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Re: How to cash in Savings bonds (from 80s)

My wife found a savings bond from 1956 (!) and cashed it at a local bank. The bank gave her the exact amount that TreasuryDirect indicated.
by ThePrune
Wed Jul 23, 2014 7:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to cash in Savings bonds (from 80s)
Replies: 14
Views: 1534

Re: Imputed income (rent) Owner occupied houses.

Thanks for getting this thread started. Doing some reading about imputed rent has been on my "To Do" list for quite a while, and this gave me an opportunity to get started. I'll share just a few of my initial thoughts. First, housing purchase prices in my area of Michigan are quite low com...
by ThePrune
Sat Jul 12, 2014 8:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Imputed income (rent) Owner occupied houses.
Replies: 21
Views: 2369

Re: Help holding persoanl finance workshops

I've been leading retirement planning classes in local churches for 6 years. I find the key to getting permission to present in church settings is working through a network of personal friends and "key individuals" in various churches. Without having someone personally vouch for me and the...
by ThePrune
Tue Jul 08, 2014 9:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help holding persoanl finance workshops
Replies: 18
Views: 1330

Re: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Pl

bnes , wait a little while before spending more time on your IUL spreadsheet. The Actuarial Mathematics program at Worcester Polytechnic Institute has had several B.S. projects submitted recently that consisted of spreadsheets for quantitatively evaluating various types of Universal Life policies. ...
by ThePrune
Wed Jul 02, 2014 1:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Plan
Replies: 11
Views: 712

Re: Variable Index Annuity

I guess that I'm the "resident expert" on index annuities here at the Forum. (Refer to my posting thread Investor Analysis of Index Annuities for further information.) I keep pretty current on various index annuity products and their statistical return probability distributions. Because of...
by ThePrune
Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Variable Index Annuity
Replies: 6
Views: 623

Re: File and suspend

Are there income limits on who can get spousal benefits ? Income Limits? I could simply answer your question, NO , but its also useful to cite material from the Social Security Administration to back up my answer. 320.1 What is your spouse's insurance benefit amount? As a spouse, your insurance ben...
by ThePrune
Sun Jun 29, 2014 8:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: File and suspend
Replies: 9
Views: 1222

Re: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Pl

I'd like to model both the container (the "7702 plan") and the investment (which might be darn close to a FIA). There is no "7702 container" . This is a marketing ploy on the part of some insurance agents to confuse prospects into thinking that the universal life policy being of...
by ThePrune
Sat Jun 28, 2014 4:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Plan
Replies: 11
Views: 712

Re: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Pl

A friend is pushing this sort of policy: I'm trying to provide a more correct illustration than his company's illustrations provide. He's convinced these things are the best investment for moderate and low income people. Anytime you see life insurance policies being pushed as "retirement incom...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 27, 2014 9:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Plan
Replies: 11
Views: 712

Re: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Pl

For your comment: I've created a first pass at a spreadsheet to shine light on "Indexed Universal Life", which is often illustrated with carefully selected periods. I took a look at your Google.Docs spreadsheet. IUL (sometimes called EIUL) policies are clearly more complicated than your s...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 27, 2014 9:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet calculating returns of IUL / 7702 Pension Plan
Replies: 11
Views: 712

Re: Location does matter when measuring asset allocation

I track my asset allocations on both a before- and an after-tax basis. But my IPS allocation targets (and their rebalance bands) are after-tax. For a long time I was "sitting on the fence" with respect to this discussion. Then I started building a ladder of TIPS bonds as a form of insuranc...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 20, 2014 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Location does matter when measuring asset allocation
Replies: 45
Views: 2996

Re: Early retirement gotchas

Divorce when you have to face your spouse 24 hours a day. This is a very real concern. Sociological research has revealed that married couples find the first two years of retirement to be MORE stressful than the birth of their first child! Here is the big "Gotcha" - failing to appreciate ...
by ThePrune
Thu Jun 19, 2014 4:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early retirement gotchas
Replies: 28
Views: 5387

Re: Should risk be stated in dollars terms instead of AA %?

