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by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 6:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to sell a large statue?
Replies: 16
Views: 1020

Re: How to sell a large statue?

I have very little to add here, except to say that I once sold an item for $6,000 through Sotheby's--$6,000 is what I actually netted, after the auctioneer's commission, while the buyer paid something like $10,500. Anyway, Sotheby's was able to sell it and I was moderately happy with the transaction...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 6:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging market bond funds
Replies: 14
Views: 1069

Re: Emerging market bond funds

...Does anyone have an informed opinion of the risk and returns of emerging market bonds going forward? .... No, but I have a fact about its risk in the past: it dropped 40% in less than two months in 1998. And the the Total Stock Market dropped 57% from October 2007 to March 2009. Did this make yo...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 5:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging market bond funds
Replies: 14
Views: 1069

Re: Emerging market bond funds

...Does anyone have an informed opinion of the risk and returns of emerging market bonds going forward? .... No, but I have a fact about its risk in the past: it dropped 40% in less than two months in 1998. Source: Morningstar http://s4.postimg.org/r4xgr1n9p/Captura_de_pantalla_2015_05_24_a_las_6_0...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: NASDAQ Index Fund
Replies: 2
Views: 236

Re: NASDAQ Index Fund

My reason for using an index fund is to own the stock market, all of it; to be on both sizes of every speculative transaction; to tie my personal wagon to the collective success of stock-issuing businesses; and not to seek to take money away from other speculators by outwitting them in a zero-sum ga...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 722
Views: 104674

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Very interesting the fact that it took quite a while for their achievements to be recognized by their own country. They were feted and made heroes in France before they were recognized in their own country. The Wright Brothers Hardcover – May 5, 2015 by David McCullough ... Very interesting the fac...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 11:51 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stemikger "Volatility is far from synonymous with risk."
Replies: 29
Views: 1218

Re: Stemikger "Volatility is far from synonymous with risk."

Warren Buffett [said:]...Recall, if you will, the pundits who six years ago bemoaned falling stock prices and advised investing in “safe” Treasury bills or bank certificates of deposit... Typical Buffett. In point of fact, I can't remember the pundits saying this six years ago, at least not that an...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 11:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stemikger "Volatility is far from synonymous with risk."
Replies: 29
Views: 1218

Re: Stemikger "Volatility is far from synonymous with risk."

The people who make a big deal of saying "volatility is not risk" always seem to me to be people who are trying to overcome sales resistance to volatile investments. Either you can play games with the word "risk" or you can adopt a common definition. If we are going to play games...
by nisiprius
Sun May 24, 2015 11:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why government bonds at all?
Replies: 38
Views: 2047

Re: Why government bonds at all?

...The relative performance of the mostly-corporate Vanguard Intermediate-Term Investment Grade bond fund (blue) and the Vanguard Intermediate-Term Treasury bond fund (orange) during 2008-2009 shows that pragmatic capitalists had more confidence in the Treasury than in corporations to pay their bil...
by nisiprius
Sat May 23, 2015 8:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 722
Views: 104674

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Haven't finished Count Belisarius by Robert Graves, but have also started We , by Yegeni Zamyatin--an $0.99 Kindle edition translated by one Clarence Brown. I'm not quite sure whether it's good or not, but it's fairly readable and not too long, and one of those things that's been on my to-read list ...
by nisiprius
Sat May 23, 2015 9:08 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why government bonds at all?
Replies: 38
Views: 2047

Re: Why government bonds at all?

Bonds aren't participation in anything . They are just a bill the issuer has to pay. You judge whether you want to lend money depending on how much they are willing to pay you to do it, and how confident you are that the issuer can pay their bills. If you believe the ratings: S&P's AA+, Moody's ...
by nisiprius
Sat May 23, 2015 8:49 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Will Vanguard automatically convert to Admiral class shares?
Replies: 20
Views: 1711

Re: Will Vanguard automatically convert to Admiral class shares?

