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Re: Does anyone have 'Lazy Portfolios'?

In 2007, I put my nest egg in a David Swensen lazy portfolio: 30% US stock index, 15% developed int'l stock index, 10% emerging int'l stock index, 15% US real estate, 15% Treasury bonds, and 15% TIPS. I had to rebalance heavily in the 2007 real-estate decline, the 2008 stock crash, the 2009 real-est...
by Whiggish Boffin
Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does anyone have 'Lazy Portfolios'?
Replies: 67
Views: 3046

Re: POLL: My home is worth less/more in 2014 than in 2007?

One-bedroom condo just outside the DC Beltway, assessed at about $200k in 2007, and $140k now.
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: My home is worth less/more in 2014 than in 2007?
Replies: 94
Views: 5731

Re: Which Bernstein Book?

The Intelligent Asset Allocator is Dr. Bernstein's first book, (c) 2001. It is aimed at people who do not flee from basic math and statistics. If you are an engineer, programmer, doctor, actuary, or technician, you'll be quite at home. On the following pages, there are boxed sections of Math Detail...
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Jul 21, 2014 5:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which Bernstein Book?
Replies: 27
Views: 1933

Re: POLL: Do you have a dedicated REIT allocation?

In Unconventional Success , David Swensen recommends a default portfolio of: 30% US stock 15% developed int'l stock 5% emerging-market int'l stock 20% real estate 15% nominal Treasuries 15% TIPS. I went 100% all-in on Swensen's allocation in January 2007, and learned about rebalancing real fast. I n...
by Whiggish Boffin
Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: POLL: Do you have a dedicated REIT allocation?
Replies: 123
Views: 7322

Re: SS Gap Until 70?

Calm man -- If you have the LMP, you don't need to draw from the balanced portfolio. Everything in the LMP is inflation-adjusted. The combination of Social Security, TIPS ladder, and CPI-adjusted SPIA covers your basic living expenses, with inflation protection, for life, at minimum risk. The OP say...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Jun 28, 2014 7:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Gap Until 70?
Replies: 29
Views: 2456

Re: SS Gap Until 70?

Calm man -- Yes, it would. So would drawing $6k/month from the balanced portfolio. The 4% rule says a balanced portfolio has a 95% chance of staying solvent over a 30-year retirement, if withdrawals are limited to 4% the first year and inflation-adjusted afterward. It doesn't guarantee against spend...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Jun 28, 2014 3:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Gap Until 70?
Replies: 29
Views: 2456

Re: SS Gap Until 70?

I just put your numbers into #Cruncher's TIPS-ladder spreadsheet to figure out a TIPS ladder that meets your needs. Assuming you'd start taking money in Jan. 2015, you could buy a ladder for $716k that would pay you an inflation-adjusted $72k/year. The yield-to-maturity is negative at -0.611% -- the...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Jun 28, 2014 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Gap Until 70?
Replies: 29
Views: 2456

Re: New to Forum with Questions, Eager to Learn

If you haven't already, see the thoughts of EmergDoc aka Dr. Jim Dahle . He is an emergency physician in Utah, who got the Air Force to buy him his MD. He has made over 9850 posts to Bogleheads since 2007, quite a few from Afghanistan. He wrote the Wiki page on Military Finance , wrote Chapter 4 on ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:23 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New to Forum with Questions, Eager to Learn
Replies: 5
Views: 561

Re: Medical Textbook for the Layperson?

