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Re: Maxing your IRA or 401k at the beginning of the year?

I think it's fine to max out your contribs in your 401(k) or 403(b) plan over the course of the year. My Roth IRA was less than my 403(b) so I got the $6000 into that in the first half of my last year or two of employment. And if you ARE one of those eager beavers who maxes out your tax-sheltered op...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 30, 2014 5:37 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maxing your IRA or 401k at the beginning of the year?
Replies: 11
Views: 841

Re: need for a backup credit card?

BigPrince wrote:
I also carry a decoy wallet when I travel...the wallet I hand over to muggers has a debit card to an account with very little money it and a two credit cards with very low limits. (never had to deploy it lol)

So, generally how often do you get mugged?
by The Wizard
Mon Sep 29, 2014 8:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: need for a backup credit card?
Replies: 37
Views: 1405

Re: How to get rid of fractional shares

WHY exactly is the OP concerned about owning fractional shares?
by The Wizard
Mon Sep 29, 2014 8:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to get rid of fractional shares
Replies: 4
Views: 514

Re: Obese airline passenger

I think the word FATSOS may be unnecessarily derogatory...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Obese airline passenger
Replies: 62
Views: 4650

Re: Gas Water Heater Upgrade worth the $$$

Have the builder put in fittings for gas clothes dryer, gas kitchen stove, and gas outdoor grill as well, while he's at it...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 1:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gas Water Heater Upgrade worth the $$$
Replies: 31
Views: 1736

Re: Can I be held personally liable for things done at work?

Additionally, as you may know, your software isn't going anywhere until it's been tested and verified to meet requirements, usually with an Acceptance Test.
So there's a team of people involved...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 1:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I be held personally liable for things done at work?
Replies: 16
Views: 2066

Re: Can I be held personally liable for things done at work?

I would say No, assuming you're an employee of some company, as I was.
Oops, a civilian employee of the military, I see.
Answer is still No, no insurance needed for malpractice or errors.
I would have heard of this over past decades if it was an issue...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 1:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I be held personally liable for things done at work?
Replies: 16
Views: 2066

Re: Read too many books... help untangle

don't know if this will help but, First, IMO the best book on modern financial theory is Ilmanen's Expected Returns. Two other excellent books are The Physics of Wall Street by Weatherall and the Success Equation by Mouboussin, and finally successful Investing is a process by Lussier... Oh great, j...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 12:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Read too many books... help untangle
Replies: 35
Views: 2409

Re: Help me divorce my Stocks

What percentage do these stocks represent in your portfolio? Yes, I would look at this and at your age. No need to do anything quickly due mainly to taxes. With ongoing contribs to index funds, how long will it be before these stocks will be just 5% of your total portfolio? With $60K in those legac...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help me divorce my Stocks
Replies: 16
Views: 1519

Re: Should I take SS or wait, Penny for your thoughts,

I'm 64 and retired for 3 + years and my wife just retired 63. We both collect SS. The more I hear this question the more I believe ther is a huge psychological component to it. I like knowing that I having this money coming, who knows what the future brings....better in my hands. :happy I'm 64 and ...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take SS or wait, Penny for your thoughts,
Replies: 14
Views: 1231

Re: Answer to Most Physician/High Net Worth Questions:

livesoft wrote:I don't see much difference between the suggestions here and what non-physicians should want to do.

True, which may be why the OP mentioned HNW, though it should more accurately be High Net Income.
Seems like disability and malpractice insurances would not be applicable to most other occupations...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Answer to Most Physician/High Income Job Questions:
Replies: 31
Views: 2256

Re: Need advice; Significant Student Loan Burden

The other person in the OP's life is a GF, not a wife.
Not sure I would commingle debts and assets until there's a marriage, if that's the plan...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:22 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need advice; Significant Student Loan Burden
Replies: 18
Views: 1391

Re: 54 yrs old roth 403b or continue traditional 403b

The decision depends on your estimated tax bracket in retirement vs your tax bracket presently. You're close enough to retirement to estimate that now, based on present federal tax tables. Run the numbers assuming a 3.5% to 4% withdrawal from your traditional tax-sheltered funds. If your projected t...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 10:22 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 54 yrs old roth 403b or continue traditional 403b
Replies: 9
Views: 416

Re: Answer to Most Physician/High Net Worth Questions:

OP: did you forget Disability Insurance?