It's fully automatic but it sometimes takes a while.

Perhaps it has to be done manually by someone at Vanguard and it takes them a while to get around to it, or something like that.
by nisiprius
Sat May 23, 2015 6:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not overweight international?
Replies: 35
Views: 2756

Re: Why not overweight international?

With regard to international stocks offering better inflation protection, we can look at this directly. The period 1970-1983 covers the last part of the "Death of Equities" era, when, according to BusinessWeek The one rule whose demise did the stock market in could be summed up thus: By bu...
by nisiprius
Sat May 23, 2015 5:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not overweight international?
Replies: 35
Views: 2756

Re: Why not overweight international?

...For the typical US investor, what matters is the investor's future purchasing power, not the future number of dollars in the investor's account. If currency movements match inflation then they actually help the investor since they reduce the risk in terms of the investor's purchasing power even ...
by nisiprius
Fri May 22, 2015 5:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Risk Factors: Variance Skewness Kurtosis
Replies: 9
Views: 1156

Re: Risk Factors: Variance Skewness Kurtosis

skewness/kurtosis proxies framework diminished the benefit of tilting a portfolio towards small/value/momentum. In this framework a tilt would simply mean lowering variance exposure but increasing skewness ... ...Exactly. Which means that the notion of "beating the market" by tilting is a...
by nisiprius
Fri May 22, 2015 5:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Allocation with large holding in single stock
Replies: 25
Views: 1249

Re: Allocation with large holding in single stock

...60% of their portfolio is within Apple stock that no amount of convincing will change... Try harder. Try to get them to sell it down incrementally or something. This is awful. No matter what they say now there is no way they will actually be cool with losing 60% of their portfolio. For the stock...
by nisiprius
Fri May 22, 2015 4:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not overweight international?
Replies: 35
Views: 2756

Re: Why not overweight international?

[one] rationales for holding above market-cap weighting in domestic (US) stock (or the "home-country bias") [is] that our spending in retirement will be in dollars. Why [does this rationale] support a home-country bias? Currency risk. The "bias" is built into our personal curren...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does this inflation Calculator Make Sense ???
Replies: 12
Views: 1022

Re: Does this inflation Calculator Make Sense ???

All of the online inflation calculators are regrettably vague about the exact date they are using for a year like 2014, so I'm never quite sure of the starting and endpoints for the period. When I need something precise: http://www.bls.gov/cpi/#data All Urban Consumers (Current Series) Multiscreen N...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market Cap and Value
Replies: 46
Views: 2139

Re: Market Cap and Value

backpacker, I have no answer but I like your question. ...Take momentum: You're telling me that all I have do to beat the market is performance chase faster ? ... The thing I have trouble with is that there has been belief in momentum for, I would guess, as long as there's been a stock market. Certa...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 2:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help me help my retired father -- preferred stocks
Replies: 20
Views: 1397

Re: Help me help my retired father -- preferred stocks

No good ideas...

Why doesn't he think preferred stocks have interest rate risk?
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whole life or term life?
Replies: 29
Views: 1987

Re: Whole life or term life?

Term. The insurance companies don't have any magic investments, they can't do anything better with the extra money than he can do himself. They invest it in something very safe and conservative that may or may not match what'd he'd do for himself yourself, they make it so obfuscated and intwingled t...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Teaching maths to a 4 year old
Replies: 22
Views: 1595

Re: Teaching maths to a 4 year old

P. S. I am convinced that I know why little kids like construction equipment so much, and it is not because of motors or power or anything like that. It is that a crane or a backhoe is a three-dimensional object whose spatial relations in 3D are complicated but just within the kid's spatial percepti...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Teaching maths to a 4 year old
Replies: 22
Views: 1595

