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Re: A perfect profession

When changing the label of a product, we'd often employ a company called PRS to do eye-tracking studies for us. We could test several different designs and see which parts of the label people's eyes would go to 1st, 2nd, etc. And then we could also test those designs in simulated shelf sets with co...
by Bfwolf
Sat Dec 20, 2014 6:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A perfect profession
Replies: 61
Views: 6315

Re: Max my 401K early, how to maximize employer match?

leod,

Definitely look for the True Up language in your 401k Summary Plan Description. True Ups are common, though by no means ubiquitious.
by Bfwolf
Fri Dec 19, 2014 12:17 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Max my 401K early, how to maximize employer match?
Replies: 13
Views: 1503

Re: Do you travel with friends?

I am single and do not enjoy traveling alone as much as traveling with others. I have one buddy that is really compatible with me for traveling. We've done a couple of 2 week trips together and had a great time. It has made us even better friends. I have another buddy that I'm less compatible with, ...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 18, 2014 11:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you travel with friends?
Replies: 41
Views: 3269

Re: A perfect profession

In a former life, I used to manage food brands you can buy in the grocery store. When changing the label of a product, we'd often employ a company called PRS to do eye-tracking studies for us. We could test several different designs and see which parts of the label people's eyes would go to 1st, 2nd...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 16, 2014 8:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A perfect profession
Replies: 61
Views: 6315

Re: Should I surrender my annuity and whole life policy?

$15,000 invested in the S&P 500 in 1980 would be worth nearly $700,000 today ($600,000 after cap gains tax), let alone in 2020. These investments were probably not of equivalent risk, but 40 years is a very long time horizon for even risky investments like stocks. I agree with the standard Bogle...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 16, 2014 7:56 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I surrender my annuity and whole life policy?
Replies: 17
Views: 1246

Re: (Poll) Did you tap into emergency fund in the past 10 ye

We always tap into it here and there when little, unexpected things happen. For instance, the garage door opener broke the other day (literally fell right off the ceiling and the garage door came slamming down - no injuries or damage, thankfully). So we tapped the e-fund a couple hundred dollars fo...
by Bfwolf
Fri Dec 12, 2014 5:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: (Poll) Did you tap into emergency fund in the past 10 years?
Replies: 62
Views: 4486

Re: Looking to get Boggled

Will you have a modified AGI less than $116,000 in 2015? That's the requirement to be able to make a full $5,500 direct contribution to a Roth. Assuming the answer is yes, I might recommend the following: 1) Roll your 401k $10K into a traditional IRA at Vanguard and put $7K in the Vanguard Total Int...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking to get Boggled
Replies: 3
Views: 385

Re: Instruments and kids

I don't have kids, but in my personal opinion, if you're gonna go down the instrument route, have them learn piano or guitar. You can play lots of popular music on these, which may be useful in social situations.
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Instruments and kids
Replies: 31
Views: 1926

Re: I need to accumulate $30k over the next 2 years, how?

Not to pile on, but putting the money into a savings account and just trying to find ways to save more money is really the best solution. The reality of the investing marketplace is that if you want your money to be safe and not fluctuate at all, you have to accept 1% or lower annual returns right n...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I need to accumulate $30k over the next 2 years, how?
Replies: 59
Views: 4037

Re: Dropping COBRA- Which Obamacare plan? Bronze or Silver?

On first glance, the bronze plan sounds like your best bet. A few considerations: 1) That bronze plan looks very much HSA eligible. That silver plan does NOT look HSA eligible. HSA eligibility is a big deal...you can contribute $3,300 to it in 2015 and it will be tax deductible, which may or may not...
by Bfwolf
Mon Dec 08, 2014 6:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dropping COBRA- Which Obamacare plan? Bronze or Silver?
Replies: 14
Views: 1267

Re: High(ish) earner; spending too much?

Yes, your spending is extravagant compared to 95%+ of people.

Who cares?

You make enough to support that lifestyle, have plenty of savings, and are saving plenty annually.

Keep doing what you're doing as long as it brings you pleasure.
by Bfwolf
Mon Dec 08, 2014 12:17 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: High(ish) earner; spending too much?
Replies: 71
Views: 8829

Re: Year-End Review for a 24 year old...

