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Re: what is risk?

“When a thing is certain there's nothing to be brave about. All you can do is to find your consolation.” ― Agatha Christie, Endless Night (a Miss Marple story) That quote was in the Masterpiece Theater Miss Marple show that aired just yesterday, I think it was. Season 7 episode 3. I recorded the sho...
by bertilak
Wed Oct 01, 2014 6:21 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: How can I stop feeling depressed about my finances?

... and have managed to raise my net worth from -32k to -7k. I'll be moving out soon with some friends, and while I made up a budget and am able to squirrel away a tiny bit of money... I still feel absolutely horrible about myself. Not sure how long it took to reduce that much debt, but if it was o...
by bertilak
Tue Sep 30, 2014 10:56 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How can I stop feeling depressed about my finances?
Replies: 93
Views: 6118

Re: what is risk?

[I don't think Joe (or Jane) investor will get this, you need to couple the explanation with sequence of returns - what this means (at least to me). Bear in mind I think like an engineer. A large variance means that the market will tank even lower than you thought precisely when you need the money ...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 29, 2014 4:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: what is risk?

[I don't think Joe (or Jane) investor will get this, you need to couple the explanation with sequence of returns - what this means (at least to me). Bear in mind I think like an engineer. A large variance means that the market will tank even lower than you thought precisely when you need the money ...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 29, 2014 4:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: what is risk?

YDNAL wrote:The road (volatility) to the finish line, when you need the money, is mostly irrelevant.

When you are retired, every day is a finish line.
by bertilak
Mon Sep 29, 2014 2:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: favorite brand name products

I still have my K&E slide rule, but you guys sound like you're still using your slide rules? I preferred the Post but there were also K&E and Pickett fans where I went to school in the mid '60s. I liked the Post's bamboo "action" better. Smoother, but that was also a matter of pro...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 29, 2014 9:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: favorite brand name products
Replies: 58
Views: 2689

Re: what is risk?

It appears most people are risk adverse - they prefer less risk to more. Do you seriously believe there is any rational person who would prefer 1 to 2, let alone most people? You miss the point. There are lots of bad things in this world. Risk isn't the only one and it isn't at the top of the list....
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: favorite brand name products

Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:Schaefer, the one beer to have when you're having more than one beer.

Yeah, but did it make Milwaukee famous? As famous as the Shotz Brewery did?
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: favorite brand name products
Replies: 58
Views: 2689

Re: what is risk?

Which is riskier: 1) Certain to miss your goal by a large margin. 2) May miss your goal by a large margin, may exceed your goal by a large margin. Under Bob's definition, 2 is riskier - it has more "Uncertainty of outcomes". I find it hard to believe anyone would prefer 1. If so, does tha...
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: favorite brand name products

I always laugh when I see comments about best foods or Hellman's mayonnaise. Growing up I thought that just was the grocery store mayonnaise. I don't think I ever even saw any other brands. You wanted mayo, best foods is what they had. No other choice. "Bring out the Hellmans and bring out the...
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 1:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: favorite brand name products
Replies: 58
Views: 2689

Re: what is risk?

However, there are a lot of zigs and zags to get there. The sequence of returns says that you will need your money precisely at a time when the stock market tanks. Volatility is the amount the market (or a stock) zigs and zags. You want to minimize this amount so your exposure to bottoming out at t...
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: Active Manager Marketing Quote of the Day

“The past strategies of just blindly investing in ETFs and index funds may be a little bit more challenging. You really need to go out there and find pockets of opportunity.” He should get a prize for such densely packed set of snake oil. past strategies : You certainly don't want old outdated stra...
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Active Manager Marketing Quote of the Day
Replies: 27
Views: 3344

Re: Is it worth higher expense ratios to value tilt?

Is it worth it to value tilt in this scenario when I'll be paying a whole point just for the privilege of being in the fund? ... That's a tough call. I agree, but don't think making "tough calls" is appropriate for one's retirement future. The reason it's a tough call is that the expected...
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is it worth higher expense ratios to value tilt?
Replies: 6
Views: 547

Re: what is risk?

