What if you die?

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    The real typical question is: what if you get hit by a beer truck tonight?

    I’m thinking there are a few people following your website who have not quite mastered the intricacies of business cycle investing, particularly as relating to when to shift allocations. I know you post monthly the indicators you utilize to determine the current phase, but can your average follower replicate your determinations?

    Finally, how old are you and how long can we anticipate your “hobby” to last. 🙂



    PS. Have you posted the non TSP index fund (or ETF)recommendations yet? I did not find them and thus far have been keeping my money in Vanguard’s VB ETF (due to a post you made that associated the S fund roughly with the VB). Since there are significant tax penalties (short term capital gains) associated with moving money frequently I like the longer term money parking associated with business cycle investing, and am thus hesitant to switch to another ETF after switching all my assets to VB at the start of the year when I finally caught your website.

    TS Paul

    I’m not sure how I feel about you planning for my death. A little flattered that you spent some mental energy thinking about it, I suppose, but also a bit frightened.

    I do hope to go out a bit more elegantly than being flattened by a beer truck, but I see where you are going with this. Right now I’m in my mid-40’s, and in excellent health, so I shouldn’t go naturally anytime soon.

    I don’t anticipate stopping the monthly updates for the foreseeable future unless my agency capriciously changes its mind and tells me that anonymous hobby writing is no longer acceptable.

    Long term, my hope is really that the site will continue to grow and eventually some readers will emerge from the community with a similar investing philosophy and an interest in contributing their own writing to the site. I would be delighted to share the update duties at some point, and would set things up so that they would just take over if anything unfortunate ever happened to me. (I’ve logged your IP address, so if I do coincidentally get hit by a beer truck in the next year or two, you had better have a good alibi ready.)

    I think just about anyone who reads this page a couple of times and perhaps checks out a few of the books on the business cycle on the Recommended Reading page would be able to make educated decisions about where we are in the cycle by following basic news on the economy. But I hope that this community will continue to grow so that there will always a place to come to discuss our thoughts on that subject and bounce ideas off each other.

    With respect to the non-TSP index fund recommendations, you can find a page called ‘Mutual Fund and ETF Equivalents to TSP Funds’ under the ‘Resources’ tab above. The direct link is: http://www.tspallocation.com/mutual-fund-etf-equivalents-tsp-funds/

    VB is good, and I own a lot of that ETF. I also hold VBR, which is the small-cap value index (which tends to do better than the core and growth versions over the long run).

    Good luck and thanks for reading. -ts

    The TSP Allocation Guide www.TSPallocation.com


    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for playing along. I knew I should have used a proxy when making the initial post. However, as I also work for the government those sites are blocked anyway. I think you answered all my questions, so I’ll just close off with:




    I found another useful website for business cycle indicators: http://www.conference-board.org/data/bcicountry.cfm?cid=1 If you click on the PDF press release in the upper right hand corner of this page, you can see the correlation between the Leading Economic Index and business cycles (recessions).

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