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by asset_chaos
Thu May 21, 2015 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Career Advice: Follow "Passion" or Follow the Money?
Replies: 64
Views: 2859

Re: Career Advice: Follow "Passion" or Follow the Money?

Not that it will help you---you have to decide for yourself what's important for you to live a satisfying life---but I chose the R&D route and haven't regretted it. By the way, mathematicians certainly do publish high quality work after age 40.
by asset_chaos
Thu May 21, 2015 9:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What if the US stock market was only 25% of the world by market cap?
Replies: 35
Views: 1951

Re: What if the US stock market was only 25% of the world by market cap?

I'm a total world kind of guy already, so I'd continue to be at market weight. Depending on why the US fraction of the global market cap declined, I might or might not notice the change---until it became the subject of a heated thread on Bogleheads.-)
by asset_chaos
Thu May 21, 2015 12:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Desired asset allocation for temporary US person?
Replies: 10
Views: 554

Re: Desired asset allocation for temporary US person?

As a Scandinavian person who's going back to live in Scandinavia in a few years, as you say, I think your stock investments should be close to, if not at, global market weight. In your position there is no reason to overweight the US. I'd even say that anything other than a slight overweight to your...
by asset_chaos
Thu May 14, 2015 6:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: At what point would you want "capped" indices?
Replies: 12
Views: 779

Re: At what point would you want "capped" indices?

I don't think this will ever become an issue for a large economy like the US. Concentration is already an issue for small economies, i.e. most countries. The antidote to concentration risk is more global diversification.
by asset_chaos
Tue May 12, 2015 8:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interactive Brokers (Best Kept Secret)
Replies: 58
Views: 4667

Re: Interactive Brokers (Best Kept Secret)

livesoft wrote:There are other criteria for a broker that are important, but so far I haven't seen them mentioned in this thread.

Heck, I'll bite. What are the important criteria for a good broker to have?
by asset_chaos
Tue May 12, 2015 8:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Australia - All Weather
Replies: 5
Views: 519

Re: Vanguard Australia - All Weather

From what you've written I would suggest a LifeStrategy fund. They give simplicity, which has an all too easy to underrate virtue, and a diversification of investments in Australian and overseas stocks and bonds. When you say "I'm keen for growth, but not for large risk", then maybe the Li...
by asset_chaos
Tue May 12, 2015 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to suggest downsizing to Parent
Replies: 23
Views: 2488

Re: How to suggest downsizing to Parent

Good luck with that. I tried for years to convince my mom with no success. Sometimes the objections aren't objective. I heard lots of reasons why lots of condos wouldn't suit. But, sometimes the reasons given for not moving are smokescreens because she doesn't want to tell you she's old, comfortable...
by asset_chaos
Mon May 11, 2015 10:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interactive Brokers (Best Kept Secret)
Replies: 58
Views: 4667

Re: Interactive Brokers (Best Kept Secret)

IB seems to be available over much of the world and seems plugged in to many stock exchanges all over the world (at least the developed world). I considered them for a trust I will manage in Australia. While my research into brokerages is not advanced, two questions have put me off IB. One is an ina...
by asset_chaos
Sun May 10, 2015 8:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Jack Bogle hates ETFs?
Replies: 22
Views: 2324

Re: Jack Bogle hates ETFs?

Bogle has used the analogy of ETFs to finely crafted shotguns, maybe later in the book Taylor quoted from or maybe in an article I read elsewhere. You can go hunting with the shotguns and that is their primary purpose, but you can also use them to blow your brains out. ETFs are fine when used for th...
by asset_chaos
Sun May 10, 2015 8:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Give your two cents on my Vanguard selections [UK, Australia, HK]
Replies: 20
Views: 1144

Re: Give your two cents on my Vanguard selections [UK, Australia, HK]

If you've already decided that keeping the investment in Australia makes sense for your itenerant lifestyle, tax situation, and retirement plans, on none of which I can comment; and, you already have an ASX enabled brokerage account, then perhaps you might consider some combination of these three ex...
by asset_chaos
Sun May 10, 2015 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Total World Stock Index
Replies: 44
Views: 3715

