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by ruralavalon
Wed May 27, 2015 8:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Evaluating my 401k elections at 25 years old
Replies: 18
Views: 1378

Re: Evaluating my 401k elections at 25 years old

I am currently contributing 12% (10% traditional, 2% Roth) to my employer 401k. They do not match until after 1 year then I'm fully vested. I thought about contributing less in order to open an IRA until they can start matching (February 2016). Thoughts? . . . . . Employer match is 5% but I'll have...
by ruralavalon
Wed May 27, 2015 8:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Updated Info: Please, Please, Please! Help Us Improve our Portfolio
Replies: 8
Views: 1082

Re: UPDATED INFO: Please, Please, Please! Help Us Improve our Portfolio

Any information on the guaranteed interest currently being paid on the Guaranteed Income Fund in his 401k? If 3% or close to that, then it's probably a good "bond" fund to select.

Also, Did I have the correct information on the funds in her 401k?
by ruralavalon
Tue May 26, 2015 4:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Starting a 401k at my First Fuill-time Job
Replies: 12
Views: 845

Re: Starting a 401k at my First Fuill-time Job

I've almost got saved up what I'd like to have as a safety liquid cash emergency fund in my bank account -I maxed out my Roth IRA this year . . . . . . . . So why am I here? I was captured by the simple 3-4 fund portfolio concept and would like to begin constructing it. For starters from what I rea...
by ruralavalon
Tue May 26, 2015 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details
Replies: 31
Views: 2732

Re: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details

Asset allocation. I would not suggest 100% stocks. Rather consider 80/20 stocks/bonds. If you put 30% of stocks in international stocks then that works out to about: 20% bonds; 25% international stocks; and 55% domestic stocks. Priority of Investments/debt payment. Our Larson Financial planner stro...
by ruralavalon
Tue May 26, 2015 7:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Updated Info: Please, Please, Please! Help Us Improve our Portfolio
Replies: 8
Views: 1082

Re: Please, Please, Please! Help Us Improve our Portfolio

Age: 35 (Her), 43 (Him) Desired Asset Allocation: 75% stocks, 25% bonds (I think) Desired International Allocation: 25% stocks (I think) In my opinion your desired asset allocation is within the range of what is reasonable, especially in light of your pension. That's a nice pension that you have. Q...
by ruralavalon
Mon May 25, 2015 6:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Starting a 401k at my First Fuill-time Job
Replies: 12
Views: 845

Re: Starting a 401k at my First Fuill-time Job

The 3 lowest expense international stock funds are: -DODGE & COX GLOBAL (DODWX) - Stock Investments - International - 0.65% -OPPENHEIMERGLOBAL I (OGLIX) - Sotck Investments - International - 0.69% -MFS INTL NEW DISC R4 (MIDJX) - Stock Investments - International - 0.84% Is Dodge & Cox Inter...
by ruralavalon
Mon May 25, 2015 3:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Starting a 401k at my First Fuill-time Job
Replies: 12
Views: 845

Re: Starting a 401k at my First Fuill-time Job

Welcome to the forum :) . Congratulations on your first full time job. I was thinking to split between FUSVX (80%) & FSITX (20%) . . . . . . . . Do to no match from the employer in 401(k) should I forgo it entirely and create a 3-4 fund portfolio within a taxable Vanguard brokerage account or wo...
by ruralavalon
Mon May 25, 2015 9:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 725
Views: 105662

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Dead Wake by Eric Larson. The last voyage of the Lusitania. Everything I have read by Larson is just top notch and this book is no exception. It gives a very nice perspective of the world right at the beginning of the Great War. Very highly recommended. 4.5/5 stars. Thank you for this recommendatio...
by ruralavalon
Mon May 25, 2015 8:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much is enough diversification?
Replies: 10
Views: 1217

Re: How much is enough diversification?

I am curious, why 10% in Japan? Why not use a more broad-based Asian index instead? This is what I wanted but I couldn't find one with an Irish domicile. They mostly seem to be either Japan only or Asia-ex Japan. The emerging markets 3 biggest weightings are china, taiwan and south Korea, so the co...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 24, 2015 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio advice needed
Replies: 3
Views: 404

Re: Portfolio advice needed

Welcome to the forum :) . My wife and I have been combing through our finances trying to determine if we can retire in 1-2 years, I would be 54, she 58. . . . . . Feeling like I should be more towards a 50/50 AA In my opinion 50/50 is a reasonable asset allocation for your age and expected retiremen...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 24, 2015 12:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much is enough diversification?
Replies: 10
Views: 1217

Re: How much is enough diversification?

