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Re: Inflation-indexed SPIAs: A Good Deal?

Is there a site that will give quotes online for these (inflation-indexed SPIA) ? Vanguard used to have one for AIG. They actually removed the inflation-cap during the time I was pondering whether to get one. (BTW, mine started in 2007 at age54 with an initial return of about 4.4% of my principal; ...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Inflation-indexed SPIAs: A Good Deal?
Replies: 16
Views: 1779

Re: To be truly rich, take stock of your life before investi

The best, the very best thing I've ever read about this is:

"We act as though comfort and luxury were the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us really happy is something to be enthusiastic about."--Charles Kingsley.
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: To be truly rich, take stock of your life before investing
Replies: 24
Views: 3259

Re: Give Your Portfolio Room To Maneuver-DFA/Bridgeway

What is "unbalanced" about a barbell?
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Give Your Portfolio Room To Maneuver-DFA/Bridgeway
Replies: 5
Views: 399

Re: look at small value etfs

As a reminder, the smaller and more "valuey" the stocks that a fund owns, the higher the expected returns of the portfolio are. Is it not equally true that the smaller and more "valuey" the stocks that a fund owns, the higher the expected risk of the portfolio is? Don't both of ...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: look at small value etfs
Replies: 15
Views: 962

Re: Do you tip on the tax? [Restaurants]

For what it is worth, there is, I find, an Emily Post Institute and they have a set of General Tipping Guidelines . Emily' Post's minions say "Wait service (sit down): 15-20%, pre-tax." Restroom Attendant $0.50-$3, depending on the level of service Depending on the level of service ???? I ...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you tip on the tax? [Restaurants]
Replies: 105
Views: 2941

Re: Do you tip on the tax?

Tipping is optional, no? Sure. But so are any number of random social niceties that are typically expected of someone who participates in this human culture we have here. We can (often justifiably) question these expectations. But when we nonetheless participate in an activity that we know clearly ...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you tip on the tax? [Restaurants]
Replies: 105
Views: 2941

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

...Now it's another matter that TBM does not come close to representing the whole fixed income market... I believe it comes reasonably close to representing the whole investment grade fixed income market, which is what it bills itself as doing: This fund is designed to provide broad exposure to U.S...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

Re: Why do we tip restaurant servers?

dolphinsaremammals wrote:Tipping is a stupid custom, and people should be paid a decent wage.
I couldn't agree more completely. But in the meantime, tipping is the custom and waitstaff is not paid decent wages, so what should we do?
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do we tip restaurant servers?
Replies: 42
Views: 1497

Re: WSJ/Zweig- The Decline and Fall of Fund Managers

I have sense of deja vu here. Zweig says In an article in the latest issue of the well-respected Financial Analysts Journal, Mr. Ellis argues that fund managers equipped with sophisticated analytical tools, electronic trading and instantaneous access to news are engaged in an arms race resulting in ...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ/Zweig- The Decline and Fall of Fund Managers
Replies: 6
Views: 643

Re: Why do we tip restaurant servers?

I know this is a controversial subject, but why do we tip restaurant servers? There is no logical reason that I know of except to say it is customary. There is no logical reason I know of to shake hands except that it is customary. There is no logical reason that I know of to speak English except t...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do we tip restaurant servers?
Replies: 42
Views: 1497

Re: Stopping Junk mail from USPS

A long time ago I used the Direct Marketing Association's "Mail Preference Service," and while it did not, by any means, eliminate junk mail, it made a huge difference. One way I can tell is that I wasn't able to noodge my wife into using it, so she gets much more than I do. http://www.dma...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 6:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stopping Junk mail from USPS
Replies: 13
Views: 614

Re: Fidelity front page: Is that value stock cheap or troubl

Of course it's baloney. Fidelity isn't endorsing it. Brokerages like to run anything that will keep people interested, and, in particular, interested in trading , because that's where they make their money. The title says it is going to tell you "How to buy value stocks and avoid falling knives...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity front page: Is that value stock cheap or troubled?
Replies: 2
Views: 236

Re: Juice up your cash returns (!) [What do you consider cas

The idea of not holding cash as actual cash seems to be getting more popular as the time of 0.01% money market fund yields continues. Here's an idea that instead of holding actual cash, you hold a riskier stock/bond portfolio at 130% of your cash needs, to account for the increased volatility: Safe...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 2:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Juice up your cash returns (!) [What do you consider cash?]
Replies: 7
Views: 1059

Re: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of lay

DonCamillo wrote:...We Bogleheads love this quote from the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland;
Don't just do something, stand there!
I was hoping you were right, because I a) love Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and b) love that saying, but I can't find it there, nor in Through the Looking-Glass.
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of layoff
Replies: 39
Views: 2609

Re: Tipping the virtual waiter/waitress?

