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Re: should my nephew apply to a top-tier university?

At Oxford and Cambridge, in arts at least, the tutorial system still rules- -at least as far as I know. There are lectures, but 1 day every week you spend a couple of hours with your tutor, in the company of maybe 2-3 other undergrads (or just 1 on 1). You produce a written paper for that meeting: ...
by Kulak
Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: should my nephew apply to a top-tier university?
Replies: 274
Views: 11810

Re: It's getting very hard to ignore the noise

It isn't deciding if 50 or 60 or 70% is the right allocation based on what everyoen is predicting. Success is more likely on not deciding if folks are right or wrong, but focusing on staying the course with your approach (assuming you had a well thought out reason for choosing your asset allocation...
by Kulak
Sun Dec 01, 2013 11:28 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: It's getting very hard to ignore the noise
Replies: 98
Views: 8160

Re: Average Yearly Raises?

5.9% nominal over 13 years. This year (my 14th) I got 0% due to substandard performance. Had I performed better, it would have been ~2%, for a 14-year CAGR of 5.6%.
by Kulak
Tue Nov 26, 2013 6:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Average Yearly Raises?
Replies: 97
Views: 5457

Re: should my nephew apply to a top-tier university?

Valuethinker wrote:The quality of education he would receive as an undergraduate at Oxford or Cambridge would be exceptional ... particularly in the liberal arts.

Could you elaborate on this? And are you distinguishing Oxbridge from even the elite American schools?
by Kulak
Tue Nov 26, 2013 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: should my nephew apply to a top-tier university?
Replies: 274
Views: 11810

Re: 4% stock returns this decade

cheese_breath wrote:If I knew what was going to happen I'd be a lot richer by the end of the decade.

I don't know what's going to happen, but I'm still going to be a lot richer by the end of the decade. 8-)
by Kulak
Tue Nov 26, 2013 12:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 4% stock returns this decade
Replies: 42
Views: 3755

Re: "Americans need more financial education."

A large proportion of the population is financially ineducable. By that I mean that they lack the intelligence (mostly heritable) to understand these ideas or the conscientiousness (also highly heritable) to apply them consistently or both. Imagine for a moment that you're massively dumber and more ...
by Kulak
Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Americans need more financial education."
Replies: 56
Views: 2178

Re: How to deal with the temptation to pullback on stocks

Easy. I keep feeling this same temptation, and then I ask myself, "What if you do and then it goes up another 20%? Then what? Buy back in THEN? Never buy back in?" That dilemma is way more stressful to me than the thought of a downturn.
by Kulak
Fri Nov 22, 2013 2:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to deal with the temptation to pullback on stocks
Replies: 35
Views: 2316

Re: Poll: What YTM would cause you to pile into long term TI

It'd have to be pretty high, because I don't really trust the creditworthiness of the U.S. government. If I did, 4% (so that's what I voted). I consider that very high, but I'd be replacing my extremely aggressive AA -- I feel a high need to take risk. You guys who voted 4%+, and not because you're ...
by Kulak
Fri Nov 22, 2013 2:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: What YTM would cause you to pile into long term TIPS?
Replies: 19
Views: 1201

Re: Bogle-approved spend on a car?

I don't value cars highly, so I don't spend much on them. You're also a DOCTOR and thus have nothing to prove class-wise. That's something to consider too. If you have a profession or a college affiliation or similar that confers automatic upper-middle class, you don't need a fancy car and might ev...
by Kulak
Tue Nov 19, 2013 2:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogle-approved spend on a car?
Replies: 68
Views: 4795

Re: Bogle-approved spend on a car?

I think 25% of gross income is ridiculously high for most people. A lot of Bogleheads are missing the point that cars are an important status display, particularly for single men. I'd say to buy the cheapest car that won't hurt your ability to present yourself as whatever social caste you are aiming...
by Kulak
Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogle-approved spend on a car?
Replies: 68
Views: 4795

Re: Survive depression in retirement: Don't rebalance from c

I think some have suggested that you can get the rebalancing bonus by rebalancing only on the upside, i.e. selling stocks when the allocation gets too high but not buying them when it gets too low. While I am one who has suggested that rebalancing only on the upside might make sense, and Larry Swed...
by Kulak
Tue Nov 19, 2013 11:35 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Survive depression in retirement: Don't rebalance from cash?
Replies: 14
Views: 1810

Re: A "What's Your Number" Follow-Up Question

In calculating my net worth, I divide my Roth balance by (1 - expected tax rate) and then sum that with my trad and taxable. My "number" is then projected on that (pre-tax) basis. An accountant would probably say my true net worth is less than what my spreadsheet says.
by Kulak
Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A "What's Your Number" Follow-Up Question
Replies: 16
Views: 2387

Re: A math question ...

