In the latest edition of the Sound Investing podcast, published by FundAdvice.com, Paul, Tom and Don share their insights into investing in international markets (outside the US), retirement plans and annuity products, the problems with trying to pick winning market sectors and the danger with investing using the "There's always a bull market somewhere" approach.
One warning, the radio show is 51 minutes in length and will suck up 23MB of download.
If this is not an issue for you I highly recommend you take a look at the latest podcast - Sound Investing - July 4, 2008
For those who have limited time and/or limited download capability the following is a brief summary of the more relevant material that was covered:
Investing in International Stock Funds
The clear conclusion from their discussionwas that a 50/50 split between US and International markets was what they favoured within the growth section of a portfolio.
Problem with trying to pick winning market sectors
Tom, Don & Paul were adamant about the great risks involved with trying to take an active approach by picking winningmarket sectors - eg resources, retail, banks etc... The problem with this approach is that the average investor only buys into a market sector after seeing that the sector has had strong growth lately. Whether it will continue to have such strong growth in comparison to another sector is the risk with this strategy. They concluded it was much better to have a well diversified portfolio and hold it.
"Always a bull market somewhere"
Similarly, the presenters poored cold water on this approach to investing highlighting that it is a rare person who can put together this type of strategy and they stay disciplined.