You're in great shape, but I concur with what Laura said. Except for the part about paying off a 0% loan faster than necessary (though I understand why she said it).
by Bfwolf
Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Year-End Review for a 24 year old...
Replies: 14
Views: 1566

Re: Protocol for taking a deposit on an item I'm selling

I do not understand the logic behind a refundable deposit. If it's refundable, why have a deposit? I say cash the check. I imagine she is expecting you to do so and will pay you the balance in a couple of weeks when she has the movers. Nonrefundable deposit is probably good if you don't know the pe...
by Bfwolf
Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protocol for taking a deposit on an item I'm selling
Replies: 15
Views: 676

Re: Protocol for taking a deposit on an item I'm selling

I do not understand the logic behind a refundable deposit. If it's refundable, why have a deposit?

I say cash the check. I imagine she is expecting you to do so and will pay you the balance in a couple of weeks when she has the movers.
by Bfwolf
Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protocol for taking a deposit on an item I'm selling
Replies: 15
Views: 676

Re: Who Paid for the wedding?

‘A Diamond is Forever’ and Other Fairy Tales: The Relationship between Wedding Expenses and Marriage Duration I read this article with great interest, and while I agree with their conclusion that the higher the wedding cost, the greater the likelihood for divorce, I don't think they are telling the...
by Bfwolf
Sun Dec 07, 2014 7:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who Paid for the wedding?
Replies: 94
Views: 6504

Re: Who Paid for the wedding?

I have never been married, but in my opinion, the way to handle this is to be upfront with the brides' parents and say, "My parents don't have much money, but I can afford $X to help pay for the wedding." Then it's up to her parents to decide whether they want to match it 50/50 and have a ...
by Bfwolf
Sun Dec 07, 2014 12:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who Paid for the wedding?
Replies: 94
Views: 6504

Re: Family jewels, kind of.

I agree with those who think the in-laws believe they're doing you a favor. I think a simple "I really appreciate the gesture, but in searching for the diamond that best symbolizes my love for your daughter, I've found another one that I'm going to go with instead" will get them to back of...
by Bfwolf
Sat Dec 06, 2014 11:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Family jewels, kind of.
Replies: 44
Views: 3323

Re: Any Momentum Investors Out There?

I do not use momentum because I can find no rational argument for why it should persist.

With small and value, at least there's the argument that those asset classes are riskier to explain why higher expected returns should persist.
by Bfwolf
Sat Dec 06, 2014 1:54 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any Momentum Investors Out There?
Replies: 107
Views: 9170

Re: My Rate of Return on my 401K was 9.83%. Is that Good?

Good to hear that everyone thinks my 401K is good. By contrast, the 401K with my previous company only matched 12 cents on each dollar I contributed, and my total earnings over 1 year was only $15. My new 401K is infinitely better and I love it. You're falling into a common misconception which is t...
by Bfwolf
Sat Dec 06, 2014 12:54 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My Rate of Return on my 401K was 9.83%. Is that Good?
Replies: 30
Views: 2498

Re: Credit card sign-on bonuses -- worth the trouble?

The Chase Sapphire Preferred has a much better bonus than the Chase Freedom. It does have an annual fee, but it is waived for the first year so you can just cancel after 11 months.
by Bfwolf
Sat Dec 06, 2014 12:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit card sign-on bonuses -- worth the trouble?
Replies: 83
Views: 5927

Re: Suddenly Retired, do I have enough?

Have you used something like firecalc to model the cash flows? Don't forget your pension is going to be taxable as will part of your Social Security.
by Bfwolf
Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:04 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Suddenly Retired, do I have enough?
Replies: 42
Views: 6818

Re: GMAT prep

I found the GMAT very challenging and am surprised you did not. Since the questions get harder when you get an answer right and easier when you get one wrong, the whole idea (I thought) is that after a while they are asking questions right on the edge of your ability.
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 6:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GMAT prep
Replies: 23
Views: 1564

Re: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

Wow! I am surprised at how much the # of companies who pay dividends fluctuates. Of course, your reasoning makes perfect sense for why that is true. That could definitely be an obstacle to this type of index. With the S&P 500 vs Extended Market, you can count on it being roughly an 80/20 split. ...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 6:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Re: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

Sorting on the basis of tax characteristics, which are plain facts, seems to make at least as much sense as sorting on factors, which are some kind of statistical discovery with only vague and changing theories to explain their existence. However there are plenty of dividend-oriented stock funds on...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Re: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

Sorting on the basis of tax characteristics, which are plain facts, seems to make at least as much sense as sorting on factors, which are some kind of statistical discovery with only vague and changing theories to explain their existence. However there are plenty of dividend-oriented stock funds on...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Re: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

