Search found 1911 matches

by Christine_NM
Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How often should I check my accounts online?
Replies: 18
Views: 1307

Re: How often should I check my accounts online?

Back in the wild times of the 90s, Fidelity messed up my 401k once and it looked like it was part of another account with an owner in a different state with a different name. I was in the habit of checking on Fridays and found this problem. I bugged Fidelity relentlessly but got no meaningful respon...
by Christine_NM
Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the Duration of Your Bond Portfolio? And Why?
Replies: 50
Views: 2764

Re: What is the Duration of Your Bond Portfolio? And Why?

You made me do the calculation, OP, so here's the result. Duration of my bond portfolio is 4.78 years. There is no why, it is what it is. I thought it might be 4-4.5 years so this was a surprise. My duration has been powered by Balanced Index (duration 5.7) and Wellesley (duration 6.3). I have a sig...
by Christine_NM
Thu Jul 02, 2015 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pick One of Three! Vanguard Balanced Funds
Replies: 23
Views: 2738

Re: Pick One of Three! Vanguard Balanced Funds

I've had Balanced Index (in taxable!) since 2002. I have also owned Wellington in an IRA, but now have Wellesley in the IRA. I considered the LifeStrategy MG but preferred access to Admiral Shares and no surprises in fund management. It was a long decision, several years of watching different funds ...
by Christine_NM
Tue Jun 30, 2015 8:23 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Please Try Out Test Posts Here
Replies: 74
Views: 128076

Re: Please Try Out Test Posts Here

testing send channel - again
by Christine_NM
Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: tap IRA to pay off CC debt?
Replies: 31
Views: 3148

Re: tap IRA to pay off CC debt?

If I pay it off from my 401K I feel I can break the pattern and start saving up cash reserves immediately. I am still not buying this. You have already saved up this 401k money for retirement. Let it sit there and grow. Use current cash/card offers to pay off debt. Don't borrow from the future to p...
by Christine_NM
Thu Jun 25, 2015 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: tap IRA to pay off CC debt?
Replies: 31
Views: 3148

Re: tap IRA to pay off CC debt?

IRAs are for retirement, not for credit card debt. When the next expense comes, will you use the IRA just because there is no penalty to withdraw except extra taxes? Bad precedent. Bite the bullet and learn how much $10k really is -- pay off out of current cash and scrimping. Sorry, but you need a b...
by Christine_NM
Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scotland / Ireland Castles?
Replies: 19
Views: 1610

Re: Scotland / Ireland Castles?

To start, check out the National Trust for Britain and Ireland here http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/visit/places/. They don't seem to manage any castles in Scotland and sorry, I don't know the Scottish equivalent. Google is your friend (usually).
by Christine_NM
Wed Jun 24, 2015 5:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What ratio are you stocks/bonds and how old are you?
Replies: 262
Views: 17086

Re: What ratio are you stocks/bonds and how old are you?

Age 72 (in a couple of months) As my tag line says, 10% cash 45% bonds 45% stocks -- of which, 25% is international, 10% is small value I had been hiding out in large value stock funds for first 10 years of retirement, and to some extent still am, but have increased international and added small val...
by Christine_NM
Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stop funding Roth IRA
Replies: 23
Views: 3001

Re: Stop funding Roth IRA

I stopped funding my Roth when I retired. Others (like all our doctors here) stop because they earn too much to contribute. Any particular reason you ask?
by Christine_NM
Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:22 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?
Replies: 218
Views: 19967

Re: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?

OK, here's how bad it really was. In June 2009 I was looking to buy a house for cash. The realtor wanted to know how much money I had. I told him, I have $X but if you had asked me a year ago I would have said $X+$500,000. His response was not horror or sympathy. He said, oh heck you did pretty well...
by Christine_NM
Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should my husband become a nurse?
Replies: 71
Views: 7311

Re: Should my husband become a nurse?