I was reading the following thread and it got me to thinking about another close topic in regards to tipping. http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=145332&start=50 With our recent state raise to the minimum working wage (we live in a state where the employer must pay a tipped ...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 1:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tipping the virtual waiter/waitress?
Replies: 15
Views: 931

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

Doc, I meant to bug you about this in your thread about style drift in Total Bond and other intermediate-term bond funds. Vanguard has a chart that they call "bond style," that is based on average weighted maturity , uses the words "short," "medium," and "long,&quo...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:35 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

There's some kind of bond math effect. The relationship between interest rate and bond value is not linear. The "duration" is just the slope of the curve at that particular interest rate. For any particular bond, an interest rate change from 5% to 5.01% causes a different change in value t...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:28 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

Re: Do you tip on the tax?

I tip in cash and I round up to some nice round number. My wife and I negotiate on the amount--it's sort of potlatch, we tend to raise each other's suggestions rather than reduce them--and it is partially based on our joint currency holdings. The starting point is mental arithmetic based on 1/5 of s...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you tip on the tax? [Restaurants]
Replies: 105
Views: 2941

Re: Yes you can time the markets.....

As usual you can read the whole article by doing a Google search on the full title, which is Yes, Virginia, You Can Time the Market and using the Google link. Well, that's an interesting choice of title and I think it tells us everything we need to know. What is the meaning of "Yes, Virginia?&q...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:15 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Yes you can time the markets.....
Replies: 3
Views: 783

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

That's a great chart, simplegift, thanks for posting. I had the wrong mental model, completely. The article title is "Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries " and I think other people have used the phrase "Treasuries" rather than "government bonds," so, you know...
by nisiprius
Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:47 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

Re: When did you hear of Bill Miller and Legg Mason Value Tr

The poll results don't support my hypothesis, do they? I hate it when that happens.
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 10:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When did you hear of Bill Miller and Legg Mason Value Trust?
Replies: 23
Views: 1391

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

Slow double-take. So, taking ogd's interpretation and simplegift's great phrase, the article is warning that the Barclay's Aggregate Index has been undergoing "safety drift." That is what we have been discussing. But meanwhile, Doc, in an interesting thread entitled Vanguard Bond funds Sty...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 6:56 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

A related question is whether a stock index and/or fund has constant risk (and on what time scale). I understand bobcat2 to say that "volatility clustering" is more or less a demonstrated and accepted fact...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 6:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

"including the possible loss of the money you invest"

I've noticed, starting maybe six months ago, that everyone seems be using stronger and plainer language in their "all investing is subject to risk" disclaimer. I think this is a Good Thing. Vanguard, for example, says here : All investing is subject to risk, including the possible loss of ...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 5:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "including the possible loss of the money you invest"
Replies: 4
Views: 903

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Halfway through the play, The Admirable Crichton , by J. M. Barrie. Finished Piers Dudgeon, J.M. Barrie, the Du Mauriers, and the Dark Side of "Peter Pan" . Probably only read about 2/3 of it though as I did a lot of skipping and skimming--I have never read anything by Daphne Du Maurier an...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 4:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1086834

Re: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?

I really wish that people (including Jack Bogle) would not phrase it that way. The Aggregate Index is what it is. I see no reason to think that Barclay's is screwing up their calculations. If the Aggregate Index includes more Treasuries that it used to, it is because there are proportionately more T...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 4:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Aggregate Index Too Heavy in Treasuries?
Replies: 45
Views: 1786

Re: A random walk...

