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Re: More Aggressive AA Post Home Purchase

Although I exclude it from my retirement portfolio calculations, in net worth I include home equity as equity. I don't pretend it's a bond to use it to talk myself into holding more stocks. In fact, I've recently reduced the risk of my retirement portfolio, its having touched a targeted multiple of ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Fri Oct 24, 2014 4:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: More Aggressive AA Post Home Purchase
Replies: 16
Views: 746

Re: Vanguard, TIPs, Accrued Interest & RMDs

Most larger businesses use accrual accounting . Most smaller ones, and nearly all individuals, use cash-basis accounting . You can use accrual if you want, although it's more complex, but cash-basis refers to actual money you actually received during the actual time period (in this case a tax year)....
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Fri Oct 24, 2014 3:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard, TIPs, Accrued Interest & RMDs
Replies: 9
Views: 530

Re: Renting vs owning

Naturally this thread has, as most similar ones seem to do, descended into a comparison of free-standing houses, or in one instance row houses, with apartments in a complex. One can rent a house. One can buy an apartment. If we're arguing over whether houses or apartments are better let's at least b...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Fri Oct 24, 2014 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting vs owning
Replies: 16
Views: 1512

Re: Yes, 100% of economists were dead wrong about yields

Fallible wrote:
Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:...
Now that's comedy! :D

PJW


But borrowed comedy. Not sure who coined it first - maybe you?

If I had a nickle for every good joke I've coined I'd be five cents in debt. If I had one for every good joke I've stolen I'd be in prison.
PJW
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Fri Oct 24, 2014 1:24 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 100% of [surveyed] economists were dead wrong about yields
Replies: 26
Views: 3167

Re: Yes, 100% of economists were dead wrong about yields

... Had the headline writer included the word "surveyed" - and I think he/she should have - so that the headline read: "Yes, 100% of economists surveyed were dead wrong about yields," I'd guess the number of clicks would be the same. I'd prefer to read an article titled "Ye...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 100% of [surveyed] economists were dead wrong about yields
Replies: 26
Views: 3167

Re: 2nd Opinions on Bond Alternatives?

At 80% equities, your portfolio's value and volatility is affected very little by the fixed income component, whatever it's invested in. Twenty percent is somewhere around the minimum good level for bonds, for a risk-seeking investor. There's an argument that it's really 10%, but that difference won...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 2nd Opinions on Bond Alternatives?
Replies: 35
Views: 2092

Re: Renting vs owning

I rented by choice for a couple of decades, in four different regions of the US, until I settled on the location in which I want to stay, and found what was, for me, a compelling deal. The seller, who had the place on the market for over a year when I made the offer one mid-December, didn't know it ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 6:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting vs owning
Replies: 16
Views: 1512

Re: A MM account or not?

To help others who may happen across this thread, the subject line refers to a Money Market Account , but the body of the OP talks about a Money Market Fund . The latter, which are mutual funds , are not FDIC insured, and pay very little interest, even by today's standards. The former, which are FDI...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 4:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A MM account or not?
Replies: 5
Views: 687

Re: Long Term Care Insurance - Should I Keep?

For me the primary purpose of LTCI is protecting your legacy for your heirs. If you don't care about this then maybe cancellation is a reasonable idea. Otherwise I think your policy is probably worth keeping. I would not expand it. I think your coverage is fairly decent as is. I, respectfully, main...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 4:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long Term Care Insurance - Should I Keep?
Replies: 11
Views: 890

Re: Emergency Fund Questions

Hi WalterMitty, and thanks for making one part of your life less secret. :happy I think we get into too much prescriptive detail here on EFs. The main point is to have fairly liquid fairly stable assets available in case you unexpectedly need them. Not doing so can mess up investing and other plans....
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 4:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund Questions
Replies: 13
Views: 1578

Re: Yes, 100% of economists were dead wrong about yields

I suppose Well, 67 economists predicted the wrong direction, without counting magnitude, for bond yields over six months wouldn't garner nearly as many clicks, and might not even have shown up here, so good job, headline writer * ! PJW * The writers of articles in periodicals hardly ever write their...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 3:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 100% of [surveyed] economists were dead wrong about yields
Replies: 26
Views: 3167

Re: Just wondering how you personally calculate net worth

An equally valid question is, how do you calculate your height? I include my feet, and my head, when measuring my height. My problem is, although I know the absolute value of my head, I can never figure out whether it's an asset or a liability. My feet definitely are assets, which work best when ba...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 23, 2014 3:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just wondering how you personally calculate net worth
Replies: 53
Views: 3086