For the adult Investing classes I teach, I have the participants do an "Asset Allocation" exercise. The goal is to help them individualize the PERCENTAGES for their allocation. But I always have them estimate a target stock allocation percentage based on maximum number of absolute DOLLARS ...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 13, 2014 10:35 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should risk be stated in dollars terms instead of AA %?
Replies: 54
Views: 1377

Re: "Never take an investment risk that doesn't pay a premiu

Actually, I just checked Merriman's figures using Simba and get somewhat different asset returns from 1984-2013: Gold: Compound annual return = 3.45%, SD = 15.6% (Merriman's figures were < 5% return with 20.1% SD) I decided to check these numbers against my own database, which uses the London Bulli...
by ThePrune
Wed Jun 11, 2014 1:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Never take an investment risk that doesn't pay a premium"
Replies: 14
Views: 1033

Re: Young boglehead: Materials science, chemE, or mechE for

As someone who made a dramatic shift mid-career (geology to ceramic engineering), I'd advise moving into a new discipline that takes advantage of what you've already learned. Shifting into engineering is a lot of work, so don't make it needlessly difficult by throwing away your chemistry and medical...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Young boglehead: Materials science, chemE, or mechE for grad
Replies: 28
Views: 1934

Re: [Back testing programs]

pvguy , a very nice website and suite of tools. Please consider the following comment purely as constructive criticism. A basic "reality check" for any Monte Carlo model that uses a Normal Distribution is to compare projected mean and median values against the values calculated using the ...
by ThePrune
Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Back testing programs]
Replies: 17
Views: 1508

Re: Retirement Calculator ?

Still, it's hard to believe that the monte carlo simulation would be worth a damn unless they could somehow reproduce the correlation between stocks/bonds/inflation as we've seen it in history. No problem for Monte Carlo! Run enough billions of simulations and one of them will match the historical ...
by ThePrune
Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Calculator ?
Replies: 14
Views: 1757

Re: All in one retirement simulator

For those of you who suggested incorporating non-normal (non-lognornmal) distributions, I'll add a few comments. I've done this little exercise, but instead of using the Cauchy distribution (symmetrical about the median, mean and variance undefined), I decided to use the Normal Inverse Gaussian (NIG...
by ThePrune
Fri May 30, 2014 6:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: All in one retirement simulator
Replies: 11
Views: 1736

Re: All in one retirement simulator

As the main author of the Bogleheads Wiki Retirement calculators and spending article I've had the opportunity to review a lot of calculators. In addition, I've developed my own rather-detailed spreadsheet retirement calculator over the years to illustrate the concepts I present in a retirement plan...
by ThePrune
Fri May 30, 2014 5:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: All in one retirement simulator
Replies: 11
Views: 1736

Re: Retirement Planning Calculator from Vanguard

The Vanguard Retirement Income calculator is included within the Retirement calculators and spending Wiki. Some if its characteristics relative to modeling spending in retirement are also shown.

Art
by ThePrune
Tue May 20, 2014 5:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirement Planning Calculator from Vanguard
Replies: 11
Views: 1798

Re: Spreadsheet for backtesting (includes TrevH's data)

I would like do download the return Data form the Emering Markets Index of this Homepage: http://www.ifa.com/disclosures/index-data/#EM But i can't find there a link where i can download the Monthly returns :?: Anybody know wehere i can download the Data from the Hompepage? This is the Dimensional ...
by ThePrune
Sat May 10, 2014 2:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet for backtesting (includes TrevH's data)
Replies: 604
Views: 366108

Re: Obtaining TIPS Index Ratios -- WSJ Accrued Principal

Although I don't track my individual TIPS quite the way you do, I appreciated your posting. Thanks.
by ThePrune
Wed May 07, 2014 7:15 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Obtaining TIPS Index Ratios -- WSJ Accrued Principal
Replies: 5
Views: 617

Re: Best retirement books request

Allan , If I were asked to recommend retirement books for "Liberal Arts types", I'd change my recommendations somewhat from those I posted earlier! Here are some I think are worthwhile and background appropriate: Richard Stim and Ralph Warner's Retire Happy Zvi Bodie and Rachelle Taqqu's ...
by ThePrune
Tue May 06, 2014 2:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best retirement books request
Replies: 28
Views: 3065

Re: Best retirement books request

Bobcat , Risk Less and Prosper (Zvi Bodie and Rachelle Taqqu) isn't on my favorites list also. The simple reason is because I didn't like their approach of using fictional people to convey the book's themes. The material being presented is outstanding. Clearly this is a matter of personal, literary...
by ThePrune
Tue May 06, 2014 2:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best retirement books request
Replies: 28
Views: 3065

Re: A riddle about "attributing" gains.

