Editor's note: Read the latest on how the coronavirus is rattling the markets and what investors can do to navigate it.
In late June, both Warren Buffett and MacKenzie Scott made news for their multibillion-dollar donations to charity. Like some other altruistic billionaires, Scott has signed the Giving Pledge--created by Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates more than a decade ago, the Giving Pledge encourages the super-rich to distribute a significant chunk of their wealth to charitable causes. Many equate philanthropy with stratospheric wealth--a do-good activity for the Buffetts and Scotts of the world. Others define the term more loosely: To them, a philanthropist is simply someone who donates time, money, or talent to help create a better world. I prefer the second definition. Under those terms, we can all be philanthropists. We just need to find our good and act on it. Given that Morningstar.com is a financial and investing site, we of course provide insights around the money aspect of giving back. My colleague Christine Benz has discussed how to check up on a charity to make sure your dollars are being effectively spent. She's also shared charitable strategies to pursue--such as donating appreciated stock, contributing to a donor-advised fund, or making a qualified charitable distribution from an IRA--that in addition to helping others may also yield tax benefits to you and lower your portfolio's portfolio risk. You can find these philanthropic money ideas and others in our 2021 guide to charitable giving. For many, though, acting on your good may not involve money at all. Instead it may mean giving your time to a food bank or a community garden. Or your sharing your special talents with a tutoring program or a senior center. Or reminding the children in your life that they can make the world a better place--and then encouraging their charitable acts, whatever they may be.
10 Undervalued Wide-Moat Stocks These are the cheapest names in the Morningstar Wide Moat Focus Index--plus stocks the index has recently added and dropped. Your Financial To-Do List for July Is it raining or too muggy? Use this time to evaluate your portfolio. Special Report: Advisor Cultural Competency How to build diversity in your advisory business. What Retirees Get Right About Their Retirement Income Instinctively, they understand how to stretch their portfolios. Closing the Gap: Building Black Dollars Learn about wealth gaps, pay gaps, social justice investing, and more. Q2 2021 Market Performance in 7 Charts Bond markets recover and stocks post broad gains.
Portfolio Planning and Personal Finance With Christine Benz
A Midyear Portfolio Checkup in 7 Easy Steps Reviewing your year's performance so far, and positioning yourself for the future. Get a Tax-Smart Plan for In-Retirement Withdrawals Consider these strategies to stretch out your tax savings during your retirement years.
Mutual Funds and Exchange-Traded Funds
Manager Question of the Month: How Much Attention Do Managers Pay to Rival Trades? Stock managers especially watch large investors, activists, and insiders. The Power of the Muni-Bond Market for Impact Investing A Q&A with Adasina Social Capital and Activest on muni bonds as the intersection of finance and policy. 9 Funds Whose Expense Ratios Have Risen in Recent Years Cash outflows and performance adjustments have pushed these funds' expense ratios up. How to Choose a Great Dividend Income ETF Use caution when chasing yield. How a Little Bitcoin Can Change Your 60/40 Portfolio a Lot After bitcoin's recent slide, it may be tempting to buy the dip. Here's what to consider when thinking about adding it to a balanced portfolio. Halfway Through 2021, ETFs Are on Pace for Another Record Year ETFs look poised to shatter last year's flows records.
Why Shell No Longer Has a Moat Too much uncertainty surrounds its new strategy and commodity prices. Stock Rotation Deflated These Momentum-Heavy Funds These funds rode momentum stocks higher, but some didn't pivot with the value rally. 3 Great Stocks to Own These brand-name companies are businesses to buy and hold for the long haul. Still a Long Road to Legalizing Cannabis Federally But investors can still find value in U.S. cannabis stocks. Should These 11 Travel Stocks Be on Your Radar? These companies stand to benefit from pent-up demand--but they aren't all undervalued today.
Stock Analyst Updates
Facebook Wins First Round Against FTC; Maintaining FVE We continue to believe that antitrust and other regulatory risks are manageable and that Facebook's share price already reflects these risks. Raising Tesla's FVE on Improved Profitability Outlook The increased fair value estimate comes from our outlook for higher long-term profitability in the automotive segment.
Investing During an Era of Speculation Should we be concerned about the financial markets' excesses?
Adding Project-Based Planning to Your Advisory Business This useful addition to a practice can broaden the reach of advice. Wash Sale Challenge: What Is Substantially Identical? The key to proper tax-loss harvesting comes down to "facts and circumstances."
The Long View Podcast
Jason Zweig: Temperament Is Everything for Most Investors The author and The Wall Street Journal columnist discusses the current trading frenzy, the scorn for expertise, the road to a fiduciary standard, and more.
Mandatory Contributions Should Be a Retirement Priority Author and former Vanguard CEO Jack Brennan talks retirement, portfolio customization, ESG, and low-cost investments.