Wouldn't owning something like Total US Market in an ETF give you this advantage? You don't pay taxes on dividends until you sell and so long as the ETF is over a year old, it's LTCG. I have yet to open a taxable account (something about a son in college and pesky tuition bills) but have that strat...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Re: Any regrets going from iOS to Android phone?

i switched to android. quickly switched back. iOS just works - and works well for me. both have their supporters, but i far prefer iOS. Financially, it is nice to be in one of the ecosystems (apps, etc) +1 I tried an Android phone a several years ago for a few days and HATED it so switched back. Th...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 2:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any regrets going from iOS to Android phone?
Replies: 27
Views: 3376

Re: [woke up] and whole life has changed. [disabled vet]

OP, the reason why people are harping on the firearms is that collectibles (firearms, gold, silver, art, etc) are purely speculative and do not share in the earnings growth from businesses that stocks do. Your plan to reduce the % of your $560K portfolio in collectibles from 70% of your portfolio to...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 2:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [woke up] and whole life has changed. [disabled vet]
Replies: 26
Views: 6787

Re: Why do we like dividends?

In addition, you pay tax only on capital gains part. If you get a $100 dividend, you pay tax on $100. While if you sold $100 worth of equity, you pay tax only on the gain (which is almost always less than $100) This is not a fair comparison. The $100 dividend is all return while $100 worth of equit...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 2:05 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do we like dividends?
Replies: 114
Views: 8319

Re: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

I'm saying that to have an index fund or ETF, you need an index. If you are serious about the idea, step one is to see whether there are any appropriate indexes. Unbelievably, the index providers have constructed >100,000 indexes and it is not a trivial task. But Google searches on things like &quo...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 1:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Re: GMAT prep

I don't have too much additional to add, but I like the idea of taking a practice test out of the gates to calibrate where you are vs where you want to be. You also probably have some sort of idea of how good you are at these kinds of tests based on your SAT/ACT score in high school. Anything above ...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 1:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GMAT prep
Replies: 23
Views: 1564

Re: Buying a kids first car -- considerations?

Love the idea of giving Kid #1 option of which car to get. I think only you know whether Kid #2 is responsible enough for a car. I pulled up the safety ratings of a 2004 Mini Cooper....don't know if that's the exact year but you did say 10 years old. It seems perfectly acceptable to me. http://www.c...
by Bfwolf
Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:47 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a kids first car -- considerations?
Replies: 25
Views: 2586

Re: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

nisiprius wrote:Step 1: Is there any index provider who currently provides that pair of indexes?


Is that a rhetorical question or are you really asking?
by Bfwolf
Wed Dec 03, 2014 7:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock

As I was reading through the most recent thread on the pros and cons of dividend stocks, I had an idea, and I wanted to run it by you guys and see what you think. Given: 1) Stocks that pay dividends have negative tax implications in taxable accounts vs stocks that do not pay dividends. 2) Stocks tha...
by Bfwolf
Wed Dec 03, 2014 7:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment product idea: Splitting up Total US Stock
Replies: 16
Views: 1508

Re: Why do we like dividends?

Not true -- capital gains can be deferred. In the long run, this can reduce the effective tax rate to half, or even zero if gains are disposed of through donations or inheritance. So capital gains are taxed more favorably. My main point was that some investors want the qualified dividend income to ...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 02, 2014 7:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do we like dividends?
Replies: 114
Views: 8319

Re: Understanding why we market weight

I don't even know if you're horse-betting analogy is a valid one, but even if it is, you would not want to bet the same money on every horse at a racetrack if your goal was predictable returns. Let's say there are 2 horses in a race, and Horse A has been heavily bet on and is 1/4 odds, while Horse B...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 02, 2014 1:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Understanding why we market weight
Replies: 18
Views: 1629

Re: [woke up] and whole life has changed. [disabled vet]

Thank you for your service. I will also echo what everybody else here said about finding the next chapter in your life. Humans are designed to be extremely adaptive. While I cannot even begin to imagine what you are going through, I hope that you find a path to leading a life where you are happy and...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 02, 2014 1:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [woke up] and whole life has changed. [disabled vet]
Replies: 26
Views: 6787

Re: Back Door Roths from Vanguard?

And have no IRAs with taxable amounts or at least the means and knowledge on how to "hide" those. Great point. EmergDoc, thanks for the stats! Certainly encouraging. Though the "White Coat Investor Bubble" may be even worse than the "Boglehead Bubble" given the income ...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 02, 2014 12:55 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Back Door Roths from Vanguard?
Replies: 8
Views: 1305

Re: Why do we like dividends?

