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Re: "You're invited to...." (nonsense talk and dinner)

...A friend of mine bragged about going to time-share presentations just to get the free dinner. She said cheerfully, "Oh, I don't have any problems at all. When they come over to give me the sales talk, I just tell them 'I'm just here for the free dinner.'" And she is trying unsuccessful...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "You're invited to...." (nonsense talk and dinner)
Replies: 42
Views: 1763

Re: Why I won't have bond funds

Sigh. Today we have an environment where rates have very little room to fall and at some point will go up (we just don’t know when). Once rates finally rise, bond prices will fall, which means investors will lose money. The 10-year Treasury rate is 2.21%. It's down from 3%. It had plenty of "ro...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:29 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I won't have bond funds
Replies: 17
Views: 2369

Re: Why I won't have bond funds

Sigh. Yet another example of confusing risk and return. Low return is not the same thing as risk. Low return sucks, but it doesn't make bonds "unsafe." It just makes them low in return. And of course, to the question "I wonder: is there some kind of bond that’s immune to interest rate...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I won't have bond funds
Replies: 17
Views: 2369

Re: Why include International Index in AA?

It's controversial. Although the conventional wisdom strongly favors allocating 20% to 50% of one's stock holdings to international stocks, the case that it will actually help much is surprisingly weak, given the frequency and intensity with which it is recommended. I do hold international, not beca...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 7:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why include International Index in AA?
Replies: 11
Views: 517

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

...Curiosity got the better of me - plus I found a free Kindle download :) I said "Project Gutenberg" but actually am reading the "free Kindle download." Virtually all the Kindle books that are converted "by a community of volunteers" are PG texts, and most though not ...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 6:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 122
Views: 7361

Re: Health care tilt

An acquaintance of mine had "robotic" prostate surgery. The robot was actually a computer-controlled micromanipulator. Actually, it's a great argument for a healthcare tilt. The machine did not make itself. A company did, and its share price is probably through the roof. "Healthcare&...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 6:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Health care tilt
Replies: 68
Views: 3059

Re: Health care tilt

"Robotic" prostate surgery has become very common. "Last year, 73,000 American men — 86 percent of the 85,000 who had prostate cancer surgery — had robot-assisted operations." And that was written in 2009! The "robot" is actually a computer-controlled micromanipulator. ...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 5:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Health care tilt
Replies: 68
Views: 3059

Re: "You're invited to...." (nonsense talk and dinner)

I received an "invitation" from Dale A. Frank of Dale A. Frank Financial Group and Insurance Agency. "You're invited to a critically timed event for those preparing for retirement". A talk followed by dinner at a stodgy restaurant. "This is an educational program only, Ther...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "You're invited to...." (nonsense talk and dinner)
Replies: 42
Views: 1763

Re: Vanguard website down

??? Vanguard.com is working for me. I find isup.me helpful, and it is reporting that "http://vanguard.com is up," in whatever way they determine this.
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard website down
Replies: 7
Views: 584

Re: Stocks as long term investments

Michael, I sense a certain ambivalence... you are posting in this thread about investing in individual stocks. Whether or not one or two well-chosen individual stocks offer more risk-adjusted reward than the market as a whole, it still a riskier choice. More risk, perhaps more reward, perhaps reward...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stocks as long term investments
Replies: 44
Views: 2601

Re: How do so many HCEs contribute the max to 401k

So at the end of the day there isn't much risk here. Worst case scenario is I get a check back and pay taxes that I would have paid anyway. Best case, my company passes the test and I keep the money in. Right? Right. This assumes that your company accountants are competent and will issue you a chec...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do so many HCEs contribute the max to 401k
Replies: 24
Views: 1895

Re: Leon Cooperman giving the same advice as Warren

Jeff Albertson wrote: The real puzzle, why would anyone watch CNBC? It's okay to watch it, but it's very important to keep the mute button pressed. Garland Whizzer Unless John C. Bogle is on and talking about the importance of staying the course, while second-by-second updates of the S&P scroll...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Leon Cooperman giving the same advice as Warren
Replies: 38
Views: 2445

Re: Leon Cooperman giving the same advice as Warren

I don't know whether or not Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund is "better" or "worse" than the Vanguard 500 Index Fund. What I can personally say about them is this. My original reason for owning Vanguard 500 Index Fund was that I wanted to own "the stock market," a...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Leon Cooperman giving the same advice as Warren
Replies: 38
Views: 2445

Re: GT Advanced Technology Files for Chapter 11

Anyone who was closely following the company would have noticed that insiders had been dumping the stock hand over fist since July. It's usually not a good sign when top executives and directors are exercising their options and immediately liquidating 100%. A look at insider selling is breathtaking...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:45 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: GT Advanced Technology Files for Chapter 11
Replies: 8
Views: 1129

Re: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?

