Top investment companies for retirement

top investment companiesThe best and most respected investment companies of today are Vanguard, Fidelity, and American Funds.

Vanguard has been in a neck-and-neck race with American Funds for years, and in 2007 Vanguard edged out as the as the nation’s top-selling fund company. What makes it stand out above the rest is that it provides superior investment options, and is owned by its shareholders (meaning it is a not-for-profit company), so its expenses are very low. For example, the Vanguard Wellington plan, which is considered a near-perfect choice for retirement investment by financial advisors, places 65 percent of assets in big company stocks, 32 percent in high-quality, intermediate-term bonds (bonds that last 3.5 – 6 years and rotate among better-valued sectors in the bond market) and the remaining amount in cash – and the expense ratio is very, very small (only 0.27 percent). The Vanguard Primecap Core plan is also a top choice with a nice expense ratio of 0.55 percent. And the Vanguard REIT Index Fund allows 401k contributors to invest in real-estate investment trusts instead of stocks and only charges 0.2 percent in expenses – a plan that is highly recommended by advisors. Other things consumers seem to love with Vanguard are their low-cost EFTs (electronic funds transfers). However, one of the problems you’ll find with Vanguard is that many of their top performers are withheld from 401(k) plans.

While Vanguard is the top-selling fund company, Fidelity Investments has the largest network when it comes to distributing corporate 401k retirement plans. Many say that in comparison with Vanguard, Fidelity is the epitome of big business, but unfortunately is not as personable. So with this company, finding the right manager for your fund account can make or break your experience. A few of Fidelity’s top funds that make it, rank high among other companies are Magellan, Contrafund, and Emerging Markets. Magellan is loved because it is channeled to both foreign stocks and domestic juggernauts like Google. Contrafund, which is only available through employer retirement plans, is a favorite because it falls into the top five percent of large-growth mutual funds and has been there for well over a decade. And Fidelity Emerging Markets is ranked as one of the best due to its reasonable fees and because it has beaten 97 percent of its competition over the past three years. Between these three retirement funds, advisors feel that investors are definitely in good hands with Fidelity.

American Funds is another top choice in investment companies for retirement, and is the world’s largest fund company. If you’ve never heard of it, it is because it doesn’t advertise to individuals – only working with brokers and financial advisors. This company offers significantly fewer mutual funds than the competitors, keeping its stash in the dozens. But surprisingly, this has helped the company grow into a humongous company for retirement investing. In fact, American Funds has seven of the ten largest mutual funds, including Growth Fund of America, which is by far the largest fund in the world to date.

There are several other large companies like Edward Jones and Wells Fargo that are well-known in the investment world, but these three companies above know the business well, and thus are very likely to deliver the results you need. The fact of the matter is though, it truly depends on your needs as to whom is the top investment company for you. It depends on a multitude of factors including how much money your starting off investing with, what kind of service you need, and various other factors. Be certain you’ve visited our lessons to help you devise a plan so you know who and what to look for depending on your demands.

Top investments for your portfolio in bad or recessionary times

InvestmentsThe top or best investments for your portfolio in recessionary times include those companies that benefit in spite of hard times. Instead of getting deep into the economics and determining product elasticity (or in-elasticity), which would add a bunch of confusion for my readers not versed in economic theory, this article will simply focus on those companies doing well in the recession. Please keep in mind, as times get better – these companies are destined to come back to earth with regards to their earnings and stock prices.

The following list of types of companies and products is not all inclusive, rather a starting point for helping you further explore companies that may be profitable now that we are struggling and still losing jobs.

  • Discounted grocery stores and fast food: People tend to look at private label brands more favorably as their income falls. Restaurants have been hard hit, as more people pickup groceries and stay home. Look of for companies that manufacture items like pastas, noodles, etc. On the flip-side, smaller fast food chains may pickup if their menus adapt to consumer demand for cheap meals. As more and more people stay home, things get dirtier, hence, items like cleaning goods and personal care items may see an increase in sales as people choose to cut their own hair, do their own nails, and color their own hair.
  • Alternative Transportation companies: Over the road truckers might be in for a real shock if they haven’t experienced it already at the pumps, I’m guessing as they lose the ability to make transporting profitable, rail companies will get their business. As oil prices continue to rise, flatcars pushing containers will become common place again.
  • Low cost providers: People will lose an appetite for extras when it comes down to it. Seek those companies that are generic and cost efficient.
  • Aerospace companies and companies whom make defense systems.
  • We can’t forget about staffing firms, with many people out of work – their services will be demanded.