I also noticed this particular question in todays WSJ and was astounded at their suggested correct answer. Equally invalid would be to wonder what would happen if the S&P 500 only paid dividends over that same period, and had no capital growth. I see that (1.03)^73 = 8.65 (less than 1% of 1051.2...
by ThePrune
Mon May 05, 2014 2:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A riddle about "attributing" gains.
Replies: 44
Views: 3343

Re: Best retirement books request

I have read LOTS of retirement books (easily over 50) as part of developing a 6 week adult education class on retirement planning which I teach each year. I'll break my recommendations into 2 categories: non-financial and financial. Primarily Non-Financial Emphasis Recommendations : Get a Life and i...
by ThePrune
Sun May 04, 2014 12:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best retirement books request
Replies: 28
Views: 3065

Re: Great Interview with William Sharpe

Thanks for the link. I hadn't seen this interview.
by ThePrune
Fri May 02, 2014 7:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Great Interview with William Sharpe
Replies: 11
Views: 1577

Re: "Does Anyone Play It Straight In the Markets?"

I particularly liked that the author was aware of his own motivational incentives and biases, and stated them up front. This article nicely reminds us of our continual need to consider secondary motives for publicly broadcast statements about investing. Every time I read P* S* making a bold predicti...
by ThePrune
Tue Apr 29, 2014 6:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Does Anyone Play It Straight In the Markets?"
Replies: 9
Views: 2621

Re: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?

That said, what are some of hidden "gotchas" in these things? I'd like to know more, so I'm in a better position to save the next good friend with some specific information, if I ever have the opportunity to do so. A GREAT article on "gotchas" in Equity Indexed Annuities just ap...
by ThePrune
Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?
Replies: 29
Views: 6221

Re: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?

This question is in my opinion the crux of the matter. Rather than make blanket statements, do some math! One of the challenges is picking which assumptions to do the math on . There are usually caps, rates, and fees in these equity indexed products that are subject to change by the insurance compa...
by ThePrune
Mon Apr 28, 2014 9:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?
Replies: 29
Views: 6221

Re: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?

What will an investment in an S&P 500 fund be worth ten years from now? What will an investment in a 10-year EIA be worth ten years from now? Ron This question is in my opinion the crux of the matter. Rather than make blanket statements, do some math! That's why I embarked on the project to wri...
by ThePrune
Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?
Replies: 29
Views: 6221

Re: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?

Prune, Is your spreadsheet posted publicly? Not yet posted because we are continuing to make improvements. But if you want to try out what we've got to this point I'd be glad to email you the Excel file. The spreadsheet has an extensive Users Description. It also uses VBA macros, so you need to all...
by ThePrune
Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?
Replies: 29
Views: 6221

Re: Social Security Benefit Calculator

Adding to what sscritic has already stated, you also need to be aware that those Social Security estimated monthly benefit amounts assume that you will continue working at your current annual income level until those three ages (62, 67 and 70) are reached. Whether or not this makes much of a differe...
by ThePrune
Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Benefit Calculator
Replies: 7
Views: 2293

Re: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?

... what are some of hidden "gotchas" in these things? I'd like to know more, so I'm in a better position to save the next good friend with some specific information, if I ever have the opportunity to do so. There are so many "gotchas" that you'd have to study for a long time to...
by ThePrune
Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's wrong with equity-indexed annuities?
Replies: 29
Views: 6221

Your Opinion - US Aggregate Bond Index as Bond Proxy

The Barclays (formerly Lehmans) U.S. Aggregate Bond Index is a common proxy for a broadly diversified portfolio of U.S. bonds. For example, Vanguard's Total U.S. Bond Market Index Fund uses the Barclays as its benchmark. But the Barclays US Aggregate Bond Index certainly isn't the only possible bond...
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Opinion - US Aggregate Bond Index as Bond Proxy
Replies: 10
Views: 2295