P.S. Social engineering works. Sure, I have learned to ignore "SEEKING YOUR IMMEDIATE ASSISTANCE" and other familiar phishing. In fact, it occurs to me that another good reason to avoid big banks is that it is easier to ignore emails about my Bank of America account if I don't have a Bank ...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 10:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?
Replies: 34
Views: 2004

Re: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?

Now I suddenly receive similar spam in several fairly independent email accounts at the same time. What's your theory on how this could happen? I'm not Greg, but I hope you don't mind if I respond. I like that you qualify "independent" with "fairly", but it still seems that you'...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 10:32 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?
Replies: 34
Views: 2004

Re: Risk in a high dividend stock portfolio

Dividend stock enthusiasts quibble about this--crushing arguments never actually crush anyone--but I still think the crushing argument is a comparison of the total return growth charts of dividend-oriented stock funds versus others. For example, the Vanguard Equity Income fund, VEIPX, blue (actively...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 9:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Risk in a high dividend stock portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1015

Re: Risk in a high dividend stock portfolio

P.S. I am wondering... are there any examples of companies that have chosen to issue two classes of stock, one which pays dividends and one which doesn't? It would be a great real-world test of whether the market believes the Modigliani–Miller theorem.
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 9:17 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Risk in a high dividend stock portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1015

Re: Risk in a high dividend stock portfolio

Hi all, I'm a few years (2 to 5) until retirement, I'm wondering about high dividend stocks. Looking at the site, http://www.dividend.com/dividend-stocks/high-dividend-yield-stocks.php and eliminating say the first 12, just because the dividend is so high you will see 80 stocks paying between 15.69...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 21, 2014 9:13 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Risk in a high dividend stock portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1015

Re: Why is VIPSX (TIPS) active?

Is it difficult, e.g. for regulatory reasons, to change a technically-active fund into an index fund, I wonder? There doesn't actually seem to be any point in its not being an index fund. The orange line here is the TIP ETF, which is an index ETF tracking the Barclays U.S. Treasury Inflation Protect...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why is VIPSX (TIPS) active?
Replies: 14
Views: 852

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Just finished The Sirens of Titan , by Kurt Vonnegut. Loved it. Finished the preface to The American Credo , by H. L. Mencken and George Jean Nathan, online at http://www.gutenberg.org/files/23858/23858-h/23858-h.htm , and have read about 200 of the articles of the "Credo" itself. I am com...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 122
Views: 7361

Re: Why do people use age instead of life expectancy?

One interesting aspect of life expectancy is that it appears to be becoming a bit more predictable over time — in other words, the statistical distribution of "age at death" is getting narrower and narrower (chart below). For one, more folks are surviving childhood and living to an older ...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do people use age instead of life expectancy?
Replies: 43
Views: 2883

Re: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?

greg, what's disturbing is the email accounts in which I received these. THESE email accounts have NOT previously received spam. They are ones that I do not give to merchants or supply to websites. Each of them is used to communicate with a different set of people, and generally these people do not ...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?
Replies: 34
Views: 2004

Re: TBM too much treasury?

[...their willingness to exclude greater than 50% of the world's bond market by rejecting international bonds (hedged or not) even as they've come to embrace international stocks. In this 21st century, is an investor limiting her bond holdings to domestics, as a matter of choice, widely diversified...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TBM too much treasury?
Replies: 66
Views: 3953

Re: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?

I've seen exactly the same thing. I think it's new and troubling. I have a number of different email addresses. One is a "garbage" email address that I use for every stupid thing that doesn't deserve my email address but insists on it; it's supposed to be the one I can throw away if it att...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 7:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple Fake "Thank you for your order"?
Replies: 34
Views: 2004

Re: Fundamental Index Funds?

What about bubbles? I heard that cap weighted indexing cannot shield one from bubbles while fundamental can. Is there any merit to this statement? If so, doesn't it argue against cap weighting? No. Stocks are stocks, and whenever I hear that some flavor of stocks provides "protection" or ...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 5:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fundamental Index Funds?
Replies: 14
Views: 1202

Re: Leon Cooperman giving the same advice as Warren

...Does it make you wonder why two of these giants would be wrong... No. Particularly if you state their advice as "stay out of bonds." You don't, you go beyond that, but the point is that the details matter. Where their opinions are of value is when you look closely a) what the advice ac...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Leon Cooperman giving the same advice as Warren
Replies: 38
Views: 2445

Re: 2 Fund Portfolio...which Bond fund?