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Top investment in a rebounding market

green-chartThe markets have gained 3000 points back in just under 6 months, it’s still not too late to jump on the bull and ride it by it’s horn. The key is, knowing what to buy now that we’ve seen the rebound start. To do that though, you need to first understand what fueled the demise and its rebound, which we’ll discuss below.

By now, most people understand that a massive housing bubble – among other things (like rapid consumer spending without regards to saving and with no means to repay debt) caused this crisis. More specifically, stocks tied to sub-prime mortgages were bundled up as good investments. People thought their home values would continue to rise, and they took out home equity loans and went spend crazy. Companies were profitable across the board with unreasonable expectations that we would be able to continue that pace. When the markets realized people were defaulting on their homes with loans tied to variable interest rates, the real estate market fell with a thunderous crash. Suddenly, with home prices down – all of that additional or extra money people had (because of their home equity lines of credit) – was suddenly frozen – and people began to panic. They decided to hoard their money and tried to make-up for the over spending – but not spending. That sent companies sales across the board down the tube – and most all stock prices were affected because now reasonable future expectations set in. When the big banks realized they weren’t sufficiently capitalized to take losses on the numerous inflated homes they had to take back over as a result of foreclosure – they started to scrutinize who they were lending to, and suddenly there was much less individuals who could qualify for homes, so prices had to drop further.

Finally, we think we’ve seen a bottom in home prices, and the markets have started to stabilize. People have started spending again and also snapping up stocks that are priced at historical lows. But what is driving the rebound? The bottom line is future expectations, just a couple of years ago – there was too much uncertainty as to the extent of this problem. As earnings reports start coming back showing continual growth – stock prices soon follow.

In developing a top investment strategy, look for companies that are showing consistent growth in earnings – and use a little common sense – will they be able to keep it up in the future and over the life of your investment horizon. If so – then proceed with caution, but don’t wait too long – you could miss out on still basement bargain prices.

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Online Brokerage Companies: An Anaylsis of the best brokers to invest with


(Be sure to check out our thorough broker reviews where you can get info on most every broker out there.)

Online brokerage companies are a dime a dozen. So who should you choose to work with? The following analysis will answer multiple questions you may have and provide you some direction.

The various questions this article will address include. What options are there as far as an online brokerage firm is concerned. Who is the best online brokerage or best broker online for your money? For those whom know more about and investing and wish to do most things on their own, we’ll discuss which online brokerages offer more than they likely need, and help them find the best online discount brokerage. Like we mentioned above online stock brokerage companies come in every size, and offer many different levels of service with regards to their managing your online brokerage account.

Online brokerage firms certainly are abundant these days, it seems as if a new one pops up every other day. As far as options are concerned, below is our list of the best online brokerage companies today.

  • Scottrade
  • Ameritrade
  • Firstrade
  • Fidelity
  • FolioInvesting
  • Schwab
  • Forex
  • Interactive Brokers
  • Sharebuilder
  • TD Ameritrade
  • Lightspeed
  • Marsco
  • Thinkorswim
  • Tradeking
  • Tradestation
  • OptionsXpress
  • Zecco

For those in need of a more full service oriented online trading brokerage company, that will walk you through the process from beginning to end, we would recommend the online brokerage services offered by one of the larger – full service online brokerage companies mentioned above like Fidelity or E*Trade.

Now, many investors are already familiar with the companies out there  – but they want to know who is the least expensive: The truth is, the amount of money you will be investing may determine with whom you can invest. Some of the companies listed will not allow you to open an account with less than $5,000 or in some cases you will need $50000 or more to start and open online brokerage accounts with them. Moreover, several of the companies like Sharebuilder offer no account minimums whatsoever.

So who is the best online brokerage or best broker online for your money you’re asking? To provide you the best answer we will show you our criteria for calling someone the best; The best is not always the biggest, the prettiest, nor the most well-known. The best is the best because they’re perceived by customers as willing to go the extra mile to please them. Like a good waiter, they’re not over burdening, but they’re there when you need their assistance. We look at the best online brokerage company like many would evaluate food, it needs to taste good, be reasonably priced and the service experience needs to be worth the money. Having said that, our favorite online brokerage companies  include , Schwab, and Interactive Brokers because they all provide the best bang for the buck. You will find our ratings fall in line with JD power ratings, Kiplingers, SmartMoney, and several other consumer rating companies.

