Being wealthy doesn't mean having all the money in the world, just not having to worry about it.

Lesson 21 – A More Sensible Use of Hedges

As I mentioned in the last lesson, the Permanent Portfolio (PP) is NOT an example of a well-diversified portfolio. It does, however, have, in my opinion, three excellent hedges: Treasury bills, Treasury bonds, and gold. Hedges, as insurance, are to protect you against losses you can’t afford to take. If you’re a long-term investor, a Read more »

Lesson 20 – Ruining a Good Idea: The Permanent Portfolio

I’m not the first person to identify Treasury bills, Treasury bonds, and gold as effective hedges against stock-market declines. In fact, there is a well-known strategy known as the Permanent Portfolio, developed by the late Harry Browne, which has recently been making a comeback. Browne first referred to the idea of a Permanent Portfolio in Read more »

Lesson 19 – Panic Insurance

The great investor, Warren Buffett, has said, “Unless you can watch your stock holding decline by 50% without becoming panic-stricken, you should not be in the stock market.” Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway holding company has endured such declines multiple times during its climb from $15 per share in 1965 when he took over the company to Read more »

Lesson 18 – Relax, You’re Going to Die

Over the long term, the survival of the entire global economy almost certainly depends on the continued profitability of the companies which provide the world’s goods and services. Without that, the tax base on which governments rely virtually disappears, lenders to those businesses don’t get repaid, and even that hedge against global disaster, gold, won’t Read more »

Lesson 17 – What Insurance Is and Isn’t

Did you ever hear the story of the man who thought he had enough life insurance but died anyway? Apparently he didn’t quite understand the concept, and neither do most people. I’ve seen people insure packages worth $100 at the post office while not having any disability income protection. This is nuts! The purpose of Read more »

Lesson 12 – Why Bill Gates Isn’t a Million Times Happier than You Are

Wealth has a diminishing marginal utility. This, in my view, is the most important argument, the one I stress with my clients when helping them plan their future. Even if the first two reasons (here and here) didn’t apply, an investment strategy designed to serve real lives mustn’t overlook this one: $2 is not twice Read more »