Year End Investment Moves

In the past few weeks I have purchased more I-Bonds using cash in savings and bought more TIPS (Treasury Inflation Protected Securities) using assets inside my 401(k) account. I made these moves to (a) reduce risk and (b) increase the amount of future retirement income that is both guaranteed and inflation-protected.  I will be continuing this strategy in 2014. Today I made some more year-end changes.

Specifically, I entered orders in my taxable brokerage account to sell all of my GLD and DBC ETF (exchange traded fund) shares. I did this now for two reasons. First, I never liked the GLD investment. I bought those shares a few years ago only because my wife hounded me into investing in gold. Who wants to hold an investment that goes up only when the world news is bad?

The DBC ETF is a commodity investment which has not done well and which I have duplicated as an asset category inside my 401(k) account.

The second reason I sold these shares now was that I wanted to harvest the capital losses this tax year. Why wait for 2014 when I know now that I would not buy these shares again? I want to deduct these capital losses to offset 2013 gains I have realized in other investments.

I’m going to do another investment review on Monday to see if I want to rebalance or just simplify my portfolio. I’m all about simplicity and I don’t need complexity to attain my retirement income goals. I know for sure I will be moving money from my 401(k) core funds to the self-managed brokerage account. I can lower my fund expenses by doing this because I have access to Vanguard and Fidelity funds inside the brokerage account.

What year-end moves are you making?


  1. Jerlocarb says

    Fidelity just introduced some commission free, low expense ratio, passive index funds. So far, I invested in FSTA, Consumer Staples. I plan to invest in FHLC in January. I also have VCSAX in a Vanguard account which I am leaving alone.

    I also like the SPDR etfs. I bought XLP because it has a history of double digit gains since 2008. Also, in 2008 it only went down less than 15% while most everything else went down 32-45%, even total stock market indexes. For my wild side, I am planning to invest in XPH for reasons similar to XLP. I sold my VCDAX this month and will probably buy XLY next year, both Consumer Discretionary funds.

    Finally, I have begun converting my IRA to a Roth while trying to stay right near the 15% tax bracket.

    Have a Happy New Year!

  2. Doris says

    Not too much really—I still have my core retirement holdings invested in my Thrift Savings Plan. When I retired four years ago I left the majority in there and took an in service withdrawal before I left my job. I am averaging a 9% gain for the year and hope to continue the trend next year. My Roth IRA is in Fidelity’s Select Bio-tech fund and I am leaving it there for now. All in all, I have had a good run the last four years but as we all know, I don’t let myself get too comfortable — I do monitor all the investments closely.

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