Here is an older but still current online brokerage comparison we completed they may help you determine how to dwindle down that list of potential companies.

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Best investment companies today and after the economic collapse

With the recent collapse we witnessed several major investment company giants collapse, or get swallowed up by other banks or investment companies. Having said that, a few of the big dogs that survived the crisis include State Street, Fidelity, and Vanguard in the United States. Companies such as Merill Lynch (they own Black Rock too) whom was recently acquired by Bank of America is still operating, but only because the government more or less forced BOA to acquire them with TARP funds. So, when considering who you want to work with – or whom you want handling your money – deeply consider their history, as some are much better than others. Below is a list of many more (including those above) you may be interested to research further in order of their size of assets (in millions) managed (not all are mentioned here, for example T. Rowe Price), rather the largest across the globe.

1. UBS AG – according to its website (31.03.09) 2059 Switzerland
2. Barclays Global Investors 1,400 UK
3. State Street Global Advisors 1,367 US
4. Fidelity Investments 1,299 US
5. The Vanguard Group 852 US
6. JPMorgan Chase 782 US
7. Capital Group 757 US
8. Deutsche Bank 723 Germany
9. Northern Trust 598 US
10. AllianceBernstein 516 US
11. Wellington Management Company 484 US
12. Merrill Lynch & Co. 473 US
13. Credit Agricole 461 France
14. Goldman Sachs 452 US
15. Citigroup

An investment company is a company whose main business is holding securities of other companies purely for investment purposes. The investment company invests money on behalf of its shareholders who in turn share in the profits and losses.

In United States securities law, there are at least three types of investment companies [1]:

* Open-End Management Investment Companies (mutual funds)
* Closed-End Management Investment Companies (closed-end funds)
* UITs (unit investment trusts)

A fourth and lesser-known type of investment company under the Investment Company Act of 1940 is a Face-Amount Certificate Company.

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What are some of the best books for beginning investing?

Investing Online for Dummies, 5th edition by Kathleen Sindell is a book full of plain English explanations about how to invest on the Internet. The terminology is simple for beginners and there are loads of references to other sites and authorities. Great for younger novices who know little or nothing about investing, this book helps get you through all the finance jargon. Just a little word of caution though, be sure to get the latest edition as some of the data on online companies may be a little out of time, which is to be expected because the Internet is evolving all the time.

Investing for Dummies, 5th edition by Eric Tyson. I repeatedly go back to this book because of its incredible breadth of explanations of investment strategies including stocks, bonds, Treasury bills, mutual funds, bank accounts, individual retirement accounts, real estate, private companies and on and on. It is nicely written, simple but not simplistic, compared to the other “dummies” books.
I find money talk soporific mostly, but this book lays down the essentials in a refreshingly easy to read format. I have read it from cover to glossary but I will always go back and refer to it through my investing years ahead. If you are considering investment from home, invest in this book first. It’s a mine of investing nuggets. A terrific bargain!
The Small Investor: A Beginners Guide to Stocks, Bonds, and Mutual Funds by Jim Gard. I found the chapter on ‘investing or gambling; what’s the difference’ to be particularly insightful. A great extra that the author has included and that is very useful is the “Recommended Further Reading” at the conclusion of each chapter. It gives you somewhere to go to next in order to delve deeper into the subject. The level of detail is just right for a beginner in investing. This book is ideal for anyone thinking of dipping his or her toe in the murky financial waters. Financial planners and bank managers should consider giving copies of this book to all their customers.
Early to Rise: A Young Adult’s Guide to Investing by Michael Stahl. This book was not for me but my daughter (17) studying business said she read it in two sittings. It is full of real market applications and reasonable sound investment advice. It is couched in terms that young people like her could relate to. The small touches of humor make it less like most investment books. This one is a must give to the kids.

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What are the best mutual funds on the market today?

The best mutual funds now are the same best mutual funds that were around twenty years ago. Longevity is the second key criteria by which to judge the best mutual fund. There isn’t just one but rather many ‘best’ mutual funds. The first key criterion when looking for the best mutual funds is performance. The positive percentage return above money invested.

