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Re: Household Gross Income Poll

I guess my primary problem with the poll is trying to understand what sort of information you're hoping to get from it. From one doctor to another, I'm just trying to figure out what the conclusion you're going to draw here might be. I'm surrounded by colleagues who make hundreds of thousands of dol...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Household Gross Income Poll
Replies: 134
Views: 12423

Re: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account

Wisdom Seeker, You're having a panic attack. You need to pull yourself together and relax. You'll be fine. No point in belaboring some of the previous posts but two things: 1. Income taxes are not being paid on all of your money going into a tax-deferred account. You will pay to get it out of those ...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 6:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account
Replies: 74
Views: 7188

Re: I-Bonds vs EE Bonds vs TIPS vs Treasuries - 20 years

^ Yes, in fact one of the primary reasons I invest in individual TIPS is because of the principal accrual. However, I just don't want to have to pay income tax for that accrual every year when all I have to show for it is a paper gain. I can't know what our marginal tax rate will be once we stop wor...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 6:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I-Bonds vs EE Bonds vs TIPS vs Treasuries - 20 years
Replies: 22
Views: 1854

Re: Anyone semi-retired? What's it like?

I've worked three days a week for over a year and love it. I have no trouble "filling up" those days off but I've learned a lot myself and others. I'm in my late 50s. For me, my days off are more fulfilling if I have a plan for the day. It can entail hiking or biking, but you can sometimes...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone semi-retired? What's it like?
Replies: 16
Views: 2504

Re: I-Bonds vs EE Bonds vs TIPS vs Treasuries - 20 years

^ For me, paying income tax on income that does nothing for me (the "phantom income" described above) doesn't fit with my investment plan. Delaying income tax payment as long as possible works best for me, but others may find that it makes little to no difference to them.
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I-Bonds vs EE Bonds vs TIPS vs Treasuries - 20 years
Replies: 22
Views: 1854

Re: Would you refinance to save 0.25%?

I'm sorry to sound cynical but I suspect that your mortgage broker "reached out" to you to make some money. I can't give you a deal personally, but a quick perusal online would suggest that you could do better than 4% on your own (no fees or points), if you're inclined to do that legwork. ...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 4:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you refinance to save 0.25%?
Replies: 23
Views: 1953

Re: Stop contributing, and cash out your 401

I also did a double-take. Vanguard Financial Services in Florida has nothing to do with "our" Vanguard. If you're inclined, you can always write something on Amazon's website in order to steer people away from her. But I don't think our Vanguard can actually sue her (though if there's a Va...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 4:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stop contributing, and cash out your 401
Replies: 16
Views: 2768

Re: I-Bonds vs EE Bonds vs TIPS vs Treasuries - 20 years

James, Everyone's tax situation is different, but in an effort to be "tax-efficient," consider holding TIPS and STRIPS in your tax-advantaged accounts and I-bonds (or EE-bonds) in a taxable account. This taxable account containing I- and EE-bonds effectively increases your "tax-advant...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 4:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I-Bonds vs EE Bonds vs TIPS vs Treasuries - 20 years
Replies: 22
Views: 1854

Re: Household Gross Income Poll

Is this really "actionable"? The number is respondents is tiny and using Line 22 of the 1040 is often meaningless (it excludes tax-exempt income, it counts NET income after tax-deferred savings and not GROSS income, it neglects income that has been sheltered in C/S corps, etc.). And is the...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 4:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Household Gross Income Poll
Replies: 134
Views: 12423

Re: Is not utilizing taxable space for long-term investing w

If you have no investments in a taxable account, you lose the ability to donate appreciated shares in the future, you lose the ability to tax-loss harvest, and you lose tax diversification in retirement. It is usually most beneficial to contribute the maximum amount each year to a tax-advantaged acc...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Apr 12, 2015 1:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is not utilizing taxable space for long-term investing wise?
Replies: 11
Views: 1190

Re: Difficult to answer tax and residency question

Here is the NY Division of Tax Appeals decision in the Julian Robertson case: http://s.wsj.net/public/resources/documents/wsj_NYSTDTADtr091103.pdf. Here is the Wall Street Journal story on it: http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB125729222815826639. I had a case once where New York wanted over $10 million...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Apr 07, 2015 6:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Difficult to answer tax and residency question
Replies: 19
Views: 1211

Re: Cost basis of land inherited from spouse

Is your dad a resident of a community property state? If so, the cost basis could be adjusted accordingly.
by Artsdoctor
Tue Apr 07, 2015 5:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost basis of land inherited from spouse
Replies: 9
Views: 693

Re: TLH + HSA?

