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Dec. 7, 2019, 1:29 p.m. EST

Weekend reads: A warm retirement on modest income

Also, stock-market momentum and picks, and how to save a lot of money watching TikTok

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By Philip van Doorn, MarketWatch


iStock
Coastline of Bay St. Louis Mississippi.

Catey Hill once again helps readers to find destinations for retirement living based on their individual circumstances and wants. This week she offers up three beautiful locations to a couple with a specific medical problem, relatively low income and a desire to live near the ocean.

A different way to see the wealth gap

This one chart sums up how dire millennials’ finances are compared to other generations when they were the same age.

Luxurious college amenities

One reason millennials have more difficulty building wealth is their student debt. But then there’s this: tapas bars, high-end gyms and pet services all included in the cost of tuition and room and board. How did a college education turn into a luxury vacation?

For investors — to weight, or not to weight?

The S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX +0.39%  is incredibly important to U.S. investors. The largest mutual fund tracking the index — the Vanguard 500 Index Fund /zigman2/quotes/201363336/realtime VFIAX +0.39%  — has $520 billion in assets under management, while the SPDR S&P 500 ETF has /zigman2/quotes/209901640/composite SPY +0.31%  $290 billion.

The benchmark index is weighted by market capitalization, which means the largest five companies — Apple /zigman2/quotes/202934861/composite AAPL +1.11% , Microsoft /zigman2/quotes/207732364/composite MSFT +0.56% , Amazon.com /zigman2/quotes/210331248/composite AMZN -0.70% , /zigman2/quotes/205064656/composite FB +0.17%  and JPMorgan Chase /zigman2/quotes/205971034/composite JPM +0.69%  — make up 16% of the index. The largest 10 make up 24%.

Last year, Howard Gold used long-term data to show that equal-weighted index funds and ETFs have performed better than indexes that weight companies by market capitalization. Now Mark Hubert argues that cap-weighted indexes are better because they take advantage of the “momentum effect,” and that’s been a much more important driver for stock prices than the “contrarianism” that the structure of an equal-weight index promotes.

More on momentum

Momentum stocks — those that have risen rapidly — tend to appear expensive. Michael Brush identifies 30 momentum stocks that look cheap enough to buy now.

A fresh FIRE story

Kiersten and Julien Saunders point the way to cutting debt, managing expenses and working together toward financial independence.

Do you want to time the stock market?

Andrea Riquier looks at how investors might predict a market decline.

What will the next bear market look like?

Some investors have short memories. The last brutal bear market — with a 58% decline for the S&P 500 from intraday peak to trough — took place between Oct. 11, 2007 and March 9, 2009. Here’s what the next bear market might look like.

Two political stories

Small farmers in the U.S. are being hurt by President Trump’s trade war with China. But most federal aid to the agriculture industry is being misdirected, according to Environmental Working Group.

Chris Matthews points to a threat to anyone in a broad index fund or ETF: Mounting bipartisan support for antitrust action against the largest U.S. technology companies.

Go here to save money while having fun

There’s plenty of silly material on TikTok, but there’s also a serious side that shows how to save a lot of money.

/zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime
US : S&P US
3,329.62
+12.81 +0.39%
Volume: 2.15B
Jan. 17, 2020 5:07p
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/zigman2/quotes/201363336/realtime
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 307.51
+1.19 +0.39%
Volume: 0.00
Jan. 17, 2020
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/zigman2/quotes/209901640/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE Arca
$ 331.95
+1.03 +0.31%
Volume: 95.85M
Jan. 17, 2020 8:00p
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/zigman2/quotes/202934861/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 318.73
+3.49 +1.11%
Volume: 34.45M
Jan. 17, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
26.89
Dividend Yield
0.97%
Market Cap
$1397.32 billion
Rev. per Employee
$1.98M
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/zigman2/quotes/207732364/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 167.10
+0.93 +0.56%
Volume: 34.37M
Jan. 17, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
31.47
Dividend Yield
1.22%
Market Cap
$1274.77 billion
Rev. per Employee
$902,473
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/zigman2/quotes/210331248/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 1,864.72
-13.22 -0.70%
Volume: 4.00M
Jan. 17, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
82.56
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$924.52 billion
Rev. per Employee
$359,671
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/zigman2/quotes/205064656/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 222.14
+0.37 +0.17%
Volume: 15.91M
Jan. 17, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
35.48
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$633.65 billion
Rev. per Employee
$1.57M
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/205971034/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 138.20
+0.95 +0.69%
Volume: 14.70M
Jan. 17, 2020 6:30p
P/E Ratio
12.89
Dividend Yield
2.60%
Market Cap
$433.46 billion
Rev. per Employee
$497,647
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Philip van Doorn covers various investment and industry topics. He has previously worked as a senior analyst at TheStreet.com. He also has experience in community banking and as a credit analyst at the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York.

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