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Re: 500K Sitting in a Bank Account

If there's 500k in one bank account, does that mean you are beyond the FDIC insurance limits? If so, I'd put it in several CDs, possibly a ladder, in different institutions. They should be titled in some logical manner, but that requires some conversation in the family.
by scone
Thu Jul 24, 2014 1:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 500K Sitting in a Bank Account
Replies: 17
Views: 972

Re: Primer on slice and dice alternatives to total bond mark

Apart from my Stable Value fund, which has some mediocre credits, I use 3 Fido Treasury funds: FSBAX (short), FIBAX (intermediate) and FLBAX (long). The weighted average duration is about 4.5 years, including Stable Value. I have played with various allocations within Treasuries on the Simba backtes...
by scone
Thu Jul 24, 2014 12:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Primer on slice and dice alternatives to total bond market?
Replies: 7
Views: 249

Re: Slice and Dicers -- Plans when you can't manage it anymo

If you are incapacitated, someone will have too look after it whether it's 3 funds or 15. If the person doing that job can't or won't do it properly, then someone else should-- again, no matter how many slices there are. Personally, I slice, and I've trained my husband so he knows the theory and can...
by scone
Tue Jul 22, 2014 1:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Slice and Dicers -- Plans when you can't manage it anymore?
Replies: 38
Views: 2135

Re: Bond funds- your percentage of intermediate vs. short-te

This isn't a recommendation per se, but I hold 30% stock, so obviously my portfolio is dominated by the bond allocation. I have about 15% in Stable Value, which has a duration of about 3 years, IIRC. (My SV is a right royal PITA, so let's not even go there.) The rest is now split among the three Fid...
by scone
Tue Jul 22, 2014 9:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond funds- your percentage of intermediate vs. short-term?
Replies: 12
Views: 1109

Re: How would you handle this situation if it was you.

I was sort of in a similar situation, back in the 70s. I had scholarships and grants to a good school, but the the oil shock hit and my tuition doubled. I had to leave school, go to work, and live pretty rough for years. I finally got back to school, but it took me 8 years to finish. At times I had ...
by scone
Mon Jul 21, 2014 5:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How would you handle this situation if it was you.
Replies: 15
Views: 1922

Re: Stable Value Fund vs Total Bond Market

I'm not thrilled with our SV. It's basically a mix of short term Treasuries and short term corporates, MBS, and CMBS, with a smattering of other stuff, including hedge funds, private equity, and other questionable "alternative investments." There's nt guaranteed minimum payout. Right now i...
by scone
Mon Jul 21, 2014 1:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stable Value Fund vs Total Bond Market
Replies: 27
Views: 2119

Re: Much risk in moving into FSBAX or FSHBX?

FSBAX is a straightforward Treasury fund with a low expense ratio. FSHBX holds many different types of shorter term bonds, with a much higher expense ratio. On balance, I'd say FSHBX is riskier, so it might pay better, maybe even keeping up with inflation after expenses. That's maybe. FSBAX has less...
by scone
Sat Jul 19, 2014 10:55 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Much risk in moving into FSBAX or FSHBX?
Replies: 5
Views: 410

Re: Do any bogleheads hold the "Larry Portfolio?"

I'd say mine is strongly influenced by the Larry Portfolio, although I have more slices, like Paul Merriman, because I'm looking for less tracking error. So the tilt isn't as strong as the "LP." It's 30% stock and 70% bonds. Like so: Stock: 3% Large Cap Blend 3% Large Cap Value 3% Small Ca...
by scone
Sat Jul 19, 2014 7:42 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do any bogleheads hold the "Larry Portfolio?"
Replies: 18
Views: 2370

Re: Economics 101

Start here. Read the entire entry carefully, and the links. At some point you should read the original works. Then you'll need some background in statistics. But don't imagine all this will make you a better investor, necessarily. It will make you a better educated human being, which is worthwhile i...
by scone
Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:05 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Learning about] Economics 101
Replies: 37
Views: 2568

Re: A question for the Bogleladies or those who can consult

Nordstrom has an excellent lingerie department with fitters who actually have a clue. Wacoal is a good brand, their stuff lasts and it's not tacky. ETA: this is one area where spending a little more pays off in less back pain, more comfort, and maybe even better posture. You can see the results of p...
by scone
Mon Jul 14, 2014 7:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A question for the Bogleladies or those who can consult one
Replies: 70
Views: 5329

Re: Anyone here flip houses?

Unless you do a lot of the work yourself, you likely won't make much money. Living on a construction site to get the tax break can be pretty brutal, and that goes double for relationships. You can get "killed by the carry" if the market turns against you, and it can turn in a matter of wee...
by scone
Mon Jul 14, 2014 3:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone here flip houses?
Replies: 40
Views: 4452

Re: High end purses

If I have to replace a bag every year, that costs me time, which is not valueless. A massive wardrobe of cheap disposable goods costs a lot of time and costs more in maintenance. I suspect this is one reason Jack Bogle relies on his tribal preppie uniform of navy blazer, khakis, loafers, etc. The un...
by scone
Sat Jul 12, 2014 11:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: High end purses
Replies: 119
Views: 10799

Re: Two kinds of people.