I am curious, why 10% in Japan? Why not use a more broad-based Asian index instead? This is what I wanted but I couldn't find one with an Irish domicile. They mostly seem to be either Japan only or Asia-ex Japan. The emerging markets 3 biggest weightings are china, taiwan and south Korea, so the co...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 24, 2015 11:40 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio (and Bogleization from Complex- to Simplified-Diversification) Review Request
Replies: 7
Views: 509

Re: Portfolio (and Bogleization from Complex- to Simplified-Diversification) Review Request

Asset allocation The idea of bonds in an asset allocation is to reduce risk: wiki, "Never bear too much or too little risk" . At age 44 an asset allocation in the area of about 70/30 or even 60/40 would be fairly typical, " % Stocks vs Age" . A relatively modest bond allocation ...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 23, 2015 9:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio (and Bogleization from Complex- to Simplified-Diversification) Review Request
Replies: 7
Views: 509

Re: Portfolio (and Bogleization from Complex- to Simplified-Diversification) Review Request

Welcome to the forum :) . Those investments without tickers in your 401k are probably Commingled Investment Trusts (CITs), sometimes referred to as Combined Investment Trusts. Somewhere in your 401k plan documents or the 401k website you should find a "fact sheet" for each CIT. The fact sh...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 23, 2015 5:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Beginner investing
Replies: 21
Views: 1480

Re: Beginner investing

Welcome to the forum :) . Don't try to pick individual stocks or bonds to invest in. Stick to low expense mutual funds, like index funds. Your age? Your tax bracket? Any debt? If so types, amounts, and interest rates? How much do you have available to invest? Are you employed? Is a 401k or 403b offe...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 23, 2015 11:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much is enough diversification?
Replies: 10
Views: 1217

Re: How much is enough diversification?

Adding more ETFs does not necessarily add more diversification, it does add complexity. You might achieve more diversification by changing ETFs. As nesaid implies you could add to diversification by using an asia/pacific developed market ETF instead of the Japan ETF. Also you could use a small value...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 23, 2015 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 725
Views: 105662

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

April 1865 , by Jay Winik. The book explores turning points at the end of the Civil War, such as: the Union Army enters Richmond Virginia and Abraham Lincoln walks to the Confederate Capitol; Lee surrenders to Grant at Appomatox; Abraham Lincoln assasinated by John Wilkes Booth at Ford's theater; J...
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 11:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Confirming that I should not use my 401k
Replies: 18
Views: 1226

Re: Confirming that I should not use my 401k

You are right. With no match in the 401k, max out the contributions to the IRAs before even considering using the 401k.
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 10:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity 401K Help
Replies: 11
Views: 641

Re: Fidelity 401K Help

Mostly looking for some general recommends for the funds I listed. I have a lot to read up on, I'm not sure what makes sense for me. Thanks! In your IRA consider Vanguard Total International Stock Market Index Fund Admiral (VTIAX) ER 0.14%. It's superior to the Fidelity Spartan International Index ...
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 8:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Porfolio checkup, please. Risk tolerance and KISS approach
Replies: 3
Views: 400

Re: Porfolio checkup, please. Risk tolerance and KISS approach

Questions: 401(k)/ Spouse 403B I'm hopping for good returns until retirement or that the SSA doesn't go bankrupt before then. Otherwise, I need a higher paying job or pump my savings as much as I possibly can in order to be able to retire. My wife is younger, so she has a few extra years of compoun...
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 8:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International Bond fund in Three Fund Portfolio
Replies: 11
Views: 742

Re: International Bond fund in Three Fund Portfolio

I notice the Vanguard Target Retirement has 4 funds with one being the International Bond fund. If I'm interested in a three-fund portfolio do I need to worry about international bonds?---particularly with the expected rise in interest rates in the coming years. Adding international bonds adds comp...
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 8:04 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Review
Replies: 7
Views: 441

Re: Portfolio Review

Welcome to the forum :) .

Ashley1748 wrote:I am seeking review of our retirement portfolio. Thank you!

Both the asset allocation and the funds selected look fine in my opinion.
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 7:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fund Roth IRA or pay student loans?
Replies: 13
Views: 971

Re: Fund Roth IRA or pay student loans?

Welcome to the forum :) .

For that extra $1k/month, first fully fund a Roth IRA and then the remainder toward paying off your student loans in the order that you listed them.
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 7:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity 401K Help
Replies: 11
Views: 641

Re: Fidelity 401K Help

Do you have an asset allocation (stock/bond mix) that you want to aim for? Please see: wiki, "Never bear too much or too little risk".
by ruralavalon
Fri May 22, 2015 7:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details
Replies: 31
Views: 2732

Re: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details

New Clarifications: -Our monthly expenses including mortgage AND $2,000 towards the loans is $6,500-7,000/mo. -Net income after health insurance, taxes, 401K contributions is $9,600/mo -Emergency fund: We have already put away $50,000 in savings living expenses for the next 6 months. Our Larson Fin...
by ruralavalon
Thu May 21, 2015 6:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity 401K Help
Replies: 11
Views: 641