^^ yes, it is a hard job. He will earn every penny of that salary. After 2-3 years of this, you will have a tired, burned-out spouse on your hands. If you both are very lucky he will find some other work. I was an RN as a second career for 12 years and then switched to IT so I could sit down. No, I ...
by Christine_NM
Fri Jun 19, 2015 2:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing 11 Million Dollar Gift
Replies: 80
Views: 11965

Re: Investing 11 Million Dollar Gift

^^ in addition to predators and crooks, you will be way above the estate tax limit. See Forbes article http://www.forbes.com/sites/ashleaebeli ... ax-limits/

Hopefully you know this already.
by Christine_NM
Thu Jun 18, 2015 3:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My grandparents need their hodgepodge of investments sorted out
Replies: 14
Views: 1841

Re: My grandparents need their hodgepodge of investments sorted out

Dividend funds like Wellington and Wellesley are great for older retirees who do not have decades to watch growth stocks grow. Their need is cash now, as in dividends and interest. It is unclear exactly what should be done because we don't know the whole portfolio. Pick the worst parts, like the ind...
by Christine_NM
Thu Jun 18, 2015 2:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirees: Did you spend much time wringing your hands over Retirement Savings as Many on Forum Do Today?
Replies: 81
Views: 11461

Re: Retirees: Did you spend much time wringing your hands over Retirement Savings as Many on Forum Do Today?

One change that makes people worry more, I think, is the increased contribution limits that began in the early 2000s. They were necessary to keep up with inflation, but somehow large nominal amounts are daunting. Even with a middling salary I could always find $2000 a year to put in my IRA. $5000 wo...
by Christine_NM
Wed Jun 17, 2015 5:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Transferring to Vanguard - Need Input
Replies: 11
Views: 1106

Re: Transferring to Vanguard - Need Input

If you want a conservative portfolio, this is a good one. I think I might hold a little less in international bonds - 30% is more than even Vanguard uses. I thought 30% is what Vanguard uses. Maybe this "30%" refers to Vanguard recently upping the recommendation for international stocks t...
by Christine_NM
Tue Jun 09, 2015 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car dealer wants me to compensate for underpayment
Replies: 182
Views: 12749

Re: Car dealer wants me to compensate for underpayment

For those who are so eager to pay up -- this was not a random typo on the invoice as I read the OP. There were specials available to all buyers and he got two price breaks when he had agreed to one. A plain case of sales incompetence. I would not pay without a fuss. If the salesperson wants me to co...
by Christine_NM
Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice for Boston trip
Replies: 24
Views: 1495

Re: Advice for Boston trip

I grew up there and still remember my first visit to the Science Museum at age 7. See if you can find a talk that is aimed at that age group. For that matter, programs aimed at young kids make anything come alive for them. Lexington and Concord are not for kids, but they are real, not theme parks. I...
by Christine_NM
Tue Jun 09, 2015 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 9 Funds for a Rainy Day
Replies: 16
Views: 2537

Re: 9 Funds for a Rainy Day

Also what article are you referring to? It's on kiplinger.com main page now, but it is a pay site $79/yr (you could buy $80,000 of vbiax for that) and the google trick does not work. If anyone has a link to a copy, we'd all be grateful. Kiplinger as I remember it was a pretty good rag for beginning...
by Christine_NM
Mon Jun 08, 2015 11:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The final decision
Replies: 13
Views: 2297

Re: The final decision

looks good

about that 3.5% guaranteed return -- that is not your return, is it? Usually stable value funds guarantee that they will invest in insurance-type vehicles that guarantee a certain return like 3.5%. But you will receive the actual current rate less expenses and profits.
by Christine_NM
Sun Jun 07, 2015 7:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 Beautifully Boring, Balanced Funds
Replies: 14
Views: 2515

Re: 3 Beautifully Boring, Balanced Funds

Taylor & Stemikger - I learned a different lesson from 1998-2000 -- neither cap-weighted index funds nor W&W large value/corp bond funds are ideal by themselves. Together, however, Bal Index and Wellesley make a bulletproof combination for all-weather investing. If Taylor's (former?) friend ...
by Christine_NM
Sun Jun 07, 2015 11:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Elderly with 60% in single company stock
Replies: 30
Views: 2492