Also, I see nothing wrong with buying a New Car (a Lexus, preferably) with cash a few years after starting work, with the plan of keeping it for seven years or more...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 10:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Answer to Most Physician/High Income Job Questions:
Replies: 31
Views: 2256

Re: Savings exceed lifetime earnings

I'm not quite sure what your question is, but it seems like the answer is not to keep all your money in bubbly assets. Diversification and an AA with lower risk are the best you can do. Plus wait till you have at least a 25% "pad" above your "number". And your assumption that bot...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 9:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Savings exceed lifetime earnings
Replies: 13
Views: 2930

Re: Lump Sum Package With Details

Maybe it should or shouldn't go without saying, but since I am eligible beginning at 55, I don't have to wait until 65 to begin receiving payments. Of course, for each year after 55, it will be higher than $533, but lower than $1515...somewhere in between. I don't have the reduction calculator info...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 27, 2014 9:47 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lump Sum Package With Details
Replies: 28
Views: 1529

Re: operating cost of this forum

It would still be interesting to get some round dollar numbers to ponder when thinking about donations. Let's make some initial estimates: Two types of costs: equipment costs and recurring monthly costs. I have zero experience configuring and running an internet server, so will be interesting to see...
by The Wizard
Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:41 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: operating cost of this forum
Replies: 42
Views: 5230

Re: Tree trimming cost

Toons wrote:For tree trimming I saved hundreds,maybe more with my ladder and the item below,,doing it myself :happy

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00004 ... UTF8&psc=1

That's impractical for larger trees of seventy feet or more in height...
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tree trimming cost
Replies: 30
Views: 2498

Re: Tree trimming cost

yukonjack wrote:I recently had a 25 foot aspen tree removed for $300 and it involved working around a 6 foot privacy fence.

Removal of a tree, of whatever size, is not trimming...
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tree trimming cost
Replies: 30
Views: 2498

Re: Stubbornly Non-Boglehead Husband. What To Do?

Good luck with those recommendations to make deals or bets with the husband that will force him to change his ways a year or two down the road.
That's not how it works with addictive personality types...
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:19 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stubbornly Non-Boglehead Husband. What To Do?
Replies: 122
Views: 7528

Re: Take Social Security at FRA, or Early, or Delayed?

...I'm hoping that since I'm close to SS age now and since our Congress in incapable of making any decisions that I'll be grandfathered into the current system before they start means testing (which I think they will at some point). They already started a version of Means Testing 20 years ago. 85% ...
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take Social Security at FRA, or Early, or Delayed?
Replies: 49
Views: 2689

Re: Stubbornly Non-Boglehead Husband. What To Do?

Call_Me_Op wrote:Maybe you can divide investable funds into a Boglehead portfolio (90% of assets) and a speculative portfolio (10% of assets). You control the Boglehead portfolio and he can control the speculative portfolio...

Sounds like that is about what they have now, except that the split is closer to 50/50...
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 8:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stubbornly Non-Boglehead Husband. What To Do?
Replies: 122
Views: 7528

Re: Stubbornly Non-Boglehead Husband. What To Do?

A $500K loss in one month is rather large. As long as he's having fun and keeps bringing in more money to play with, I'm not sure there's a problem. Las Vegas calls these types "whales". The problem gets worse later on if you want to retire and terminate the large employment income stream....
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 8:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stubbornly Non-Boglehead Husband. What To Do?
Replies: 122
Views: 7528

Re: S&P 500 guarantee without the annuity

Wait...so the main thing you want is portfolio insurance? You want to insure that your portfolio is worth x and are willing to trade being able to only withdraw a small percentage of your portfolio at any given time? Yes Methinks the OP is looking for something that doesn't exist. If you don't want...
by The Wizard
Wed Sep 24, 2014 7:56 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: S&P 500 guarantee without the annuity
Replies: 21
Views: 1843

Re: Take Social Security at FRA, or Early, or Delayed?

Keep working until 70? No thanks! I'm out of here at 68. Having passed Full Retirement Age almost a year ago I continue to work, but I do want a retirement I can enjoy at least somewhat. Terminating employment and starting to take SS benefits are two separate things, as almost all Bogleheads know. ...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 4:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take Social Security at FRA, or Early, or Delayed?
Replies: 49
Views: 2689

Re: Need help protecting assets (marriage)

I would not bother with just 100K asset. If you expect a very large inheritance in the future, that might be different story. In the grand scheme of things (say 30 years of marriage), 100K is simply too little asset to go thru this trouble in my opinion. This leaves bad taste in her and her family....
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 4:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need help protecting assets (marriage)
Replies: 46
Views: 4526

Re: Take Social Security at FRA, or Early, or Delayed?