TxAg: There are two kinds of people: Inner-directed and outer-directed . Outer-directed are the people who buy flashy handbags to impress others. I prefer inner-directed people like Jack Bogle (who wears a $17 wrist-watch). Best wishes. Taylor At a certain level of wealth, you can do whatever you w...
by scone
Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: High end purses
Replies: 119
Views: 10799

Re: High end purses

$300-$500 gets you a mid-range mall brand, not high end. The high end ladies are playing a complex social signaling game which gets them certain privileges, like a certain seat at a restaurant. and better business contacts. For many jobs in fashion, marketing, design, and even real estate, this sort...
by scone
Sat Jul 12, 2014 7:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: High end purses
Replies: 119
Views: 10799

Re: My house just flooded

I'm sorry to hear of all this, house troubles are very upsetting, aren't they? But this too shall pass. The poster who wrote "document everything" is correct, you need to take pictures of the damage and keep records of every conversation you have with the water people. In the long run, if ...
by scone
Fri Jul 11, 2014 7:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My house just flooded
Replies: 13
Views: 1983

Re: International exposure: does it really help?

I'm absolutely counting on those efficient frontier worms to squirm around. Diversification means I don't know how the worm will turn, so I choose to place my bets across the board. And then there's the bond side. Whether you use CDs, the AGG, or Treasuries, you are already making a big bet on the U...
by scone
Wed Jul 09, 2014 7:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International exposure: does it really help?
Replies: 75
Views: 7284

Re: $47,000 cash now or $330 per month for life

If someone is making a promise, then you have to think about whether you can trust that person to keep the promise. If the person has little credibility, the cash is obviously preferable. But even if the person has a lot of credibility now, things can change, and you may have a long life. It gets co...
by scone
Wed Jul 09, 2014 5:32 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $47,000 cash now or $330 per month for life
Replies: 33
Views: 4914

Re: International exposure: does it really help?

I suppose if you had a tiny amount of money at risk, international exposure might not be worth it. But if it's a large sum, then betting on one country alone strikes me as a very bad idea. And the idea that correlations are rising, therefore there's no point in seeking diversification, doesn't make ...
by scone
Wed Jul 09, 2014 5:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International exposure: does it really help?
Replies: 75
Views: 7284

Re: Merton: 401(k) retirement plans face crisis

Why would a corporation offer this option? What's their incentive? They have been trying to get away from pensions for years, and this product looks a lot like a pension. It also has a whiff of "guaranteed income" to it, which sounds like the corporation itself is offering some sort of gua...
by scone
Wed Jul 09, 2014 4:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Merton: 401(k) retirement plans face crisis
Replies: 188
Views: 16836

Re: Is Market on "Wrong Side of History"?

This is a zombie meme-- it's been going around for years, and the people who bought into it have been thoroughly screwed. Never make investment decisions based on politics.
by scone
Wed Jul 09, 2014 1:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is Market on "Wrong Side of History"?
Replies: 22
Views: 2682

Re: Reusable crates for moving

I've used plastic bins with lids, and that has worked out well, except for the Rubbermaid bins, which cracked. The bins that have survived were some no-name generic from Bed, Bath, and Beyond. I also used a lot of Home Depot cardboard boxes, and they have served well. I would also advise getting a r...
by scone
Tue Jul 08, 2014 3:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reusable crates for moving
Replies: 8
Views: 832

Re: POLL: Are You Re-Balancing?

I was all set to rebalance the other day, and then the markets went down. Never mind. :?
by scone
Tue Jul 08, 2014 3:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: POLL: Are You Re-Balancing?
Replies: 70
Views: 4950

Re: POLL: How Old is Your Newest Motor Vehicle? -- REVISED

Bert, the Honda CR-V, is 8 years old, replacing a 20 year old Acura Integra with over 500,000 miles. :D
by scone
Tue Jul 08, 2014 6:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: How Old is Your Newest Motor Vehicle? -- REVISED
Replies: 51
Views: 2968

Re: In Which Theories Should I Have Confidence?

Opinion is divided, and long may this happy state continue. If it were not, the markets would not work . It's not like science, where you can (sometimes) get to the one correct answer to a problem. It's more like the rest of the liberal arts, perhaps relying on a different standard of evidence. Thin...
by scone
Tue Jul 08, 2014 6:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: In Which Theories Should I Have Confidence?
Replies: 43
Views: 4212

Re: When you retire you plan to?