Re: Elderly with 60% in single company stock

gasdoc - Here is the SEC link on physical stock certificates: http://www.sec.gov/investor/pubs/holdsec.htm You will need either a full service brokerage or the FL transfer agent, which is Computershare. I just did a limit sale on inherited stock that Computershare held on their books in my name. It ...
by Christine_NM
Sat Jun 06, 2015 5:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Elderly with 60% in single company stock
Replies: 30
Views: 2492

Re: Elderly with 60% in single company stock

If her time horizon truly is closer to 5 years than 10, she should be in short term investments only, no stocks. I agree. The only question may be whether the stock holding can be liquidated nearly tax free in one fell swoop or the process should be extended over a year or two. Yes. I was thinking ...
by Christine_NM
Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Elderly with 60% in single company stock
Replies: 30
Views: 2492

Re: Elderly with 60% in single company stock

Thanks for all the additional info. If I had to advise someone else, I'd say look seriously at housing alternatives at some point and go half-cash and half-short term bond fund with the 100k by gradually selling funds and FL over next 2-3 years, starting now. It does not make sense to worry about st...
by Christine_NM
Sat Jun 06, 2015 12:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Elderly with 60% in single company stock
Replies: 30
Views: 2492

Re: Elderly with 60% in single company stock

For the last 5 years of her life, my Mom had an AA of 25% stock (one high-dividend stock and one mutual fund), 25% cash and 50% bonds (mostly vbiix). She did not use the money, since she lived with me and had SS income. Her medical expenses were next to nothing -- only the Medigap policy premium whi...
by Christine_NM
Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Divorcing over finances.
Replies: 70
Views: 6344

Re: Divorcing over finances.

I divorced for many reasons, not just money but that was part of it. I cannot imagine divorcing over a few thousand dollars. Are you planning never to marry again, or to learn to compromise? She sure knows how to push your buttons. Have you asked her if she wants (1) a budget or (2) a divorce? From ...
by Christine_NM
Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Starting Taxable Investing. Read Wiki & confused about adjusting overall portfolio
Replies: 14
Views: 1305

Re: Starting Taxable Investing. Read Wiki & confused about adjusting overall portfolio

You will need a small part of Schedule D if your taxable fund makes distributions that include capital gains. This would be reported on 1099-DIV. Vanguard includes this leaflet with your annual 1099 to explain how to report each item: https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/1099DIV.pdf Look at the funds y...
by Christine_NM
Mon Jun 01, 2015 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to furnish a new residence, completely from scratch
Replies: 35
Views: 3020

Re: How to furnish a new residence, completely from scratch

Where can we buy good quality, modern furniture in a relatively quick and painless manor? I sympathize. Most "fast" furniture is poor to middling quality. I've never been in an IKEA so can't say about that. I like Ethan Allen for better quality but it is a hassle to choose buy and wait we...
by Christine_NM
Mon Jun 01, 2015 11:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which grocery stores do you shop at and why?
Replies: 93
Views: 6191

Re: Which grocery stores do you shop at and why?

Yes, OP, Trader Joe's is my primary store. I've grown to like it and it is nearest to my house. With occasional visits to Kroger (known here as Smith's) and Whole Foods.
by Christine_NM
Sat May 30, 2015 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: All cash now ($1M) - need advice on entering this lofty market
Replies: 96
Views: 9863

Re: All cash now ($1M) - need advice on entering this lofty market

Hi again Ed --

I am beginning to feel sorry for your former adviser. It's not entirely his fault that you only have a million bucks to invest. :wink:

Press on regardless, as Mr. Bogle likes to say. The other thing he likes to say is Stay.The.Course.
by Christine_NM
Thu May 28, 2015 5:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: All cash now ($1M) - need advice on entering this lofty market
Replies: 96
Views: 9863

Re: All cash now ($1M) - need advice on entering this lofty market

If you are wary of putting 50% in equities now, how about less than 50%? Generally if you can't pull the trigger on a plan, the plan is wrong for you and you will abandon it at the first opportunity. Do something like 25% World Equity Index/75 % Total Bond now, knowing that 25% is considered in some...
by Christine_NM
Thu May 28, 2015 11:03 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond portfolio YTM> 3%
Replies: 24
Views: 1524