I once got into a heated debate with a college instructor who insisted that a set was NOT a subset of itself. By every definition I'd ever read, a set IS a subset of itself, but not a proper subset of itself. Differences like this lead to confusion and frustration for students. My understanding (on...
by Kulak
Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: A math question ...
Replies: 57
Views: 2125

Re: It's a stock picker's year

JoMoney , I wasn't so much putting forth a general rule as commenting on Netflix itself. I'm a subscriber because my wife watches legacy TV series on it. It has become a joke in our house that when we want to stream a movie, we first check Netflix (since it's free) and of course Netflix never has i...
by Kulak
Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:29 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: It's a stock picker's year
Replies: 20
Views: 1954

Re: Fidelity: The Secret To Becoming A Retirement Millionair

Yeah, but I would add to this "and invest in low cost Vanguard funds, not Fidelity funds"..... When I had a Fido 401k, some Spartan funds had lower ERs than their corresponding Vanguard funds. (Of course, I doubt the Spartans would exist without Vanguard, and I remember right Fidelity was...
by Kulak
Sat Nov 16, 2013 6:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity: The Secret To Becoming A Retirement Millionaire
Replies: 15
Views: 3034

Re: Fidelity: The Secret To Becoming A Retirement Millionair

To steal the old vintner's joke:

"Start as a retirement multimillionaire?"
by Kulak
Sat Nov 16, 2013 6:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity: The Secret To Becoming A Retirement Millionaire
Replies: 15
Views: 3034

Re: It's a stock picker's year

Wow, anybody else tempted to short Netflix at 290x earnings?
by Kulak
Sat Nov 16, 2013 6:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: It's a stock picker's year
Replies: 20
Views: 1954

Re: How many funds do you have in your portfolio?

Four funds:
Vanguard World ex-US (VEU) (taxable)
Vanguard US small-value (VBR) (trad)
WisdomTree int'l small-div (DLS) (trad)
WisdomTree EM small-div (DGS) (Roth)

In fact, those are the only significant assets I own.
by Kulak
Fri Nov 15, 2013 3:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How many funds do you have in your portfolio?
Replies: 96
Views: 6212

Re: Pull-ups and Push-ups

but not so great for things like joint strength You might be surprised how that joint strength would improve with an intelligent barbell program. I used to have frequent knee pain from just squatting down or stepping up onto a 2-foot ledge; today I do 300lb barbell back squats without pain. I'm onl...
by Kulak
Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pull-ups and Push-ups
Replies: 329
Views: 39679

Re: Pull-ups and Push-ups

I'm going to be a dissenter here and say that BW exercise generally sucks. For a man, the only one challenging enough is pull-ups, and pull-ups are too hard for 99% of women. Bodyweight squats and lunges are too easy unless you're ridiculously out of shape, and pistol squats are too tricky/goofy to ...
by Kulak
Thu Nov 14, 2013 4:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pull-ups and Push-ups
Replies: 329
Views: 39679

Re: Shiller P/E 10 hits 25

umfundi wrote:If I may ask, when did CAPE and Shiller PE10 become popular as forecasting metrics?

Funny, back on the M* board there was a poster named "Hocus" who went on and on about PE10, hijacking every other thread, until he got banned. I wonder if he's lurking and feels vindicated.
by Kulak
Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller P/E 10 hits 25
Replies: 268
Views: 18164

Re: If want a good laugh watch this video

So much for full disclosure, he acted as if this advice Nov 2007 - get out July 2009 - get in was particularly great, but from March 2009 to mid-June 2009 the market was up over 37%. And in fact it was up 20% at some point in March 2009 alone. But he didn't talk about missing that rally. So overall...
by Kulak
Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If want a good laugh watch this [advisor] video
Replies: 41
Views: 4103

Re: discretionary spending per month

travellight wrote:My saving rate is about 80%.

:shock:
by Kulak
Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: discretionary spending per month
Replies: 48
Views: 3244

Re:

So a question for someone that has read and understands this book. What's the expected return of the Vanguard Target Retirement Income Fund? Over the next 10,20,30 and 40 years? I'll plug the answer into my Plan. :D This was serious question. Anybody? I haven't read this book, but I gather that the...
by Kulak
Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Expected Returns by Antti Ilmanen
Replies: 55
Views: 6179

Re: The Cheapest ETF in the World

If it's really 2.5, I'd like to gamble on it. But is this accurate? Yahoo shows GREK with a P/E of 8 as of Sept 29, and Global X's website has it at 24.4 as of Nov 5.
by Kulak
Tue Nov 12, 2013 4:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Cheapest ETF in the World
Replies: 12
Views: 1473