Clearly_Irrational wrote:
baw703916 wrote:If the market follows a random walk, why don't returns follow a normal distribution?
The market isn't actually a random walk, it's a levy flight.
Which is another way of saying "it's not a random walk, it's much worse than that."
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A random walk...
Replies: 21
Views: 1634

Re: Investors Pour Into Vanguard, Eschewing Stock Pickers

Any idea what percentage of the total money invested at Vanguard is in "index" vs. "managed" funds? According to Morningstar , at the end of 2013, about 70% of Vanguard's assets were indexed and about 30% were actively-managed. The suburban Pennsylvania behemoth now manages $2.3...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investors Pour Into Vanguard, Eschewing Stock Pickers
Replies: 65
Views: 4828

Re: What can happen to a union pension?

Thanks everyone, great things to keep in mind. I am not sure about PBGC but will look into that. If it matters, this is not a public pension, so tax payers do not fund it. http://www.pbgc.gov/about/who-we-are.html The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) protects the retirement incomes of mo...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 1:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What can happen to a union pension?
Replies: 10
Views: 1089

Re: Why aren't annuities better than investment drawdowns?

To add a wisecrack to what dbr said: Suppose your analysis showed that homeowner's insurance was a better "money's worth"--paid out a higher percentage of premiums in claims, then car insurance. Suppose you owned a car and did not own a house. What kind of insurance would you buy? Homeowne...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why aren't annuities better than investment drawdowns?
Replies: 46
Views: 2806

Re: Why aren't annuities better than investment drawdowns?

Where is the best place online to shop for and compare annuities? If you have a Vanguard, account Vanguard ain't half bad. You need to log into your Vanguard account, and drill down: What We Offer, Annuities, Consider An Income Annuity, Log on and Get a quote through Vanguard Annuity Access. You wi...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:45 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why aren't annuities better than investment drawdowns?
Replies: 46
Views: 2806

Re: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of lay

P.S. Although I'm not a fan of Jeremy Siegel, whose cheerleading for stocks, in my opinion, goes beyond enthusiasm into spin and dogmatism, I trust his data, and Stocks for the Long Run makes a good case for its being OK to invest in stocks at peaks. Not ideal, but good enough. Of course, if you can...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:32 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of layoff
Replies: 39
Views: 2609

Re: A random walk...

The book is, and has always been, a grab-bag. The title has always had a dual meaning. A random walk is a ramble, and it could have been entitled "Burton Malkiel's Rambling Thoughts on Investing." Starting around 1990, the title changed from A Random Walk Down Wall Street to A Random Walk ...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A random walk...
Replies: 21
Views: 1634

Re: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of lay

...but there's such a thing as recession (with proper definition from the NBER if one needs a precise declaration.) Why is it not better to only buy into index fund during recession?... Because that is like Will Roger's advice, Don't gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:50 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of layoff
Replies: 39
Views: 2609

Re: Why aren't annuities better than investment drawdowns?

[Added by nisiprius] Read researchmed's follow-up post, below . I did not mean to recommend 100% annuitization for anyone, but rather than paraphrase here what he says, I recommend reading his post. ---- Annuities are not better or worse, they are different. This is a clear case where it makes sens...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why aren't annuities better than investment drawdowns?
Replies: 46
Views: 2806

Re: Investors Pour Into Vanguard, Eschewing Stock Pickers

I actually find this just a little bit troubling. No, I am not someone who sells active funds using the "what if everybody indexed" talking point, but I do worry about "will success spoil Vanguard?" Jack Bogle has a essay, is it in "Clash of the Cultures?" about the ris...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 21, 2014 7:00 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investors Pour Into Vanguard, Eschewing Stock Pickers
Replies: 65
Views: 4828

Re: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of lay

...Could you explain where this dividend may be coming from if the US S&P 500 index is exactly the same (at some point) in 2006 and in 2008?... The easiest thing to do is look at a growth chart. A growth chart shows you the total return of an index fund. When you invest in a mutual fund, you ar...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of layoff
Replies: 39
Views: 2609

Re: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of lay

...given the fact that during boom years we tend to have more money to invest, whereas in downturns we tend to have less (due to layoffs, less work for freelancer, etc.) In other words, in theory all the highs and lows will balance out. But in practice, we tend to invest more during highs and less ...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 5:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to weather market downturn with a high chance of layoff
Replies: 39
Views: 2609

Re: What can happen to a union pension?