Re: Bond portfolio YTM> 3%

I agree with looking for extra return from equities, not bonds. Sometimes you can get a good deal on individual corporate bonds too (arguably that is the equity side), but Total Bond is strictly buy and hold. Maybe your IPS should say not long term inflation + 1, but current inflation +1. That is a ...
by Christine_NM
Mon May 25, 2015 3:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 32 year old--help investing in taxable for first time
Replies: 3
Views: 585

Re: 32 year old--help investing in taxable for first time

If your taxable portfolio will mimic your TSP ex bonds, will you plan to rebalance all the same funds in your taxable account? That's not usually a good thing, but sometimes OK for tax loss harvesting. Can you do all rebalancing in TSP (or other tax-favored account) as the taxable account begins to ...
by Christine_NM
Thu May 21, 2015 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Apply Medical school advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1819

Re: Apply Medical school advice

You should let your son decide this for himself. This is like advising a relative on a portfolio -- suppose he takes your advice and you are wrong? IMHO his decision should depend on whether he has other, non-gaming extracurriculars to add as well. If not, I'd leave it out. If it balances nicely wit...
by Christine_NM
Thu May 21, 2015 10:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Not your father's Total Bond Market Fund anymore
Replies: 86
Views: 9766

Re: Not your father's Total Bond Market Fund anymore

http://i1277.photobucket.com/albums/y487/robertrb/Rolling%20returns%203-years_zpstguzxssg.jpg Thanks, Rob. I clicked on the chart and added MFF (my favorite fund), Balanced Index Admiral. It steers nicely between Total Stock and Total Bond. To my biased eye it captures most of the upside and avoids...
by Christine_NM
Wed May 20, 2015 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living on last months income.
Replies: 33
Views: 3484

Re: Living on last months income.

I don't fully understand this. So if you bring home $6k each month, and you live on last month's income, then you would have ~$6k in checking at all times? That is similar to what happens with me. Everything comes into checking on the 1st of the month or the week before, representing payments for t...
by Christine_NM
Wed May 20, 2015 9:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: On a Scale of 1 - 10.. [Portfolio evaluation]
Replies: 34
Views: 2432

Re: On a Scale of 1 - 10.. [Portfolio evaluation]

I would not have the CD ladder and a mortgage larger than my investment portfolio. Use the CDs as they mature to make principal payments on the mortgage, especially if pre-paying principal gives you a break on the current payment amount. In 5 years the mortgage will have shrunk considerably and hope...
by Christine_NM
Mon May 18, 2015 2:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New to investing with questions
Replies: 5
Views: 617

Re: New to investing with questions

Have you considered the Total World Stock Investor Shares (VTWSX) or ETF if you can get free trades? This seems like an ideal starter fund for a small taxable account with a 50/50 US/Intl allocation built in. Minimum is $3,000 for the fund. ER is higher than TSM and Total Intl but you are not invest...
by Christine_NM
Sat May 16, 2015 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Letter from IRS (I think they are wrong)
Replies: 21
Views: 2973

Re: Letter from IRS (I think they are wrong)

The latest case: this year, I get an IRS notification that I had calculated my 2014 taxes incorrectly, and that I owed several thousand in additional income tax. It took me about 2 minutes to diagnose their mistake: they calculated my tax bill as if Line 9b on my Form 1040 (i.e., qualified dividend...
by Christine_NM
Fri May 15, 2015 8:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds
Replies: 20
Views: 1533

Re: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds

More tweaks please -- omit the 10% play account if this is not long term investing. Do you consider your CDs to be bond-equivalents or are they part of an emergency fund? Is your 401k your only long term investment? If you are just starting out with a small amount in your 401k you could do worse tha...
by Christine_NM
Fri May 15, 2015 7:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds
Replies: 20
Views: 1533

Re: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds

Does the 401k only offer these Vanguard funds? Vanguard Target Date funds or Life Strategy funds would make it easier for you to set up a portfolio.
by Christine_NM
Fri May 15, 2015 3:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How bad is Wellesley for taxable?
Replies: 37
Views: 3010

Re: How bad is Wellesley for taxable?