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I suggest you look carefully at the Yahoo! Finance data, if that is what you are using. In spite of the titles on the columns, it may not be total return data. Check that the adjusted price is indeed different than the closing price. Over time (for the S&P 500) they should differ by about 2.5%,...
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 26, 2014 3:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** Barclays US Aggregate Bond Index **** I was not able to find any Price Index (without reinvested dividends) da...
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 26, 2014 8:42 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** Euro Stoxx 50 **** The Stoxx.com website had the Euro Stoxx 50 USD Price Index as well as the USD Net Total Re...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 25, 2014 5:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** MSCI EAFE **** Every hunt for data should be this easy! The MSCI Global Index website had the USD Price Index ...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 25, 2014 5:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** Nasdaq 100 **** The results are very disappointing. I started out downloading the Yahoo Finance spreadsheet da...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 25, 2014 5:29 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** Russell 2000 **** The Yahoo Finance website had both Price Index as well as Total Return data from 1987 on. I ...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 25, 2014 1:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** Dow Jones Industrial Average **** DJIA Price Index month end data are available for a long time back! I was on...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 25, 2014 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm supplying an update on my efforts to accumulate a database of MONTHLY index returns, both Price as well as Total Return. I'll break this up into several posting based on each Index. *** S&P 500 **** Most folks know about Prof. Robert Shiller's monthly S&P Composite Excel file dataset sin...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 25, 2014 1:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Divorcee about to reach FRA seeks SS information

I've also read that if I don’t pay the Medicare Part B premium out of my own pocket (which I am doing now), but have it withheld from my Social Security check then my retirement benefit at age 70 will be no larger than when I suspended it. In essence, I would have given up my higher retirement bene...
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 19, 2014 11:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Divorcee about to reach FRA seeks SS information
Replies: 16
Views: 1725

Re: Interpreting Shiller's data

1. Date: Is it the 1st day of the month or the last day of the month or simply average S and P closing value for the entire month? I also got interested in this question several years ago. The only way I could exactly reproduce Prof. Shiller's S&P Composite monthly Price Index values was to ave...
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interpreting Shiller's data
Replies: 4
Views: 588

Re: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

Dow Jones Industrial Average: prior to Sept 1987 (I have more recent) Russell 2000: prior to July 1995 (I have more recent) NASQAQ 100: anything you can give me ! ! MSCI EAFE: prior to May 2009 (I have more recent) FTSE 100: prior to 2002 (I have more recent) I'm making progress. MSCI EAFE Total Re...
by ThePrune
Wed Apr 16, 2014 4:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Looking For Monthly Total Return Data

I'm looking for sources of monthly Total Return data (either Index value at the end of the month or % return for the month) for the following: Dow Jones Industrial Average: prior to [edited] Sept 1987 (I have more recent) Russell 2000: prior to July 1995 (I have more recent) NASQAQ 100: anything you...
by ThePrune
Tue Apr 15, 2014 4:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Looking For Monthly Total Return Data
Replies: 11
Views: 1236

Re: Mr. sscritic or other please advise SS Homework for me.

Dana Anspach ( MoneyOver55 here on the Forum) has created a web page with a great listing of free and pay Social Security optimization calculators: Social Security Calculators - Don't Claim Without Trying One First . Among the free calculators she lists, I've used the AARP Social Security Calculator...
by ThePrune
Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mr. sscritic or other please advise SS Homework for me.
Replies: 6
Views: 1314

Re: What are your favorite websites and forums?

I regularly read the retirement related articles posted at RetireMentors. Stan Haithcock's articles on annuities are generally spot-on!

I also follow and highly recommend Wade Pfau's Retirement Researcher blog postings.
by ThePrune
Sun Jan 12, 2014 5:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are your favorite websites and forums?
Replies: 8
Views: 2132

Re: SS File and Suspend Strategy

This article brings up a couple of points regarding the File and Suspend strategy for maximizing SS benefits for a couple. http://www.investmentnews.com/article/20140103/BLOG05/140109976 Mary Beth Franklin, the author of the article being cited, regularly writes about Social Security and retirement...
by ThePrune
Mon Jan 06, 2014 10:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS File and Suspend Strategy
Replies: 3
Views: 695

Re: Simple IRA question

Please refer back to your company copy of IRS Form 5304 or Form 5305, whichever one you used to set up your SIMPLE IRA. This acts as your "Plan Document" which you MUST follow exactly for handling the SIMPLE IRA contributions for each eligible employee. (1) Is this new employee eligible to...
by ThePrune
Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Simple IRA question
Replies: 2
Views: 169
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