Bobble, I also have my HSA with HSA Administrators (through HSA Bank). Be aware that they charge you up to $16 per quarter PER FUND, depending on the balance. It's almost always better to hold a single fund in your account. For many years, I used VTSAX as the only fund but about three years ago swit...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Apr 07, 2015 3:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TLH + HSA?
Replies: 5
Views: 554

Re: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??

Please let me clarify above. I can't comment on pre-nups or the titling of assets before and during marriage (or being attached in a community property state). There may be a way to separate assets for protective purposes outside of a trust, and I am only speaking to the concept of potential asset p...
by Artsdoctor
Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??
Replies: 12
Views: 1071

Re: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??

Kevin: Good question. The most important thing that I've learned is that all of these idiosyncrasies are driven by state law so I would generally ignore interpretation by anyone not practicing in CA. There are at least separate issues that I believe would be considered: divorce, creditors in bankrup...
by Artsdoctor
Thu Mar 26, 2015 12:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??
Replies: 12
Views: 1071

Re: Munis when moving to a different state

There's a bit more bookkeeping associated with selling muni fund shares at a loss and claiming the loss (which COULD happen in your move next year). You might want to turn off your reinvestment option and just empty the dividends into your money market fund (perhaps investing those dividends in an e...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Mar 25, 2015 10:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Munis when moving to a different state
Replies: 9
Views: 1093

Re: Is it time to give-up on TIPS?

^ dbr, I agree with you. But if someone "gave up" on TIPS this year, they would've missed out on unexpectedly decent returns, if that's what they're interested in. These yields are ridiculously low and it seems that the real yield of a 30-year bond might approach 0% before you know it.
by Artsdoctor
Wed Mar 25, 2015 10:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is it time to give-up on TIPS?
Replies: 113
Views: 14502

Re: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??

So perhaps a CA estate attorney can weigh in here. In a community property state, individual assets of Spouse A and Spouse B are, for all practical purposes, co-mingled regardless of the title. Of course, the dates of marriage and/or co-habitation can play a role, and pre-nups are entities unto them...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Mar 25, 2015 10:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??
Replies: 12
Views: 1071

Re: Any situations car leasing makes sense?

I'm surprised at the dogmatic answers. "Never lease." There are plenty of reasons to lease. You can certainly run your lease through your corporation if you're driving a lot for your job. It's easier and "cleaner" from a tax perspective than depreciating. I can't imagine buying a...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Mar 25, 2015 10:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any situations car leasing makes sense?
Replies: 63
Views: 5179

Re: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??

I view a RLT as nothing more than a suitcase holding my possessions and I have the ability to add items to or remove items from that suitcase as I so desire. However, it would be interesting to know what exactly you have titled in the name of the trust that you might want to remove . Some people ma...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 24, 2015 7:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??
Replies: 12
Views: 1071

Re: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??

Agreed. Regarding revocable trusts, transferring assets into a trust, between different trusts, and out of trusts should not create a taxable event.
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 24, 2015 7:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Removing an asset from a living trust: Taxable event ??
Replies: 12
Views: 1071

Re: Should I invest my emergency fund?

^ Agree with Seattle. In fact, I'd go one step further. You don't have to paint yourself into a corner of dire emergencies. Sometimes, opportunities just come up and you want to take advantage of them. Airfares to Asia are slashed 50% and the Four Seasons is running a once-in-a-lifetime special. Do ...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I invest my emergency fund?
Replies: 71
Views: 6211

Re: Should I invest my emergency fund?

There comes a point when you just want liquidity. Things come up, and it doesn't have to be a loss of a job. You're never going to find a consensus here because there's no right answer. In fact, I'd be weary of someone trying to tell you that their way is the best, or only, way. You'd probably be be...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Mar 22, 2015 4:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I invest my emergency fund?
Replies: 71
Views: 6211

Re: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit

^ Spirit Rider, thanks for the clarification. To me, it's fascinating that there appears to be an awful lot of varying interpretations out there: http://www.latimes.com/la-ira-story3-story.html Even in spending quite a bit of time searching for clear definitions, there's confusion regarding: which r...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Mar 15, 2015 6:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit
Replies: 41
Views: 4219