Which is riskier: 1) Certain to miss your goal by a large margin. 2) May miss your goal by a large margin, may exceed your goal by a large margin. Under Bob's definition, 2 is riskier - it has more "Uncertainty of outcomes". I find it hard to believe anyone would prefer 1. If so, does tha...
by bertilak
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is risk?
Replies: 116
Views: 4082

Re: "Shellshock" vulnerability for Linux based systems

Most Linux based home routers run on OpenWRT/DD-WRT which are based on BusyBox which is not vulnerable. pSense also does not include bash. Cygwin was just patched today and may not be on all mirrors yet so watch out on that one. Quite a few hobbyists use linux general purpose distros or firewall sp...
by bertilak
Sat Sep 27, 2014 7:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Shellshock" vulnerability for Linux based systems
Replies: 61
Views: 2597

Re: "Shellshock" vulnerability for Linux based systems

How would I check if my home router is running bash and if it was open to remote access? You need to get to a command line on your router. The simplest way to do this is with the telnet program. It is included with Windows but disabled by default. In Windows use the "run" command generall...
by bertilak
Sat Sep 27, 2014 5:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Shellshock" vulnerability for Linux based systems
Replies: 61
Views: 2597

Re: [which] toilet paper [from walmart.com?]

island wrote:Well it's official, the bar can not get any lower.

Even lower would be a meta-discussion about how low the bar can get.
by bertilak
Sat Sep 27, 2014 3:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [which] toilet paper [from walmart.com?]
Replies: 34
Views: 2449

Re: [which] toilet paper [from walmart.com?]

... it doesn't matter how cheap it is, the kind of single-ply tissue that comes 1000 sheets to a roll is just plain gross. As someone who is in the middle of a hugely expensive septic system upgrade I have become more aware of what it mean to be septic-safe, as pretty much all of the brands claim t...
by bertilak
Fri Sep 26, 2014 4:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [which] toilet paper [from walmart.com?]
Replies: 34
Views: 2449

Re: Looking for advice- Already Retired.

I'm getting a bit nervous having it invested in the stock market at this point. You shouldn't be in "the stock market" but in a portfolio that contains, in part, stocks. I am in a similar situation of having all (normal) expenses covered by SS+pension and having a decent portfolio besides...
by bertilak
Fri Sep 26, 2014 2:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for advice- Already Retired.
Replies: 9
Views: 961

Re: Indoor rowing machine - worth it?

I would only recommend a rower if you get a chance to try it out. I used to row on a crew team and at one point, later in life, was considering a rowing machine -- figured it would be a natural. I got a membership at a fitness center where they had rowing machines. Oddly enough I didn't like them at...
by bertilak
Thu Sep 25, 2014 12:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Indoor rowing machine - worth it?
Replies: 48
Views: 1913

Re: Defined Benefit Plan?

Not sure what he means by a self-funded defined benefit plan.

If he means an annuity I would be very suspicious.
by bertilak
Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Defined Benefit Plan?
Replies: 8
Views: 774

Re: Is having 100% large cap not diverse enough?

I met with a fee-only adviser, and he indicated that having 100% "large cap" is not diverse enough. Here is my current portfolio: Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Investor Shares - 63.2% Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund Investor Shares - 26.8% Vanguard Total Bond Market...
by bertilak
Wed Sep 24, 2014 1:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is having 100% large cap not diverse enough?
Replies: 49
Views: 2835

Re: Biggest discretionary expense in retirement?

555 wrote:... the biggest discretionary expense in retirement is a place to live.

Well, I guess there is a line somewhere between a roof over a flush toilet and an indoor olympic sized marble swimming pool where we slide into "discretionary."
by bertilak
Wed Sep 24, 2014 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest discretionary expense in retirement?
Replies: 29
Views: 2920

Re: Biggest discretionary expense in retirement?