Re: Harry Browne Permanent Portfolio question

Harry Browne's portfolio was informed by his general mistrust of government. Are you sure the convexity effect wouldn't get much bigger in extreme monetary events like the Volcker recession or the 1930-32 deflation?
by Kulak
Tue Nov 12, 2013 2:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Harry Browne Permanent Portfolio question
Replies: 73
Views: 4298

Re: The key to investment success

Because a metric is noisy it is meaningless? I guess meaningless is a strong word, but the implication is that P/E10, as opposed to P/E, prices in the "probability" of a recurrence of the 2008 financial crisis (yet neglects the 2002 dot-com recession because that's more than the-number-of...
by Kulak
Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The key to investment success
Replies: 33
Views: 2973

Re: The key to investment success

CAPE 8/10, I like that. Based on estimated P/E for this year, the CAPE 8/10 is 18.79. 8-) So basically the Shiller PE is >25 because of ONE year when E went to 0. Then count me as one of the folks who thinks it's meaningless. Hell, even a PE(median)10 would be better. Can I have a Nobel Prize in ps...
by Kulak
Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The key to investment success
Replies: 33
Views: 2973

Re: The key to investment success

I'm not a fan of Shiller's CAPE because it uses earnings from 10 years ago to value stocks today, and because one bad year of corporate earnings year over the last ten years can throw the ratio way off for a long time. That's what happened in 2008. We need, like, a Cyclically Adjusted Price to Root...
by Kulak
Mon Nov 11, 2013 12:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The key to investment success
Replies: 33
Views: 2973

Re: Questioning role of Emerging Markets

Which one's the more meaningful basis? I based my AA on total capitalization, so I have a little over 20% in EM, which I'm not entirely comfortable with.
by Kulak
Mon Nov 11, 2013 12:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Questioning role of Emerging Markets
Replies: 58
Views: 5729

Re: We're not in an Equity Bubble

greg24 wrote:Can't be a Bernubble, because then we'd have to change it to Yellubble in February.

I can think of an obvious generalization that will probably hold forever, but the post would get zapped in a heartbeat.
by Kulak
Sun Nov 10, 2013 6:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: We're not in an Equity Bubble
Replies: 61
Views: 6678

Re: We're not in an Equity Bubble

Fama claims that he doesn't know what a bubble is--I'm beginning to have sympathy with that view. Perhaps, like justice Potter on obscenity, I can't define it -- but I know it when I see it. And it's the mother of all epic bubbles on steroids. That reminds me: using the emdash -- where a simple com...
by Kulak
Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: We're not in an Equity Bubble
Replies: 61
Views: 6678

Re: We're not in an Equity Bubble

Of course we're in a bubble. Because "bubble" today simply means above-average valuations. It's used in the finance porn almost every day now. We of the MTV, ADHD, Adderall, Facebook, Twitter, etc. generation, We who expect even 60 Minutes and Sportscenter to be edited like a music video, ...
by Kulak
Sun Nov 10, 2013 2:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: We're not in an Equity Bubble
Replies: 61
Views: 6678

Re: Efficient Frontier of Risk Tolerance

I'm having fun trying to translate technovelist 's posts into math. I think he's saying that 'utility' is totally ordered but not complete , therefore no bijection exists with (log) money. But from that he's inferring that no function (of any kind with domain 'utility') exists, and that's the fallac...
by Kulak
Thu Nov 07, 2013 3:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Efficient Frontier of Risk Tolerance
Replies: 74
Views: 2991

Re: A One Question Test for 100% Equities

Not to mention: read my signature. How much are you willing to sacrifice for a retirement that could easily be undone by a black swan event like hyperinflation, government stealing your assets (see Cypress), your own premature death, etc.? In any one lifetime, the odds of a non-financial failure mod...
by Kulak
Thu Nov 07, 2013 1:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A One Question Test for 100% Equities
Replies: 69
Views: 6351

Re: A One Question Test for 100% Equities

EmergDoc wrote:Low rates of return change the game completely. [...]

I wrote about it this Spring.

http://whitecoatinvestor.com/making-dif ... d-returns/

Excellent piece. You at least get it.
by Kulak
Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A One Question Test for 100% Equities
Replies: 69
Views: 6351

Re: A One Question Test for 100% Equities

At 36 I hold 100% equities with overwhelming small-value and int'l/EM tilts. And yes, "back in 2008" I held firm and lost over half my net worth (which, admittedly, was less than half of my current number). And yes, I'm dis pleased with the '13 run-up and expecting to give back quite a bit...
by Kulak
Mon Nov 04, 2013 12:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A One Question Test for 100% Equities
Replies: 69
Views: 6351

Re: 2013/2014 Honda accord - any better values?