Re: Fidelity 401K Help

Welcome to the forum :) . I would stick to Fidelity Spartan funds, such as: Fidelity Spartan Total Stock Market Index Fund Advantage Class (FSTVX) ER 0.05% Fidelity Spartan U.S. Bond Index Fund Advantage Class (FSITX) ER 0.10% Fidelity Spartan International Index Fund Advantage Class FSIVX) ER 0.12%...
by ruralavalon
Thu May 21, 2015 5:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Correct Format with all funds included
Replies: 13
Views: 1342

Re: Correct Format with all funds included

Question: would it be better to just buy one fund in the PCRA and pay 49.99. I like the Lifesyte Growth Fund. 60/40. Will this do the same as the sample porttolio.. Also, I will roll over a large amount (only pay 49.99 once) All new money I will just put in the fixed account 3.5% interest. I only h...
by ruralavalon
Wed May 20, 2015 11:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Evaluating my 401k elections at 25 years old
Replies: 18
Views: 1378

Re: Evaluating my 401k elections at 25 years old

I am currently contributing 12% (10% traditional, 2% Roth) to my employer 401k. They do not match until after 1 year then I'm fully vested. I thought about contributing less in order to open an IRA until they can start matching (February 2016). Thoughts? How much (%) would you need to contribute to...
by ruralavalon
Tue May 19, 2015 2:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 22 year old looking to get started
Replies: 18
Views: 910

Re: 22 year old looking to get started

Congratulations on your recent graduation and your new job :) . An Ally savings account seems like a good place for that extra $8k for now. Take your time about any investing decision, there is no rush. Read a good book on investing, look at the "suggested reading" list on the home page, o...
by ruralavalon
Mon May 18, 2015 2:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Evaluating my 401k elections at 25 years old
Replies: 18
Views: 1378

Re: Evaluating my 401k elections at 25 years old

What is your reasoning for contributing to bonds at the age of 25? Many have told me wait until you're older. The purpose of holding a modest amount of bonds is to control your investing risk. Stocks have a higher expected return in general. " But in exchange for the hope of high return, stock...
by ruralavalon
Mon May 18, 2015 8:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With AA, Particularly International AA
Replies: 16
Views: 946

Re: Help With AA, Particularly International AA

New Contributions assuming I max out the Roth IRAs: His 401k: ~$14,500 my personal contributions I get a 50% employer match on 6% of salary, or about $3100 per year ~$14,500 Her 401k personal contributions I don’t have her matching info with me, it is something like 2% but it’s not vested for 3 yea...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 7:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With AA, Particularly International AA
Replies: 16
Views: 946

Re: Help With AA, Particularly International AA

Ok. If I do $3000 in the Roth IRAs to overcome the minimum fund requirements, then that will get me close to maxing out the 401ks. Her new 401k 00%, TRP U.S. Enhanced Bond Index Fund (PBDIX) ER 0.30% What percent did you mean to type in here? 00%. That's the current balance. Initially put all new c...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 7:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My 457(b)
Replies: 13
Views: 937

Re: My 457(b)

With no employer match, the top priority is paying off those high interest debts. Paying off 15% and 10% interest rate debts is the best "investment" for you.
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 2:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds
Replies: 20
Views: 1450

Re: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds

what is a good percentage allocation of the 3 US funds (large, mid, and small cap) that is closest to total US market index? 82%, Vanguard Institutional Index Fund Institutional Shares (VINIX) 11%, Vanguard s & p mid-cap 400 index fund institutional shares (VSPMX) 07%, Vanguard s & p small-...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With AA, Particularly International AA
Replies: 16
Views: 946

Re: Help With AA, Particularly International AA

Congratulations on the baby this fall :) . I personally would max out the 401ks rather than filling up the Roth IRAs, preferring the current tax deduction over a future tax benefit. It really depends on your anticipated retirement income and expected tax rate in retirement. If you expect large pensi...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 1:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: On a Scale of 1 - 10.. [Portfolio evaluation]
Replies: 34
Views: 2284

Re: On a Scale of 1 - 10.. [Portfolio evaluation]

You are right BOgle7979, you should leave the emergency fund out of the asset allocation for long-term investing.

I don't thik that you are unnecessarily using extra mutual funds.

EDIT , corrected spelling.
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 12:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Now what? [Next step after emergency fund is funded]
Replies: 10
Views: 1010

Re: Now what?

