BONDS FOR SAFETY?

Physician's Money Digest, July15 2003, Volume 10, Issue 13

Tip:

Bonds have traditionally beenseen as a safe harbor for risk-aversephysician-investors. That's true ifyou think of safety as a regular interestpayment. But after the 10-yearUS Treasury bond hit a 45-year lowin mid-May, the real yield, afterbacking out taxes and inflation, isapproaching zero. If your money isin bond funds, you need to keep aneye out for rising interest rates. Ifyou hold individual bonds to maturity,the fall in the bond price wheninterest rates go up doesn't matter,but share prices of bond funds fluctuateand you can lose money whenrates rise. Every portfolioshould have a liberal dose of stocks,according to Warren Buffett's mentor,Benjamin Graham. He recommended that investors keep no lessthan 25% and no more than 75% oftheir money in equities.