Re: Total World Stock Index

You don't really have to guess at the current numbers for total world index fund or it's index the FTSE global all cap index. The Vanguard fund page is here https://personal.vanguard.com/us/funds/snapshot?FundId=0628&FundIntExt=INT and the FTSE current fact sheet is here http://www.google.com.au...
by asset_chaos
Sat May 09, 2015 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snowbird Utah, what to do
Replies: 2
Views: 547

Snowbird Utah, what to do

I'll be in Snowbird Utah next week. I don't ski, and I suppose ski season is over anyway. I won't have a car. Any recommendations for hiking,biking or other activities, restaurants and the like. Thanks.
by asset_chaos
Fri May 08, 2015 10:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should You Time the Markets When Experts Can’t?
Replies: 21
Views: 2216

Re: Should You Time the Markets When Experts Can’t?

My personal answer is an unequivocal, No, I should not try to time markets. For myself I'd even go further: I shouldn't try to time markets even if (somehow, somewhere) someone could demonstrate that experts could.
by asset_chaos
Tue May 05, 2015 1:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard: The Problem of World Domination?
Replies: 21
Views: 2754

Re: Vanguard: The Problem of World Domination?

As an index fund owner of everything, I don't think I care if one public company takes over another, hostile or friendly. Except for the deadweight loss of legal fees (and maybe investment banking fees) involved in the process, it's just a rearrangement of cash flows that all still end up in the poc...
by asset_chaos
Tue May 05, 2015 1:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investors dumping US stocks for better opportunities abroad
Replies: 11
Views: 1929

Re: Investors dumping US stocks for better opportunities abroad

A lot of the financial press just touts what's done well lately. I'll guess that an article like this means that non-US has done better than US this month or quarter or year. In fact, let's look it up: Vanguard says total stock market index fund is up 3.6% ytd while total international stock index f...
by asset_chaos
Sun May 03, 2015 7:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 10 index fund allocation how does it stack up?
Replies: 23
Views: 2285

Re: 10 index fund allocation how does it stack up?

That 10 index fund portfolio, like most index fund based portfolios, can do well for an investor. It's low cost and well diversified, which are two essential attributes. It falls down a bit in that the complexity may make it more difficult for an investor to stick with it and rebalance to it year af...
by asset_chaos
Sat May 02, 2015 4:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to invest 15 years of living expenses
Replies: 13
Views: 1562

Re: How to invest 15 years of living expenses

If it were me, I'd consider having three investments. One year of expenses ($75k) I'd put in a money market fund or online checking account, whichever paid better and was more convenient for paying my bills. Four years of expenses ($300k) I'd put in a short term bond fund (short term bond index, sho...
by asset_chaos
Fri May 01, 2015 5:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Malkiel on Smart Beta/Factor Investing ... times 4
Replies: 21
Views: 1711

Re: Malkiel on Smart Beta/Factor Investing ... times 4

For planning purposes I would say that a conservative approach would suggest that at best you consider factor premia to be fair compensation for extra risk, i.e. no better risk adjusted returns than the market. If the behavioralists are right and premia come from systemic, pervasive investor mispric...
by asset_chaos
Fri May 01, 2015 5:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Australian Article says you DO get what you pay for.
Replies: 4
Views: 747

Re: Australian Article says you DO get what you pay for.

It's simply a trueism that all investors in aggregate get the market average. That's true in the Australian market, the global market, any market you care to define. I can think of only two ways that unbiased---and surely the ABC would never be sloppy in its reporting---data could show active manage...
by asset_chaos
Thu Apr 30, 2015 9:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Total Bond Index Fund or Other?
Replies: 19
Views: 2267

Re: Total Bond Index Fund or Other?