Human Physiology: The Mechanisms of Body Function is a pre-med text that approaches physiology from the viewpoint of feedback systems. It has anatomical pictures, but also block diagrams of signal/process flow. It has more to say about how bodies are supposed to work than about fixing them when the...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Jun 12, 2014 10:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Textbook for the Layperson?
Replies: 22
Views: 1744

Re: What does this mean? [investing terms and concepts]

These books cover bond math, and a lot more. I'd recommend you start with Strategic Financial Planning and try the others if you're still hungry after that. Strategic Financial Planning over the Lifecycle: A Conceptual Approach to Personal Risk Management , by Charupat, Huang & Milevsky, Cambrid...
by Whiggish Boffin
Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:03 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What does this mean? [investing terms and concepts]
Replies: 14
Views: 1122

Re: Swenson question

I went all-in on a Swensen allocation in January 2007. By March 2009, REITs had dropped 74%, US stocks 52%, and developed-world stocks 54%. I learned that I possess the self-discipline to stay the course and rebalance in major downturns. I also learned why you have to have some bonds.
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Swenson question
Replies: 10
Views: 1080

Re: Technical Analysis Drags Down Performance

Is a random stock chart chart a valid test of technical analysis? Serious chess players are much better than non-players at remembering an arrangement of chessmen reached in a game, but can't remember a random placement of chessmen any better than non-players. Likewise, if technical analysts were se...
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Technical Analysis Drags Down Performance
Replies: 52
Views: 2452

Re: What is the best brand of 3 ton air conditioner & furnac

My apartment-size Carrier furnace needed the inducer motor replaced every two years -- a $350 service call. Seemed like a planned-obsolescence annuity for the service guys. I replaced the system with a Trane 2-stage system that's run 8 years with one problem (dead igniter).
by Whiggish Boffin
Fri May 16, 2014 12:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the best brand of 3 ton air conditioner & furnace?
Replies: 46
Views: 2666

Re: David Swensen's Book Unconventional Success

Prolific Boglehead poster grok87 posted a series of investing tips. The first: Grok's investing tip #1/10 Take your risk on the equity side [H]igher bond yields means higher risk (measured by correlation with equities) and not necessarily higher returns. Stick to treasuries and TIPs for the bond por...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu May 15, 2014 11:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: David Swensen's Book Unconventional Success
Replies: 34
Views: 3862

Re: Is 6 months of savings needed?

The six-month emergency fund should be safe and liquid . Money in a mattress, or a savings account, is at long-term risk of inflation. You could put it in an inflatable mattress*, though. Once you've banked six months' living expenses, save a seventh month and buy Series I savings bonds with it. The...
by Whiggish Boffin
Wed May 07, 2014 10:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is 6 months of savings needed?
Replies: 33
Views: 3710

Re: Obtaining TIPS Index Ratios -- WSJ Accrued Principal

Thanks. I needed that.
(I never dreamed I'd be one of the 0.1% ...)
by Whiggish Boffin
Wed May 07, 2014 1:03 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Obtaining TIPS Index Ratios -- WSJ Accrued Principal
Replies: 5
Views: 698

Re: TIPS Price in Your Account ?

Doc -- Probably I'm not sure what I mean either. OK, Quicken just uses what it downloads, and Vanguard only downloads the unadjusted prices, and other brokers do it differently. I haven't downloaded TIPS data from anyone but Vanguard. The Quicken community links are worse than I remembered. This thr...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat May 03, 2014 3:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: TIPS Price in Your Account ?
Replies: 11
Views: 1129

Re: TIPS Price in Your Account ?

I have a TIPS ladder at Vanguard, and a bunch of Series I savings bonds. I despair of finding their value via a quick, easy download. Quicken is entirely ignorant of inflation adjustments to TIPS and I bonds. (The Quicken support forum gives a complex accounting entry that, to my non-accountant mind...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat May 03, 2014 12:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: TIPS Price in Your Account ?
Replies: 11
Views: 1129

Re: Why am i stressed after being laid off? (3yr expenses sa

Your feelings might have nothing to do with financial security. Rejection hurts. In the state of nature, people are tribal. Even introverts need people to connect with (just not as often as extroverts). You have no family, and you don't mention any social network. If your job was your life, a layoff...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat May 03, 2014 12:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why am i stressed after being laid off? (3yr expenses saved)
Replies: 15
Views: 2577

Re: Deciding whether to annuitize

(dbr beat me to it!) Jim Otar's Unveiling the Retirement Myth covers this in detail. In Chapters 41-44, he classifies retirement situations into -- Red Zone (8% withdrawal rate required; keep working, annuitize completely and cut back spending ruthlessly), Gray Zone (4% withdrawal rate required; ann...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat May 03, 2014 9:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Deciding whether to annuitize
Replies: 14
Views: 976

Re: Other ways to invest/make money?