Visit the website of any best mutual fund right at this moment and you will see on the landing page, in big bold headlines, their current rate of return. These are dire economic times and those websites may well be showing zero returns. Do not be discouraged because mutual funds performance tracks the performance of the stock market and no stock market anywhere is doing well at this moment in time.

It is important to understand what mutual funds are and how they operate in order to select the best place to put your precious retirement money. The best mutual funds now are like large baskets. In the basket are a variety of finance products but mostly stocks. Stocks are certificates of ownership of parts of all the companies quoted on the stock markets of the World.

People all over America see money taken from their pay packet each week or month at source. That money is transferred into their IRA, Individual Retirement Account. It is then invested in ways to make it grow by more than it would if it were simply deposited in savings account. One of those investment products is the mutual fund.

Mutual fund managers take the investment funds and buy and sell stocks making the money work hard to build the maximum retirement payouts for the fund members. While mutual funds hold stocks in their basket on behalf of fund contributors the units of the fund themselves become financial products and are then traded in their own right.

The essence of the best mutual funds is their ability to pick the best performing stocks. Best performing stocks are those in companies that pay good dividends from consistently growing profits. In this way the individual IRA investor builds a cash generating fund for the time when retire.

It is only by picking the best stocks consistently that the best funds can grow the IRAs of their investors. It costs a lot of money to operate a mutual fund. They have to pay their fund managers; they have to pay the stock market costs every time they buy or sell stocks and they have all the other costs associated with a commercial operation. They, in short have to be moneymaking machines.

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What companies or businesses are doing well in this recession? A look at the top 20 percentage winners over the last year.

You’ve heard the headlines, the market is down more than 50%, but certainly there has to be some companies that are doing good in this terrible market. Well, I’m on a quest to find out for you and me. In a previous and popular article I wrote several months ago, I described which companies did well in the great depression, now I’m on a mission to find out who is doing the best right now.

There are some very powerful and free tools available over there on google as they have this nifty stock screener, you can do some cool analysis with it.

Not only will I look at the top 20 companies who’ve done the best over the past year, I will also tell you the types of companies that are most prominent on the list. You might be surprised by my findings:

Company name
Market cap
P/E ratio
Div yield (%)
52w price change (%)
American Italian Pasta Company
Emergent BioSolutions Inc.
TeleCommunication Systems, Inc.
Corinthian Colleges, Inc.
American Caresource Holdings, Inc.
Myriad Genetics, Inc.
ITT Educational Services, Inc.
New Concept Energy, Inc.
Emergent Group Inc
Crawford & Company
Fuel Systems Solutions, Inc.
Hot Topic, Inc.
Lannett Company, Inc.
Mexco Energy Corporation
InterDigital, Inc.
Career Education Corp.
Applied Signal Technology, Inc.
APAC Customer Services, Inc.
Centennial Communications Corp.

American Italian Pasta Company

is benefiting big time in this recession, as people shut their wallets on restaraunt spending, and bring diner making back to their own kitchen. And what’s a popular and relatively inexpensive food that’s easy to make at home? You guessed it, spaghetti, or any other noodly apendage recipe you can dream of.

Here’s a bit more about the biggest gainer over the past year:

American Italian Pasta Company, incorporated in 1988, is a producer and marketer of dry pasta in North America. The Company has manufacturing and distribution facilities located in Excelsior Springs, Missouri, Columbia, South Carolina, Kenosha, Wisconsin, Tolleson, Arizona, and Verolanuova, Italy. American Italian Pasta Company outsources distributing operations at all of its facilities and it outsources milling at the Arizona and Italy plants. The Company’s United States plants serve both retail and institutional customers. The Italy plant, which was constructed in 2001, serves retail and institutional customers internationally, and retail customers in the United States. The Company produces approximately 300 different shapes and sizes of pasta products in multiple package configurations, including bulk packages for institutional customers and smaller individually wrapped packages for retail consumers. More from Reuters »

Emergent BioSolutions Inc.

