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Re: Life changing decision... advices needed!

Streptococcus, As you probably are seeing, primary care is becoming increasingly onerous from an administrative point of view. You can buffer yourself with administrative assistants but there's no doubt in my mind that primary care will become increasingly burdensome as bureaucratic requirements inc...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 26, 2014 10:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life changing decision... advices needed!
Replies: 26
Views: 1648

Re: Vanguard: "Updated capital gains estimates "

Gordon,

Even though the capital gains distribution for the Conservative Growth fund is high, over 95% is in long-term capital gains distributions. These gains can be offset by any capital losses you have (whereas, the short-term capital gains distributions cannot and must be counted as income).
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 26, 2014 9:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard: "Updated capital gains estimates "
Replies: 14
Views: 1752

Re: 30 Year TIPS Bond as a SPD Annuity Alternative?

TIPS are US government bonds so there is no credit risk. Before you buy anything, spend some time looking at the Wiki here. Buying a 30-year bond is not to be done lightly and I'd only recommend it if you're familiar with individual bonds. Good luck!
by Artsdoctor
Mon Nov 24, 2014 6:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 30 Year TIPS Bond as a SPD Annuity Alternative?
Replies: 7
Views: 742

Re: 30 Year TIPS Bond as a SPD Annuity Alternative?

^ dbr, good point. Totally agree and the difference is an important one. Once a TIPS ladder is set up and the bonds are maturing, you're getting your inflation-adjusted income which is comprised of the principal and any on-going interest payments. But prior to the maturity date of the earliest bond,...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Nov 24, 2014 10:06 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 30 Year TIPS Bond as a SPD Annuity Alternative?
Replies: 7
Views: 742

Re: Suggested retirement reading for 60 year olds

You may want to look at Retirement Portfolios: Theory, Construction and Management by Michael J. Zwecher. This book specifically addresses portfolio management for retirees and near retirees. It is not one of those books that assumes you are 22 years old and just starting. There are so many of thos...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:42 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Suggested retirement reading for 60 year olds
Replies: 25
Views: 2760

Re: 30 Year TIPS Bond as a SPD Annuity Alternative?

Mike, There is no benefit to buying TIPS at auction through Treasury Direct versus your retirement brokerage account: both are free. When you purchase TIPS in your taxable account, you will pay federal income tax on the interest which is paid every six months AND the appreciation in principal (phant...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 30 Year TIPS Bond as a SPD Annuity Alternative?
Replies: 7
Views: 742

Re: Why I will fund retirement with TIPs ladder no matter wh

^ I don't think this a fair comparison. The columnist invested in a TIPS fund. The argument for building a TIPS ladder is that it gives you a payout when the bond matures. No one advocating a life cycle approach to investment would ever advocate a TIPS fund. If you think you need an inflation-adjust...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Nov 22, 2014 7:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I will fund retirement with TIPs ladder no matter what
Replies: 53
Views: 3962

Re: Why I will fund retirement with TIPs ladder no matter wh

^ Yes, no one knows. Take a look at the WSJ TIPS pricing page. It'll give you prices and yield everyday. At the top, you can also click on historical numbers and you can get a sense of how long people would have been waiting if they thought TIPS were too expensive 4-5 years ago. Of course, the oppos...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Nov 22, 2014 6:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I will fund retirement with TIPs ladder no matter what
Replies: 53
Views: 3962

Re: Why I will fund retirement with TIPs ladder no matter wh

making my decision to build a TIPs ladder to fund my retirement no matter what the real yield look like. Using only TIPS to fund a retirement is expensive. You would need to have a large portfolio. If you would enjoy spending more than the TIPS portfolio allows, you will probably give up a lot of l...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Nov 22, 2014 9:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I will fund retirement with TIPs ladder no matter what
Replies: 53
Views: 3962

Re: lock-up for 20 years [20 year CD]

I would not. I use (an admittedly arbitrary) 20 basis points to justify going out each year on the yield curve for taxable fixed income. You can find a 10-year CD for around 3.2% so you're really not being compensated for going so far out on the yield curve. The exception might be that you're enteri...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 19, 2014 6:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: lock-up for 20 years [20 year CD]
Replies: 21
Views: 2484

Re: Actual experience with California probate court?

So the thing to remember about probate is that every state is different. CA is very different from NY, for example. Some states, like New York, can have a relatively seamless probate period. California does not. There are a lot of variable in CA. If the estate is small, things could go smoothly. If ...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 19, 2014 6:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Actual experience with California probate court?
Replies: 8
Views: 838

Re: Tips Ladder Now or Not So Fast........