If you've been investing in total bond fund for a number of years, is there a compelling reason to change? Sure, you can fiddle around with bond risk a little bit , for example, somewhat lower risk with intermediate term treasury fund with no corporates, or somewhat higher risk with intermediate ter...
by asset_chaos
Wed Apr 29, 2015 7:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: DFA as a new 401k option - Poll
Replies: 12
Views: 919

Re: DFA as a new 401k option - Poll

Access to DFA in the retirement plan wouldn't be a factor in my decision to change jobs or not. But, since I value tilt now, if I found DFA funds were available, I'd use the two non-US small-value funds and phase out the wisdomtree combination I use now. Somewhat lower cost and probably better facto...
by asset_chaos
Mon Apr 27, 2015 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: non-US citizen spouse TIN and WILLS and TRUST questions
Replies: 5
Views: 652

Re: non-US citizen spouse TIN and WILLS and TRUST questions

I don't quite understand your situation but trans-national estate planning is fraught with difficulty and seemingly small differences in circumstance bring into play subtle parts of US law with important consequences. Between my non-citizen spouse and I we have property in three countries, and it wa...
by asset_chaos
Sat Apr 25, 2015 7:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Stock Poll: Emerging vs Developed Ratio
Replies: 55
Views: 2778

Re: International Stock Poll: Emerging vs Developed Ratio

A number of years ago (2009 to be precise) I moved to total world as my core stock investment. I don't know, though I could easily look it up, what the current split between emerging and developed is. I actually find it quite nice not needing to know that and other bits of information about how peop...
by asset_chaos
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Will Saudi Arabia be added into Total International Stock?
Replies: 14
Views: 1670

Re: Will Saudi Arabia be added into Total International Stoc

What Saudi based companies either government or publically owned would be large enough to be included in a world ex-US or total world index fund? Only Aramco (oil) and Sabic (chemicals) come to mind as big global companies and to date they've been wholly Saudi government owned. Are there any others,...
by asset_chaos
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not rebalance with reinvested dividends?
Replies: 11
Views: 1754

Re: Why not rebalance with reinvested dividends?

I don't think I understand. If you have two stock index funds A and B and the share price of A goes up a bunch while that of B goes down a bunch, the dividend yield of A goes down and that of B goes up, but the actual number of dollars paid out doesn't typically go up or down on the same time scale ...
by asset_chaos
Tue Apr 14, 2015 9:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Windfall in a foreign currency [NZ dollars, UK resident]
Replies: 5
Views: 595

Re: Windfall in a foreign currency

As you're proposing to use (most, all of, some of?) this money in a few months to purchase real estate in the UK, then, if the money is in liquid form in NZ now, I suggest you transfer it to your UK bank account now, so the money will be ready and available when you want to make your purchase.
by asset_chaos
Sat Apr 11, 2015 9:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Question - Australia
Replies: 15
Views: 1004

Re: Vanguard Question - Australia

The whole tax side of things is something else I'm going to have to look into, I have no idea how any of that works with respect to investments. I just assume you would get taxed on dividends and withdrawals, but I'm going to have to look it up to make sure it doesn't ruin anything in the long run....
by asset_chaos
Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Question - Australia
Replies: 15
Views: 1004

Re: Vanguard Question - Australia

There is a difference between Vanguard mutual funds and Vanguard exchange traded funds (etfs). The mutual funds can only be invested in by opening an account at Vanguard, in the case of the OP Vanguard Australia. The etfs can be invested in through any brokerage account that connects you to the ASX....
by asset_chaos
Sat Apr 04, 2015 10:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why Vanguard Why? [Problems opening new account]
Replies: 85
Views: 7088

Re: Why Vanguard Why?

Into every life a little rain must fall, I guess. Since I pre-date the ubiquitous internet, I opened my Vanguard account by mailing in a paper form along with one of those paper things called a check---queue the creak of a rocking chair. If there is some glitch in the online account opening forms, t...
by asset_chaos
Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can consumers assess the value of life annuities?
Replies: 7
Views: 819

Re: Can consumers assess the value of life annuities?

