Bogleheads:Featured article/Three-fund portfolio

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A three-fund portfolio is a portfolio which does not slice and dice, but uses only basic asset classes — usually a domestic stock "total market" index fund, an international stock "total market" index fund and a bond "total market" index fund. It is often recommended for and by Bogleheads attracted by "the majesty of simplicity" (Bogle's phrase), and for those who want finer control and better tax-efficiency than they would get in an all-in-one fund like a target retirement fund.

There is no magic in the number three; the phrase is shorthand for a style of portfolio construction that emphasizes simplicity, and is related to lazy portfolios. (more...)