Many scenarios are possible. One question, may be obvious but since I don't have such a pension I don't know the ins and outs... is it insured by the PBGC?

http://search.pbgc.gov/search/InsuredPl ... e=c&page=1
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What can happen to a union pension?
Replies: 10
Views: 1089

When did you hear of Bill Miller and Legg Mason Value Trust?

I claim that because excitement over an apparent trend builds exponentially, most of the people who hear about a trend, hear about it late in the process when it is almost over. To test this hypothesis, I would like you to think back as best you can and see whether you can remember the approximate y...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When did you hear of Bill Miller and Legg Mason Value Trust?
Replies: 23
Views: 1391

Re: Defining "Stay the Course"

My mental model currently is this. And it's just a model. Please insert an "I think" or "possibly" or "maybe" before everything that follows. I believe that the statistics that show "Investor returns" are a lot lower than "fund returns" are true. I a...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Defining "Stay the Course"
Replies: 32
Views: 2516

Re: Any reason I should not pick the admiral funds equivalen

For example, someone might have a very negative reaction to anything referring to the sea, so they wouldn't want to have Admiral shares. Ok, that's my contribution. Who else has something even more far-fetched? "I've memorized all of the fund numbers and ticker symbols and don't want to have t...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any reason I should not pick the admiral funds equivalent?
Replies: 18
Views: 1624

Re: Any reason I should not pick the admiral funds equivalen

:oops: Thanks to sscritic for sending me a PM pointing out to me that I goofed. I said Vanguard does not "demote" Admiral merely because of market movements. In fact, the prospectus for Vanguard 500 Index Fund (see p. 26) and probably all the others says: Mandatory Conversions to Investor ...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any reason I should not pick the admiral funds equivalent?
Replies: 18
Views: 1624

Re: Do interest rates really matter when buying a home?

Well of course they matter, but consider one thing. A change in interest rates tends to change the value of the home. In a similar way a change in interest rates changes the value of a bond. When interest rates are low, a seller can charge a higher price for their home, then interest rates are high...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do interest rates really matter when buying a home?
Replies: 8
Views: 781

Re: To be truly rich, take stock of your life before investi

The phrase " take stock of your life" instantly recalled to mind: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HW5ykXDYcLk Taking stock of what I have and what I haven't What do I find? The things I got will keep me satisfied Checking up on what I have and what I haven't What do I find? A healthy balan...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: To be truly rich, take stock of your life before investing
Replies: 24
Views: 3259

Re: Will you have to pay your parent's long term care costs?

Those who resist LTCi and annuities in the interests of leaving a legacy to their children should be sure they know how their children feel about this. I suspect some children are more concerned about the possibility of having to support their parents during their lives than they are about inheritin...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you have to pay your parent's long term care costs?
Replies: 55
Views: 3374

Re: POLL: Age for Collecting Social Security Benefits

Seems to mix apples and oranges, people potentially many years from retirement and those retired. Any answer I gave would be theoretical: waiting till 70 is the theoretically right answer assuming today's system continues as is, you have the money to reach 70 without SS, and it seems fairly likely ...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:38 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: Age for Collecting Social Security Benefits
Replies: 79
Views: 4441

Re: POLL: Age for Collecting Social Security Benefits

My decision about when to claim was influenced by two considerations:

a) I was over 62 and thus eligible,

b) my unemployment benefits were about to run out and I hadn't managed to get a single job interview.
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:34 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: Age for Collecting Social Security Benefits
Replies: 79
Views: 4441

Re: Dow Jones Index Fund?

...QWERTY keyboards are analogous. They aren't sensible given today's technology, but everyone wants them because that's what they are used to... The analogy I like is the Blue Hills Weather Observatory. It continues to measure barometric pressure in inches of mercury, not millimeters. They using g...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:19 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dow Jones Index Fund?
Replies: 41
Views: 2048

Re: Any reason I should not pick the admiral funds equivalen

Wow, that's amazing. Another glitch in the tool. Incidentally, if you have more than a $10,000 total in an Investor shares fund held at Vanguard, eventually Vanguard will automatically convert them to Admiral shares. Basically there is NO reason not to pick Admiral shares. I can think of three very ...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:03 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any reason I should not pick the admiral funds equivalent?
Replies: 18
Views: 1624
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