A reporter was asking people outside a Los Angeles restaurant "How is your screenplay going?" None of them said "Screenplay? What screenplay?"
by Whiggish Boffin
Fri May 02, 2014 4:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Other ways to invest/make money?
Replies: 22
Views: 2151

Re: Bogle Baptism

This is not investing advice. You have that covered.
Read The Inner Ring, a short essay by C. S. Lewis. Much of Lewis's writing is religious. This essay is not -- just right reason and plain observation. It likely will be of practical use to you.
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Apr 26, 2014 9:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bogle Baptism
Replies: 32
Views: 3366

Re: Bonds - Are they essential in a new portfolio?

There are certain things that cannot be explained to a virgin either by words or pictures. Nor can any description that I might offer here even approximate what it feels like to lose a real chunk of money that you used to own. Psychologically, if you're new to investing and your all-stock portfolio...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Apr 24, 2014 12:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds - Are they essential in a new portfolio?
Replies: 8
Views: 1641

Re: Is it a bad move to buy a home now?

John94549 --
If that's Sunnyvale, CA, the heart of Silicon Valley, then $40k in 1973 was four years' salary for a new-minted BSEE, and the mortgage rate was 7.5%. Still, rates would double by 1980.
by Whiggish Boffin
Wed Apr 23, 2014 11:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it a bad move to buy a home now?
Replies: 34
Views: 7402

Re: Baby Boomers: Top 10 Movies

Li'l Abner cartoonist Al Capp, a man of the Right, did a college lecture tour in the late '60s. A student asked his opinion of Easy Rider. He said "I liked it. It had a happy ending."
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Baby Boomers: Top 10 Movies
Replies: 49
Views: 4041

Re: Use brokerage window for REITS and TIPS?

That's what I've done and it's worked out fine. I'm holding a Swensen lazy portfolio in my 401(k). (Yale's endowment manager David Swensen wrote Unconventional Success for individual investors. Taylor Larimore includes it among the Gems . Swensen recommended a default portfolio of 30% US stock index...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sun Apr 13, 2014 8:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Use brokerage window for REITS and TIPS?
Replies: 7
Views: 519

Re: Getting over huge mistakes

This older (62) Boglehead can tell you that it's not bad at all, and you can likely retire at not too great an age, sit beneath your own vine and fig tree, and delight in the wife of your youth, and your children, and perhaps theirs. Net worth over half a mil, about $366k socked away, a house you lo...
by Whiggish Boffin
Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting over huge mistakes
Replies: 30
Views: 3749

Re: Please help identify quote: I'm richer than he because..

VictoriaF wrote:I am richer than he because I will die with more toys.

The one who dies with the most toys, dies.
(Those who say "wins" have yet to show experimental verification.)
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Apr 03, 2014 7:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Please help identify quote: I'm richer than he because...
Replies: 28
Views: 3234

Re: Has anyone purchased an inflation adjusted SPIA?

asterix0 said: When I bought real dollar annuities in 2008, the payout for a real dollar annuity was only two-thirds of that I would have received (in year 1) for constant dollar annuities. My breakeven point was 17 years. If your house doesn't catch fire, fire insurance doesn't protect you. If infl...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Mar 15, 2014 11:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone purchased an inflation adjusted SPIA?
Replies: 24
Views: 2433

Re: Has anyone purchased an inflation adjusted SPIA?