#Cruncher has a superb TIPS ladder spreadsheet if you're interested. The 2033-2039 is a problem. There are several ways around: you can buy enough 2032 bonds to take you through to when the 2040 bonds mature, you can split the difference by buying enough 2032s to last until 2035 and buy more 2040s t...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 19, 2014 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tips Ladder Now or Not So Fast........
Replies: 9
Views: 1153

Re: Poll: Net cost of your checking account annually?

Nice job for people getting more than $100 per year without strings attached! We use the Vanguard Advantage account. Free checks, electronic transfers, they will mail checks free of charge, cash flow couldn't be easier, never had a problem with reliability, and certainly easy access. I was surprised...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll: Net cost of your checking account annually?
Replies: 44
Views: 2247

Re: CA int municipal bond fund vs. Vanguard int muni fund

Ilan, I'm a CA resident and understand your question completely. First, consider your goal. The national fund is a fine fund and very diversified. If you feel you'd like to begin transferring some of it into the CA fund, then do it in stages. First, re-direct the dividends to the CA fund at least. S...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CA int municipal bond fund vs. Vanguard int muni fund
Replies: 32
Views: 2204

Re: Tips Ladder Now or Not So Fast........

N, I'm a little older than you and have been slowly building a 30-year TIPS ladder. The amount has been more or less decided for me just because of the amount we have in tax-deferred and Roth accounts. In reality, that made the process easier because it ultimately meant that my retirement income is ...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Nov 17, 2014 5:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tips Ladder Now or Not So Fast........
Replies: 9
Views: 1153

Re: is 3.20% Vanguard brokered CD best deal around?

Arthur, You should be paid for going further out on maturity. Take a look at some of the easy-to-obtain 5-year CDs since you will most likely find some that are paying more than 2.25%. Although everyone has their own way of calculating these things, I usually use 20 bp per year to justify going furt...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: is 3.20% Vanguard brokered CD best deal around?
Replies: 48
Views: 4318

Re: Where would you invest 100k for a year?

You have specific need at a specific time. As others have said, this is not investing, it is savings. If you know exactly when you're going to need the money, you might pick a 1-year CD. If you want a little more flexibility regarding liquidity, you can open an online savings account (they're yieldi...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 05, 2014 8:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where would you invest 100k for a year?
Replies: 17
Views: 1926

Re: Job advice - academic physician career move?

Two physician household here, and we're 13 years older than you. MDs in academics look around quite a bit, and it's almost expected. It's not unreasonable to move, especially when you're in your early and mid-40s, to further your career. Career advancement can certainly trump salary and I know plent...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 05, 2014 7:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Job advice - academic physician career move?
Replies: 35
Views: 2934

Re: BND or a CD

Kevin, nice summary. It's not that Bill Bernstein is recommending holding off on funding your LMP with TIPS, I believe he's saying that with prices so high, he'd be reluctant to go all in at one time since it would be so expensive. In reality, very few people are going to build their LMP all at once...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Nov 05, 2014 9:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BND or a CD
Replies: 119
Views: 9666

Re: What's worrying Vanguard's CEO

The regulars on this forum are level-headed and have relatively good memories. Certainly a lot of my colleagues at work, not so much. It's uncanny that so many people have forgotten the pain of the 2008-2009 meltdown and have only seen the last couple of years of stellar equity returns. You and I we...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Nov 04, 2014 7:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's worrying Vanguard's CEO
Replies: 14
Views: 2770

Re: BND or a CD

dbr, Definitely share your concerns. Several things could be done. When in doubt, you could diversify: you could have a TIPS ladder that would take you to age 85, for example; you could purchase a deferred income annuity (say, when you're 70 to begin when you're 85); you could also combine your TIPS...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Nov 04, 2014 7:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BND or a CD
Replies: 119
Views: 9666

Re: What's worrying Vanguard's CEO

I'm going to be the contrarian here. I think this information is actionable. A lot of people, perhaps not on this forum, have seen a very substantial run-up in the portfolios over the 5 years. For those of us in our late 50s or early 60s, there may be a tendency to extrapolate from these returns and...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's worrying Vanguard's CEO
Replies: 14
Views: 2770

Re: Should I stop tracking past performance?

I used to track my performance and compared it to a few benchmarks with similar allocations. For me, it was a valuable experience. I learned that simpler is inevitably better and I developed confidence in my investing. It's not that my returns were so much better than the benchmark to which I was co...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I stop tracking past performance?
Replies: 36
Views: 2184

Re: How to avoid AMT

Geez, tough crowd. The only way to really understand the AMT and minimize your overall tax is to play with a software program. It is essential to do this. As sscritic points out, one can easily be subject to the AMT with income over $400,000 and it doesn't really take a stingy high-income person to ...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Nov 03, 2014 7:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to avoid AMT
Replies: 51
Views: 9209

