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Re: The safest 4 door sedan out there

Like jdb, I've liked Mercedes (I owned a 300E, back when the number preceded the letter). I think our Range Rovers have been safe cars. They're big and heavy, and can stop on a dime considering their weight (and it costs many dimes to replace the massive brake pads). Knock wood, they've been reliab...
by dbr
Thu Oct 30, 2014 12:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The safest 4 door sedan out there
Replies: 36
Views: 1478

Re: Prudent Investment Portfolio for 58-year Old w/20M Net W

OK, Well,even with only $13 million, if he needs to produce $375K of pretax income, that's only a 2.9% return, which can be accomplished a number of ways. And, if he needs 375K after taxes, and assuming an average effective tax rate of 35%, he'll need to make 4.4% overall. That's a little more chal...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Prudent Investment Portfolio for 58-year Old w/20M Net Worth
Replies: 24
Views: 1751

Re: The safest 4 door sedan out there

Trying to single out a single make, model, and variant that is the safest 4 door sedan out there is not possible. There is possibly a list of a number of cars that are good bets and a list of other cars that might fall short to some degree.
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The safest 4 door sedan out there
Replies: 36
Views: 1478

Re: Best approaches to accumulating in a down market

So here's a topic that has been bugging me lately. best approaches to adding/accumulating in a down market. for example, should you go overweight in e.g. small caps, especially when the market gives you such a nice pullback, or should you add across the board using specific weights that favor favor...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best approaches to accumulating in a down market
Replies: 18
Views: 1157

Re: If I am a LT investor, should I forgo a bond allocation?

I decided to have 15% cash, no bond. That is just my choice. I will buy bond when the 10 year yield is at least 3.5%. In the context of this discussion about stock risk and diluting it with bonds, cash is bonds. You might not even be losing a lot of return if by cash you mean CDs paying a reasonabl...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If I am a LT investor, should I forgo a bond allocation?
Replies: 16
Views: 1113

Re: The safest 4 door sedan out there

Well this is a concern: InformedForLife.org Safety Assessment NOT RECOMMENDED: [NHTSA frontal impact rating in bottom 72%] My mistake. I was looking at the ratings of the 2-door, not 4-door Accord. In a case of something like this one has to ask if that "recommended/not recommended" is no...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The safest 4 door sedan out there
Replies: 36
Views: 1478

Re: If I am a LT investor, should I forgo a bond allocation?

If I am a long term investor (ie, 30+yrs time horizon), why should I even have a bond allocation (either taxable or tax exempt)? The bond allocation would reduce my return over that time period. I can understand if I had a shorter time horizon (ie, <10yrs) I should have a bond allocation. But as a ...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If I am a LT investor, should I forgo a bond allocation?
Replies: 16
Views: 1113

Re: Early SS or Higher IRA Withdrawal??

In any case, as mathwizard points out, the comparison statistic is the level of safe total income that can be achieved. It is a mistake to look at breakeven because the plan is a mix of spending down assets and carrying a longevity annuity that is inflation indexed. As pointed out the plan involves ...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early SS or Higher IRA Withdrawal??
Replies: 10
Views: 702

Re: The safest 4 door sedan out there

The Driver Weight-Effect Fatality Rate is an interesting statistic. I have been involved in studies of exactly that issue. The result is an almost 1/weight dependence of driver fatality rate on vehicle weight with a knee around 3000 lbs. Note this implies severe issues when driving very small cars ...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The safest 4 door sedan out there
Replies: 36
Views: 1478

Re: My college son's investment in Merril Lynch

The accounts are UGMA. It is under both my husband and my son' names. Probably you mean the accounts are in your sons' name and your husband is the custodian. The point is that income has been and is to be reported as your sons' income. Another point is that the money is absolutely permanently your...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My college son's investment in Merril Lynch
Replies: 6
Views: 665

Re: The safest 4 door sedan out there

At least they take vehicle weight into account, which is a factor not included in Federal test protocols.

In using actual accident statistics for any part of the data driver behavior correlated with make and model must be considered.
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 4:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The safest 4 door sedan out there
Replies: 36
Views: 1478

Re: who decides the stock price?

