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This page features tools mentioned in the Tools in the Crib segment from the investing show. It may include books, websites, TV shows, or other things you should have in your Mad Money Machine toolcrib.
MMM-121: Check the health of your bank. FDIC: Is My Account Insured? and TheStreet Banking Screener (only works in IE) and Bankrate.com
MMM-119: MSN Mutual Fund Screener
MMM-118: LooseStitch.com online outliner
MMM-117: Stock Quotes in Google Spreadsheets
MMM-115: Google Spreadsheet Form Survey Tool
MMM-114: Simba’s Backtest Portfolios Spreadsheet. Read the thread at Bogleheads.org to get the latest version.
MMM-113: IFA’s comparison charts of various assets over various timeframes.
MMM-112: IFA’s chart of Estimated Average Expected Return Over Market Return.
MMM-109: Free PDF version of Reminiscences of a Stock Operator
MMM-107: Google Finance Stock Screener
MMM-105: Try your hand at stock chart analysis at Inspectd.com and prove to yourself that past prices don’t reflect future prices.
MMM-103: Hedge Fund Implode-O-Meter tracks the meltdown.
MMM-102: MeasuringWorth will tell you how much money you need today to equal the same amount from some previous year. It has some other neat tools too.
MMM-096: Windows Live Writer is the tool I’m using to make blog postings.
MMM-095: Yeah it costs a few Federal Reserve Points, but I LOVE the Natara Bonsai outliner tool
MMM-094: Amazon’s Kindle ebook reader. Really neat.
MMM-093: World’s Smallest Political Quiz: Are you liberal, conservative, or what?
MMM-090: Complicated charts from NowAndFutures.com say watch when both lines go below 0.
MMM-089: WhatShouldIReadNext.com helps keep the stack of books on your nightstand piled high.
MMM-088: ClearBooth.orgGlassBooth.org will help you figure out if you are backing the right candidate. Remember: answer questions with an attitude of how little you want the Federal government involved in our lives.
MMM-087: Google Calendar. It. Just. Works. Keep in sync with your spouse.
MMM-086: The Mad Money Machine Personal Portfolio Risk Versus Return Calculation Service! Just email me your portfolio of up to 11 mutual funds, the ticker symbols and percentage owned (Don’t send dollar amounts!), and I will (try to) calculate the annualized return and annualized risk of that portfolio. This will help you compare it against other Lazy Portfolios.
MMM-085: Yahoo! Calendar Sync keeps your and your spouse’s calendars synchronized.
MMM-084: IFA’s Risk vs. Rewards chart includes the DOW 30
MMM-082: The Flea Market for Financial Information: Gummy-Stuff.org!
MMM-077: FinCalc.com can help me calculate how much money I’ll have in 10 years if I take the savings from my Verizon FiOS bundle and invest in the market. Click on ConsumerCalcs, then along the right side under “Saving” click on “What will my current savings grow to?”
MMM-076: The Morningstar Instant X-Ray helps be your blazing light beneath the bay.
MMM-074: Rolling Period Returns can improve the number of observed periods of stock market data.
MMM-072: Comedian Jerry Seinfeld has a motivational tip to keep you going, to get you into a habit of being productive. Basically, get a big wall calendar with a whole year on one page. Then get a big red magic marker. Then for each day that you do your task, mark a big red “X” on that day. After a few days of doing your task regularly, you’ll have a nice chain of X’s going. Then… DON’T BREAK THE CHAIN!
MMM-070: Political Calculations: The S&P 500 at Your Fingertips helps find the true return of the S&P 500 index between any two months, including reinvested dividends and also compares against inflation.
MMM-066: Morningstar’s Investing Classroom. Just don’t believe EVERYTHING you read.
MMM-064: The IFA Portfolio Simulator. If you change the Fees and Expenses section to be 4.25% instead of just .25% you can estimate the safe withdrawal rate on your portfolio.
MMM-063: Looking for some Stock Charts? How about StockCharts.com.
