Search found 444 matches

Go to advanced search

by steve r
Sat May 23, 2015 9:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's so great about simplicity?
Replies: 118
Views: 8853

Re: What's so great about simplicity?

Simplicity in and of itself has little merit. One would not suggest only owning one stock or one sector fund for the sake of simplicity. But what I found most insightful -- for my own journey and insight --- is the discussion is that simplicity can help avoid the behavioral traps associated with try...
by steve r
Fri May 08, 2015 11:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Want to invest in VWELX but costly - Mimic using two ETFs?
Replies: 16
Views: 1777

Re: Want to invest in VWELX but costly - Mimic using two ETFs?

This being the Bogleheads forum, I'd suggest that a three fund portfolio is the best place to start and then you can deviate from there ... . +1 I too must have some money with Fidelity... and Spartan is the way to go. Trying to match Wellington is problematic on may fronts. Perhaps be comfortable ...
by steve r
Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Backdoor Roth -- then pension conversion to IRA?
Replies: 3
Views: 196

Re: Backdoor Roth -- then pension conversion to IRA?

retiredjg wrote:If you plan to convert it anyway, there is no need to wait until next year. Just roll the pension into tIRA and convert. Or roll the pension directly into Roth IRA. The tax will be the same either way.

I thought, perhaps wrongly, you can do one conversion per calendar year.
by steve r
Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Backdoor Roth -- then pension conversion to IRA?
Replies: 3
Views: 196

Backdoor Roth -- then pension conversion to IRA?

I got good news today. A decade ago, my wife did a long term substitute teaching. Evidently, $1,000 was contributed to a pension fund that she is now eligible to receive. It can be: 1) rolled over to an IRA or 2) withdrawn with a ten percent penalty My preference is to avoid the $100 penalty. But, a...
by steve r
Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Money Magazine on Low Volatility Funds
Replies: 18
Views: 3104

Re: Money Magazine on Low Volatility Funds

Anyone here have thoughts about SPLV (SPDR's take on this theme)? Over its history it has delivered on its promise. It was the first of these funds to market. Performance-wise it has been very similar to USMV (my personal favorite in this space). It's ER is .25%, which is the main reason I don't us...
by steve r
Thu Mar 26, 2015 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: should I include a REIT fund with a .77 ER in my portfolio?
Replies: 5
Views: 726

Re: should I include a REIT fund with a .77 ER in my portfol

I own this fund. It is NOT a REIT or an REIT fund (index), rather an individual annuity that owns a lot of real estate products around the globe. It provides wonderful diversification. The expense ratio is not an apples to apples comparison. A REIT fund has an expense ratio to hold various REITs lik...
by steve r
Tue Mar 24, 2015 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15 vs 30 yr mortgage
Replies: 83
Views: 7750

Re: 15 vs 30 yr mortgage

Given your fixed income portion of your retirement is unlikely to earn 5.25 percent, I would go 15 year mortgage and crank up your stock holdings a touch. This assumes one can afford the higher payments. http://www.bankrate.com/calculators/savings/simple-savings-calculator.aspx steve r, This is whe...
by steve r
Tue Mar 24, 2015 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15 vs 30 yr mortgage
Replies: 83
Views: 7750

Re: 15 vs 30 yr mortgage

TS, You are making this way too complicated. It is very simple. 1) Can your investment return more than 5.25% over this 15 years period?? A) If the answer is yes, take the 30 years mortgage. B) During this 15 years period, if the return is lower than 5.25%, aka you changed your mind. You can prepay...
by steve r
Tue Mar 24, 2015 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15 vs 30 yr mortgage
Replies: 83
Views: 7750

Re: 15 vs 30 yr mortgage

The breakeven point is 5.25%.. So, can you investment return 5.25%?? If you take 15 years mortgage, after 15 years, you owed nothing. If you take 30 years mortgage, after 15 years, you owed 253K. ... If your investment return greater than 5.25%, you make money. Or else, your don't. KlangFool The bi...
by steve r
Sun Mar 15, 2015 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a Home. 30yr FRM vs. 15yrFRM vs. ARM 5/1
Replies: 32
Views: 2916