The stock market is a form of auction. so basically there is half of them who want to sell at that price and half who want to buy at that price? Its fascinating that its a "step function" as though the new equilibrium always existed like rocks under the sea bed only to be exposed when the...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: who decides the stock price?
Replies: 17
Views: 1260

Re: Asset Location

If there are two accounts, say a traditional IRA and a taxable account, please help me understand by equities go in the taxable account and bonds go in the IRA. I have heard this advice many times in the past, but I find it unworkable in practice. To me, it should be reversed. Assuming stocks are i...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Asset Location
Replies: 13
Views: 601

Re: My college son's investment in Merril Lynch

One of the investments is MDCPX (Blackrock Balanced Fund). Originally my F-I-L invested $4,572 in 1996. The estimated market value was $11,934 (end of Sept) and cost of basis $12,651 (end of Sept.) The cost of basis includes all the dividend and capital gain as I understand the explanation from the...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My college son's investment in Merril Lynch
Replies: 6
Views: 665

Re: Tools for Balancing and Re-Balancing Portfolio

Hi Wisemates, I'll pile on. I’m grappling with some way to evaluate if a person’s portfolio is properly balanced. Being properly balanced means that the expected return of the portfolio and the risk in its different manifestations is what meets the needs and objectives of the investor. It takes lea...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tools for Balancing and Re-Balancing Portfolio
Replies: 9
Views: 482

Re: how risky is stock investing?

As others are pointing out there is no such thing as "being good with stocks and making money consistently." It is a valid comment that what Buffett does is nothing like an individual simply trying to pick stocks and make a success of it. The basic idea about investing and gambling or retu...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: how risky is stock investing?
Replies: 16
Views: 1062

Re: Are advisers necessary?

Bogleheads: Because we are not taught about investing in school, . . . That might be a good thing as most attempts I have seen to bring investment education into schools are either opportunities for predatory investment advisors to peddle their view of the world or, even worse, for well meaning eng...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?
Replies: 69
Views: 5761

Re: How should we invest if interest rates never go up?

Save more and plan on spending less.
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 9:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How should we invest if interest rates never go up?
Replies: 17
Views: 1493

Re: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?

In some perverted sense, this guy did you a favor by doing such a bad job that you woke up to smell the coffee! Now you can invest ALL of your money in a better way. In the long run, this switch may even make you more wealthy. :twisted: Yep, that's the part I refer to as the free market economy wor...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 9:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?
Replies: 69
Views: 5761

Re: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?

I guess one could list a hierarchy from most to least (or not) guilty: 1. Criminal acts such as extortion, theft of client assets, actual fraud such as a Ponzi scheme, etc. This might include selling defective products that cause death and injury or selling contaminated food. Sometimes such things o...
by dbr
Wed Oct 29, 2014 9:32 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?
Replies: 69
Views: 5761

Re: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?

I am not sure anyone could establish that 3% in total fees violates fiduciary responsibility, as outrageous as that sounds. That paying the fee is justified in services received and expected performance delivered would probably be routinely accepted as standard in the industry. Would anyone be able ...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 5:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?
Replies: 69
Views: 5761

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

I disagree with this somewhat. I do fly a fair bit of BIS miles but having spent time investigating and learning about this has resulted in incredible value for us. In the past we would take one or two trips while we are now able to take many many more because we spend so absurdly little on flights...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 5:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4302

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

A couple of sources include: http://thepointsguy.com/ http://boardingarea.com/ A fair warning though is that this whole area could perhaps best be characterized as an enthusiast hobby rather than a common sense form of intelligent consumer behavior. Does a person really want to end up with two dozen...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 4:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4302

Re: Prudent Investment Portfolio for 58-year Old w/20M Net W

I am asking for thoughts not for myself, but for a friend who recently sold his business, is now worth the above stated amount and who is crying poor-mouth because his business income has vanished. Net worth is 65% liquid. Income needs $375K per year. Top US income tax rate. So he doesn't understan...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 4:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Prudent Investment Portfolio for 58-year Old w/20M Net Worth
Replies: 24
Views: 1751

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

2. If apply for some cards right now, can I use my total employment income in 2014, even after the major source of this income has been shut? Victoria I've used spending of withdrawals from assets as "income" explicitly identified as such over the phone with CC CSR's to get approvals for ...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 3:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4302

Re: What funds are negatively correlated with stocks?