Re: Emergency fund - importance & lessons learned

Elchris, I'm sorry to hear about your husband's work-related issues. I think you very eloquently relayed the importance of having access to relatively liquid assets. You will inevitably have multiple opinions on how much to have in your Emergency Fund and where to house those funds, but being able t...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Mar 15, 2015 5:56 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency fund - importance & lessons learned
Replies: 3
Views: 895

Re: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit

There's really only so much protection you can obtain from any investment. Even 401k's can be problematic: Google "bankruptcy and 401k" and you'll find that your funds can be held up for a very long time while your company goes through bankruptcy. The funds are yours and they're protected,...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Mar 14, 2015 11:15 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit
Replies: 41
Views: 4219

Re: Understanding Your Net Worth

The Burns article is right on the money. We will not have a pension when we retire; some of friends will. They will need far less in savings than we will need, a fact that took quite a while for me to digest. In retirement, it's going to be all about how you're going to generate money to spend--from...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Mar 14, 2015 11:09 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Understanding Your Net Worth
Replies: 25
Views: 3543

Re: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit

You'll want to discuss the umbrella coverage with your agent. In general, an umbrella policy will not cover work-related activity.
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 10, 2015 12:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit
Replies: 41
Views: 4219

Re: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years

In order to plan, you have to make some sort of a guess on what real returns you're anticipated. You can't just say, "I don't care, I'll take what I get," because you won't know how much to save and return expectations ultimately are one of the factors that go into deciding on your asset a...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Mar 09, 2015 1:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years
Replies: 216
Views: 23206

Re: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit

^ This is a personal decision and I don't think anyone except for you can answer it. 401k's are more protected but it's all a matter of weighing the pros and cons. I have personally decided to transfer assets out of a 401k as soon as possibile because we've never had good options (fees are too high,...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Mar 09, 2015 1:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit
Replies: 41
Views: 4219

Re: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit

^ An umbrella policy is relatively inexpensive. In CA, the annual premium for a $1M/$3M policy is about $400, and if you'd like a $2M/$4M policy, it's only a little more. For most lawsuits that are likely to come your way, the umbrella will cover it. You need to consider what your umbrella policy wi...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Mar 08, 2015 7:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Protect rollover IRA from potential lawsuit
Replies: 41
Views: 4219

Re: Negative bond yields

So if you're betting that bond prices will increase further, you'd be buying the bond for the capital appreciation (and not the coupon). Huh? The question was "What's the point of a negative nominal bond". The answer is collateral for some other financial instrument. The return on the col...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Mar 08, 2015 12:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Negative bond yields
Replies: 25
Views: 2376

Re: Negative bond yields

So if you're betting that bond prices will increase further, you'd be buying the bond for the capital appreciation (and not the coupon).
by Artsdoctor
Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Negative bond yields
Replies: 25
Views: 2376

Re: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?

I think the most interesting question here is why are we on a 5th page for this thread? Something must have clearly touched a nerve on a lot of people. A house is nothing more than a thing. It's an item that you've purchased. You can either pay cash for it or you can borrow to purchase it. Why is it...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?
Replies: 410
Views: 20901

Re: Tax Loss Harvesting Bonds??

Sure. Bonds were frequently TLHed back when increased rates were common. We've been in a bond bull market for so long that people have probably not thought much about it. If you're going to do this with a bond fund, you'll need to pay attention to wash sale rules, and you'll definitely need to pay a...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Loss Harvesting Bonds??
Replies: 7
Views: 526

Re: International increase in Target Retirement & LifeStrate

Very interesting to see their reallignment. But if you're investing in these funds, you're relinquishing all control to Vanguard for asset allocation. You really wouldn't have any reasonable expectation for things never to change--if you want that kind of control, then you need to control your own a...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International increase in Target Retirement & LifeStrategy
Replies: 233
Views: 20076

Re: Anyone investing in Vanguard Global ex-U.S. Real Estate

I did use VNQI in the past but, in the general scheme of things, it didn't account for enough of my portfolio to really make any significant difference. You can figure out your asset allocation but a typical breakdown might be the following: 70% equities and 30% fixed income for a moderately aggress...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Mar 03, 2015 5:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone investing in Vanguard Global ex-U.S. Real Estate ETF
Replies: 16
Views: 1192

Re: Holding bond funds to average duration

Nobs, The reason you're having difficulty with this is because it IS difficult. Duration is not a guarantee. There is a misconception that "if you hold a fund for its duration," you'll reach "a point of indifference." While this is a guide, it's definitely not a guarantee. Durati...
by Artsdoctor
Thu Feb 26, 2015 8:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Holding bond funds to average duration
Replies: 20
Views: 1781

