Latest posts by Wanderer (see all)
- Reader Case: Keep Calm and FIRE On - May 31, 2019
- The US China Trade War - May 27, 2019
- Reader Case: Should I Buy a House as a Passive Investment? - May 17, 2019
Hello again and welcome back to the Millennial Revolution Investment Workshop! New readers, please click here to start from the beginning.
Today we’re going to take a look at how the various accounts show up on Personal Capital.
The reason we wanted to use Personal Capital in the first place is that because
- It’s free so why not
- It has some nifty visualization tools we can use to see how our portfolio is doing.
We are going to dive into some of these tools right now.
We start by logging into your Personal Capital account. If you haven’t created one already, use this link.
Note that unfortunately, Personal Capital only supports American brokerage accounts, so if you’re Canadian this doesn’t apply to you 🙁
Step 1: Linking Your Trading Account
We will be using Vanguard. You can use any supported brokerage but for the purposes of this workshop we’ll be sticking with these 2.
1. Click the little + symbol in the top-left corner to add a new account…
2. Find your bank by typing in it’s name…
3. Once that’s done and it’s finished syncing your transactions over, we can see that our initial buy transactions have been recorded. As we can see, our portfolio is already up a teeny tiny bit, but that’s mostly because of random movement in the markets.
4. Click over to Portfolio -> Holdings to see can see how our portfolio has been behaving. So far, nothing too fancy as the market hasn’t really done too much over the last week.
5. For another view, we can click on Portfolio -> Performance.
Nothing too interesting here so far, but that will obviously change as time goes on.
6. Now the interesting part. Click over to Portfolio -> Allocation. You should see something like this.
Most of our assets are lumped into that big grey box labelled “Unclassified.” This is because Personal Capital doesn’t know what to make of our adorable Canadian ETFs, so we have to do a little extra work to tell the software what we’re holding. Fortunately we only have to do this once.
If you’re American, skip to Step 3 (because Personal Capital should do Step 2 automatically). If not, continue.
Step 2 Manually Classifying Your ETFs:
1. First, we click that grey button “Manual Classifications” in the top-right corner. This should take you to a screen that looks like this.
2. Now we have to click through each asset and manually classify each asset. We will start with VUN.TO.
3. We want to use Method 2: Enter the percentage of each asset class.
We want to put this at 100% US Stocks since this is our Total US Market ETF. The sub-categories on the right I copied over from the American VTI holdings, so feel free to copy my work. After you’ve entered this in, hit Save.
4. Now we do XEC.TO.
5. Again, click Method 2: Enter the percentage of each asset class.
XEC is our emerging markets fund, so we want to classify it as 100% International stocks, then sub-categorize it as 100% Emerging.
6. Now XEF…
XEF is our EAFE ETF, which is of course 100% International Stocks, 100% Developed.
7. VAB is next.
VAB is an International Bond (since it’s not US, as defined by Personal Capital), and it’s a government bond index, so we will sub-categorize as 100% government.
8. And now finally VCN.
This is our TSX ETF, which we shall classify as International Stocks, Developed.
9. OK great. Now if we were to go back to our Manual classification screen, every ETF should now be labelled as “Manually Classified Holdings.”
Step 3: Viewing our Allocations
1. Go to Portfolio -> Allocation. You should see the following:
Play around with this screen. You can, for example click the boxes and drill down to see how each category is divided. For example, if you click “International Stocks,” you should see something like this.
2. And if we were to drill-down further, we would see our actual ETFs and their weightings.
When I was investing ourselves, I had to do all this crap manually with an ugly spreadsheet, so this acts as a nice double check that everything’s going the way it should be. Right now, all the holdings are skewed by 50% since I’m holding the next $500 I’m planning to invest in the trading account as cash, but once that gets deployed these percentages should look close to our target allocations we decided previously. If they drift off target, it should be pretty easy to spot using this interface.
And that’s it! Feel free to play around with the rest of the features of Personal Capital as we will be using this to track our performance going forward.
So that’s it for this week. Questions? Comments? Problems? Let’s hear it in the comments and we will do our best to help.
How much does it cost to participate in the Investment Workshop? NOTHING. Because that's how we roll. All we ask is that you sign-up using the following affiliate links to keep it free forever:
Disclaimer: The views expressed is provided as a general source of information only and should not be considered to be personal investment advice or solicitation to buy or sell securities. Investors considering any investment should consult with their investment advisor to ensure that it is suitable for the investor’s circumstances and risk tolerance before making any investment decisions. The information contained in this blog was obtained from sources believe to be reliable, however, we cannot represent that it is accurate or complete.