Re: Explaining muni bond spreads

Thanks for posting the article, Larry. Another factor that I don't think the authors addressed when it comes to examining the spread includes the heightened tax aversion in 2014 of high-income earners which also drove prices up. Munis might not have the "flight to quality" of treasuries, b...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Nov 03, 2014 10:18 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Explaining muni bond spreads
Replies: 40
Views: 3495

Re: BND or a CD

MPT, Are you in the accumulation stage or in retirement? What's the role of fixed income in your investment portfolio? If you're in the middle of accumulation mode and all you're after from fixed income is a smoothing out of the equity volatility portion of your portfolio, you can use either or both...
by Artsdoctor
Fri Oct 31, 2014 4:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BND or a CD
Replies: 119
Views: 9666

Re: "Why Bother With Bonds" -- A Gem

Ganacel, TIPS are peculiar investments so your uncertainty surrounding them isn't unusual. There are several moving parts with individual TIPS. If you buy $10,000 at a TIPS auction and the coupon is 1%, you would think that your bonds would pay $100 a year in interest. Not so. If "inflation&quo...
by Artsdoctor
Fri Oct 31, 2014 8:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Why Bother With Bonds" -- A Gem
Replies: 29
Views: 7373

Re: Primary Doc Steering to Specialist Within Own Group

^ Now this is a better assessment. Your concerns have been evolving over several years, and your concerns are not only valid but shared by patients and doctors alike. Private practice is changing significantly, and it is the rare physician whose practice hasn't been impacted by the current environme...
by Artsdoctor
Fri Oct 31, 2014 8:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Primary Doc Steering to Specialist Within Own Group
Replies: 31
Views: 2493

Re: Primary Doc Steering to Specialist Within Own Group

Twenty years is an awfully long time. If you are seriously considering ending your relationship with your doctor after 20 years, it is hard to imagine that one incident like this would do it. I would venture a guess that you've not been entirely happy for a while. If that is not the case, why didn't...
by Artsdoctor
Thu Oct 30, 2014 7:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Primary Doc Steering to Specialist Within Own Group
Replies: 31
Views: 2493

Re: 39.6% Tax Bracket :(

Buy Turbo Tax this year and play around with numbers. You'll need to develop an understanding of what happens with each $100 you make in income, investments, as well as in deductions. You may think you're in the 39.6% but you might wind up being in the AMT. If you're in the AMT, there are completely...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Oct 29, 2014 6:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 39.6% Tax Bracket :(
Replies: 28
Views: 6050

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

It is true that the variety of FlySpeak can be intimidating. Not only does each airline have its own idiosyncrasies, who's to say that next year the rule won't change? I took one, whole day last winter to actually sit down, map out my FF plans, get together my miles, familiarize myself with my AMEX ...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4583

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

Congratulations on making your decision! Overall, using miles to fly business class internationally is probably going to be the biggest bang for your buck. I use my AMEX points to transfer into a variety of frequent flier programs and have done this for many years. This creates a lot of flexibility ...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Oct 27, 2014 10:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4583

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

A lot of airlines are moving away from offering a specific number of rewards points for travel, and they have moved to charging you points/miles based on the fare available at the time of booking. That's why you might have to spend 40,000 miles one day on the same destination that you spent 60,000 m...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Oct 26, 2014 3:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4583

Re: Elder Law attorney (Trusts, Medicaid, nursing homes)

The one thing about Medicaid you have to bear in mind is that rules change according to state of residence, sometimes a great deal. While it is true that there are a lot of nursing homes that are Medicaid-eligible, there can be a huge difference between applying to the nursing home while on Medicaid...
by Artsdoctor
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Elder Law attorney (Trusts, Medicaid, nursing homes)
Replies: 30
Views: 2012

Re: Which lots do you sell when redeeming shares?

At first I thought this was a trick question. Of course you'd sell the shares with the highest cost basis in order to pay the least tax. But that's not necessarily true. For example, let's say your income this year is extremely low (laid off, between jobs, etc.) and you've found yourself in the 0% l...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which lots do you sell when redeeming shares?
Replies: 14
Views: 933

Re: When to think about tax lost harvesting

There might be problem with wording. Marie, do you have capital gains from sales or capital gains from mutual fund distributions. If you have capital losses from 2013 that are carried over, there may be short-term and/or long-term carryover losses. That's the first thing. If not, then you're startin...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:32 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to think about tax lost harvesting
Replies: 19
Views: 1448

Re: When to think about tax lost harvesting

Most of my investments are in taxable. Last year I had -167 short-term capital losses and $10,000 long-term capital gains distributions. For this year, would the possible $3,000 short-term capital loss from sale I might make reduce the $10,000 long-term capital gain for a total of $7,000 capital ga...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:33 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to think about tax lost harvesting
Replies: 19
Views: 1448