MMM-062: Finally, I found a tool that helps compare entire portfolios. Icarra.com is the place to go. And while you are there, check out the MadMoneyMachine.com portfolios in the Shared Portfolios space.
MMM-060: XIRR calculates the internal rate of return for aperiodic investments. You need to go into Excel and say Tools -> Add Ins -> Analysis Toolpack -> OK
MMM-058: EasyAllocator.com has a three step approach for determining how to invest in your taxable and non-taxable accounts with low fees.
MMM-056: David Grabiner’s Asset Allocation Excel spreadsheet. From his documentation:
This Microsoft Works/Excel worksheet is intended to help you keep track
of your asset allocation. It will not make the asset allocation decisions, but
once you have made the decision, it will tell you what percent of your portfolio
is in each asset class, adjusting for funds which cover multiple asset classes.
Then, when you are ready to invest new money, or to rebalance, you can
increase your allocation to those classes in which you are below the target
You can adjust for the different tax treatment of assets in different accounts.
If you have $60,000 in bonds in a 401(k), and $40,000 in stocks in a
Roth IRA, your effective allocation is not 40% stock. If you will be in a 33%
tax bracket at retirement, the IRS and state treasury effectively own 33% of
your 401(k) but none of your Roth IRA, and thus your portfolio is effectively
50% in stock.
MMM-053: Nationwide’s RetirAbility Check (SM) — Retirement Tool for Retirement Planning.
MMM-052: How to calculate Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR). This tells you the annual rate of your investment gains over any time period. Calculate it the easy way or the hard way in Excel: +(FinalValue / InitialValue) ^ (1 / years) -1
That will give you the annual percentage, so don’t forget to format the cell as a %.
MMM-051: Gotten your Wii yet? Be like me and go to ps3seeker.com/wii and get up early and get in line!
MMM-050: FeedThePig.com helps you figure out the long-term cost of eating lunch out instead of eating a bag lunch.
MMM-047: Google’s News Archive Search helped me find things like Jim Cramer’s Asset Allocation Adventure and the worksheet for it. I’m sure you caught the sarcasm in my voice over this one. Instead of it, I urge you to use the Risk Capacity Survey at IFA.com
MMM-044: Go check out CAPS.fool.com and search for TrackJimCramer. How’s Jim doing for you?
MMM-042: Not yet innundated with information? Then read lots and lots of blogs, starting with the Kiplingers Must-Read Bloggers. Go to reader.google.com and get started. Then import this OPML file (right-click to download) in to Google Reader and all of the blogs will show up.
MMM-041: The tool that has changed my life: The simple way to fold a shirt…
MMM-039: The social-networking of portfolio management and asset allocation! It will replace the Portfolio Smackdown page and automatically update prices. It will provide daily graphs of the entire portfolios and will give the Standard Deviation of the whole mix. The Public Portfolio Analyzer is located here: ><
MMM-038: Its back to school so here’s a tool for your investing education,
to gauge risk in your stocks, whether index funds or CROX, you need standard deviation.
MMM-037: Become a Boglehead! The Vanguard Diehards forum at Diehards.org is the place to ask and have answered your investment questions. In fact, the forum is almost unusable due to so many postings. Your question has PROBABLY already been answered. So, here’s a way to use Google to search it better. Click this link, and when the search box appears, type your search string in the spaces ahead of site:socialize.morningstar.com: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=+++++++++++site%3Asocialize.morningstar.com+inurl%3AF100000015&btnG=Search
MMM-036: Already own or thinking of owning an actively-managed mutual fund? See if it is really an index fund in disguise at Morningstar. Here’s the page for Bill Miller’s Legg Mason Value Trust, for example. Once you are there, just type your ticker symbol in the box at upper left of Morningstar’s page.
MMM-032: Pandora.com lets you create a stream of music based upon the kind of music you tell it you like. It is not based just on referrals, it is based upon actual attributes within the music.