Along the same vein, only today I saw a reply to a thread here where someone knocked 25% off their expected SS benefits in order to account for future dismay. In my own planning spreadsheet I have a switch to knock down SS benefits but anywhere near 25%. Although I might have it knocked down by tha...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take Social Security at FRA, or Early, or Delayed?
Replies: 49
Views: 2689

Re: Need help protecting assets (marriage)

Does your future wife know that you are looking for ways to protect your assets from her in the event of "possible divorce?" I think that's something she's entitled to know going in. She may also have some interesting thoughts on the subject! :wink: This is why I recommended a Prenuptial ...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need help protecting assets (marriage)
Replies: 46
Views: 4526

Re: Total Stock Market Dividends

We have other current threads on the value of SPIAs.
Comparing the dividend payout of TSM to the interest paid by CDs is amusing but should not be used as actionable evidence for changing anything, imo...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 11:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Total Stock Market Dividends
Replies: 18
Views: 1161

Re: S&P 500 guarantee without the annuity

Every single one of the annuities I have seen cap the market gain. That cap is a huge part of why they can provide "insurance" against market losses. If it was possible to make a product that gave market returns and no risk of capital, we would all stick 100% of our investment money. The ...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:12 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: S&P 500 guarantee without the annuity
Replies: 21
Views: 1843

Re: How to build a Vanguard portfolio

Any comparison conducted over a 2 year period will provide you with meaningless results. It's just not enough time. Not even close. I don't totally agree. The problem is finding appropriate benchmarks for the funds the advisor has him in. If the advisor has him in volatile sector funds there's just...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:47 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to build a Vanguard portfolio
Replies: 10
Views: 968

Re: Barron's article: Don't Panic! (retirement news & theory

I like the idea of placing 10 years of expenses in bond funds to avoid selling equities in a big downturn and indeed to buy equities in a big downturn. I don't see a need for cash in a big downturn. OK, but is this in ADDITION to your nominal AA, or simply another way of looking at your balanced po...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Barron's article: Don't Panic! (retirement news & theory)
Replies: 28
Views: 3753

Re: How to build a Vanguard portfolio

OP wants to compare a Vanguard portfolio with one that his advisor is managing. Good idea, BUT, you'll need to compare comparables. By this, I mean a comparable mix of stocks, bonds, international, etc. For example, if your advisor's portfolio was 100% stocks, then I can tell you right now what the ...
by The Wizard
Tue Sep 23, 2014 7:53 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to build a Vanguard portfolio
Replies: 10
Views: 968

Re: In a Serious Situation Need Financial Advice

I almost hate to say it, but consider going back to your previous business while keeping the details within the rules of the law.
It seems like you were doing OK for a while, yes?
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 4:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: In a Serious Situation Need Financial Advice
Replies: 45
Views: 7244

Re: New Investor begging for input

Thanks for all the input guys, keep it coming. I feel like my first day in the operating room, whatever I do will and sound like stupid. So, it comes... Should I utilize the fidelity 401K for max return(thus go for 100% Sp500) or go for 100% safety in 401K and go with bonds? Before getting into tha...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 1:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Investor begging for input
Replies: 34
Views: 1424

Re: New Investor begging for input

I'm guessing that before long, the OP will have quite a bit more in his TAXABLE account compared to the 401(k). With that in mind it probably makes sense to hold 100% bond funds in the 401(k) and keep low-cost stock index funds in taxable. The last fund in the OP's list appears to be Fidelity's Spa...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 12:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Investor begging for input
Replies: 34
Views: 1424

Re: In a Serious Situation Need Financial Advice

Get a less expensive V6 Mustang, yes, like the one I have. :)
I'm a bit puzzled how the OP came into her modest savings lump sum which was even larger before the immigration battle.
You must have been living beneath your means and saving every month then, right?
Or was it an inheritance?
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 11:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: In a Serious Situation Need Financial Advice
Replies: 45
Views: 7244

Re: New Investor begging for input

I'm guessing that before long, the OP will have quite a bit more in his TAXABLE account compared to the 401(k). With that in mind it probably makes sense to hold 100% bond funds in the 401(k) and keep low-cost stock index funds in taxable. The last fund in the OP's list appears to be Fidelity's Spar...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 11:33 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Investor begging for input
Replies: 34
Views: 1424

Re: Need help protecting assets (marriage)