Not to be too smart-alecky about it, but the majority of adults are functionally innumerate. Financial ignorance is just a by-product of the general inability of being able to cope with anything that requires converting numbers into meaning or vice versa.
by asset_chaos
Tue Mar 24, 2015 6:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When everyone "knows" the euro will fall
Replies: 7
Views: 1413

Re: When everyone "knows" the euro will fall

Sometimes "everyone" is right, and sometimes "everyone" is wrong, and sometimes "everyone" is right for a while then wrong later, or vice versa. As I find it difficult to discern in advance which time is which, I tend to ignore everyone's opinion---at least about invest...
by asset_chaos
Sat Mar 21, 2015 5:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lump sum - how to invest it now and sleep at night?
Replies: 27
Views: 3511

Re: Lump sum - how to invest it now and sleep at night?

I think whether you keep the same allocation or change to a more conservative one depends on how big this lump sum is compared to your financial assets without it. If the lump sum is 10 or 20% of your financial wealth now, then invest the lump sum now. If you were ok with 80:20 yesterday, what's dif...
by asset_chaos
Sat Mar 21, 2015 5:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much international stock for a foreigner
Replies: 23
Views: 1214

Re: How much international stock for a foreigner

Why is China so under represented in the FTSE all world equity index? At first look I don't like this at all. China is the rising superpower. Isn't this an effect of free float? Most indices (FTSE, MSCI, et al) use free float weighting. The weight of a company is the total market capitalization min...
by asset_chaos
Sat Mar 21, 2015 5:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much international stock for a foreigner
Replies: 23
Views: 1214

Re: How much international stock for a foreigner

I think your split of the stock allocation is reasonable for your circumstances. It overweights your home market some but not excessively. My hesitation is that your parents' retirement fund is 70:30 stocks:bonds. I'm guessing your parents are at least in their 50s. If it were me, I would want my re...
by asset_chaos
Fri Mar 20, 2015 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trusts taxes distributions
Replies: 4
Views: 429

Re: Trusts taxes distributions

It's not exactly that tax rates are high. Tax rates for trusts are the same as for individuals. The difficulty is that the tax brackets are highly condensed, with a tax free threshold of only $600 and the top tax rate kicking in at around $12,000 of income. Distribution will get the money taxed at t...
by asset_chaos
Wed Mar 18, 2015 8:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard - The New Bond King - WSJ
Replies: 27
Views: 4463

Re: Vanguard - The New Bond King - WSJ

Instead of a King, he's like a plumber. I think less a plumber and more like a power plant operator. In the plant you want the needles on the dials to stay at particular points, and the operator's job is to continually adjust the plant's controls so that those needles stay on those optimum numbers....
by asset_chaos
Mon Mar 16, 2015 1:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice needed on proposed portfolio (Australia)
Replies: 8
Views: 773

Re: Advice needed on proposed portfolio (Australia)

Yes, there is certainly going to be fiddling done to the super rules over the next 30 years. You're right that politicians can't help themselves, and anything that depends on a political decision to gain an investment advantage always runs the risk of having that political decision changed. But none...
by asset_chaos
Mon Mar 16, 2015 1:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I change Asset Allocation to a more conservative mix
Replies: 20
Views: 2068

Re: Should I change Asset Allocation to a more conservative

If it were me, I wouldn't pay capital gains tax to be more conservative, but if I wanted to reduce risk faster, I would start redirecting stock dividends and all my fresh savings to bonds. If you're much closer to the retirement nest egg you think will do, perhaps also consider changing your 1% glid...
by asset_chaos
Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Benefit of tilting towrds Nordic minus Norway for Norwegian?
Replies: 2
Views: 371

Re: Benefit of tilting towrds Nordic minus Norway for Norweg

According to this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OBX_Index the Norwegian stock market is about 37% oil and gas and 20% finance. Those two sectors dominate the Norwegian stock market. Even with Sweden and Finland added in, the entire Nordic stock market doesn't come to 2% of the global market ( https:/...
by asset_chaos
Sat Mar 14, 2015 10:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice needed on proposed portfolio (Australia)
Replies: 8
Views: 773

Re: Advice needed on proposed portfolio (Australia)