Re: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks

bhsince87 wrote:...
It could be great to marry a little bit of, say, each of the top 500 spouses in America.... :happy

Didn't you mean to say, marry a little bit of each of the top 500 biggest spouses in America? :happy
PJW
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks?
Replies: 111
Views: 6575

Re: Just wondering how you personally calculate net worth

If I was going to do a net worth, which I don't, I would take .75% of IRA + ROTH + taxable + home equity . Since my pension does not survive me it does not apply. Would you adjust home equity by your current long term capital gains rate less $250,000 (or $500,000, if you're married in a state in wh...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just wondering how you personally calculate net worth
Replies: 53
Views: 3086

Re: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks

Here's a response I wrote last year to a self-described engineer's question about optimizing, which that person received well. Maybe it will be useful in this context.

LQD, BND, or MUNIs ?

PJW
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks?
Replies: 111
Views: 6575

Re: "Vanguard 'Bogleheads' Crazy for 'Saint' Jack Bogle?"

sorry if this is obvious but what exactly does "Vanguard would place ownership of the funds with the shareholders themselves" mean? How is this technically accomplished? Is it just eliminating all the middlemen and keeping the costs low or is there a explicit technical mechanism where the...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:56 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Vanguard 'Bogleheads' Crazy for 'Saint' Jack Bogle?"
Replies: 8
Views: 1589

Re: Just wondering how you personally calculate net worth

Net Worth = Assets - Liabilities. I mark them to market. That which can't be marked to market, at least aproximately, I don't include in the calculation. A pension, for example, unless it has an immediately-realizable price I can opt to obtain, isn't part of the equation. Social Security is continge...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just wondering how you personally calculate net worth
Replies: 53
Views: 3086

Re: Bonds in taxable or tax advantaged?

abuss368 wrote:The best portfolio is the one that works for you and allows you to stay the course.

And on that, the overriding value of staying the well-chosen course rather than trading in response to short- to medium-term market events, we fully agree.
:sharebeer
PJW
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds in taxable or tax advantaged?
Replies: 9
Views: 847

Re: How does one hedge against deflation?

... I did not assert that? My apologies if I attributed to you a position you didn't express. That's never my intent toward anyone. If a TIPS bond is trading at 90, due to cumulative deflation , with 5 years to run, then the investor is guaranteed a $10 nominal return over 5 years-- a positive amou...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does one hedge against deflation?
Replies: 52
Views: 3821

Re: 2013 NAWI released

Just saw it on SSA site: http://www.ssa.gov/oact/cola/AWI.html and also the bend points here http://www.ssa.gov/oact/cola/bendpoints.html Time to update those SS bene spreadsheets! Faith - - - 2013 (?) I'm not Faith, but yes, 2013. Quoting from the first link: Latest index The national average wage...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2013 NAWI released
Replies: 5
Views: 460

Re: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks

I'm an engineer. ... The biggest thing I have learned which is in 100% contrast to boglehead philosophy and what most economists say is that markets are efficient on the macro level and more often than not inefficient on the micro level. There are tons and tons of mispriced individual stocks in my ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks?
Replies: 111
Views: 6575

US Chip & Signature --> Chip & PIN 2020

An article at Bankrate.com from last Friday, the 17th of October, says the US is meant to get Chip & PIN in 2020. We'll have Chip & Signature until then. Of course, that's far enough in the future that plans can change. ... Unlike the European version of EMV, American debit card holders won'...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: US Chip & Signature --> Chip & PIN 2020
Replies: 24
Views: 1290

Re: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks

... Dunning-Kruger is tricky. It reminds me of the liar paradox "this statement is false." If I claim that I am a better investor, I must be suffering from illusory superiority. If I am modest about my investing ability, I must be underestimating my skill. ... With due respect, Victoria, ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks?
Replies: 111
Views: 6575

Re: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"

There was a news bit on Bloomberg today that none of the ivy league colleges endowments beat the S&P 500. The highest was about 20% vs the S&P 500 of about 29%. I only saw it for a moment so I may have the numbers off a bit. Alternative investments/hedge funds were all the rage -- that may ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"
Replies: 29
Views: 2836

Re: Why include International Index in AA?

