Secrets of a Long-Term Investing Strategy

April 14, 2016

fb-strategyfordecadesMost of us are long-term investors. We need to grow our portfolios over many years in order to reach our goals, but it can be a challenge to find a strategy that will be around for decades.

Few advisors have a 40-year track record, and more than two-thirds of the investment newsletters that were around when we started NoLoad FundX in 1976 have stopped publishing.

So why are investors still turning to us for help taking charge of their financial futures?

Here are six secrets to our long-term success.

6 Secrets of a Long-Term Strategy

1. Core investments like mutual funds don’t go out of style

We focus on mutual funds and ETFs, not on niche investment products, and funds continue to be a core investment for millions of investors. More than 90 million people own mutual funds — about a third of the U.S. population, according to the Investment Company Institute (ICI).

Funds offer investors diversification and access to top managers and market indexes around the world. Funds are also easy (and often inexpensive) to trade and they allow investors to quickly adapt their portfolios when markets change.

When we started NoLoad FundX back in April 1976, there were only 300 funds available. Today, investors have more than 25,000 funds and ETFs to choose from, and they need solid investment guidance more than ever.

2. A broad view of the market offers many opportunities

We take a broad view of the market, covering a wide range of funds, including large-, mid- and small-cap funds, growth and value funds, foreign and domestic funds. This has helped investors capitalize on many different opportunities over the past four decades.

Newsletters that focused on a particular industry or sector often suffered when their area of the market was out of favor for many years, and many didn’t stick around. In the tech boom of the early 2000s, advisors who focused on technology seemed like they could do now wrong, but when the market changed and technology went out of favor, many tech-focused advisors struggled to attract investors. But our Upgrading strategy moved us out of technology funds and into new leading funds, like value funds and then foreign funds.

3. A simple approach is easy to stick with long term

Many people assume that investing has to be complicated, that successful investing requires a lot of time, research and in-depth analysis. But if your strategy is too complicated or too time-consuming, you may not be able to stick with it long term.

Our Upgrading strategy is easy to follow and doesn’t take much time each month. It’s designed to help you focus on what information really matters and it shows you exactly what to do about it.

“I can modify my portfolio without having to understand the complexities of various companies and market situations,” one longtime investor told us.

4. A long-term record shows that the strategy works in many different markets

We invest to make money over time, but strategies that work in one market environment may not work as well in other environments. That’s why a strong long-term track record matters: it’s a way for investors to know that their approach has been effective in many different kinds of markets.  

Our terrific long-term returns are another reason why we’ve survived when so many other newsletters folded, and our results were backed up by the Hulbert Financial Digest. NoLoad FundX was one of just three newsletters to beat the market since 1980, as Mark Hulbert reported in the Wall Street Journal.

5. A commitment to leveling the playing field

Our firm was built on the idea that individual investors should have the same opportunities as large investors. FundX began in 1969 as a money management firm, and that remains our core business today. But we knew that investors could manage their own portfolios if they had the right tools and information, and that’s what led us to start publishing NoLoad FundX.

NoLoad FundX helped investors take their portfolios into their own hands. It freed them from the constraints of load funds and the need to pay a broker for the privilege of investing in a fund. And it gave them a clear, proven strategy that they could use to keep their portfolios in top funds and adapt to changing markets.

Over the years, some advisors dropped their newsletters in order to devote more time to their money management clients. But we believe our newsletter is a valuable resource for our clients. It gives them monthly insights on how we’re thinking about the current market, and it provides a clear view of our investment process.

6. The support of investors like you

NoLoad FundX wouldn’t be celebrating 40 years this month if it weren’t for the support and loyalty of investors like you. Many of our subscribers have been with us for decades, and, over the years, some have even become money management clients or shareholders of the funds we manage. We are gratified that the strategy we developed back in the 1970s has helped so many people reach their long-term goals.

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