Re: physicians [Frustrated, considering early retirement]

^ (above). Exactly. Your focus is right on target. You're employed by an institution, don't have to worry about administrative issues, are better at balancing personal and professional life, and you're young. If I were starting out, I'd do the same as you're doing.
by Artsdoctor
Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: physicians [Frustrated, considering early retirement]
Replies: 132
Views: 9573

Re: physicians [Frustrated, considering early retirement]

Yes, I'm sad to say that I'm winding down. I'm in private practice and have really loved it. But I can clearly see 60 in front of me, I've reached my saturation point with all of the increasingly cumbersome (and ludicrous) regulations; the cons now outweigh the pros. I've been on call every third we...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: physicians [Frustrated, considering early retirement]
Replies: 132
Views: 9573

Re: Individual TIPS

Offshore: While some people don't mind the bookkeeping associated with TIPS in a taxable, most are happier holding TIPS (and REITs for that matter) in a tax-advantaged account. If you're new to TIPS, I would not recommend that you purchase them in your taxable account.
by Artsdoctor
Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Individual TIPS
Replies: 13
Views: 787

Re: why do some people like Fidelity?

Fidelity's fixed income department offers more than Vanguard's. You can't buy initial offerings of munis at Vanguard, and at Fidelity you can. Fidelity's Donor Advised Fund is easier to use than Vanguard's. You can make much smaller contributions at Fidelity and the fees are similar. There may be mo...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Feb 24, 2015 7:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: why do some people like Fidelity?
Replies: 67
Views: 7072

Re: Vanguard brokerage tax forms changed to late Feb. questi

Amended 1099s have been sent out before so even if you get your 1099 from your brokerage firm by late January, I would always wait until late February to use it. And even that doesn't guarantee you won't receive an amended tax form, but it decreases that risk. If you're going to use a brokerage acco...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Feb 24, 2015 7:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard brokerage tax forms changed to late Feb. question
Replies: 95
Views: 8025

Re: Is this wash sale?

Fred, A wash sale is designed to prevent people from declaring a capital LOSS only to buy the same investment back within 30 days. When you declare a loss in your taxable account, the federal government will subsidize that loss in the form of decreasing your final tax bill. If you were to sell an in...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Feb 24, 2015 7:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is this wash sale?
Replies: 4
Views: 302

Re: Vanguard brokerage tax forms changed to late Feb. questi

Brokerage tax forms are always later than mutual fund tax forms. Vanguard is no different than many of the other brokerage firms. And even if you got your tax forms by the end of January, you'd be wise to hold out until the end of February at least because I've had amended 1099s in the past. In fact...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Feb 24, 2015 3:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard brokerage tax forms changed to late Feb. question
Replies: 95
Views: 8025

Re: Tax Loss Harvesting

^ There is really no such thing as a "sure tax strategy." In case you haven't noticed, there is movement afoot to have heirs inherit the original basis of the asset at death! I don't think it'll come to pass, but I wouldn't assume anything as a sure thing . . . Tax-Loss Harvesting is extre...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Feb 22, 2015 1:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Loss Harvesting
Replies: 13
Views: 833

Re: 401k or Taxable account in CA? + harvest gains

You're very smart to know the fees. Few people take the time to look at that. And yes, it's ridiculous that an index fund would have an ER of 1% but it's not that unusual for 401k's. You generally learn to say, "Never say never," but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that you would NEV...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Feb 22, 2015 10:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k or Taxable account in CA? + harvest gains
Replies: 6
Views: 465

Re: why do some people like Fidelity?

The advantage of Fidelity's DAF is that minimum contributions are relatively low and subsequent requests for charitable contributions can be as low as $50.
by Artsdoctor
Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: why do some people like Fidelity?
Replies: 67
Views: 7072

Re: Best Sequence for Withdrawing Funds in Retirement

Check Christine Benz's most recent column at morningstar.com about this. It's one of her best columns and she covers a lot of ground that you'd find useful.
by Artsdoctor
Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best Sequence for Withdrawing Funds in Retirement
Replies: 7
Views: 654

Re: 401k or Taxable account in CA? + harvest gains

The longer you stay at your job, the most expensive that 401k becomes. If you view this job as a stepping stone and only expect to be there a few years, you can hold your nose and contribute the maximum to your plan. The match will certainly help defray those costs although money is money. If you vi...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k or Taxable account in CA? + harvest gains
Replies: 6
Views: 465
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