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Here is what worked best ... this week ... within my portfolio.

edited February 2019 in Fund Discussions
For the week the three best performing areas within my portfolio were found in commodities, emerging markets and a dividend payer. My funds held representing these areas were PCLAX +1.91% ... NEWFX +1.64% & DWGAX +1.59% ... and, SVAAX +1.26%. In comparison, the equally weighted S&P 500 Index fund VADAX, that I sometimes use for equity ballast, was +0.70% for the week.

Linked below are the Lipper Indexes. You can view to find the leaders.

Wondering what worked best for you?

Have a good weekend.



  • @Old_Skeet what worked best for me were two funds UBVSX + 1.46% and PRGTX + 1.38% and a stock TRV + 1.77%, two other funds did respectively well, FISCX and TWEIX, both at + .94%.

    You did very well this week, each week it seems different funds of mine take the top prize. I guess that means Im pretty diversified. If everything went up in a week, that means they would all go down together. Sometimes Im very surprised what does well. UBVSX is in that category, 2nd best ytd of all my positions.
  • For the week... VVPSX+2.96, FARNX +2.54, FSCCX+1.87, OAKIX+1.62. In total 20% of portfolio with the last 2 funds being 16% of portfolio.
  • edited February 2019
    Hi @slick: Interesting that you're invested in UBVSX as this fund, if I remember correctly, was one of the positions that was presented in an advisor advised package of funds for my consideration. Anyway, I did not cut any money off to this firm because what they presented was a fee based program something I've chosen to stay away from. The the other fund that we own in common is FISCX and one that I've held for better than ten years. About a year ago I did cut some money into AOFAX form a net asset transfer from part of my SPECX position as it had grown quite large. I'm thinking AOFAX is another fund that we might also own in common. Just wondering whatelse you have that you are happy with? They might be something I'd be interested in reviewing to see if there is a fit within my own portfolio.
  • edited February 2019
    Hi @Art: Boy, you've been quite for sometime. Nice reading your comment. Hope things continue to go well for you.
  • @Old Skeet. I was at Merrill Lynch when I purchased UBVSX, was able to transfer to Fidelity when I left ML in 2016. Yes, I do own AOFAX, in both taxable and roth ira, it sure is a wild ride, but have VBK and UBVSX in same portfolio to soften the blow, dampens volatility. Another I like is MSEGX, but it is also pretty aggressive. I balance more aggressive funds with more mild assets such as VDIGX and TWEIX. About 40% of my total portfolio is cash bonds and more conservative funds, to balance my more aggressive holdings, I call it a barbell portfolio
  • @slick: Thank you for making comment on my question. TWEIX sure is a fine fund and at one time I was thinking of paying the A share load and putting TWEAX into my portfolio. However, with the other choices available to me at nav or reduced sales charges I passed. And, the Morgan Stanley funds are also eye catchers. But, sorry to say they were not available for me to make purchase the last time I inquired about them. I'll make another inquiry. Thanks again for making comment. It is most appreciated.
  • @ Old Skeet. I now have all my accounts at Fidelity, having left ML in 2016, and TWEIX and MSEGX are load free and ntf. I have found many more funds available to me at Fido than were available at Merrill, since Merrill sold only funds they received compensation for. THAT'S WHY I left ml.
  • @oldskeet top oerformers for me were Grandeur Peak Global reach at 1.35% and Granduer peak emerging markets at 2.07%. Both small positions right now. I'm getting ready to add a number of new positions.

    Would you mind giving us a market barometer update?
  • edited February 2019
    @MikeW: As you requested. For the week ending 2/22/2019 Old_Skeet's market barometer finished the week with a reading of 133 indicating that the S&P 500 Index is extremely overbought based upon the metrics of the barometer. I'll be doing a more detail report on March 1st.
  • Thanks very much @Old_Skeet. Tough to allocate new funds when its this overbought
  • edited February 2019
    Old_Skeet said:

    Old_Skeet's market barometer finished the week with a reading of 133 indicating that the S&P 500 Index is extremely overbought based upon the metrics of the barometer.

    Thanks @Old_Skeet for your discussion of how you are positioned.

    - I’m curious what you believe an “overbought” reading for the S&P implies for whatever action(s) one should take? I realize you are not offering investment advice, but it still leaves open the question of what an overbought reading might suggest the investor should do? Some obvious choices are: (1) Ignore the overbought reading and stay put, (2) move some or all of the overbought asset to cash, (3) move some or all of that overbought asset into a different asset - perhaps one having a reading of “underbought”.

    - Are your metrics based primarily on valuations or on technicals? Perhaps a 50/50 slice of each?

    - While it might be discouraging to be buying into an overbought market, a really long time horizon helps. Had you poured all your $$ into the S&P when it was arguably overbought in the 1997-98 period, I believe you would still be very happy with your return today, some 20 years later.:)

    Appreciate any thoughts.
  • edited February 2019
    Hi @hank: Thank you for your inquiry about Old_Skeet's investment mythology.

    Here is the defination of overbought. The term a stock is "overbought" when the stock reaches a point in trading where technical indicators suggest the next price move of the stock will be down. When a stock's price has risen too far, too fast and it is beginning to look expensive to investors, it is overbought.

