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Paul Merriman: ‘This Is Not Just a Problem with Retail Amateur Investors’

The author and financial educator discusses his commitment to indexing, why he believes in small value stocks, and the perils of performance-chasing.

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Our guest on the podcast today is financial educator and author Paul Merriman. He founded Merriman, a fee-only investment advisory firm, in 1983. He retired from Merriman in 2011 and started The Merriman Financial Education Foundation, which is dedicated to providing comprehensive financial education to investors. Merriman has written several books on investing. His latest released in November 2020 and is called We're Talking Millions! 12 Simple Ways To Supercharge Your Retirement. He writes a weekly column on MarketWatch, and he also hosts the weekly Sound Investing podcast.




MarketWatch columns

Sound Investing podcasts

Financial Education

The Merriman Financial Education Foundation

Next Gen Personal Finance

NGPF Documentary: The Most Important Class You Never Had, by Tim Ranzetta,, March 20, 2020.

"Opinion: My Wild Ride Owning GameStop Stock," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, Feb. 12, 2021.


"The Ultimate Buy-and-Hold Strategy," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, July 17, 2013.

"30 Reasons to Fall in Love With Index Funds," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, June 4, 2014.

"Why REITs Belong in Your Retirement Portfolio," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, April 1, 2015.

"Opinion: Here Are the two Funds you Need—Before and After Retirement," by Chris Pedersen, MarketWatch, Nov. 30, 2019.

"Target Date Funds and Portfolio Choice in 401(k) Plans," by Olivia S. Mitchell and Stephen P. Utkus, Wharton Pension Research Council, Jan. 9, 2020.

"The Lessons of Vanguard's Jack Bogle Have Helped Countless Investors—but His Picks Could Be Improved," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, Feb. 13, 2020.

Telltale Chart,

"Paul Merriman 4 Fund Portfolio Review," OptimizedPortfolio, March 24, 2021.

Retirement Decumulation

"Fine-Turning Retirement Portfolio Allocations," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, July 31, 2013.

"Retire With More Money and Less Risk," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, April 30, 2014.

"FAQs About the Merriman Target Date Portfolios," by Chris Pedersen,

"How to Double Your Target-Date Retirement Fund’s Return in a Single Move," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, April 15, 2015.

"Why Target-Date Funds Are the Best Retirement Investment," by Paul Merriman, MarketWatch, Sept. 7, 2019.