I'm planning to build a small energy efficient home on land we bought in Kennebunkport, Maine. We hope to spend the winters with family in Australia or Europe. Less than three years to retirement. Steady as she goes! :happy
by scone
Tue Jul 08, 2014 6:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When you retire you plan to?
Replies: 44
Views: 3359

Re: The Risk of Short-term Bond Funds

I'd prefer to be intermediate altogether, but I'm pretty much forced to hold Stable Value in the 401k. So that means I'm carrying a substantial amount of short bonds. Does this mean I should go a little longer with the rest of the bond allocation? Which brings up the question, what exactly is interm...
by scone
Wed Jul 02, 2014 2:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Risk of Short-term Bond Funds
Replies: 152
Views: 10135

Re: What is the risk of having too much house

Former Bay Area resident here. The problem is, you are essentially concentrating a large portion of your net worth in one small geographic area-- and it's prone to boom and bust cycles. Also earthquakes, tsunamis, and fire. OTOH, rents are high. My DH and I solved this dilemma years ago by moving ou...
by scone
Wed Jun 25, 2014 6:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the risk of having too much house
Replies: 51
Views: 4504

Re: Improving upon index funds

O.K., let me see if I understand the problem. Let's say an index is basically a rule based system for buying and selling. something like an algorithm. And let's say a structured portfolio is like an index, but adds some more rules-- a new and improved algorithm. So why wouldn't the designers of indi...
by scone
Tue Jun 17, 2014 6:52 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Improving upon index funds
Replies: 16
Views: 1821

Re: Boston or south Boston chapter

I would love to attend and help represent New Hampshire. Live free or die! :happy
by scone
Sun Jun 15, 2014 7:05 pm
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Boston or south Boston chapter
Replies: 96
Views: 3651

Re: With no children, who will take care of my finances?

We have trusted relatives, but they live on the other side of the planet. They don't know American law, and one is an Aspie. In any case, since they are our age, they might be in need of care themselves, when the time comes. I've been thinking about this a lot, but I don't have a good solution. Almo...
by scone
Sun Jun 15, 2014 1:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: With no children, who will take care of my finances?
Replies: 53
Views: 5704

Re: POLL: Do/did you get a match? How much?

No match, just profit sharing, which varies a lot year to year. The company places this money in a separate account, with horrible investment choices, the least bad being a Stable Value fund with .32% ER. (OTOH, the account we contribute to has almost unlimited choices.) I suspect the company has re...
by scone
Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:18 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: Do/did you get a match? How much?
Replies: 67
Views: 4176

Re: What Do You Eat For Snacks?

Cashews, because of the carbs and trace minerals. When I'm really busy and can't eat, cashews get me through without sugar crashes.
by scone
Fri Jun 13, 2014 9:31 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Do You Eat For Snacks?
Replies: 103
Views: 6213

Re: investing international, why & how much

I use VSS and iShares IEIS for international small. IEIS has the new hotness-- "quality"-- as well as size and value. I'm looking forward to seeing how it does in the future. :happy
by scone
Wed Jun 11, 2014 9:07 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: investing international, why & how much
Replies: 51
Views: 4546

Re: Bernstein: A Decade of Super-Low Returns [1.4% for 60/40

I'm taking Pascal's Wager on Bill's estimate. If I'm wrong, I forego some luxuries I don't care much about anyway. If I'm right, I'll be very glad to avoid eating cat food in my old age. I'm also tilting more to international and factors, in an attempt to have my cake and eat it too. Will that work ...
by scone
Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: A Decade of Super-Low Returns [1.4% for 60/40]
Replies: 207
Views: 17124

Re: Poll: Luxury and Happiness

The sort of things middle class and upper middle class people buy in America today aren't really luxuries, they are just cost-engineered commodities with lots of features-- noisy gadgets with a lot of flashing lights, things that consume time and effort, almost more than they save. Our houses, cars,...
by scone
Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll: Luxury and Happiness
Replies: 141
Views: 8059

Re: [short term job that's] easy to get and pays well?

I thought I had a post in there mentioning construction, coding (programming) and the military. Maybe it didn't post. In any case, for construction I was thinking of simple casual labor, at the "helper" level. I've got some high school and college kids working for me right now doing that t...
by scone
Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [short term job that's] easy to get and pays well?
Replies: 44
Views: 4925

Re: How to Invest Excess Cash?

