Paul Merriman
Sound Investing For Every Stage of Life 

Our Top 10 Articles of 2018-2019

I thought it’d be interesting to look back at 10 of our most-read MarketWatch articles of 2018-2019, written by Rich Buck and me. It’s interesting that not all of these popular articles were written in the last two years. In fact, “8 lessons from 80 years of market history” was published in late 2014 and still attracts new readers. Maybe you’ve missed some of these, or your circumstances have changed and some are more meaningful now. In any case, I hope you find something worthwhile in this list.

Want to retire rich? Have a small wedding and invest the rest
This article makes a good case for considering the long-term benefits of investing the cost of a wedding for the future.

The ultimate buy and hold strategy: 2019 update

“Ultimate” isn’t a term to toss around lightly. But in this case it fits. I believe the investment portfolio I’m about to describe is the absolute best way for most investors to achieve long-term growth in the stock markets.

Save $1,000 a year. Retire with millions.

There’s a song that was a No. 1 hit in 1954 called “Little Things Mean a Lot.” Its title could sum up today’s simple lesson. By saving less than $100 a month, adjusting the savings for inflation, and investing well, a young person can retire with millions. I’ve known this truth for a long time, but now I have numbers to demonstrate it year-by-year.

15 ways to make more money in your 401(k)
For many people, a 401(k) retirement plan is the biggest source of retirement savings. Unfortunately, most people don’t use their retirement funds to the best advantage. Here are 15 ways you can get more benefit from your 401(k). This applies to similar accounts such as the U.S. government’s Thrift Savings Plan. Most of these tips also apply to saving in an IRA.

This strategy beats a total stock market fund and gives you more diversification
More and more lately, I’m hearing the praises of “total market” funds as alternatives to S&P 500 index SPX, -0.08% funds. Unfortunately, many advocates of total market funds don’t realize they aren’t fundamentally different from S&P 500 funds. Fortunately, there’s an even better alternative, which I’ll get to.

10 mistakes nearly everyone makes when saving for retirement

Until we retire we are all preretirees. So this article applies to you unless you’re already retired. However, my fundamental focus here is the mistakes people make in the last 10 years before they retire.

How time can turn $3,000 into $50 million

As hard as it may be to believe, it’s possible to turn a single $3,000 investment into $50 million in a single lifetime. I can’t say that I have done it, but I’m going to show how you could.

Allocate your retirement portfolio in 3 easy steps

Over the years, I’ve spent more hours than I care to even think about pondering the best ways for investors to allocate the assets in their retirement portfolios. There are seemingly endless variations. But I think it’s quite possible to cut through the clutter and noise and reduce the process to three decision steps.

8 lessons from 80 years of market history

What do you think is the most important thing that investors do? Keep their expenses low? Hire a superstar manager? Avoid taxes? Have perfect timing? They’re all significant, but arguably the very most important decision is choosing what kinds of things to invest in. Asset class selection is the fancy name for this.

4 simple and effective ways to help a young person get a jump on retirement

There’s plenty of stressful news these days, and by and large I’m used to hearing or reading about unpleasant developments… The bad news is that Congress can always change the rules and the tax rates in the future, and this could negatively impact our expectations and plans… The good news is that we can resolve to be smarter with our retirement investments. The two most important ways we can “be smarter” are to save more and to start saving sooner.

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