It's a contentious issue, not everyone agrees, there isn't even a Boglehead consensus, and it may turn out not to make any important difference. So far so good? Reasons not to: US stocks are the best! USA Blast! USA! USA! US stocks get plenty of their revenue from it isn't important to get reven...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 7:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why include International Index in AA?
Replies: 39
Views: 2562

Re: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks

Do engineers think they're better than other investors at picking stocks to any greater degree than non-engineers think they're better? Sorry to rain on everyone's speculative parade with a testable question. Engineers in my acquaintance don't always do that, which is why they're more successful th...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 6:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks?
Replies: 111
Views: 6575

Re: Bonds in taxable or tax advantaged?

^ Rick's recommendation assumes behavioral errors.
PJW
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 5:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds in taxable or tax advantaged?
Replies: 9
Views: 847

Re: Bonds in taxable or tax advantaged?

That's a subject which has come up several times over the past few low-bond-yield years. One view has been to invert the traditional order, keep bonds in taxable, pay little in income tax because the interest is so low, then when intermediate-term interest rates go up Real Soon Now sell the bonds af...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds in taxable or tax advantaged?
Replies: 9
Views: 847

Re: How does one hedge against deflation?

... Once the TIPS fell below par, it would (mathematically) have to offer a real return to an investor-- making them quite attractive instruments. How would a TIPS trading below par because of a rise in real interest rates have a higher real YTM than one just issued offering the same recently-risen...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 2:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does one hedge against deflation?
Replies: 52
Views: 3821

Re: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"

I learned, through experience operating several cars and a couple of trucks, that if my objective is to overtake another driver I can't do it by staying in the same lane they chose. I suppose that must be true for investing: if my objective is to overtake other investors I can't do it by buying the ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 2:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"
Replies: 29
Views: 2836

Re: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket

I like thought experiments. In my earlier message cited here, I looked for possible explanations of why one would put all money into a single stock. It's easy to claim that some people are just stupid and leave the topic. I wanted to find a plausible explanation apart from stupidity. Victoria [I fi...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket
Replies: 222
Views: 22209

Re: How does one hedge against deflation?

... PS. Because of the Treasury's guarantee, wouldn't a bond whose adjusted principle was below par value due to prolonged deflation likely be valued "at par" by the market? By that reasoning, nominal treasury debt would never trade below par, because of the promise to return all principa...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does one hedge against deflation?
Replies: 52
Views: 3821

Re: How does one hedge against deflation?

... • TIPS that have been outstanding, say, 5 or 10 years have likely accrued a fair amount of inflation in their current value. If deflation was prolonged over years, these TIPS would eventually lose that accrued inflation down to the par value of the bonds (the amount the bond holder is entitled ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does one hedge against deflation?
Replies: 52
Views: 3821

Re: What tax software do you use and why

... I am curious. If you don't mind saying, what was the rule the software didn't implement correctly? ... I'm pretty sure it was TaxAct, several years ago (within the last seven, because I remember where I was living while I worked it out). I've looked back through my notes and I didn't keep a rec...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What tax software do you use and why
Replies: 54
Views: 2553

Re: "The best response to market volatility"

What a wildly volatile week! Well, not so much week, as several wildly volatile days in close proximity. To wit, my total retirement portfolio value as of close of trade two days ago (Friday 17th) compared to one week earlier, was down 0.001%. That's the fewest figures I can use to prevent its round...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The best response to market volatility"
Replies: 27
Views: 3342

Re: What tax software do you use and why

I do mine by hand, supplemented by a(n RPN) calculator. I submit electronically when it's free. I do choose an online tool to find out whether we agree. The last time we didn't come up with the same number the tool was wrong, not me - I tracked down the specific rule the software implemented incorre...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What tax software do you use and why
Replies: 54
Views: 2553

Re: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments

... But do you know of better deals elsewhere? I know credit unions offer better CD rates than commercial banks. (Btw, the CD from Vanguard is sold by a bank through Vanguard, but not sold directly from Vanguard). Anyway, I'd appreciate it if you could let me know of better rates elsewhere. Thanks!...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 16, 2014 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments
Replies: 19
Views: 1633

Re: Got my first cold call - does this mean I've 'made it?'

There might be a mole inside your company that sold a phone list to the adviser. ... +1 I have a colleague who received a cold call from our friendly local pickpocket organization at his desk number two days after we hired him. I was in the next cube and heard it all. As it happens, the colleague i...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 16, 2014 2:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Got my first cold call - does this mean I've 'made it?'
Replies: 30
Views: 5415

Re: Your personal risk level: Got your flu shot yet?