The dividend part of a distribution would be taxable at qualified dividend rate, which for me are the same as capital gain rate. The bond income portion of each distribution is taxable at your ordinary income rate -- this is the rub. However, if you are in the 15% bracket this should not hurt too ba...
by Christine_NM
Wed May 13, 2015 12:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this a dumb thing to do? [Pied-a-terre to share with daughter]
Replies: 41
Views: 5059

Re: Is this a dumb thing to do? [Help daughter purchase condo]

rikki - Would you buy a pied-a-terre just for yourself, if your daughter lived far away? I'm familiar with the area you live in and with traveling to Boston and Cambridge. It is not that far to travel to justify the prices. Ah for the days when you could buy a studio for $400,000. Cambridge is full ...
by Christine_NM
Tue May 12, 2015 12:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Share your networth progression
Replies: 226
Views: 49096

Re: Share your networth progression

6/1965 - BA 12/1965 - working but $0 net worth 12/1966 - $300.00 .. fast forward to 12/1980 $30k including an IRA and some stocks in a taxable account, 401k added in 1983 12/1987 finished MBA while working full time 12/1995 $120k 12/1998 $350k 12/1999 $500k 12/2004 $800k - retirement 12/2007 $1.2m 1...
by Christine_NM
Sun May 10, 2015 10:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lecture me about "too much house"
Replies: 49
Views: 5730

Re: Lecture me about "too much house"

When you sell your house, the cheaper house will sell much faster. I would be inclined to keep it small for now, and plan to move up only when you can afford a 20%+ down payment. And once you put money into home equity do not cash it out with refinancing. There will always be prettier neighborhoods ...
by Christine_NM
Sat May 09, 2015 1:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stop contributions to retirement accts due to future RMDs
Replies: 77
Views: 5759

Re: Stop contributions to retirement accts due to future RMDs

I will be forever thankful to whoever responded to my query on Morningstar's Already Retired Forum over 15 years ago. I asked in general about how to plan for retirement spending (not a common topic then) and one person replied, Do not neglect your taxable accounts . I already had my suspicions abou...
by Christine_NM
Sat May 09, 2015 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Math for Retirees and the 4% Withdrawal Rule
Replies: 96
Views: 13158

Re: New Math for Retirees and the 4% Withdrawal Rule

And furthermore, if you are in a situation where you have an income stream from pensions or annuities which are fixed (not inflation adjusted), a low-interest / low inflation environment is just what the doctor ordered. I think a lot of people are in this situation, with a mix of fixed income strea...
by Christine_NM
Thu May 07, 2015 6:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: McNabb op ed - possible 8% cash requirement
Replies: 33
Views: 3195

Re: McNabb op ed - possible 8% cash requirement

Both the op-ed and the ICI comments are worth reading. Apparently, out of all the world's mutual funds, FSB finds that 14 US-based mutual funds might be SIFIs. Any fund designated SIFI would not be worth an 8% headwind, or even a 5% headwind. If you would not pay a load, you would not invest in thes...
by Christine_NM
Thu May 07, 2015 4:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: McNabb op ed - possible 8% cash requirement
Replies: 33
Views: 3195

Re: McNabb op ed - possible 8% cash requirement

Silence Dogood wrote:Is there any way to read this op-ed without having a WSJ subscription?

I tried to Google the article but I hit a pay wall.


Try highlighting the headline and dragging it into a Google search box. Works for me, anyway.
by Christine_NM
Thu May 07, 2015 4:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Round Numbers in Portfolio Allocations
Replies: 49
Views: 3058

Re: Round Numbers in Portfolio Allocations

What does "investment savvy" have to do with round numbers? I don't see how this addresses the issue at all.
by Christine_NM
Wed May 06, 2015 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit union question
Replies: 16
Views: 1741

Re: Credit union question

Look up the credit union on bankrate.com.

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