The portfolio holds separate bond holdings in its core fixed-income positions, including iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond (NYSEArca: LQD) at 16% and mortgage-backed iShares Barclays MBS Bond (NYSEArca: MBB) at 10%. These bonds help replicate securities in the total market bond index fund, sans government-bond exposure.
Additionally, the portfolio holds positions in iShares Barclays TIPS Bond (NYSEArca: TIP) at 25%, Vanguard Short-Term Bond ETF (NYSEArca: BSV) at 13%, and a smaller allocation in SPDR DB International Government Inflation-Protected Bond (NYSEArca: WIP) at 4%. TIPS ETFs help protect against any potential rise in inflation levels and the short-term bond ETF helps support any short-term flights to quality.
Equities holdings cover the basic U.S. market-capitalization funds with some international diversification, including the Vanguard Mega Cap 300 Index (NYSEArca: MGC) at 13%, Vanguard Mid-Cap ETF (NYSEArca: VO) at 4%, Vanguard Small-Cap ETF (NYSEArca: VB) at 2%, iShares MSCI EAFE Index (NYSEArca: EFA) at 5% and the Vanguard Emerging Markets ETF (NYSEArca: VWO) at 1%. More conservative investors may lean toward stable companies that focus on dividend growth.
Around 7% should be held in cash or cash equivalents. Cash held should be dependent on spending needs, income generating assets and the size of the overall portfolio. Benz advises holding enough cash to cover two to five years’ worth of living expenses.
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Max Chen contributed to this article.