what I would do is to buy a portfolio of great stocks and hold on for the ride. There is no reason that you should not expect to net far better than 8%. You could pick 10 great companies and buy approximately $20,000 of each. The dividends would net close to what the AMEX fund is paying you alone. The cap gains are gravy! If you want, you can then either reinvest the dividends to diversify further or you can do an automatic dividend reinvestment in the same stocks at minimal cost. I bet you can beat the market and do the whole thing yourself. But, you will have no one to blame but yourself if the portfolio value goes down. Some folks like the security of having someone else to blame...apparently that is worth something to them even though it is still their own money that is being lost. I prefer to take the responsibility on my own shoulders. It simplifies things greatly to know you have no one else to trust. But, that is just me. Personal responsibility is not for everyone.



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