doesn’t seem to have many worries in this rough economy; They are a multinational biopharmaceutical company focused on the development, manufacture and commercialization of immunobiotics, consisting of vaccines and therapeutics that assist the body’s immune system to prevent or treat disease. It manufactures and market BioThrax, also referred to as anthrax vaccine adsorbed. It develops immunobiotics for use against infectious diseases that have resulted in significant unmet or underserved public health needs and against biological agents that are potential weapons of bioterrorism and biowarfare. In addition to its licensed BioThrax product, it has product candidates in both advanced and earlier stages of development. Its advanced stage product candidates consist of an anthrax immune globulin therapeutic candidate, a typhoid vaccine candidate and a hepatitis B therapeutic vaccine candidate. Its earlier stage programs include botulinum vaccines, group B streptococcus vaccine and chlamydia vaccine candidates. More from Reuters »

TeleCommunication Systems, Inc.

develops and applies highly reliable wireless data communications technology, with emphasis on text messaging, location-based services, such as enhanced 9-1-1 (E9-1-1) for wireless carriers and voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) service providers, and secure satellite-based communication solutions for government customers. TCS conducts its business through two segments: Commercial and Government. Its carrier software system products enable wireless carriers to deliver short text messages, location information, Internet content and other enhanced communication services to and from wireless phones. Government segment is engaged in designing, furnishing, installing and operating wireless and data networks communication system, including SwiftLink deployable communication systems and Internet protocol (IP) technology. On February 26, 2008, TCS introduced Wireless Point-to-Point link for commercial and government organizations.

Corinthian Colleges, Inc.

When people lose their jobs, they go back to school. For profit schools can rake in the loot as the sometimes desparate unemployed focus on upping their worth. You can bet these schools will do well until at least there is some sort of rebound in the employment markets. Corinthian Colleges, Inc. (Corinthian) is a post-secondary education company in the United States and Canada. During the fiscal year ended June 30, 2008 (fiscal 2008), the Company had a student enrolment of 69,200, and operated 89 schools in 24 states, and 17 schools in the province of Ontario, Canada. The Company offers a range of diploma programs and associate’s, bachelors and master’s degrees. The training programs include healthcare, criminal justice, mechanical, trades, business and information technology. Since the Company’s formation in 1995, it has acquired 74 colleges and has opened 32 branch campuses. The Company offers online education to two categories of students, including those attending online classes exclusively, and those attending a blend of traditional classroom and online courses. More from Reuters »

American Caresource Holdings, Inc.

is a smaller company with a market cap just over 100 million, but you can get in on this stock for just over $7 a share, however, beware their high p/e ratio compared to some of their largest competitors whom had more reasonable price to earnings of around 10, investors are paying quite a bit for this stock considering its earnings. There is the possibility that investors see big opportunities with this small company.

American CareSource Holdings, Inc. (ACS) is an ancillary healthcare services company that provides patients access to its network of ancillary service providers for the benefit of healthcare payors. The Company utilizes its network of ancillary healthcare service providers, contracting capabilities, client service support and claims management services to assist health benefits plan sponsors, including preferred provider organizations, third-party administrators, insurance companies, and large self-funded employers, to reduce their overall ancillary healthcare costs. Ancillary healthcare services encompass an array of services that supplement or support the care provided by hospitals and physicians. Ancillary healthcare services include non-hospital, non-physician services associated with surgery centers, free-standing diagnostic imaging centers, home health and infusion, dialysis, supply of durable medical equipment, orthotics and prosthetics, laboratory and other services. More from Reuters »

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What are the best ETFs?

What are the top ETFs?

VTI Vanguard Total Stock Market -22.7% 0.07% Blend
IVV iShares: S&P 500 Index -23.3% 0.09% Blend
VO Vanguard Midcap -26.3% 0.13% Blend
VB Vanguard Small-cap -19.6% 0.10% Blend
VNQ Vanguard REIT Index -14.9% 0.10% Real estate
IGE IGE iShares: S&P GSSI Natural Res. -19.0% 0.48% Natural resources
DVY iShares: Dow Jones Select Dividend Index -17.7% 0.40% Dividend stocks
VWO Vanguard Emerging Markets -34.7% 0.25% Blend
VEU Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-U.S. -30.1% 0.25% Large Blend
VEA Vanguard Europe Pacific -29.9% N/A Large Blend
TIP iShares: Lehman TIPS Bond 6.3% 0.20% Inflation-protected
BND Vanguard Total Bond 3.6% 0.11% Intermediate-term
BSV Vanguard Short-term Bond 4.2% 0.11% Short-term
Source: Lipper
Data as of: October 2, 2008


What are the best Index funds for your 401k, Roth IRA, IRA

The best index funds over the last year include many precious metal funds, among other well known names as Midas.  The bottom line is, gold is being used as a significant hedging tool against dollar losses. The problem is now, is it too late now to jump on the bandwagon? There is still some life left in these guys – with uncertainty hanging in the air. But be ceratin you are diversified before jumping into anything “trendy” such as gold or other precious metals including silver.