Re: Teaching maths to a 4 year old

Play it by ear. Keep it fun. Don't worry about how it fits the curriculum. Don't worry about teaching the kid any specific things about math, just teaching him that there are these interesting activities that are fun to do, that his parent values. My grandson asked me a couple of months ago, "C...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 12:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Managed Payout Fund
Replies: 16
Views: 1867

Re: Vanguard Managed Payout Fund

Well, that's another factor. Yes, the stock allocation was about the same, but have been considerable revisions in the portfolio. It is an actively managed portfolio even if many of its components are index funds. One interesting details is that there were numerous press reports in 2010 that Vanguar...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Not your father's Total Bond Market Fund anymore
Replies: 60
Views: 6379

Re: Not your father's Total Bond Market Fund anymore

Doc, please comment on the relatively liquidity of government issues and corporate issues, their proportions in Total Bond and Intermediate-Term Bond Index, and whether liquidity should be a concern for bond mutual fund investors today. Yes, Total Bond has relatively less risk and less return than i...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 12:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: W. Buffett can earn 50% return, why don't you?
Replies: 31
Views: 3072

Re: W. Buffett can earn 50% return, why don't you?

according to rakamaka, Warren Buffett once wrote:...I think I could make you 50% a year on $1 million. No, I know I could. I guarantee that...
Dear Mr. Buffett. Enclosed please find $1,000,000. I will expect your check for $1,500,000 on May 21st, 2016. If you make more than that, you may keep the extra for yourself.
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 12:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond Funds in Rising Interest Rate Environment
Replies: 11
Views: 717

Re: Bond Funds in Rising Interest Rate Environment

I don't think you're missing anything. A couple of points that occur to me: a) We do not know that we are in "a rising interest rate environment." We probably are. If we had to bet I'd say we are. But we don't know. In April of 2014 Bloomberg surveyed 67 economists as to what they expected...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: a look at study using R-Squared to predict returns of funds
Replies: 9
Views: 943

Re: a look at study using R-Squared to predict returns of funds

...Larry Swedroe's link just seems to be the abstract so I can't read the actual paper... If interested, here's a link to the full paper "Mutual Fund’s R2 as Predictor of Performance": http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1319786 Thanks. OK, it's the usual problem. This is a...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 7:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Obtaining Exposure to Quality / Profitability Factor
Replies: 44
Views: 1936

Re: Obtaining Exposure to Quality / Profitability Factor

<RANT ON > I think it is really hard to take the current "factor zoo" seriously. My personal interpretation is that all of the research on factors-- including the original discovery of the "small-company effect" in 1981 and the Fama-French "value factor" in 1992--has ob...
by nisiprius
Thu May 21, 2015 7:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Managed Payout Fund
Replies: 16
Views: 1867

Re: Vanguard Managed Payout Fund

Any opinions on using this fund for steady retirement income? The important thing is that you shouldn't touch this fund UNLESS you have done your homework. In my opinion nobody buy it simply based on "I need $1,000/month, Vanguard estimates I can get 'regular' payments of 'initially' that amou...
by nisiprius
Wed May 20, 2015 1:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: a look at study using R-Squared to predict returns of funds
Replies: 9
Views: 943

Re: a look at study using R-Squared to predict returns of funds

"They found that the funds in both the lowest R2 quintile and the highest alpha quintile produced a statistically significant (at the 5 percent level) alpha of about 3.5 percent a year. The authors noted that the portfolio in the very bottom left corner of the 5-by-5 matrix was the only one of...
by nisiprius
Wed May 20, 2015 9:06 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Inserting a table or chart
Replies: 7
Views: 303

Re: Inserting a table or chart

That's right. The phpBB software has some capabilities that the forum decided not to enable, for various reasons... I wasn't in on decision but I respect their judgement . One is that they did not want to host any images themselves--that is, have anyone able to store an image within the Bogleheads w...
by nisiprius
Wed May 20, 2015 6:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2 different Cree LED Daylight 60W equivelent bulb options
Replies: 25
Views: 1862