MMM-031: Nosey? Go check out the prices on everyone’s house you can think of at Zillow.com.
MMM-030: Get your own Prediction Market using Inkling at InklingMarkets.com. Listen to see if I come up with a market for the Mad Money Machine listeners to participate in.
MMM-029: Got a question about investing? Don’t ask me, Ask Matt! Matt Krantz of the USA Today answers your investing questions every day of the week.
MMM-028: Want to know why index funds makes sense? Want to know more about index funds or ETFs? How to build a simple portfolio? Not gonna tell ya.
Halfway to being the most useful investing resource on earth.
MMM-025: The MSN RetirementFinancial Independence Planner
MMM-021: Take $1000 and retire a millionaire in only three months! (ok, just kidding) Earnings.com and money.cnn.com/data/earnings. But seriously, check here before you buy a stock to see what THEY expect its earnings to be.
MMM-017: CRAMER, CRAMER, CRAMER TOOLS. YourMoneyWatch.com is the one Jim Cramer said is the most comprehensive archive of his picks.
CramersMadMoney.com is the place to go to gossip all about Mad Money.
MMM-016: A Whole Toolcrib out at financialcalculators.com. I particularly liked the ConsumerCalcs section.
And think you got the stuff? Then try to make it as one of the 250 value investors at ValueInvestorsClub.com
MMM-015: Go to the new finance.google.com and type in symbol PCU and see what you get! And try your hand at stock picking before spending any money with simulator.zacks.com. Or better yet: Enter the MadMoneyMachineCOM Portfolio Challenge and see if you can beat me at making money (not too hard probably!). The fun starts April 3rd, but you can enter at ANY TIME after that. (And it might be to your advantage!)
MMM-014: The Morningstar Portfolio Holdings page lets you see what stocks are owned by an ETF. Take a look, for example, at the IGW iShares Goldman Sachs Semiconductor ETF.
MMM-012: The Amerivest ETF Advisor helps you figure out how to create a diversified portfolio of Exchange Traded Funds to help meet your goals.
MMM-011: RiskGrades.com let’s you figure out how risky your portfolio is compared to the S&P 500 and other benchmarks. It also gives you a RiskGrade over time.
MMM-009: Investment Strategies for the 21st Century is what InvestorSolutions.com says is the “finest non-technical investment guides ever written.”
MMM-008: The T. Rowe Price Retirement Income Calculator let’s you get stuck on Groundhog Day 500 times trying different return scenarios
MMM-007: The Morningstar Instant X-Ray tool helps you find out if your portfolio is diversified.
MMM-006: The number 4! Yes, 4% is all you need to know to plan for your retirement. If you withdraw no more than 4% from your retirement assest per year, you have an EXTREMELY high chance of never running out of money. So, to use the tool, calculate how much money you need to spend per year (adjusting for inflation). Then divide that number by 4% (or more simply, multiply by 25) and that will result in the NUMBER, the amount of money you need for retirement.
MMM-005: finance.yahoo.com and particularly the Top ETF Performers
MMM-004: http://madmoney.thestreet.com allows you to enter a ticker symbol and see whether Cramer said Bull or Bear. Evernote at http://evernote.com is a great free notetaking tool. Finally, read the Mad Money Recap at thestreet.com.
MMM-003: EDGAR is the Securities and Exchange Comission (SEC) website that holds every publicly traded company’s annual and quarterly reports and other important filings. Read these as part of your investing homework! Just enter the ticker symbol of the company you are interested in and you are on your way.
MMM-002: The MSN Stock Screener tool is the best one of its kind on the web. Enter criteria such as highest return on capital and lowest price to earnings ratio and see what pops up! NOTE: IT WORKS BEST IN MICROSOFT INTERNET EXPLORER!
MMM-001: Excel Stock Quote plug-in is a free tool to allow stock quotes updated live in your spreadsheet. I used it to construct and analyze the ETF and Cramer portfolios!