I need a quiet car though since I am hard of hearing. I recently test-drove a bunch of sedans in that class, and I recall the Accord being significantly noisier (road/wind and engine) than the others. I drove both an I4 and a V6 and it was true of both, if I remember right. So if that's a big conce...
by Kulak
Wed Oct 30, 2013 7:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2013/2014 Honda accord - any better values?
Replies: 66
Views: 14191

Re: Harry Browne Permanent Portfolio question

In the rationale of the PP, the bond slice is meant to benefit from deflation. Ideally you'd want 30-year zeros or something like that -- nominal and very long.
by Kulak
Wed Oct 23, 2013 11:45 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Harry Browne Permanent Portfolio question
Replies: 73
Views: 4298

Re: Why do I need bonds again?

I own US SCV + EAFE SCV + EM SCV What funds, may I ask? Here's a thread where I discussed it. I just replaced DES with VBR (cost me >$900 in spreads, ouch) and will probably also replace DLS with VSS. VSS is nominally small(-blend), not small-value, but its style box is similar enough to DLS and th...
by Kulak
Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do I need bonds again?
Replies: 42
Views: 4209

Re: Why do I need bonds again?

Now if you made the argument if you believe this thought process how about going 100% SCV then I think you have a great argument. Mind you the argument against BOTH would be that there have been many times ENTIRE countries markets have imploded, i.e. Egypt. So maybe the argument should be why not 1...
by Kulak
Wed Oct 16, 2013 6:45 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do I need bonds again?
Replies: 42
Views: 4209

Re: How many square feet is your home?

I don't know, and I don't care.

:D
by Kulak
Wed Oct 16, 2013 4:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many square feet is your home?
Replies: 162
Views: 10898

Re: Will the Small-Value premium persist over 40 years?

One point that needs mentioning is that neither you nor anyone else NEEDs a portfolio that earns a premium over the market. What you need is a portfolio plan that achieves your financial goals: retirement at an acceptable age and standard of living, putting kids through college, etc. I don't know o...
by Kulak
Fri Sep 27, 2013 2:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Will the Small-Value premium persist over 40 years?
Replies: 73
Views: 6087

Re: Why do you work?

A friend who owns a small business had an MRI done, in which nothing was found to be wrong (he had pain in his side that they thought later might have been a mild hernia), and the next time his insurance was up for renewal he was dropped. Is that typical? Is he uninsurable for life now? Seems incre...
by Kulak
Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do you work?
Replies: 73
Views: 6150

Re: Why are you trying to save so much money?

Also, if by "right" school, you mean one where my kids will actually learn something and not have to worry about getting stabbed on the way home, then yes, I feel I must fund that. I wouldn't call that a "status display" though. I want to retort here. I grew up in a hick town an...
by Kulak
Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why are you trying to save so much money?
Replies: 131
Views: 23085

Re: Why do you work?

Wish I could give you some noble minded answer, but here's the truth - access to group health insurance. For someone without an expensive pre-existing condition, is there a reason catastrophic (say $10K deductible) health insurance isn't as viable an option as it seems? I haven't looked into it muc...
by Kulak
Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do you work?
Replies: 73
Views: 6150

Re: the power of habit

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman Overrated IMO. If you want the same info (and more) in 200 lean pages, get Bazerman & Moore's Judgment in Managerial Decision Making . Definitely the best lay presentation I have seen of this important topic. It even has a chapter on cognitive biases i...
by Kulak
Tue Sep 03, 2013 2:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: the power of habit
Replies: 7
Views: 1400

Re: Retirement: How do you gauge whether you are on track?

Requirement Income Planner (RIP) Haha, I like that. My method: 1. Create a monthly retirement budget , including a guess at medical. All projections are in today's dollars, neglecting inflation, so this basis gets adjusted each year. (Don't just use the CPI; observe what things actually cost today....
by Kulak
Tue Sep 03, 2013 1:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirement: How do you gauge whether you are on track?
Replies: 27
Views: 2829

Re: Why are you trying to save so much money?

It's not true that money buys freedom. Absolute poverty is alleviated at something like $10-15K/year. For most practical purposes, absolute poverty doesn't exist in the USA and other developed countries. What money (above that $10-15K) buys is conspicuous consumption -- it enables you to display rel...
by Kulak
Mon Aug 26, 2013 12:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why are you trying to save so much money?
Replies: 131
Views: 23085

Re: Why are you trying to save so much money?

HarryD wrote:own a large portion of my house

I LOL'd at this; not sure why.
by Kulak
Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why are you trying to save so much money?
Replies: 131
Views: 23085
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