Normally the quantities the correlation of which is being examined are the returns and not the values.
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 3:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What funds are negatively correlated with stocks?
Replies: 24
Views: 2846

Re: Traditional Medicare vs Medicare Advantage

I am/have been suspicious of the long term situation for MA and have some concern regarding changing into Medigap after the initial enrollment periods. Therefore I chose traditional Medicare/Medigap. I do not think minimizing cost is a good strategy when it comes to insurance. I would tend toward ma...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 9:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Traditional Medicare vs Medicare Advantage
Replies: 26
Views: 1393

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

I've opened and closed a few cards and have come to lodge in the mid-800's. I don't actually know what the positives and negatives of this might be. There is a whole forum section on credit cards over at FlyerTalk: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/credit-debit-prepaid-card-programs-390/ http://www.fly...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 9:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4302

Re: your advisor should act like a good doctor

Another part of this analogy is that the best advice might be to not use a financial adviser at all. Not seeking care from a doctor for a medical condition and/or for wellness care would be unusual and not recommended by most. In some cases it is even illegal not to seek care, such as for a sick chi...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 9:01 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: your advisor should act like a good doctor
Replies: 28
Views: 2021

Re: Tilted to SV by mistake, should I TLH out of it?

Aptenodytes wrote:
You are acting as if choosing an AA is pure guesswork, and that subsequent returns tell you if you guessed right or not. That's wrong. There's a logic to choosing an AA, grounded in robust research.


Excellent advice for any investor to heed.
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:42 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tilted to SV by mistake, should I TLH out of it?
Replies: 37
Views: 1645

Re: Will I get taxed if family sends my bank $50K from abroa

Just to repeat the really important point: receivers of gifts do not pay taxes on the gift and have no tax reporting responsibility of any kind. It is a shame how often misinformation on this is repeated. One can understand the possibility of confusing receipt of a gift with having income, but it is...
by dbr
Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will I get taxed if family sends my bank $50K from abroad?
Replies: 10
Views: 1081

Re: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?

barnaclebob wrote:It sucks to be taken advantage of but it doesn't sound like this adviser is guilty of any crime.


As one who might say, and has said, that these practices should be criminal and result in jail time, the actual and practical resolution is caveat emptor.
by dbr
Mon Oct 27, 2014 8:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fleeced by an adviser, is there a recourse?
Replies: 69
Views: 5761

Re: Airline Ticket Price Differences

Beware that when you get a lower fare, for example a "consolidator" fare you may lose some benefits, such as not getting any frequent flier mileage credit for that fare. Also, any changes, refunds, or issues with irregular operations may have to go back through the travel agent and cannot ...
by dbr
Mon Oct 27, 2014 5:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airline Ticket Price Differences
Replies: 6
Views: 996

Re: Tilted to SV by mistake, should I TLH out of it?

After reading opposing views on SV tilting, I was confused and tilted by 5% of my portfolio (12.5% of my Stock portion) when I started my conscious investing in September. SV fell anywhere between 6-10% since then and is the worst performer in my portfolio, which made me realize that I should have ...
by dbr
Mon Oct 27, 2014 5:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tilted to SV by mistake, should I TLH out of it?
Replies: 37
Views: 1645

Re: Calculating return

I do know all that, but it doesn't change that XIRR is not the return to compare to a widely publicized S&P 500 annual return, as has been suggested by a felow Boglehead above in this thread. It is not, either, an appropiate YTD return to compare with others telling you about their own YTD XIRR...
by dbr
Mon Oct 27, 2014 9:22 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Calculating return
Replies: 34
Views: 2702

Re: Retiring without any additional investments for 25 years

We plan to sell our house at the retirement time and buy a smaller house at ~$400K in today's dollars in a low expensive area. If we don't invest any additional funds to retirement and also ignoring the additional home equity, $600K today is expected to grow to $4.1M at 8% rate. Do we need to add a...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 9:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retiring without any additional investments for 25 years
Replies: 20
Views: 2798

Re: Back of the envelope recommendation requested

The back of the envelope result for asset allocation when withdrawing is that for withdrawal rates low enough to be reasonably successful the only mistake is to have too little in stocks. After that the AA doesn't matter. You would have to find a good reason to do anything other than 50/50. 60/40 is...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Back of the envelope recommendation requested
Replies: 19
Views: 1445

