Computerized Investing > Fourth Quarter 2010

The Top Online Portfolio Managers

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by Wayne A. Thorp

I recently read an article that equated investors and their portfolios to mother bears and their cubs. The conclusion was that it was “bear watching season.” Even the most die-hard buy-and-hold investors like to know what their portfolios are doing from time to time, despite the market gyrations of the past couple of years that have many investors burying their heads in the sand.

Merely monitoring these investments on a periodic basis doesn’t necessarily require a sophisticated portfolio management program. For such simple portfolio tracking, online portfolio managers are a handy and inexpensive way to monitor several investment accounts at the same time.

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Ernest from IL posted over 7 years ago:

I'm having difficulty seeing the value in Wikinvest portfolio manager for manual transactions. First, I have not imported transactions from my broker. I have only attempted manual transactions. You show that Deposit/Withdrawal, Buy, Sell, Dividends transactions are available at Wikinvest. I can only find where you can add symbol, shares and average cost. What am I missing? I can not find help that describes these transaction types.

Wayne from IL posted over 7 years ago:

In the article I mentioned that Wikinvest currently does not support manual entering of transactions. This is something the site expects to add in the future.

Ernest from IL posted over 7 years ago:

Thank you for your response. I just can not find that statement in the article.

D. from MD posted over 7 years ago:

The last article on disk-based software seems to be from 2007 and is here:

But I cannot make comments... so when is the next review of disk-based softare coming out? And why doesn't THAT article have printable & PDF versions?

WRT this article -- does the PDF version have all the data tables, or is there still something I'll need to find online and print separately?

Its really _necessary_ that the "hardcopy" versions have direct URLs to things not included. If those links might change, at least they could index them with the article in the same spot as the links to the "hardcopy" versions.

D. from MD posted over 7 years ago:

The paid Morningstar Premium manager requires to you enter the date you purchased the security or fund. Presumably it wants to calculate your basis. However, it won't allow you to skip the entry. The program just fails at that point.

I have some things where I know the basis, but not the dates. Needs to allow you to skip it and alternatively enter the basis directly.

If you have 30 years of dividend reinvestment, its impossible to enter 120 line items of data...

Does the AAII site somehow notify posters of replies to articles upon which they have commented? If not, this is pretty useless...

James from PA posted over 7 years ago:

Is it safe to give Wikinvest your user-id and password for your brokerage account? The user-id and password has full access to buy, sell, transfer, withdrawal, etc.?

Kim from NC posted over 7 years ago:

Reply to "D from Maryland" re: M* Premium mgr. To get around the date requirement in the portfolio mgr/M* I simply used one of my previous brokerage stmts and the cost basis it reflected for each holding. Since the brokerage statement shows the cost basis as a reflection of original purchase price + all dividend reinvestments, that takes care of having to have a real starting date + all dividends reinvested over a long period of time. Makes it far easier to deal w/M*'s requirement of date & dividends reinvested -- no need to get stressed out by the limitations of M*'s portfolio manager system. FYI - the monthly price for M* premium service is now $20.95 as of 1/24/2011 (it is posted on their website altho hard to find).

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