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This page is an attempt to provide general guidance suggesting "best-in-class" investments (i.e., "offshore funds") which might be suitable for offshore investors (i.e., those seeking, for whatever reason, to invest in investment vehicles outside their country of residence).  However, each investor's situation is different, so some or all of the recommendations on this page may not apply to all such investors.

Offshore investors tend to have very complex criteria governing investment selection, so, in addition to standard criteria (e.g., passive funds, low cost, no load, etc.), the following issues must also be considered:

bulletComplex international tax issues typically apply.  Tax considerations are urgently important.  It is imperative that a competent authority on international tax law be consulted before ANY offshore investments are made.  Note that Altruist Financial Advisors LLC is NOT an expert in international tax law.  Therefore, our understanding of tax implications of the various investments should NOT be relied upon.
 
bulletKeep in mind that tax avoidance shouldn't be any investor's goal the goal ought to be maximization of post-tax wealth.  It may sometimes make sense, therefore, to invest in an imperfectly tax efficient vehicle if it is better, on an after-tax basis, than any other similar vehicles available.
 
bulletSome countries largely prohibit their residents from investing in overseas-domiciled investment funds (e.g., US, Canada). 
 
bulletResidents of some countries may have local investing options available which might be competitive with, or superior to, some or all of the below offshore funds (these countries include, but are not limited to: Australia, Canada, Ireland, UK, US).
 

Asset Class

Investment

Domicile

Short-Term Bonds DFA Global Short Bond Fund (this fund is not yet open)