Right now I'm a student, I do bring in 2500.00/MO tax-exempt income. Pretty much have low overhead right now so I opened up a Vanguard STAR Fund and right now I have 100/MO going into it right now. The rest has been getting thrown into my EF, but once I accumulate a months expenses + cushion I'm go...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With AA, Particularly International AA
Replies: 16
Views: 946

Re: Help With AA, Particularly International AA

This example is 80/20 stock/bond, about 30% stocks in international. It assumes using the new Roths as "mini portfolios". Her new 401k 00%, TRP U.S. Enhanced Bond Index Fund (PBDIX) ER 0.30% His 401k 20%, Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund Admiral (VBMFX) ER 0.07% 05%, Vanguard Total St...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 7:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My 457(b)
Replies: 13
Views: 937

Re: My 457(b)

Welcome to the forum :) . You have some nice funds offered in your plan, even with the tacked on administrative fee. I am a 26 year old who works for Multnomah County in Portland, Oregon. I currently make about $73,000 a year, and have about $11,000 in debt that I am working on paying off at this ti...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 7:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Now what? [Next step after emergency fund is funded]
Replies: 10
Views: 1010

Re: Now what?

With your emergency fund fully funded, and a month's worth of expenses in a checking account, then:
1) contribute enough to your 401k to get the full employer match;
etc.
Wiki article, "Prioritizing investments".
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 7:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Post tax investing or Pay off 2.95% Mortgage?
Replies: 39
Views: 3619

Re: Post tax investing or Pay off 2.95% Mortgage?

My suggestion for you is to start a taxable account using very tax-efficient total market type stock index funds. With the tax deduction your effective mortgage interest rate is extremely low, and you are on track to have it zeroed out in your mid-50s. Having taxable investing gives you a lot of fin...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 6:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Correct Format with all funds included
Replies: 13
Views: 1342

Re: Correct Format with all funds included

What percentage of the total is in his Roth IRA? What percentage of the total is in her Roth IRA? A brokerage feature will ordinarily have an annual fee, a per transaction free (commission), or sometimes both. A per transaction fee (commission) of $49.99 seems very high to me, it may be too high for...
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 6:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 725
Views: 105662

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

The Borders, by Allistair Moffat. The England/Scotland border from pre-history to the 21st Century, interesting myth and then history. Very detailed, and fun to read.
by ruralavalon
Sun May 17, 2015 6:19 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please help me with my 401k 31 year old single male
Replies: 15
Views: 1340

Re: Please help me with my 401k 31 year old single male

40%, Fidelity Spartan 500 Index Fund Advantage Class (FUSVX) ER 0.05% .050% 15%, Northern Mid Cap Index Fund (NOMIX) ER 0.15% GROSS ER 1.23% NET ER 1.00% 25%, Oppenheimer International Growth Fund Class Y (OIGYX) ER 0.89%, The "fund documents" are blank for this. 20%, Dodge & Cox Inco...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 16, 2015 10:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With AA, Particularly International AA
Replies: 16
Views: 946

Re: Help With AA, Particularly International AA

Option C. Use $11k for Vanguard Total International in the Roth IRAs. Because the goal is to attempt to mimic Vanguard Total International, for the remaining $13k combine in your 401k: 85%, $11k, Dodge & Cox International Stock (DODFX) ER 0.64%; and 15%, $2k, DFA International Small Company (DFI...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 16, 2015 10:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: On a Scale of 1 - 10.. [Portfolio evaluation]
Replies: 34
Views: 2284

Re: On a Scale of 1 - 10.. [Portfolio evaluation]

I give the portfolio a 9+. I think that the emergency fund is a bit large, also I would not overweight emerging markets. An approximate 80/20 asset allocation is within the range of what is reasonable for age 30, and I think around 30% of stocks in international is within reason. The fairly large nu...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 16, 2015 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 725
Views: 105662

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

I finally got around to Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail—but Some Don't . For me there was nothing particularly novel or new that I learned, since I've taken several undergraduate and graduate courses in probability and statistics (though most of that forgotten) ...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 16, 2015 8:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please help me with my 401k 31 year old single male
Replies: 15
Views: 1340

Re: Please help me with my 401k 31 year old single male

It's good to hear you have gotten your debt paid off. That's always a good way to start in my opinion. I believe I'd rather go for stocks than bonds. While bonds are safer, don't stocks have a possible higher return? In a portfolio, bonds reduce your investing risk. In general please see: wiki, &quo...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 16, 2015 6:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds
Replies: 20
Views: 1450

Re: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds

Roth Ira: $5000 in vanguard money market Expect to add additional per year: 10000 Spouse: not working. No ira, roth ira etc 5% taxable account 40% cds @ 2 - 3 % 55% 401k @ 5% fixed You omitted your Roth IRA when you did the percentages of the total portfolio. Please recalculate the percentages of t...
by ruralavalon
Sat May 16, 2015 1:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds
Replies: 20
Views: 1450

Re: 401k - Vanguard mutual funds

Thanks all. Pardon my non-standard formatted question. I have now added more information to the original post. It is often best to a look at all counts together as a single unified portfolio. Does your spouse have a work-based account like a 401k, 403b? If so what is in it? Does your spouse have an...

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