Help! 403B Allocation

Hi PFC! This content has taught me SO MUCH! I’m reallocating my 403b right now, as I was in a target date fund with a 0.46% :woozy_face:fee. I’m trying to spread my money across Vanguard index funds. The only index fund options within this 403b with expense ratios below 0.2% are VTIAX, VIMAX, VSMAX, VBTLX, and VFIAX. It doesn’t appear that VTSAX is an option. Knowing that, how should I allocate my money (percentage wise) within those accounts considering without VTSAX. I’m 35 for reference. Additionally, how would I then allocate my other accounts (Roth, Brokerage, 2nd job 401k) percentage wise with Vanguard or Fidelity index funds with VTSAX or the fidelity equivalent as an option. Thank you so much!

Per the Bogleheads forum you can estimate VTSAX using an 85%/15% mix of VFIAX and VSMAX.

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Thank you for the reply. I’m trying to create a three fund portfolio with 54% in US stocks, 36% in non-US and 10% bonds. Knowing this and the fact that VTSAX is not available, is that portfolio still an option?

So I believe here is the breakdown you’d like:


There’s your 54% US Stocks with an 85%/15% split in S&P 500 and small cap to mimic VTSAX


So your 3 fund portfolio would actually be 4 with VTSAX being comprised of VFIAX + VSMAX.

Hope this makes sense.

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Thank you for the input. I guess a follow-up question, should I do something similar in my brokerage account - sticking with low cost index funds and steer away from individual stocks, at least for the majority of assets?

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I don’t like the 0.46% fee, but nervous in choosing my own investments and making bad choices which in turn lowers my return anyway.

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I can’t exactly tell you how to invest or what to invest in for different reasons…like Jeremy says “I’m just a dude on the internet.”

But yes I am a vocal advocate for index fund investing and hold the majority of my assets on index funds.

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Don’t chase returns. And although 0.46% is high, generally 403b fees are higher anyway.

Stick with what you understand and invest in what you know.

Jeremy advocates long term index fund investing.

I’ve been in a room before surrounded by millionaires and multimillionaires more times than I can count. Long term index fund investing is the way to go.

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Hi Kelly,
In response to buying index funds vs individual stocks, see this article: The 90/10 rule of investing – Personal Finance Club

And in terms of picking your 403b investments, you can use this as a guide: How to pick your 401k investments – Personal Finance Club

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THANK YOU CHAD for your great answers! You really are the MVP.

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Aww. I just try to give helpful advice to see people win and pay it forward to those who helped me.