Since you already have your needs covered and plenty of money in stocks and bonds, maybe it's time to consider alternatives. For example, if it were my money I'd look at buying a cabin on a fishing lake or a beach, something the whole family would enjoy. Or maybe you could consider some timberland, ...
by scone
Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Invest Excess Cash?
Replies: 6
Views: 703

Re: does it make sense to buy our retirement home now

I'm in this situation. Instead of buying a house, with all the costs, we bought a piece of land. Raw land taxes are very low in the area, but we have "hedged" a good portion of the total price of the project. I'd rather build new going into retirement, so I can design for accessibility and...
by scone
Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: does it make sense to buy our retirement home now
Replies: 16
Views: 1614

Re: Large Amount in Personal Savings - scared to invest

I'm fairly risk averse, but I need to make some sort of real (after inflation and taxes) return, so I use a 30% stock allocation. Inside that allocation I have about half in international stocks. There is also a small allocation to real estate investment trusts. The day to day volatility of this ass...
by scone
Sat May 31, 2014 2:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Large Amount in Personal Savings - scared to invest
Replies: 48
Views: 5145

Re: Why have Treasury Bonds been such good diversifiers late

Treasuries are always good diversifiers, they are a massive, extremely liquid market. They have been the global "flight to quality" and "flight to liquidity" security for many years. Whereas some of the bonds in Total Bond are not nearly as liquid, and don't have the same credity...
by scone
Sat May 31, 2014 9:48 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why have Treasury Bonds been such good diversifiers lately?
Replies: 8
Views: 1007

Re: Swedroe's New Book

The big takeaway I got from the "Larry Portfolio" idea in all its permutations: it is designed to reduce your chances of catastrophic loss. So if you are investing for retirement, it reduces the chance of poverty in old age. The price of this extra bit of security is, you also reduce the c...
by scone
Fri May 30, 2014 7:00 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Swedroe's New Book
Replies: 76
Views: 11956

Re: Convincing a parent to retire

My endocrinologist is 77 and really does not want to retire, it's a big part of his identity. He doesn't even want to talk about a succession plan. But he is easing up a bit by working only four days a week, opening at 10 a.m., and taking an hour's lunch. I expect he will cut back to three days a we...
by scone
Thu May 29, 2014 3:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Convincing a parent to retire
Replies: 19
Views: 3113

Re: I need some "hand-holding" right now...

I understand your fear-- I yanked my money out of the market during the crash. But eventually, I sort of forced myself to get back in. The way I see it, there aren't really any good alternatives for me, as I do not believe in the "solutions" offered by the tinfoil hat brigade. A stash of g...
by scone
Sun May 25, 2014 1:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I need some "hand-holding" right now...
Replies: 51
Views: 5333

Re: Fidelity Brokerage Link

There's no catch, it's just an ordinary trading platform. You can buy mutual funds, ETFs, individual bonds, and brokered CDs. The software interface is a little awkward, but it works. The best thing about it is the Guided Portfolio Summary, which tells you your asset allocation, overall bond duratio...
by scone
Fri May 23, 2014 5:26 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Brokerage Link
Replies: 12
Views: 785

Re: Is now a bad time to invest?

It will never, ever be "safe" to invest. Stocks and bonds pay you to take real risk. That risk will always "show up" sooner or later, and you will lose money. Breathtaking amounts of money. And no one can tell you with certainty when the crash will come. You just have to accept t...
by scone
Tue May 20, 2014 6:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is now a bad time to invest?
Replies: 100
Views: 8474

Re: International Small Cap Value

I use iShares IEIS. It's active, but has the new hotness: "combination of quality, value, and size factors."

http://www.ishares.com/us/products/2609 ... allcap-etf
by scone
Thu May 15, 2014 6:18 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International Small Cap Value
Replies: 16
Views: 1519

Re: Help with Patio! -- Pavers v. Concrete

If I lived in a warm climate without earthquakes, I would consider poured concrete, but up here in New Hampshire I would lay pavers loose over packed, well-drained gravel. Either that or build a deck on a foundation that goes well below the frost line. The cracking, spalling, and massive frost heave...
by scone
Tue May 13, 2014 8:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help with Patio! -- Pavers v. Concrete
Replies: 25
Views: 2349

Re: Looking for one-of-a-kind London experience for wife

How about a stay on a renovated canal narrowboat named Jessie in London's Little Venice?

https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/107051
by scone
Sat May 10, 2014 3:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for one-of-a-kind London experience for wife
Replies: 39
Views: 1817

Re: Part 2 of the international bond post

I can think of one compelling reason to hold international bonds-- if you are a foreign national and want to avoid getting hit by the exchange rate. We will likely be holding Australian (and possibly UK) bonds and cash after we retire, since we will be living overseas for part of the year. And if we...
by scone
Sat May 10, 2014 11:41 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Part 2 of the international bond post
Replies: 16
Views: 1461

Re: Federal reserve balance sheet may take 5-8 years to shri

In other words, with the MM collapsing during the crisis it was critical that the FED expand MB or the MS would have collapsed, and with MS falling and V falling the GNP would have collapsed and Roubini would have been right, we would have had the next Great Depression. Indeed. I'm not sure people ...
by scone
Sat May 10, 2014 11:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Federal reserve balance sheet may take 5-8 years to shrink
Replies: 41
Views: 4073
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