Dividends are just a portion of company profits that are distributed to owners (stockholders) in the form of cash. This is a decision made by the executive board, and a common metric that dividend investors might look at would be the dividend to earnings ratio (i.e. what portion of earnings, as a %...
by Bfwolf
Tue Dec 02, 2014 12:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do we like dividends?
Replies: 114
Views: 8319

Re: Back Door Roths from Vanguard?

It would be interesting to know how many people are contributing to backdoor Roth IRAs vs how many SHOULD be. My guess is that while the percentage is low, the absolute #s in all cases are pretty low too. If Vanguard has 20,000 people contributing to backdoor Roths, then maybe there are 100,000 peop...
by Bfwolf
Mon Dec 01, 2014 1:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Back Door Roths from Vanguard?
Replies: 8
Views: 1305

Re: Update: Lost a lot in stocks and starting fresh: Please

You may be done with this thread already, but I guess my question was more along the lines of: if you learned your lesson, what brought you to repeat the destructive behavior from before? Are you saying that it was hard to resist the temptation when you had an IRA brokerage account, so you are going...
by Bfwolf
Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Update: Lost a lot in stocks and starting fresh: Please Help
Replies: 5
Views: 1455

Re: Being woken up by neighbors above me

OP here. Well, I must say that this thread has certainly gotten more attention than I ever imagined. Can I just ask that everybody take a chill pill? I knew I would get some over-the-top responses from the same group of people that immediately propose divorce any time somebody posts a marital financ...
by Bfwolf
Sat Nov 29, 2014 10:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being woken up by neighbors above me
Replies: 79
Views: 6306

Re: Update: Lost a lot in stocks and starting fresh: Please

1. Thank you for continuing to come back and share updates on your progress 2. Congratulations on eliminating the 401k loan, reducing credit card debt, and starting to build an emergency fund. 3. I will try to keep the lecture short and sweet. You came to this forum originally after losing tons of m...
by Bfwolf
Sat Nov 29, 2014 10:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Update: Lost a lot in stocks and starting fresh: Please Help
Replies: 5
Views: 1455

Re: Been out of market since 2008 and can't get back in

If it's true that you will not need these retirement assets and they're only for your heirs and we're talking about a 30+ year time horizon, I agree with the idea of just putting them in a single stock index. While the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index would be a fine idea, I think an even better id...
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 3:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Been out of market since 2008 and can't get back in
Replies: 52
Views: 5284

Re: Being woken up by neighbors above me

I genuinely appreciate everybody's thoughts. I am going to try the earplugs. I have a box of those Leight Sleepers already...I have a hard time sleeping with earplugs (I'm a side sleeper, and don't like the sensation of the ear plugs being pushed up against me when I put my head on the pillow), but ...
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being woken up by neighbors above me
Replies: 79
Views: 6306

Re: Being woken up by neighbors above me

As an aside, I do try to walk on the balls of my feet in my own apartment to spare the folks below me from the same problem, especially late at night.
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 2:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being woken up by neighbors above me
Replies: 79
Views: 6306

Re: Being woken up by neighbors above me

I actually rented a top floor unit (the unit above the unit above me now) in this building for 7 years until the owners sold it. If they hadn't sold it, I'd still be living there today, and the folks I'm complaining about might be complaining about me! As for what they can do about it, I imagine the...
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 1:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being woken up by neighbors above me
Replies: 79
Views: 6306

Re: Being woken up by neighbors above me

Maybe I just need to prepare a speech for the next time I see them in the elevator (which seems like hardly ever, but it's bound to happen some time over the next few months). That way it doesn't seem like I'm confronting them by going up and knocking on their door. And we've got a slow hydraulic el...
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 1:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being woken up by neighbors above me
Replies: 79
Views: 6306

Being woken up by neighbors above me

I live in a loft style condo in a mid-rise building. I like to sleep in until 10, but every morning around 7, I am woken up for 30 to 60 minutes by my upstairs neighbors walking around in their apartment, presumably getting ready for work. I think they are probably walking around barefoot--it's a du...
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 12:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being woken up by neighbors above me
Replies: 79
Views: 6306

Re: Why wouldn't I [contribute to an after-tax 401k w/ rollo

You can roll it over directly to a Roth. Sure you can but you owe taxes on any earnings rolled in with the basis. Right, but usually plans allow for enough frequency of the rollovers (I've never heard of a limitation more onerous than once a year) that the earnings don't amount to much, especially ...
by Bfwolf
Wed Nov 26, 2014 2:15 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why wouldn't I [contribute to an after-tax 401k w/ rollover]
Replies: 12
Views: 812
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