I would say that any intermediate-term , investment-grade bond fund can do the job, and beyond intermediate-term , investment-grade you should look into it a bit, make a reasonable choice, and then stick with it. I think Total Bond is a good choice. If it makes sense to you, I don't think you should...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 1:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 2 Fund Portfolio...which Bond fund?
Replies: 4
Views: 436

Re: New Paper ". . . and the Cross-Section of Expected Retur

Why "t-stats" at all? "Student's" t-test was invented in 1908 for making statistical measurements of beer quality--that is to say industrial process control. It makes a huge boatload of strong assumptions which actually apply quite well in a wide range of real-world situations. ...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 11:13 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New Paper ". . . and the Cross-Section of Expected Returns"
Replies: 7
Views: 497

Re: VWRL a great buy right now?

For those who like me thought VWRL sounds like a radio station... VWRL = Vanguard FTSE All-World ETF and Morningstar seems to be puzzled by it. Probably it's not available in the US. Google finds me a site that says "Vanguard FTSE All-World ETF ... seeks to track the performance of the FTSE All...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: VWRL a great buy right now? [Vanguard FTSE All-World ETF]
Replies: 6
Views: 675

Re: 50/50

P.S. Be sure to read The FInance Buff's article on rebalancing bands and try doing a little math yourself. The cult of rebalancing mostly applies to people with slice-and-dice portfolios of fairly volatile assets... you might be surprised just how long it takes for a 50/50 allocation of two separate...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:12 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 50/50
Replies: 7
Views: 1141

Re: 50/50

Fidelity Asset Manager 50%, FASMX, sort of. Strategy: "Maintaining a neutral mix over time of 50% of assets in stocks, 40% of assets in bonds, and 10% of assets in short-term and money market instruments though FMR may overweight or underweight in each asset class ." This is thus theoretic...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:57 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 50/50
Replies: 7
Views: 1141

Re: How do so many HCEs contribute the max to 401k

You need to delicately ask your HR department about this. The IRS has rules that are intended to keep companies honest and to insure that the 401(k) is really and truly a companywide plan, and isn't just used by "highly compensated employees." There are rules regarding the amount of partic...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:41 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do so many HCEs contribute the max to 401k
Replies: 24
Views: 1895

Re: WSJ's Jon Clements: "How to Make Your Savings Outlive Yo

P.S. We spend our working lives intuitively adjusting our spending to our somewhat variable and unpredictable income. Nobody ever suggests running a Monte Carlo analysis of one's future earnings. Nobody ever suggests that your spending at age 25 should be governed by statistical projections of your ...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ's Jon Clements: "How to Make Your Savings Outlive You"
Replies: 14
Views: 2709

Re: WSJ's Jon Clements: "How to Make Your Savings Outlive Yo

Too lazy to look at the paper now, but a long time ago I had what I thought was the bright idea of, conceptually, constantly evaluating your remaining life expectancy and gauging your spending by dividing your portfolio by the number of years of remaining life expectancy. With of course adjustment b...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ's Jon Clements: "How to Make Your Savings Outlive You"
Replies: 14
Views: 2709

Re: TBM too much treasury?

I still want to know: if not the Barclay's Float-Adjusted Aggregate Index, then what index? If you do not personally wish to invest in "the dollar denominated investment grade bond market, but excluding Treasuries, agencies and MBS held in Federal Reserve accounts" that is your prerogative...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 19, 2014 1:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TBM too much treasury?
Replies: 66
Views: 3953

Re: TBM too much treasury?

The reasons TBM is considered skewed is missing from the thread. My understanding is that all the bonds the Federal Reserve has purchased and held are included in the construction of the total bond index. But if one considers those bonds as just being the government financing itself (printing money...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 19, 2014 1:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TBM too much treasury?
Replies: 66
Views: 3953

Re: POLL: How fulfilling is your retirement?

I've been semiretired for several years but only fully retired for less than a year. None of the answers really fits. I think I would replace "About what I expected" with "About what I hoped ." Greatest adventure of my life? honestly, no, or not yet anyway.* More fulfilling? I ho...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 19, 2014 11:34 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: How fulfilling is your retirement?
Replies: 32
Views: 2530

Re: Kindle HDX or iPad Air?