I would not bother with just 100K asset. If you expect a very large inheritance in the future, that might be different story. In the grand scheme of things (say 30 years of marriage), 100K is simply too little asset to go thru this trouble in my opinion. This leaves bad taste in her and her family....
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 11:27 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need help protecting assets (marriage)
Replies: 46
Views: 4526

Re: Are SPIA's fairly priced? - A quick and dirty analysis

As I said upthread, to make an informed decision about WHEN to purchase an annuity, one needs to know the cost of the product vs the value of mortality credits. As long as the overhead cost of an annuity is greater than the benefit received from mortality credits in a given year, it's better to wai...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 9:29 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are SPIA's fairly priced? - A quick and dirty analysis
Replies: 75
Views: 3565

Re: Another take on "rising equity glidepath" in retirement

I also tend to agree with Larry's take on this with an exception depending on how well the retiree's income needs are already being met, liability matching, I suppose. If that rising stock allocation is for the indefinite long future, then the retiree might be less likely to panic in a significant d...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 9:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Another take on "rising equity glidepath" in retirement
Replies: 14
Views: 1457

Re: Tax Efficiency of Taxable Investments

While consolidation to fewer funds makes sense, not everybody has lots of tax-sheltered space, depending on what your employer provides and also depending on the level of total assets.
So we should inquiire about that...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 8:47 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Efficiency of Taxable Investments
Replies: 15
Views: 2053

Re: Risks to putting most investments at Vanguard

Although my assets are split between TIAA-CREF and Vanguard for historical reasons, I'm not at all concerned about this single custodian black swan scenario...
by The Wizard
Sun Sep 21, 2014 8:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Risks to putting most investments at Vanguard
Replies: 18
Views: 1084

Re: We have a grocery problem... [Household budget]

123 wrote:Some people have a hard time realizing that alcohol and tobacco products aren't "food". If those happen to slide into grocery shopping expenses and "meals out" the total amounts can skyrocket.

I don't think the OP said either of these categories were in there...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 9:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: We have a grocery problem... [Household budget]
Replies: 158
Views: 10615

Re: Do I Really Need a Million Bucks?

Let's look what $1M in tax-sheltered IRA/401(k)/403(b) equates to in retirement. The $1M could be for a single person or a couple; doesn't matter for this exercise. Assume no pension, hence the need to save more in Defined Contributions. Our retiree can safely w/d around $40,000 a year from that amo...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 3:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I Really Need a Million Bucks?
Replies: 50
Views: 3561

Re: Do I Really Need a Million Bucks?

For someone retiring in 2014 without a pension, a million bucks is a good start to being able to live decently.
For a similar person retiring 10 or 20 years from now, $1M will be a progress point to hit in their 40's or 50's ...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 2:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I Really Need a Million Bucks?
Replies: 50
Views: 3561

Re: We have a grocery problem...

Step one is to separate out all the non-food items in that $230, along with alcoholic beverages as well. That could get it down to $180 a week for two, which is still a bit high. I buy a fair amount of SEAFOOD at my grocery store: lobsters @ $5/lb ; steamer clams @ $4/lb; swordfish @ $9/lb most rec...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: We have a grocery problem... [Household budget]
Replies: 158
Views: 10615

Re: We have a grocery problem...

Step one is to separate out all the non-food items in that $230, along with alcoholic beverages as well. That could get it down to $180 a week for two, which is still a bit high. I buy a fair amount of SEAFOOD at my grocery store: lobsters @ $5/lb ; steamer clams @ $4/lb; swordfish @ $9/lb most rec...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: We have a grocery problem... [Household budget]
Replies: 158
Views: 10615

Re: So what the benckmark SWR for a 25 year retirement?

A lot of fresh air is wasted with arm-waving on SWR thinking. Trying to get down to fractional percent analysis is really not productive. (How much safer is a 3.8% WR vs a 4.2% WR, for instance...) One's AA in retirement, combined with Sequence of Returns uncertainty combined with Lifespan uncertai...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: So what the benckmark SWR for a 25 year retirement?
Replies: 14
Views: 958

Re: IRA in a Personal Pension Annuity-Opinions please?

That's a 5.1% payout, so you might want to compare that to other SPIAs available to the general public, for females 59.5.
Assuming it's close to market rates, I'd be inclined to wait longer to get more inflation protection in my income stream...
by The Wizard
Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA in a Personal Pension Annuity-Opinions please?
Replies: 6
Views: 355
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