Re: Limited Term Tax Exempt as a spot for short term savings

For many years, I used the limited term fund for an emergency stash. But the yield has fallen so low, that I had to ask myself what I'm really hoping to accomplish. I'm in the highest federal and state tax brackets and no one detests paying excessive taxes more than I do. However, there are at least...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Limited Term Tax Exempt as a spot for short term savings?
Replies: 24
Views: 2500

Re: Individual Bonds versus Bond Funds - Again

Individual bonds vs. a bond fund is a topic of frequent debate, much like lump sum vs. dollar cost averaging. The disagreements can get heated. The wiki provides a summary: Individual bonds vs a bond fund Updates to the wiki are welcome, but they'll need to represent a consensus. Update: I added th...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Individual Bonds versus Bond Funds - Again
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: When to think about tax lost harvesting

Marie, You'll want to have a running tally of both short-term and long-term capital gains/losses since the federal government will want that separation on your Schedule D (it will also come in handy later). It's possible that your gains and losses this year are small and you won't have any carryover...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to think about tax lost harvesting
Replies: 19
Views: 1448

Re: Individual Bonds versus Bond Funds - Again

Kenner, That Vanguard white paper is very important reading for nearly anyone who's interested in buying bonds (both individual bonds and bond funds). In particular, page 8 is very important to read carefully. If you're buying individual bonds to roll them when they mature, then you're more or less ...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Oct 20, 2014 7:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Individual Bonds versus Bond Funds - Again
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: "I've had it" at work - how often

This is what I love about this forum: there is such a huge variety of personalities and life experiences out there. I'm 55 and I enjoy my job as a doctor. However, there are several things that happened this year. 1. My dad became ill with lung cancer in May and died in August. 2. I started working ...
by Artsdoctor
Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "I've had it" at work - how often
Replies: 151
Views: 12643

Re: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?

^ But doesn't this depend on what you plan on doing with your TIPS? If you're going to make on play on real versus nominal returns and anticipate buying and selling accordingly, I would agree with you. But if you're going to build a specific ladder taking you from 65-85, then I think you just have t...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?
Replies: 93
Views: 6680

Re: When to think about tax lost harvesting

Livesoft, now surely you jest. That would indeed be a nice trick, to know exactly when the bottom of the market is. To the OP, there's really no minimum, but it'd have to be worth your time. Just remember that whatever you TLH in to, you want to like the fund enough to hold it indefinitely. As many ...
by Artsdoctor
Sun Oct 19, 2014 4:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to think about tax lost harvesting
Replies: 19
Views: 1448

Re: Dealing with Volatility

Nice piece, Rick. In the depths of the 2008-2009, I wrote down how I was feeling and kept those papers filed away. It was a learning experience and I refer to those papers occasionally since the raw emotions have worn off. I did hang on with white knuckles at the depths of the market meltdown and I ...
by Artsdoctor
Thu Oct 16, 2014 9:03 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dealing with Volatility
Replies: 14
Views: 1137

Re: Helping prepare family financially if earner dies early

Plano, I'm very sorry that you're going through all of this. From a financial point of view, make sure that you sit down with her and go over where the accounts are, all of the passwords, everything. This will help as well during your chemo because you're probably not going to feel like worrying abo...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Oct 15, 2014 6:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping prepare family financially if earner dies early
Replies: 8
Views: 1078

Re: Roll Over Old TIAA CREF Account?

I'll be the contrary one here. Get rid of it and roll it, if possible. If it's very small, it's not making any difference anyway. For example, if the account is making up less than 5% of your investment portfolio, it's really doing nothing. Second, the TIAA Real Estate isn't what it used to be. Alth...
by Artsdoctor
Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roll Over Old TIAA CREF Account?
Replies: 15
Views: 793

Re: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?

Angst, A TIPS ladder and an annuity accomplish similar goals, but of course they're very different products. There are annuities that have fixed time periods, and there are annuities that pay out for the rest of your life. Some annuities are fixed amounts, and some are indexed to inflation. The more...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 14, 2014 6:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?
Replies: 93
Views: 6680

Re: Another TIPS Thread

If you'd like to make TIPS a part of your accumulation stage portfolio, a fund has its merits. However, you really don't need the diversification of a fund if you're buying government-secured debt since there's no credit risk. Trading individual TIPS is very transparent as well. For me, I like the c...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 14, 2014 1:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Another TIPS Thread
Replies: 5
Views: 516

Re: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?

^ Doc: Yes, that is absolutely correct. I believe that comparing a TIPS ladder to an annuity is the right approach, at least in my mind. It is interesting, in a way. I like the life cycle approach and I am very comfortable building my "floor" with money that I've taken off the table. It wi...
by Artsdoctor
Tue Oct 14, 2014 1:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?
Replies: 93
Views: 6680
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