Re: 2 different Cree LED Daylight 60W equivelent bulb options

...When a new product is created that creates societal benefits, its often quite hard for that originator to capture those benefits... +1 Even when the originator doesn't get squashed, it is often not the big winner. One would have to do a better analysis than I have the knowledge or time for, but ...
by nisiprius
Wed May 20, 2015 6:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2 different Cree LED Daylight 60W equivelent bulb options
Replies: 25
Views: 1862

Re: 2 different Cree LED Daylight 60W equivelent bulb options

...Looks like the diff is the 2700k vs the 5000k which I guess is a difference in color temperatures... whatever that mean ~2700K is the color of late sunset. ~5000K is the color of daylight. Are you crepuscular or diurnal? Do you burst into flame when exposed to real light? The only reason 2700K l...
by nisiprius
Wed May 20, 2015 5:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Optimal Asset Allocation across Investment Horizons?
Replies: 14
Views: 1336

Re: Optimal Asset Allocation across Investment Horizons?

"The results show that optimal asset allocation varies across investment horizons and depends on whether security returns are independent or auto-correlated." This is just another way of saying "optimal asset allocation varies." After the fact, you know which was best, and after ...
by nisiprius
Wed May 20, 2015 4:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One 360 Checking
Replies: 23
Views: 2248

Re: Capital One 360 Checking

I had one briefly before they had image deposit. I dropped it after about six months for two reasons. A big one was that their ATM network was thin on the ground and I had not been prepared for the fact that none of them, at least none I could find, would accept deposits. Actually at that time most ...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 6:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Target Allocations between equities and bonds - Is the reasoning sound?
Replies: 49
Views: 3375

Re: Target Allocations between equities and bonds - Is the reasoning sound?

...Your following statement really caught me off-guard and I'd be a complete hypocrite if I denied that's the case: if your goal is to maximize the expected logarithm of wealth ... Actually, I'm guilty of making a sort of in-joke, and I shouldn't have done that. But you'd need to read the intermina...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2 different Cree LED Daylight 60W equivelent bulb options
Replies: 25
Views: 1862

Re: 2 different Cree LED Daylight 60W equivelent bulb options

...Looks like the diff is the 2700k vs the 5000k which I guess is a difference in color temperatures... whatever that mean 2700°K means a nice warm light not too different from that of incandescent bulbs and very appropriate for all living areas, including living rooms. 5000°K means a distinctly co...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's so great about simplicity?
Replies: 114
Views: 7956

Re: What's so great about simplicity?

Nisiprius: Since this is a diversified buy-and-hold strategy of growing companies (typically growing top and bottom lines every quarter), the only conceivable 100% loss would be if the entire economy collapsed. How would a 3-stock portfolio perform if TSM went to zero? Does the typical lazy-portfol...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 722
Views: 104674

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Finished Lest Darkness Fall , a 1938 L. Sprague de Camp SF-unless-alternate-history-isn't-SF "classic." I read a lot of 1960s SF in the 1960s but have only sporadically resd the 1940s John-W-Campbell era stuff. It was OK. It was readable. I didn't love it or find it totally convincing. No ...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 1:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's so great about simplicity?
Replies: 114
Views: 7956

Re: What's so great about simplicity?

... I have about 10% in a "Fun Money" account...my fun money started out as 8% of my portfolio, if you get my drift... Serious question, which so far I have never seen answered by a "fun money" advocate. Do you have a firm policy, written or otherwise, about what you would do if...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living on last months income.
Replies: 33
Views: 3266

Re: Living on last months income.