This year it was travel and a more luxurious car than actually needed.
by bertilak
Wed Sep 24, 2014 1:05 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest discretionary expense in retirement?
Replies: 29
Views: 2920

Re: Withdrawl from Target Retirement or Life Strategy Fund

Am I missing something or is it safe to say the ideal situation for a balanced fund in retirement is your withdrawal rate is equal to or below the dividend payment which means not selling shares in a down market. Of course the lower your withdrawal rate the better. Some (most?) would say this is un...
by bertilak
Tue Sep 23, 2014 7:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Withdrawl from Target Retirement or Life Strategy Fund
Replies: 51
Views: 4435

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Currently reading The Surgeon of Crowthorne by Simon Winchester (1998). It is the story of two men, mainly the title character (I suspect, not having read the whole thing yet). One of the men (Sir James Murray, not the title character) was the primary editor of the Oxford English Dictionary from 18...
by bertilak
Tue Sep 23, 2014 11:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 47
Views: 2368

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Currently reading The Surgeon of Crowthorne by Simon Winchester (1998). It is the story of two men, mainly the title character (I suspect, not having read the whole thing yet). One of the men (Sir James Murray, not the title character) was the primary editor of the Oxford English Dictionary from 187...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 22, 2014 1:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 47
Views: 2368

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Just finished Anthony Trollope's The Warden . This is the first of his Barsetshire series of five (I think) novels. This is a novel I would not be likely to read, but there was a recommendation and I was in the right mood. It is the story of a Church of England official in the nineteenth century. He...
by bertilak
Sat Sep 20, 2014 12:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1170577

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Rocky Mountain wrote:I've begun reading: "Feynman Lectures on Physics"

Could take me a while.

For a lighter read, try Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman! (Adventures of a Curious Character)
by bertilak
Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1170577

Re: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets

An alarm system from ADT will cost about $50 a month for two years. This includes monitoring and paying down the cost of the hardware. After that you pay for monitoring alone, which is like $30 per month. You get a homeowners insurance deduction, the value of which I forget. I don't think the econo...
by bertilak
Fri Sep 19, 2014 5:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets
Replies: 50
Views: 3998

Re: How to best adjust asset allocation as years pass

Funny you should ask! A couple of very smart people asked themselves the same question and came up with some answers just this week. See: The Oblivious Investor's recent blog post.
by bertilak
Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to best adjust asset allocation as years pass
Replies: 21
Views: 1788

Re: Can you haggle with online brokers?

Yes they will haggle. At least the did with me when they learned I was moving everything to Vanguard. They initiated the "haggle" by offering me deals to stay with them.

The deals were beside the point so I continued the switch-over process.
by bertilak
Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can you haggle with online brokers?
Replies: 19
Views: 1491

Re: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy

technovelist wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:Men do. And (sometimes) it improves their love life.

Victoria


How would a book club (sometimes) improve a man's love life?

You really need to join a book club!
by bertilak
Thu Sep 18, 2014 11:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy
Replies: 226
Views: 10989

Re: The boglehead way to buy furniture

Large furniture stores/chains often have scratch/dent/closeout warehouses that offer very good prices. Inventory can change quickly so revisit the place several times before settling on something just because its cheap.

We have some high-end furniture bought at K-Mart prices from places like that.
by bertilak
Wed Sep 17, 2014 7:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The boglehead way to buy furniture
Replies: 56
Views: 4990

Re: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets

protagonist wrote:But the rational question that needs to be answered is whether an investment to prevent this highly unlikely event from happening would be worthwhile. Clearly insurance to protect "physical assets" would not fit in this equation.

You mean like fire insurance?
by bertilak
Tue Sep 16, 2014 4:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets
Replies: 50
Views: 3998

Re: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets

I have homeowner's insurance (maximum deductible) because complete loss of my home would be a big financial burden, and thus I carry it out of fear. It's a terrible investment. I am not being rational. I accept that as a personal weakness. I know it is a gamble I will almost certainly lose. I would...
by bertilak
Tue Sep 16, 2014 4:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets
Replies: 50
Views: 3998

Re: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets

How many people have you known throughout your lifetime who have lost a seriously significant amount of property (or at least an amount equal to or greater than a lifetime's worth of insurance premiums that could have been invested), that was never recovered due to theft, or who have been physicall...
by bertilak
Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most cost effective means of protecting physical assets
Replies: 50
Views: 3998

Re: External backup drives - Seagate vs Western Digital

Was the drive in the LaCie marked as something beyond consumer grade? I was just going by the extra cost. SpaceMonkey may have provided a better explanation for that. SpaceMonkey is right that I do not know the actual brand or model of hard drive in the LaCie enclosure. I did at one point but have ...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: External backup drives - Seagate vs Western Digital
Replies: 43
Views: 2730