Re: Buying a Home. 30yr FRM vs. 15yrFRM vs. ARM 5/1

My 30yr FRM is at 3.49%. My 64/36 portfolio asset return average about 7.1%. So, I am not in hurry to pay off the mortgage loan. So, where is the interest rate saving?? I made 3.5% from the loan amount. ... KlangFool The OP is not borrowing at 3.75 percent to invest in stocks. The OP is borrowing t...
by steve r
Sun Mar 15, 2015 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a Home. 30yr FRM vs. 15yrFRM vs. ARM 5/1
Replies: 32
Views: 2916

Re: Buying a Home. 30yr FRM vs. 15yrFRM vs. ARM 5/1

Kids. Yes, they are expensive. But having a house paid for pre-college will be a nice help. steve, Why? I have kids going to college in a few years. Housing loan interest rate is much cheaper than student loan by a few percentage point. 30 yr FRM give a person that kind of flexibility. Interest rat...
by steve r
Sun Mar 15, 2015 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a Home. 30yr FRM vs. 15yrFRM vs. ARM 5/1
Replies: 32
Views: 2916

Re: Buying a Home. 30yr FRM vs. 15yrFRM vs. ARM 5/1

I do not think we have enough information. Is your income stable/secure(like a teacher)? If NO, I would go with the 30 year. Is your income high relative to payments? If yes. I would go with the 15 year. You can afford it. See MarcBarb's math. Every year with a 15 year mortgage is $1,000 - $2,000 mo...
by steve r
Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Consumer Cellular increases Minutes, Texts, & Data
Replies: 14
Views: 1018

Re: Consumer Cellular increases Minutes, Texts, & Data

A little sight of hand on data Data overage on the 3 gb plan now increased to 25 cents. It had been 1.5 cents. It is possible, if I am not careful and switch plans mid month, this can cost me a lot more. Before, each addition GB cost $15, now $250 (if not careful). So thanks for pointing this out to...
by steve r
Wed Feb 18, 2015 7:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone know a source showing avg. real wage in 70's vs today
Replies: 19
Views: 2101

Re: Anyone know a source showing avg. real wage in 70's vs t

FRED The Federal Reserve Board of St Louis complied over 100,000 data series http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/series/COMPRNFB They have real wage data back to 1947.https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=158710 Real hourly wages are up nearly 50 percent since the 1970s. They h...
by steve r
Wed Feb 11, 2015 9:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

Since USMV is the only one of these funds I invest in currently, I do watch it's beta. iShares has pretty consistently reported it as being around .8. Backtesting has claimed that this number should be a little lower--we'll see after the next bear market. Based on these numbers, I've been treating ...
by steve r
Mon Feb 09, 2015 8:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

.... it looks like MSCI Global Minimum Volatility uses some kind of model (GEM2) to estimate or forecast covariances. Then a practical implantation has constraints like min/max weights (0.05/1.5 pct), sector and country weights, etc. So it becomes a constrained optimization problem, which is going ...
by steve r
Mon Feb 09, 2015 2:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

Global Minimum Variance Portfolio (GMVP) is straight out of Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT). But rather than finding the Tangency Portfolio (TP), which has maximum Sharpe slope, GMVP is the tip of the Markowitz bullet. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e1/Markowitz_frontier.jpg Finding ...
by steve r
Mon Feb 09, 2015 9:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

I've argued in the past that for the person who holds, say, a 90/10 portfolio and wants less risk, the best way to do that by far is to add bonds as opposed to low volatility stocks. I suspect this is more true for someone who views risk as volatility than for someone most concerned with shortfall ...
by steve r
Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

It's worth noting that low-vol funds have more interest rate risk than the market, primarily because they are tilted toward sectors such as utilities which use more debt-financing. You can observe this in terms of the higher correlation between bond returns and low-vol returns than with market retu...
by steve r
Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

Well, in the spirit of chasing performance, I today have moved a small part of my Roth IRA into an initial stake in this fund, VMVFX... I think that doubles the number of Bogleheads who claim to be in the fund. I am curious what BH think about active management (black box) in this space versus some...
by steve r
Thu Feb 05, 2015 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Global Minimum Volatility?
Replies: 40
Views: 3215

Re: Global Minimum Volatility?