I don't regard it as a formal rule or an absolute, but certainly we've done that in an approximate, mental-accounting way. We've certainly allowed ourselves to "buffer" a bit, but in principle, in deciding what we can afford, we spend from what we have already earned , not from what we thi...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your thoughts about Peter Schiff's doomsday prediction
Replies: 39
Views: 7039

Re: Your thoughts about Peter Schiff's doomsday prediction

Thanks for bumping. Alas, nobody has the exact quotation. Of course, if it doesn't have a time frame on it, it's not a prediction. http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2010/08/09/peter-schiff-were-in-the-early-stages-of-a-depress.aspx certainly sounds like he means "soon" but I don't see ...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 10:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's so great about simplicity?
Replies: 114
Views: 7956

Re: What's so great about simplicity?

How are we defining complexity in this thread? ... I don't think we have defined it outright, but I'll answer your question with a question: is anything truly complex once it's truly understood? ahdictionary.com: com·plex (kəm-plĕks, kŏmplĕks′) 1a Consisting of interconnected or interwoven parts;...
by nisiprius
Tue May 19, 2015 6:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Target Allocations between equities and bonds - Is the reasoning sound?
Replies: 49
Views: 3375

Re: Target Allocations between equities and bonds - Is the reasoning sound?

...The fact that a diversified portfolio is less risky in the long-term than cash-equivalent holdings blew my mind. That's unbelievable because I'm sure everyone here myself included would assume those investments to be the safest. That's not a fact, it's an opinion, and it's his personal opinion. ...
by nisiprius
Mon May 18, 2015 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Healthcare Sharing Ministry A No Brainer?
Replies: 49
Views: 3101

Re: Healthcare Sharing Ministry A No Brainer?

Our family uses Medishare (https://mychristiancare.org/medi-share) and have had a great experience. We use a 5000k deductible plan and it has been significantly better (less cost) than our other Obamacare options (unsubsidized) and better service than our previous goldenrule UHC. Does Medishare neg...
by nisiprius
Mon May 18, 2015 9:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Individual treasuries vs treasury funds vs CDs: Effects of interest rate changes
Replies: 5
Views: 836

Re: Individual treasuries vs treasury funds vs CDs: Effects of interest rate changes

On a CD, keep in mind that interest rate change may have some effects. 1) If interest rates rise, you will be likely to want to make an early withdrawal from the CD instead of staying locked into the low rate. Thus, you will incur a penalty. The size of the penalty is probably smaller than the decli...
by nisiprius
Mon May 18, 2015 5:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Calling card
Replies: 9
Views: 610

Re: Calling card

All the young people are handing out rather wonderful things the size and thickness of business cards that have glossy, rich, full-color artistically-rendered designs... or detailed pictures of their band, full-color and sharp as a daguerrotype... or whatever. I have no idea how you get these but th...
by nisiprius
Mon May 18, 2015 5:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Paying zero fees on a hand picked stock portfolio
Replies: 66
Views: 3933

Re: Paying zero fees on a hand picked stock portfolio

What the people claiming to be disciples of Benjamin Graham don't mention is what Benjamin Graham said in 1976. In selecting the common stock portfolio, do you advise careful study of and selectivity among different issues? In general, no. I am no longer an advocate of elaborate techniques of securi...
by nisiprius
Mon May 18, 2015 4:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Calculating the Equity Risk Premium
Replies: 12
Views: 622

Re: Calculating the Equity Risk Premium

Do not ignore the ( amazing ) paper: The Equity Premium in 150 Textbooks, P. Fernandez, 2015 I review 150 textbooks on corporate finance and valuation published between 1979 and 2009 by authors such as Brealey, Myers, Copeland, Damodaran, Merton, Ross, Bruner, Bodie, Penman, Arzac…and find that thei...
by nisiprius
Mon May 18, 2015 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TIPS: Auction vs Secondary Market
Replies: 3
Views: 293

Re: TIPS: Auction vs Secondary Market

...The FIDO rep suggested i buy the same CUSIP on secondary market because she said it would be cheaper?... That makes no sense at all, unless she's saying it's a luck-of-the-draw good-timing possibility . But it's unlikely because when you buy on the secondary market you are subject to a bid-asked...

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