While I'm still steaming, let me post an additional note with regard to the "off-brand tablet" experience, because I just had a typical Kindle Fire experience. (Curious to know how it is for "real" Android tablet users, using apps from the "real" Google Play). 1) Lots o...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 19, 2014 9:00 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kindle HDX or iPad Air?
Replies: 17
Views: 1360

Re: The Final, Definitive Thread on Rebalancing

You didn't mention that I usually like to post showing that if you take a full cycle around 2008-2009, dip and return to same point, holding 60% Total Stock, 40% Total Bond and not rebalancing gives a virtually identical outcome to holding Vanguard Balanced Index Fund, while dropping less. Oh, and t...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 9:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Final, Definitive Thread on Rebalancing
Replies: 24
Views: 1815

Re: Safety net - VBMFX, PRPFX, VIPSX, VWINX, or Pimco

Let's look at 2008-2009, just as one indication. I also threw in Vanguard Prime Money Market, simply because Morningstar always plots the fourth fund in yellow which I find really hard to see. http://s2.postimg.org/l0dq7jtvt/Screen_Shot_2014_10_18_at_7_48_52_PM.png You need to decide what constitute...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 7:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Safety net - VBMFX, PRPFX, VIPSX, VWINX, or Pimco
Replies: 12
Views: 1903

Re: Health care tilt

...the industry is remarkably recession-proof so to speak... Are you sure about that? I'm not quite sure how to research this, nor am I sure I will get around to it, but I have the idea that the Great Depression was a fairly bad time for doctors, because nobody could afford to pay them. Check up on...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 7:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Health care tilt
Replies: 68
Views: 3059

Re: Stocks as long term investments

If he had invested $8,000 in the US Stock Market (i.e. Total Stock Market or S&P 500 index) in 1980, that 8k would have turned into $327,289 by 2013. How is that for a college tuition? Source: http://www.portfoliovisualizer.com Ahem. I tried that exercise, too. I am a very evil person and every...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 6:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stocks as long term investments
Replies: 44
Views: 2601

Re: Debit Card was hacked. Should I just use cash from now

Anyone else paying cash for everyday purchases like groceries, gas, clothing, etc? Yes. Simple and still working great after decades, go figure. :happy There are maybe a dozen of ATM machines in my local small town downtown, but only one of them dispenses anything smaller than twenties. How do you ...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 6:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Debit Card was hacked. Should I just use cash from now on?
Replies: 51
Views: 2951

Re: Kindle HDX or iPad Air?

I have the (older) Kindle Fire HD 8.9". It was a "deal" for $200. I think the screen size is the same as on the Kindle Fire HDX. My wife has an iPad Air which she received as a gift. I think a Kindle Fire HD 8.9" for $200 represents better value for the money than the iPad Air fo...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kindle HDX or iPad Air?
Replies: 17
Views: 1360

Re: Health care tilt

...Health care is a unique industry in many ways. I see it as an excellent diversifier... Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund is already 1/8 healthcare. Why is putting more of your portfolio into healthcare "diversifying" and not "concentrating?" Very seriously, what industry...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 4:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Health care tilt
Replies: 68
Views: 3059

Re: Cash in liquid savings

It's your money and your life. You need to decide what is of value to you. I don't think it's possible to avoid some "waste." And I do think it's reasonable to spend money on frivolous things that make us happy. Feeling secure isn't even frivolous, it's quite important. You need to think t...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 3:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cash in liquid savings
Replies: 13
Views: 1156

Re: "I've had it" at work - how often

Never. I've resigned twice from jobs but I don't think either really matches your description. If "never" sounds way too rosy, then, let's say, apart from the two times I was laid off, I don't think there have been six times in forty years that I have seriously gone home and seriously star...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 3:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "I've had it" at work - how often
Replies: 148
Views: 10877

Re: If those airline passengers get sick- airline stocks wil

cvault wrote:have a very VERY bad day.

And it won't just be contained to the airline sector.

What have you done just in case- OTM puts? Gone to cash? Inverse?
Gotten my flu shot to minimize my chances of being one of the 250,000 people will die of flu this season.
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 2:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If those airline passengers get sick- airline stocks will
Replies: 22
Views: 1615

Re: Stocks as long term investments

Look at all the millionaires. They all buy individual stocks and not mutual funds. To make a million bucks buy individual stock, like Warren Buffett. Steve Schullo and Dan Robertson, author of the book Late Bloomer Millionaires , made $1,514,315 by 2011 by buying mutual funds with money saved from ...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 18, 2014 2:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stocks as long term investments
Replies: 44
Views: 2601
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