Ireland

Vanguard Short-Term U.S. Government Bond Index Fund (E/R: 0.38%; Min US$100,000) (this fund is not yet open) Ireland
Ladder of Individual Treasury Bonds (E/R: 0.0%) US
US Large Cap Stocks BGI US Equity Index Fund (E/R: 0.231%; Min US$1,000,000; 0.05% Purchase Fee; 0.05% Redemption Fee) Ireland
Vanguard US Futures Fund (E/R: 0.3%; Min US$1,000,000) Ireland
Vanguard Large Cap ETF (VV) (E/R: 0.11%) US
Vanguard Tax-Managed Capital Appreciation Fund Admiral Shares (VTCLX) (E/R: 0.11%; Min US$10,000) US
Non-US Large Cap Stocks Fidelity Spartan International Index Fund - Fidelity Advantage Class (FSIVX) (E/R: 0.07%; Min $100,000; Early redemption fee for < 90 days) US
Vanguard Institutional Developed Markets Index Fund (VIDMX) (E/R: 0.07%; Min $5,000,000) US
Vanguard Europe Pacific ETF (VEA) (E/R: 0.09%) US
Vanguard European Index Fund ETF Shares (VGK)(E/R: 0.12%) PLUS Vanguard Pacific Index Fund ETF Shares (VPL) (E/R: 0.12%) US
Vanguard Total International Stock ETF (VXUS)  (E/R: 0.14%) (this fund contains both emerging and developed market stocks, including small cap) US
Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US ETF (VEU)  (E/R: 0.15%) (this fund contains both emerging and developed market stocks) US
European Large Cap Stocks Vanguard European Index Fund ETF Shares (VGK) (E/R: 0.12%) US
Vanguard European Stock Index Fund Admiral Shares (VEUSX) (E/R: 0.12%; Min $10,000; Early redemption fee for < 2 mo) US
Vanguard European Stock Index Fund (E/R: 0.50%; Min US$100,000; 0.25% Purchase Fee) Ireland
BGI Europe ex UK Index Fund PLUS BGI UK Index Fund Ireland
SSgA BALZAC Europe Index Fund (E/R: 0.50%) France
Pacific Large Cap Stocks Vanguard Japan Stock Index Fund (E/R: 0.5%; Min US$100,000; 0.10% Purchase Fee) (this fund is only Japan Japan makes up the overwhelming majority of the Pacific stock market) Ireland
Vanguard Pacific Index Fund ETF Shares (VPL) (E/R: 0.12%) US
BGI Japan Index Fund PLUS BGI Pacific Rim Equity Index Fund (E/R: .415%; Min US$1,000,000; 0.85% Purchase fee; 0.85% Redemption Fee) Ireland
Global Large Cap Stocks Vanguard Total World Stock ETF (VT) (E/R: 0.18%) US
Vanguard Global Stock Index Fund (E/R: 0.50%; Min US$100,000) Ireland
BGI World Equity Index Fund (E/R: 0.276%; Minimum US$1,000,000; 0.35% Purchase Fee; 0.30% Redemption Fee) Ireland
SSgA BALZAC World Index Fund (E/R: 0.50%, 0.25% Purchase Fee, 0.20% Redemption Fee) France
US Large Value Stocks DFA US Large Cap Value Portfolio (DFLVX) (E/R: 0.28%) US
Guggenheim S&P 500 Pure Value ETF (RPV) (E/R: 0.35%) US
DFA U.S. Value Fund (This fund is not yet open) Ireland
Non-US Large Value Stocks DFA European Value Fund (this fund is not yet open) Ireland
Vanguard European Value Stock Index Fund (E/R: 0.50%; this fund is not yet open) Ireland
DFA International Value Portfolio (DFIVX) (E/R: 0.45%) US
iShares MSCI EAFE Value Index Fund (EFV) (E/R: 0.40%) US
US Small Stocks iShares Microcap Index Fund (IWC) (E/R: 0.60%) US
Bridgeway Ultra-Small Company Market Fund (BRSIX) (E/R: 0.65%) US
DFA US Small Companies Fund (Min US$250,000) Ireland
Non-US Small Stocks DFA European Small Companies Fund (Min US$250,000) PLUS DFA Pacific Basin Small Companies Fund (Min US$250,000) Ireland
DFA International Small Company Portfolio (DFISX) (E/R: 0.45%) US
iShares MSCI EAFE Small Cap Index Fund (SCZ) (E/R: 0.40%) US
iShares FTSE Developed Small Cap ex-North America Index Fund (IFSM) (E/R: 0.50%) US
Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Small Cap Index ETF (VSS) (E/R: 0.20%) (this fund contains both emerging and developed market stocks) US
US Small Value Stocks Guggenheim S&P SmallCap 600 Pure Value ETF (RZV (E/R: 0.35%) US
Emerging Markets Large Stocks DFA Emerging Markets Fund (this fund is not yet open) Ireland
Vanguard Emerging Market Stock Index Fund (E/R: 0.65%; Min US$100,000 this fund is scheduled to open on June 7 2006) Ireland
Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets Index Fund ETF Shares (VWO) (E/R: 0.15%) US
PowerShares BLDRS Emerging Markets 50 ADR Index Fund (ADRE) (E/R: 0.30%) US
Emerging Markets Large Value Stocks DFA Emerging Markets Value Fund Ireland
DFA Emerging Markets Value Portfolio (DFEVX) (E/R: 0.61%) US
REITs Vanguard REIT Index Fund ETF Shares (VNQ) (E/R: 0.10%) US
Commodity Futures BGI Commodity Total Return Fund (E/R: 0.35%; Min US$1,000,000; 0.1% purchase/redemption fee) Ireland
PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund (DBC) (E/R: 0.83%) US

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This web page contains the current opinions of Eric E. Haas at the time it is written and such opinions are subject to change without notice.  This web page is intended to serve two purposes:

bulletTo educate the public; and
bulletTo provide disclosure of Mr. Haas' opinions to prospective clients.  We believe that prospective clients are well-served by being made aware of what they are buying and what they are buying is advice that is based on these opinions.

We believe the information provided here to be useful and accurate at the time it is written.  Information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but is not guaranteed. 

No investor should invest solely on the basis of information listed here.  Before investing, it is important to consult each prospective investment's prospectus and consider both its risk/return characteristics and its effect on your overall portfolio.

This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax, legal, or investment planning advice.  Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, Altruist recommends consultation with a qualified tax adviser, CPA, financial planner, or investment adviser.  If you would like to discuss the rationale or support for any particular idea expressed on this web page, feel free to contact us.

 

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