Re: External backup drives - Seagate vs Western Digital

I think all major drive manufacturers have multiple levels of quality. You need to pay extra to get more reliability. I think consumer grade drives are prone to early failure and that's why you see so many negative reviews on places like Amazon. I wouldn't be surprised if 99% of the hard drives sold...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 15, 2014 4:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: External backup drives - Seagate vs Western Digital
Replies: 43
Views: 2730

Re: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy

The Road. Could it be any slower? The hobbit. I don't know if you are complaining about the book The Hobbit or signing your post as "the hobbit" but I do have an opinion of the book. I didn't like it nearly as much as the LOTR trilogy. To be fair, it was intended for children but that doe...
by bertilak
Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy
Replies: 226
Views: 10989

Re: Why do so many think their home is a foolproof investmen

If the return you expect from your investment is a place to live, your home is a pretty good investment.

Any other benefit you get is just gravy.
by bertilak
Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:57 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do so many think their home is a foolproof investment?
Replies: 125
Views: 6455

Re: The dangerous practice of rebalancing...

I did not read the whole article nor all the comments here but ... ⋅ I think the article is correct about having safe (or nearly safe) assets for core expenses.: In terms of strategic portfolio balance, before a pre-retired or retired family invests in risky assets, core retirement needs s...
by bertilak
Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:27 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The dangerous practice of rebalancing...
Replies: 191
Views: 14024

Re: IRA to Roth conversion after retirement ?

Also in a similar situation. I am doing yearly conversions up to the amount that doesn't bump me past the 15% bracket. I don't think it is necessary to be real exact on that and going over a bit really makes little difference because only that "little bit" will be subject to the 25% tax. M...
by bertilak
Sat Sep 13, 2014 9:52 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA to Roth conversion after retirement ?
Replies: 14
Views: 1379

Re: Costco vs Amazon?

I like Costco's return policy. Take just about anything back to them for any reason, and they refund your purchase price. No return mailing involved. I just returned a desk chair I bought at Costco about a month ago. The chair was comfortable -- mostly. I didn't notice it at first but it had a subt...
by bertilak
Thu Sep 11, 2014 7:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco vs Amazon?
Replies: 60
Views: 4617

Re: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky

That's what he does now - but how do you think he got to now ? I think somewhere Buffet said that "how he got to now" -- being a rich guy -- no longer works because now-a-days mis-pricings get smoked out too fast for there to be any opportunty to take advantage of. Perhaps that's why he r...
by bertilak
Thu Sep 11, 2014 7:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky
Replies: 119
Views: 9762

Re: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky

That's what he does now - but how do you think he got to now ? I think somewhere Buffet said that "how he got to now" -- being a rich guy -- no longer works because now-a-days mis-pricings get smoked out too fast for there to be any opportunty to take advantage of. Perhaps that's why he r...
by bertilak
Thu Sep 11, 2014 5:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky
Replies: 119
Views: 9762

Re: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?

Where are you getting a fixed rate mortgage at 2.88%? That's what Quicken Loans quoted me as an example rate in my situation. I realize that may be a come-on rate and I may not get it. I am tracking that down to be sure. Also checking with another lender (has my current mortgage). I asked about the...
by bertilak
Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?
Replies: 14
Views: 659

Re: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?

If you do this, what would you do with the extra $200 a month you will have? Are you planning on spending the $$$, buying restaurant meals, fine wines, other consumer goods (non-appreciating assets) and just enjoying it as more discretionary income? Or will you be putting the money into mutual fund...
by bertilak
Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?
Replies: 14
Views: 659

Re: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?

Thanks all. Your replies give me confidence that my thinking isn't off the wall. I'm going to do a little comparison shopping for mortgages. I think what you mean is it will delay the day when expenses > income? A mortgage (long term fixed rate) is an inflation hedge btw. Right. Today my income (SS ...
by bertilak
Wed Sep 10, 2014 2:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?
Replies: 14
Views: 659

Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?

This overlaps investments and personal finance. The question is: Should I refinancing my mortgage by taking money from my taxable investment account to increase my equity to 20%, get a better rate and avoid PMI? I'm not looking for an answer right here and now, but I don't want to overlook anything ...
by bertilak
Wed Sep 10, 2014 10:31 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take money from investments to get better rate on refi?
Replies: 14
Views: 659
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