Investing Blog Roundup: The Bogleheads’ Guide to the Three-Fund Portfolio

Taylor Larimore — nonagenarian, World War II vet, and co-author of the Bogleheads’ Guide books — recently released a new book: The Bogleheads’ Guide to the Three-Fund Portfolio.

The “three-fund portfolio” (subject of a long-running discussion thread on the Bogleheads forum) is made up of three index funds: a total US stock market index fund, a total international stock index fund, and a total bond market index fund. With just three holdings, it manages to be far simpler than most people’s portfolios, while also being extremely diversified (including thousands of stocks from around the world, as well as thousands of bonds).

Larimore’s new book is very brief — in the spirit of Bill Bernstein’s If You Can. For those who are already well versed in the Bogleheads literature (e.g., having already read the original Bogleheads Guide to Investing, and other books by Bernstein, Roth, Ferri, etc.) the book will be unlikely to provide new information, but it will likely be an enjoyable read nonetheless, as it was for me. (I always enjoy reading about Taylor’s lessons accumulated via many years of experience.)

I think where the book will really shine is as a gift for new investors. Because of the book’s brevity (easy to read in an afternoon), it is more likely to actually be read than the typical book about investing. And because of the book’s singular focus, it will be easy for new investors to internalize the message.

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