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How to invest $10,000 in 2012

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How would you invest $10,000 in the coming year?

That's a question posed annually to a panel of investment experts:

  • Richard Cripps, chief investment officer of Equity Compass Strategies, Baltimore, Md.: "Invest $6,500 in a broad market index fund such as the Standard & Poor's 500 Index. Put $3,500 in international, with half in Vanguard MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (VWO) and half in large-cap iShares MSCI EAFE Index ETF (EFA)."
  • Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist for Standard & Poor's Equity Research, New York: "I suggest high-quality companies that have raised earnings and dividends each of the past 10 years. I'd put $1,000 each in McDonald's Corp. (MCD), Altria Group Inc. (MO), TransCanada Corp. (TRP), Royal Bank of Canada (RY), Abbott Labs (ABT), General Electric Co. (GE), Paychex Inc. (PAYX), UGI Corp. (UGI), AT&T Corp. (T) and DuPont (DD)."
  • Barbara Steinmetz, certified financial planner with Steinmetz Financial Planning in San Mateo, Calif.: "I would place $1,000 in SPDR Gold Shares (GLD), $2,000 in PowerShares Dividend Achievers ETF (PFM), $1,500 in First Eagle Global "A" (SGENX), $1,500 in PIMCO Total Return "C" (PTTCX), $1,500 in PIMCO GNMA "C" (PCGNX), $1,500 in Berkshire Hathaway Inc. "B" (BRK.B) and $1,000 in cash."
  • John Rekenthaler, vice president of research for Morningstar Inc., Chicago: "I recommend $2,500 in Jensen Quality Growth Fund (JENSX), $2,500 in Dodge & Cox Balanced Fund (DODBX) and $2,500 in FPA Crescent Fund (FPACX). I'd add some kick with $1,500 in Vanguard Mid-Cap ETF (VO), then add diversification with $1,000 in PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking ETF (DBC)."
  • Hugh Johnson, chairman and chief investment officer of Hugh Johnson Advisors, Albany, N.Y.: "I recommend a balanced portfolio half in equities and half in fixed-income securities, primarily through exchange-traded funds. For the equity component, I recommend $4,400 in SPDR S&P 500 (SPY), $400 in SPDR S&P MidCap 400 (MDY) and $200 in iShares S&P SmallCap 600 (IJR). For fixed income, I'd put $5,000 in iShares Barclays Aggregate Bond Fund (AGG). A younger person would instead have as much as 80 percent of the portfolio in equities."
  • Paul J. Nolte, managing director of Dearborn Partners, Chicago: "Put $5,000 in DoubleLine Core Fixed Income Fund (DLFNX), which has squeezed return from a tough fixed-income environment. In equities, I'd emphasize the largest, putting $2,000 in Vanguard Mega Cap 300 Growth Index ETF (MGK), $2,000 in Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP) and $1,000 in JPMorgan Alerian MLP Index ETN (AMJ), which invests in master limited partnerships in transportation of fuel."


  • Paul Auslander, president-elect of the Financial Planning Association and chairman/CEO of American Financial Advisors Inc., Orlando, Fla.: "I suggest that investors under age 50 put $4,000 in Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX), $4,000 in Vanguard Total Bond Market Index (VBMFX) and $2,000 in Vanguard Total World Stock Index Fund (VTWSX). Those over 50 should change the amounts to $6,000 in the bond fund and the remainder in stock funds."


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