I'm risk averse, which has at times led me to appear to others as if I were risk seeking. Yes, I got the inoculation in early September. Basically, I'd like to be immunized against anything I can be. Thanks for the post, because it reminds me I'm due for a 10-year Tetanus booster. There's a pharmacy...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Thu Oct 16, 2014 2:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your personal risk level: Got your flu shot yet?
Replies: 93
Views: 2967

Re: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments

... And if for whatever reason you change your mind in future or need money for other reasons can exit fund within one business day with no penalty, unlike a CD. Good luck. Please note that ruralavalon's suggestion, which meets both the low-risk and monthly income objectives of OP, is a brokered CD...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 15, 2014 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments
Replies: 19
Views: 1633

Re: Bill Sharpe on the 4% SWR rule (he thinks it's silly)

A 4% inflation adjusted rule may be simplistic, but it is far better than any complicated plan assuming 8% yield, and far better than having fear cause you to do foolish things. The 4% rule is just wrong, for the reasons explained by Sharpe. I don't see how something that is wrong can be better tha...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bill Sharpe on the 4% SWR rule (he thinks it's silly)
Replies: 51
Views: 4624

Re: -11.33% YTD, asking for some guidance

^^ And yet the fact remains that you own the entirety of what you own, regardless of how many buckets you think of yourself as having, or whether advice to somebody else triggers your hate response (I don't hate it when things go down, in reference to your upthread post saying everybody should, and ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: -11.33% YTD, asking for some guidance
Replies: 57
Views: 3386

Re: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments

... I would like to see an investment pay $150 - 250 per month. I am a bit risk averse so I tend to stick to safer investments. Given these attributes, what investment(s) do you suggest that corresponds to my needs? Vanguard currently offers new issue 10 year FDIC insured CDs issued by commercial b...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 15, 2014 3:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments
Replies: 19
Views: 1633

Re: Why are 401k plans expensive?

I have a cheap one, too, but I think a part of the broader problem is the captive nature of the audience. Few people in my acquaintance talk about changing jobs because of their 401(k) costs. That factor may also cause some employers to invest less effort into finding a good deal for their people.
PJW
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Wed Oct 15, 2014 2:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are 401k plans expensive?
Replies: 39
Views: 3023

Re: What hedges inflation (other than TIPs)

... REITs (the management kind, not the mortgage kind) tend to fair better due to asset appreciation and the ability to raise rents (usually annually). Commercial properties are often leased for ten years, with built-in set rent increases which don't know, in advance, about future inflation. With r...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 14, 2014 8:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What hedges inflation (other than TIPs)
Replies: 11
Views: 752

Re: What hedges inflation (other than TIPs)

A derivative called an inflation swap does it directly, and can even hedge an entire portfolio (as opposed to TIPS which only protect themselves), but the price maker will charge enough that over time they're likely to profit at your expense. You'd be paying somebody else to take on your inflation r...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 14, 2014 4:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What hedges inflation (other than TIPs)
Replies: 11
Views: 752

Re: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments

I want to invest $80,000. It's just sitting in the bank not doing anything. I was thinking about investing it in Vanguard Funds. I don't want to invest in stocks since I feel the market may be too volatile now. So bonds is my choice. I'm somewhat risk averse. I want to squeeze as much as I can out ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 14, 2014 4:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Suggestions for Vanguard Fund Investments
Replies: 19
Views: 1633

Re: How TIPS work

Can you please explain what causes the NAV of Vanguard Short-Term Inflation-Protected Securities ETF (VTIP) and DFA Inflation-Protected Securities (DIPSX) to change each day. I have asked this question a few times but still have a problem understanding. Thanks Paul I think I may have attempted befo...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 14, 2014 2:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How TIPS work
Replies: 10
Views: 973

Re: You will think this is a stupid question

... Haven't really tracked the ECB policy precisely, but they should be cutting rates and I believe they are with that 20bp charge on keeping currency on reserve with them. That means negative interest rates - you park cash and it will cost you .20% each year leaving you with 99.8% of your deposit ...
by Phineas J. Whoopee
Tue Oct 14, 2014 2:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [unofficial Fed announcements make bond prices predictable?]
Replies: 25
Views: 922
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