Ticker Name 1 Year
total return
TGLDX Tocqueville Gold 72.81
OCMGX OCM Gold 71.63
INIVX Van Eck Intl Investors Gold A 70.02
USAGX USAA Precious Metals and Minerals 69.06
FKRCX Franklin Gold and Precious Metals A 68.78
FSAGX Fidelity Select Gold 66.78
BGEIX American Century Global Gold Inv 65.48
EKWBX Evergreen Precious Metals B 64.44
SGGDX First Eagle Gold A 62.87
DPCAX Dreyfus Greater China A 62.75
INPMX RiverSource Precious Metals & Mining A 56.88
OPGSX Oppenheimer Gold & Special Minerals A 53.19
MIIFX Monteagle Informed Investor Growth 52.42
FGLDX AIM Gold & Precious Metals Inv 51.92
RYPMX Rydex Precious Metals Inv 51.08
DEAAX Dreyfus Emerging Asia A 48.36
SCGDX DWS Gold & Precious Metals S 46.57
UNWPX U.S. Global Investors Wld Prec Minerals 44.49
USERX U.S. Global Investors Gold and Prec Mtls 43.31
PFSAX Dryden Financial Svcs A 36.44
BPLSX Robeco Long/Short Eq I 34.51
PMPIX ProFunds Precious Metals UltraSector Inv 33.67
AACFX AIM China A 31.99
OBCHX Oberweis China Opportunities 31.98
CTVAX Catalyst Value A 30.39
OSMAX Oppenheimer International Small Co A 30.32
RBCGX Reynolds Blue Chip Growth 29.18
FEAAX Fidelity Advisor Emerging Asia A 26.51
DIBAX Dreyfus International Bond A 24.94
MIDSX Midas 24.74
INTLX Forester Discovery 24.48
ICHKX Guinness Atkinson China & Hong Kong 23.87
JGPAX JHancock Global Opportunities A 23.73
OMNAX Old Mutual China A 23.50
SIRRX Sierra Core Retirement R 22.38
ICMAX Intrepid Small Cap 21.94
DLHIX Delaware Healthcare I 21.86
ODHYX Old Mutual Dwight High Yield Intl 21.68
MCHFX Matthews China 21.62

The above list was found here.

The top index funds at this time last year were:

FSMKX Fidelity Spartan 500 Index Investor -23.4% 0.0% 4.5% 0.1% $10,000 Blend
FSTMX Fidelity Spartan Total Market Index Inv -22.6% 0.4% 5.4% 0.1% $10,000 Blend
VFINX Vanguard 500 Index -23.4% -0.0% 4.5% 0.1% $3,000 Blend
VTSMX Vanguard Total Stock Mkt Idx -22.7% 0.3% 5.3% 0.1% $3,000 Blend
VIMSX Vanguard Mid Capitalization Index -26.3% -1.3% 7.3% 0.2% $3,000 Blend
NAESX Vanguard Small Cap Index -19.7% 0.7% 7.8% 0.2% $3,000 Blend
VGSIX Vanguard REIT Index -15.0% 4.5% 12.2% 0.2% $3,000 Real estate
FSIIX Fidelity Spartan International Index Inv -30.0% 1.8% 9.5% 0.1% $10,000 Blend
VEIEX Vanguard Emerging Mkts Stock Idx -34.8% 7.7% 18.0% 0.4% $3,000 Emerging markets
VGTSX Vanguard Total Intl Stock Index -31.2% 2.6% 10.6% 0.0% $3,000 Blend
VBISX Vanguard Short-Term Bond Index 4.4% 4.5% 3.2% 0.2% $3,000 Bonds
VBMFX Vanguard Total Bond Market Index 4.0% 4.2% 3.8% 0.2% $3,000 Bonds
Data as of: October 1, 2008