    While I'm not an analyst and just a retail investor much like others on the board I have been working on someting to measures market value. Through my fifty plus years of investing I developed my barometer to aid me in determining better times to add new money to my portfolio. This lead me to develope a market barometer to help measue value in the S&P 500 Index. With this, I came up with three main feeds in my barometer plus some minor feeds. The barometer's three main feeds are a breadth feed, an earnings feed and a technical score feed. These three feeds are scaled and when combined produce a barometric number. The barometric number is then scaled into extremely overbought, overbought, overvalued, fair value, undervalued, oversold, and extremely oversold scalings. When looking for direction I often use the minor feeds to help determine this. A higher barometer reading indicates there is more investment value in the Index over a lower reading. At the first of the year the barometer had a reading of 183 which based upon the barometer metrics indicated the Index was extemely oversold. Presently, the barometer reading of 133 indicates that the Index is extremely overbought. So, in two months the Index has moved from extremely oversold to extremely overbought. Remember, at the end of last year many hedge funds were closing and sold into a vaccum on Christmas Eve. This selling pressure drove stock prices extremely low. Also, the FOMC had been on an interest rate increase campaign plus a number of other market distractors were taking place as well. This selling pressure created an extremely oversold market. As we have now progressed into the new year there has been good investor interest in stocks and their prices have been driven upward through some furrious buying to the point that they are now reaching a buying climax and by the metrics of the barometer become extremely overbought.

    As you know (or should know) markets can stay overbought and oversold for extended periods of time. However, for the past couple of weeks I have detected a softening in the money flow. This means, to me, investors have been booking some profit. In addition, there seems to be a good number of companies recently reporting a decline in their earnings and anticipated revenue growth. Will it be enough for the Index to pull back? Perhaps. So, unless there is some news event that would entergize the market and encourage investors to pay up even more for stocks I'm following the barometer reading and looking for a nearterm pullback.

    Just because I'm looking for a pullback does not mean that it will take place. But, until I see some higher barometer readings (indicating there is more investment value in the Index) I'm not putting any new money to work at this time. And, since I have no open special investment positions (spiffs) I'm not selling at this time either as the barometer generally drives my purchase and selling of spiffs. If I had any spiffs in play I'd have already closed them.

    I hope this helps you have a better understanding of Old_Skeet's investment mythology because my market barometer has help me have a better understaning of stock market movements. With this, I'm posting this for information purposes only. It is not meant (or should not be taken) as investment advice.
  • edited February 2019
    Thank you @Old_Skeet for drilling down more into your methodology. Your definition of overbought largely coincides with that of Investopedia - While valuation is mentioned by both of you, it appears to be a largely inferential determination based on recent market price behavior: ie: S&P falls 12% over 2 months and becomes oversold. Than it rises 10% over 2 months and becomes overbought. Inferentially one might conclude that the underlying assets had greater intrinsic value when the market was depressed than after it became elevated. That sounds to me very much like a technical indicator based largely on recent market price trend lines.

    I’ll agree that’s one good way to describe near-term conditions and to time one’s entry and exit points if one is a market trader. But it doesn’t help much with understanding valuations over longer periods (5, 10, 20 years). You said: “... markets can stay overbought and oversold for extended periods of time.” That may possibly be. However, if it were really the case there would seldom be a need to change the barometer from oversold to overbought within a few weeks’ or months’ time. So I’d modify that statement to read: “... markets can stay overvalued and undervalued for extended periods of time“.

    What’s the difference? Valuations are based on the intrinsic worth of the individual companies within the index. While complex, that involves appraising different attributes like: underlying assets, debt levels, bond ratings, profit margins, P/E ratios, pending litigation, competitive market advantages and long term growth prospects. In a nutshell: Valuation is much harder to measure than a temporary overbought or oversold condition based largely on a 3-6 month chart.

    Warren Buffet was on CNBC this morning and so is on my mind. I do feel his successful methodology leans very heavily towards the “valuation” end of the spectrum and much less so towards temporary technical overbought / underbought nomenclatures.

    There are many successful ways to invest. Thanks for your insights into your barometer and how you apply it.
  • Thanks very much for sharing yourr thought processes on this @Old_Skeet. Very helpful to me in thinking about the market. Do your inputs focus on the S&P 500 exclusively? Do you look at international at all?
  • edited February 2019
    @MikeW: The barometer follows the S&P 500 Index. Another means that I use to find value is to see how far below a fund is trading form it's 52 week high. Take my two emerging market funds. DWGAX is off its 52 week high by about 12% while NEWFX is off its 52 week high by about 8%. With this, I'm finding more value in DWGAX than NEWFX. One of my investment strategies through the years has been to buy some in my most out of favor holdings in belief that they will again find favor with investors. Most of the time they do. And, for me, this has worked better through the years than momentum based strategies (buying what is hot and in favor).
  • @Old_Skeet. Thank you. Yes i think thats true for my international funds too across the board. Ive been waiting for a selloff to initiate a numbet of positions. International and EM are still cheap however even with the moves since Dec 24th. I will probably add to those funds first in the next few days. ARTJX will be first.
  • Just listened to Howard Marks who picks EM equities and debt as top investment over next decade.
  • edited February 2019
    @MikeW: I've got just about all I want in emerging markets. So, I'm now prospecting.

    Often times I reference Ron Rowland's Leadership Strategy which I have linked below for easy viewing.

    Notice that the most out of favor position within the strategy is micro caps. Well, I've been thinking for sometime to add a micro-cap fund to my portfolio. Now might be a good time for me to open a starter position before the micro caps get discovered and start catching strong money. In this way I can start the holding through a position cost average process and build it over time as it moves up in the pecking order within the strategy.

    I have linked below a micro cap fund that I've had under review for a while. It is off its 52 week high by a little better than 10%. Once you open the link click on fact sheet. Perhaps, its available load fee on some platforms.

    I wish all ... "Good Investing."
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