I love when investing is boring and simple.
My team and I routinely look for boring companies when we're scouring the market for investment ideas.
As long as these businesses consistently grow revenues, reward shareholders, and have a competitive advantage... we're interested. Companies that do boring jobs – like picking up trash, selling air conditioners, or killing bugs – stay off the radar for most investors. And that's great for us to buy in at a fair price.
If a business does something that no one else wants to do... then sign us up.
One investment that hasn't been boring is bitcoin.
For more than a decade, I've watched bitcoin boom, then bust, then boom and bust again. It can be exciting... but it's definitely volatile.
Right now, bitcoin is booming again. And thanks to PayPal's new cryptocurrency service, it has become easier than ever to buy bitcoin.
That means a lot of people who don't understand bitcoin can easily buy it now...
Don't be one of them.
Some folks want to make speculations. They want to swing for the fences to complement the rest of their portfolio. I think that's absolutely fine. In fact, I encourage it – if you know what you're doing.
The crypto world is full of life-changing gains, but it's also filled with shady characters and dubious cryptocurrency tokens. There's speculating... and then there's setting your money on fire.
If you want to speculate on cryptos without losing your shirt, you first need to find someone trustworthy who knows the industry. And when it comes to cryptos, there's no one I'd trust more than my colleague Eric Wade, Stansberry Research's in-house cryptocurrency expert...
Eric just released a video where he explains how bitcoin protects you from the government, how to know which cryptocurrencies to invest in, and why the crypto boom isn't over yet.
How did you do with your 2020 resolutions? Are you already thinking of your resolutions for next year? Let us know... [email protected].
Q: Should I invest in a traditional or Roth IRA? – T.S.
A: There are two main types of IRAs – traditional and Roth.
When you contribute to a traditional IRA, you're contributing with pre-tax dollars. Your contributions to a traditional IRA can help lower your tax bill. And a traditional IRA doesn't have limitations based on income.
A traditional IRA also lets you compound your wealth from investments tax-free. You don't pay taxes on capital gains, dividends, or interest payments until you start withdrawing from your IRA. Once you reach age 70 and a half (or age 72, depending on your birthday), you have to start taking a required minimum distribution. (It's important to note that these distribution requirements rules don't apply in 2020 due to the ongoing pandemic.)
A Roth IRA is sort of a flipped version of the traditional IRA. While you don't get a tax break on your income when you contribute, you also don't have to pay taxes when you make withdrawals from your future nest egg.
Unlike a traditional IRA, there are no required minimum distributions, but there are income restrictions... Individuals making more than $139,000 aren't eligible to contribute to a Roth IRA in 2020. Next year, that limit goes up to $140,000. And a married couple filing jointly can't contribute if its household income is more than $206,000 in 2020 and $208,000 in 2021.
A traditional IRA most benefits people who expect to be in a lower tax bracket when they have retired than when they are working.
A Roth IRA best works for people in the opposite situation. If you expect that your taxes will be higher as a retiree than as a working person, a Roth is perfect for you.
We often recommend opening both a traditional and a Roth IRA if you are unsure what your tax situation will be in your retirement. That way, you get the benefits of both methods.
Q: When you talk about getting rid of blue lights, do you also mean Kindles? The light from my Kindle seems different than my phone. – G.M.
A: Any electronic device with a screen – including cellphones, tablets, e-readers, and laptops – emits blue light.
Blue light interrupts our sleep cycle by messing up our melatonin levels. Melatonin, the hormone secreted to help you fall asleep, is essential for keeping us on a healthy, restorative schedule. Disrupting this cycle leads to grogginess, impaired memory, increased risk for depression and obesity, and even loss of vision.
Fortunately, many devices today have blue light filters built in. In a Kindle, for instance, you should be able to find this under the settings menu. For more tips on device-specific blue light filters, check out this guide here.
Q: What is the best cocoa drink product we can drink daily? – F.H.
A: Longtime readers know I love getting my regular chocolate fix. And this time of year, there's nothing much better than a hot cup of cocoa. It might surprise some folks to know that hot chocolate has health benefits. A 2013 Harvard study, published in the medical journal Neurology, found that seniors who drank two cups of hot cocoa per day for a month performed better on memory and cognitive tests than those who didn't drink hot cocoa. The cocoa drinkers also showed improved blood flow to their brains.
There's just one problem: Lots of powdered hot cocoa mixes are packed with sugar. Take a look at the hot cocoa mixes at the grocery store – the first ingredient in most will be sugar. Do what I do: Skip the mixes and stick to dark cocoa powder. You'll get the antioxidants from the chocolate without all the added sugar. You can even melt dark chocolate with milk if you want an extra-decadent hot chocolate.
What We're Reading...
- Did you miss it? How to spot a bubble.
- Something different: Lots of retailers have decided to close for Thanksgiving.
Here's to our health, wealth, and a great retirement,
Dr. David Eifrig and the Health & Wealth Bulletin Research Team
November 20, 2020