You've clearly mastered the saving part of growing financially secure, and you're doing your homework on mastering the investing part. Congratulations. The plan you propose gets right all the essentials. I will make a couple of suggestions/comments that may improve things at the margin. 1) Vanguard ...
by asset_chaos
Sat Mar 14, 2015 9:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I bought [United States Oil ETF (USO) by mistake]
Replies: 13
Views: 1775

Re: I bought [United States Oil ETF (USO) by mistake]

I have to admit that I did not understand USO well before I bought it, and is was a mistake. Sell now and consider the loss (net of any tax loss you might be able to claim against gains or ordinary income) the cost of the knowledge gained to in the future not invest in anything you don't thoroughly...
by asset_chaos
Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. Stock Valuations — Making History?
Replies: 46
Views: 4883

Re: U.S. Stock Valuations — Making History?

Are we getting hints of commentary parallels with the late 90s? I remember two prominent commentary strands in the tech run up. One group opined that owning large US growth stocks was the only reasonable strategy. The other pointed out the high valuations in that part of the market. There were rejoi...
by asset_chaos
Thu Mar 12, 2015 6:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is High Frequency Trading a Problem For Bogleheads?
Replies: 42
Views: 2135

Re: Is High Frequency Trading a Problem For Bogleheads?

I recall an article that quoted Gus Sauter from around the time he retired from Vanguard that asked him this same question. I recall his answer was along the lines of he didn't have a problem with it and he thought it made running the index funds a little eaiser/cheaper. If someone like Sauter, who'...
by asset_chaos
Wed Mar 11, 2015 7:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What do you think of Fidelity's retirement benchmarks?
Replies: 14
Views: 2236

Re: What do you think of Fidelity's retirement benchmarks?

If for argument's sake you take a 4% withdrawl rule in retirement, then with the 8x rule in the OP you expect to draw 0.04 x 8 = 0.32 x final working salary to have pre-tax to live on. That's probably liveable, but it's not great if that's all there is. But if pensions and/or social security replace...
by asset_chaos
Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bond credit risk is unique from equity risk
Replies: 12
Views: 1316

Re: Bond credit risk is unique from equity risk

put to bed the false notion that credit risk and equity risk are one in the same. Live and learn. I didn't know that was a notion. Seeing as how they are separate Fama-French risk factors, I had just accepted that it was generally thought that credit risk and market risk were sufficiently distingui...
by asset_chaos
Mon Mar 09, 2015 2:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ - Why Vanguard is Secretive on Stock ETF's
Replies: 13
Views: 1562

Re: WSJ: Vanguard ETF holdings not public daily

I don't understand. Vanguard publishes a composition file on its institutional website (for example https://institutional.vanguard.com/VGApp/iip/site/institutional/investments/portfoliodetails?fundId=0970&compositionTabBox=1#hold for total stock market VTI) that lists the names and numbers of sh...
by asset_chaos
Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: Increasing international equities
Replies: 70
Views: 5532

Re: Poll: Increasing international equities

Definitely staying the course, but as I moved in 2008-2009 to total world as my core stock holding, I don't really know if my non-US equity fraction is increasing or decreasing. And frankly, as I hurtle towards retirement, I care more these days about making my fraction of bonds increase.
by asset_chaos
Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SIGN PETITION for Jack Bogle's Presidential Medal of Freedon
Replies: 55
Views: 4861

Re: WHY YOU OWE YOUR FREEDOM TO JACK BOGLE

Happy and proud to have signed the petition and backed a well deserved honor for Bogle.
by asset_chaos
Fri Feb 27, 2015 9:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International is disappointing
Replies: 84
Views: 7605

Re: International is disappointing

Of the slices you make of the market, some will wax and some will wane---and just when you notice the relativity, they change and do it again. More seriously, maybe, to combat worry and regret, you could make market churn less visible and just invest in stocks through total world. Total World has t...
by asset_chaos
Fri Feb 27, 2015 3:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International is disappointing
Replies: 84
Views: 7605

Re: International is disappointing

Of the slices you make of the market, some will wax and some will wane---and just when you notice the relativity, they change and do it again.

More seriously, maybe, to combat worry and regret, you could make market churn less visible and just invest in stocks through total world.

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