Re: Moving money that's in the market

[quote="mbdean"]Hi I recently reviewed my asset allocation and it is out of whack. I am going to correct it, but have a couple of questions: 1) Since the money is already in the market, that means that I would just move it lump sum into whatever fund(s) I choose, right? No dollar cost aver...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Moving money that's in the market
Replies: 7
Views: 614

Re: Bond exposure in my portfolio

So is the consensus to have less bond exposure now? Are interest rates expected to rise? That is certainly not a consensus. If you adjust your asset allocation away from bonds you are taking on more risk. You have to justify that on its own terms. When interest rates are historically low, which the...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond exposure in my portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1473

Re: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?

I have averaged 1.7 cpm on Delta redemptions over the past few years, but those are all international flights and involve far more than 50,000 miles. I suspect your return is probably about average. Pointsguy.com gives 1.2 cpm as the Delta average for domestic flights. I think the best I have ever d...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use 50k Delta miles for a $600 flight?
Replies: 73
Views: 4302

Re: What funds are negatively correlated with stocks?

There is also an issue that correlation is a statistic that is highly variable and may or may not be what is wanted at the time it is wanted.

Naturally an actual short position is negatively correlated by definition but may not be an effective hedge for all that.
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What funds are negatively correlated with stocks?
Replies: 24
Views: 2846

Re: My TSP G Fund is not Enough! What other Bonds?

This is actually a very perceptive comment. But what is really going on here is that the actual hazard is whether or not the investor will make the fatal mistake of selling out his stock position in panic when losses become too great. All the mumbo-jumbo about how likely how much loss is has been c...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My TSP G Fund is not Enough! What other Bonds?
Replies: 20
Views: 2017

Re: Calculating return

I run XIRR to get return data of my portfolio and compare it to the S&P 500 index fund. This simply tells me if my current investment strategy is better than ultra-passive approach I could have taken. I've been trying to explain that XIRR gives you a return that is not comparable to the S&P...
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Calculating return
Replies: 34
Views: 2702

Re: Vanguard, TIPs, Accrued Interest & RMDs

One source might be the instructions to custodians for how to fill out Form 5498. I haven't read through the whole thing but someone who is interested enough to do so might find what is needed there.
by dbr
Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard, TIPs, Accrued Interest & RMDs
Replies: 22
Views: 1632

Re: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks

I think my background and experience in engineering directs me against stock picking rather than toward it. I admit I have seen colleagues behave exactly as in the blog, but that baffles me. I have seen more of my colleagues who would not attempt to pick stocks. Maybe for me engineering was always h...
by dbr
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:54 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do Engineers Think They’ll Be Good at Picking Stocks?
Replies: 125
Views: 8794

Re: BlackRock Strategic Income Opportunities Fund

Aside from the pluses or (mostly) minuses of this particular fund, I would be concerned about what causes you to think you need to explore more than what you are already invested in. Is there a standing problem in your portfolio that needs to be addressed? There is basically no such thing as an &quo...
by dbr
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BlackRock Strategic Income Opportunities Fund
Replies: 14
Views: 1410

Re: My TSP G Fund is not Enough! What other Bonds?

dbr : Oh, I think you're giving me too much credit. I'm an engineer, not a statistician. What bothers me about Max Tolerant Loss is that investors don't state a confidence level. I probably should have said "high level of confidence" rather than 95%. I always thought the following table f...
by dbr
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:21 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My TSP G Fund is not Enough! What other Bonds?
Replies: 20
Views: 2017

Re: Conflicting home inspection reports

I would look for a house that doesn't have problems like this. Is there a particular reason you are locked in in this specific house? Are you restricted to an area where pretty much everyone is subject to these hazards due to climate and soil conditions? As far as costs, I don't have much experience...
by dbr
Sat Oct 25, 2014 10:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Conflicting home inspection reports
Replies: 5
Views: 720

Re: Vanguard Short Term Bond vs TIPS?

I personally think a retiree whose income structure indicates reason to be concerned with inflation could, maybe should, have much or all of the bond asset in TIPS. An example of that is a person with much of the income from a fixed pension or non-indexed SPIA. I personally think the Vanguard funds ...
by dbr
Sat Oct 25, 2014 9:57 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Short Term Bond vs TIPS?
Replies: 3
Views: 657
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