I won't be buying one for several years but I have looked for who sells them. Elm / The Principal used to post typical payout rates on this page: http://www.principal.com/retirement/incomeannuity/elm/income.htm but they haven't updated it since July 2013. I called in February, and the salesman said ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Mar 13, 2014 11:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone purchased an inflation adjusted SPIA?
Replies: 24
Views: 2433

Re: How Much of Tax Refund Do You Save/Spend..??

About $4k of mine went to paper-format Series I savings bonds. The rest went to the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. This is the third year in a row I've put that much tax refund into Series I savings bonds. I've gone the limit ($10k/year) buying the electronic format Series I bonds, too. I now ha...
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Mar 03, 2014 1:22 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much of Tax Refund Do You Save/Spend..??
Replies: 68
Views: 2689

Re: Are TIPS right for retired investors?

Bustoff -- Up-thread, the Bobcat pointed to my step-by-step walk-through: I bought a ladder using #Cruncher's spreadsheet 1) Yes, there are instructions. The tabs at the bottom take you to different worksheet pages. Click the tab labeled "Instructions". 2) Copy and paste from the WSJ data ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are TIPS right for retired investors?
Replies: 64
Views: 4345

Re: Are TIPS right for retired investors?

Many people here agree that inflation is not a near-term concern. They do not expect any unexpected inflation. They could well be right. From 1971 to 1986, inflation as shown by CPI-U growth and by CPI-U excluding energy, did this: http://i.bnet.com/blogs/cpi-energy.bmp In 1971-72, inflation trended...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are TIPS right for retired investors?
Replies: 64
Views: 4345

Re: REITs or Individual Real estate investments?

A REIT fund is a passive investment. Individual real estate is a job, with irregular working hours and unstructured problem-solving required. Long ago (15 July 2008), craigr and ValueThinker discussed the issue: craigr said: Reasons to own index funds for real estate exposure vs. direct ownership: 1...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Feb 13, 2014 1:20 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs or Individual Real estate investments?
Replies: 14
Views: 1457

Re: Pet peeve: When people refer to this forum as "Bogglehea

And another thing: there's no "o" in "David Swensen".
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:51 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Pet peeve: When people refer to this forum as "Boggleheads."
Replies: 36
Views: 6048

Re: Are TIPS right for retired investors?

Doc said: For you Vanguard clients there is a bond ladder function in the Research funds and stocks " Stocks, bonds & CDs Bonds & CDs Find bonds and CDs " https://personal.vanguard.com/us/FixedIncomeTrading that does all the work for you and gives you nice pretty charts of the resu...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:07 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are TIPS right for retired investors?
Replies: 64
Views: 4345

Re: What percentage should be in High Yield AKA "Junk" bonds

David Swensen says 0%. In Unconventional Success , he lists junk bonds in the chapter "Non-Core Asset Classes" aka "stuff not to own". Summarizing on pg. 110, he says: Magnified credit risk, greater illiquidity, and more valuable call options pose a triple threat to bondholders [...
by Whiggish Boffin
Tue Feb 11, 2014 8:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What percentage should be in High Yield AKA "Junk" bonds
Replies: 32
Views: 2231

Re: How do I find the next Berkshire Hathaway?

How did the Beatles find America? IMDB quotes from the movie A Hard Day's Night , the scene of the Beatles' cocktail party with the press: Reporter: How did you find America? John: Turned left at Greenland. Reporter: Are you a mod or a rocker? Ringo: Um, no. I'm a mocker. Reporter: What would you c...
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:36 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do I find the next Berkshire Hathaway?
Replies: 37
Views: 2285

Re: High Earners - What's Your Profession?

I'm an almost-retired engineer earning a smidge over $100k. ("Boffin" is a WWII-era Britishism for a tech geek.)
by Whiggish Boffin
Tue Jan 14, 2014 1:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Earners - What's Your Profession?
Replies: 357
Views: 28452

Re: Cost of inflation indexed SPIA

This web page from Elm/The Principal gives their SPIA payout rates online: Examples of Retirement Income Payouts It gives payout rates for men, women, and couples, at ages 55, 60, 65, 70, and 75, for straight-life constant-dollar payouts, constant-dollar payout with guaranteed return of principal, a...
by Whiggish Boffin
Thu Oct 31, 2013 12:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cost of inflation indexed SPIA
Replies: 8
Views: 1299

Re: New construction Vs older home buy?

From The Dirty Dozen for Black-Swan Avoidance , by Doug McGuff, a wise and world-weary emergency-medical man. It's a 12-item list of How Not To Die: 9. If you are retirement age and plan on moving to a new home…think twice. The stress pushes many seniors over the edge. If you do, buy an existing hou...
by Whiggish Boffin
Mon Oct 07, 2013 1:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New construction Vs older home buy?
Replies: 22
Views: 2254

Re: How should I build a TIPS income ladder?

LH-- I edited my last post, to show the yield-to-maturity (ytm) of the TIPS when I bought them. The #Cruncher spreadsheet and the Vanguard "My Ladders" page show the ytm of each bond and of the whole ladder. I took their word for it and didn't calculate ytm for myself. Yes, every last one ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sun Oct 06, 2013 9:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How should I build a TIPS income ladder?
Replies: 31
Views: 4906

LH wants to see our ladders. Here's mine.

Very well -- I wanted $45k/year in 2012 dollars, for eight years from 2014 to 2021. I used the #Cruncher spreadsheet to make my shopping list. On 19 July, I bought 33 x 10-year 2014 TIPS (912828CP3, 2.000%) for $42,290, ytm -1.741% 34 x 10-year 2015 TIPS (912828EA4, 1.875%) for $43,571, ytm -1.603% ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sun Oct 06, 2013 6:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How should I build a TIPS income ladder?
Replies: 31
Views: 4906

I bought a ladder using #Cruncher's spreadsheet

Browser -- This summer, I used #Cruncher's spreadsheet to make an 8-year TIPS ladder, and then bought the ladder through Vanguard. The spreadsheet made a daunting task doable, and I am grateful for #Cruncher's service. What Bobcat2 is saying is true, but #Cruncher's spreadsheet accounts for it. You ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sun Oct 06, 2013 5:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How should I build a TIPS income ladder?
Replies: 31
Views: 4906

Re: How are you investing your tax refund?

Series I savings bonds, paper-format, almost as much as the law allows.
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Jan 19, 2013 1:58 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How are you investing your tax refund?
Replies: 51
Views: 2570

Re: Are you rebalancing now?

I haven't hit my rebalancing bands since October 2011, though I've gotten close a few times, so -- no, I'm not rebalancing now.
by Whiggish Boffin
Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:53 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are you rebalancing now?
Replies: 22
Views: 1935

Re: Resume guitar

Leonard -- If you limit yourself to just one of Baker or Greene, I'd say get Greene. I got Baker's books in the early '70s, when they were all there was on jazz guitar. Baker is pretty strict with drills and reguar practice, which are good for you. What theory you get from Baker comes largely from h...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Resume guitar
Replies: 21
Views: 1965

Re: Resume guitar

If you're secure with changing chords without stopping, playing while singing, reading music a bit -- these books will stretch you some: Mickey Baker's Jazz Guitar Lesson 1 is fingerings for fifty weird altered chords that you can move up and down the neck. Then, chord progressions. Then, arpeggios ...
by Whiggish Boffin
Sat Dec 29, 2012 12:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Resume guitar
Replies: 21
Views: 1965

Re: Bonds or no Bonds?

Bonds. I-Bonds. You want to invest $30k in a 70/30 allocation. 30% of $30k is $9k, which is below the $10k annual purchase limit for Series I savings bonds. They're perfectly good bonds. They're secured by the full faith & credit of your rich uncle. Interest is better than TIPS and guaranteed to...
by Whiggish Boffin
Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds or no Bonds?
Replies: 5
Views: 676
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