The fund has done well for two reasons: 1) Currency hedged international indexes have outperformed in recent years their unhedged counterparts. In the ETF space, HEFA outperformed EFA. 2) Minimum volatility investments -- of which I am invested in -- has outperformed on a risk adjusted basis since t...
by steve r
Wed Jan 28, 2015 1:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Critique of Fidelity Index Portfolio
Replies: 28
Views: 1572

Re: Critique of Fidelity Index Portfolio

That's the... taxable account only? Ditch the REITs and high-yield corporate bonds. .... Also, my guess is that you want FSIVX instead of FSGDX. ... Different people have different feelings about tilting total market exposure to different categories. A basic small-cap tilt, without combining with v...
by steve r
Wed Jan 28, 2015 8:58 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone know when CD rates will increase?
Replies: 70
Views: 5691

Re: Anyone know when CD rates will increase?

Nobel Prize winning economist Thomas Sargent has this prediction on interest rates (short video). Enjoy.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CF4MD5imt2U
by steve r
Thu Jan 22, 2015 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Suspend 403b contributions to cancel mortgage insurance?
Replies: 12
Views: 1234

Re: Suspend 403b contributions to cancel mortgage insurance?

Thanks for the replies. You all inspired me to check out refinancing. It looks like I can get a 3.7% fixed 15 year conventional mortgage without PMI with a total of about $2,000 in closing costs. This seems like a complete no-brainer as I can shorten the term, save interest, ditch PMI, and not touc...
by steve r
Tue Jan 20, 2015 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: why did my portfolio perform so badly in '14 ?
Replies: 13
Views: 3410

Re: why did my portfolio perform so badly in '14 ?

Just my opinion, but if you can't easily analyze your portfolio and determine why you aren't seeing the returns you'd like, it should be time to simplify. +1 3 funds or 3 funds plus (tilt small value, commodities, REITs, TIPS whatever). I do think your portfolio is hedging against inflation (with T...
by steve r
Tue Jan 20, 2015 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Suspend 403b contributions to cancel mortgage insurance?
Replies: 12
Views: 1234

Re: Suspend 403b contributions to cancel mortgage insurance?

Yes!!! Not only will you not pay PMI, you will also no longerpay interest on the amount you pay down. This is a no brainer IMHO. You may also want to refi to a 15 year mortgage to coincide with retirement. You might consider contributing a little more to stocks and a little less to bonds to your ret...
by steve r
Sun Jan 18, 2015 5:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: CAPM and Minimum Variance Portofolio
Replies: 4
Views: 542

Re: CAPM and Minimum Variance Portofolio

I would suggest starting by reviewing the Wiki and the following article. You can see favorable results back to 1926. http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Low_volatility_index_returns http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2055431 A few threads on this topic have come up in the past. I am one ...
by steve r
Sun Jan 11, 2015 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Equal Weighted Funds - Better?
Replies: 31
Views: 2851

Re: Equal Weighted Funds - Better?

I am NOT an equal weighter ... but ... 50+ years of data does make one pause. I would not refer to it as illogical. So I will make some counter arguments. 1) Risk adjusted returns--- This has already been discussed. 2) Casino -- Investors are the casino in that the odds are slightly in our favor. A ...
by steve r
Sun Jan 11, 2015 11:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frontier Communications - Horrible Experiences
Replies: 9
Views: 1495

Frontier Communications - Horrible Experiences

Recently, AT&T uverse was sold to Frontier Communications (at least in Connecticut). My service has been horrible. I will not bore you with a long list of details but my issues include dropped service attempting to switch plans -- poor customer service -- tremendously long wait hold times --- pr...
by steve r
Fri Jan 09, 2015 11:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 25
Views: 2466

Re: REITs and Rising Interest Rates

Your point number 3 is the same argument Swedroe makes in the article I linked like 15 posts up (in fact he uses the same historical example from 2003), namely that the REASON for any interest rate rise is important in determining how REITs will fare. Presumably the Fed will keep rates low until th...
by steve r
Thu Jan 08, 2015 7:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 25
Views: 2466

Re: REITs and Rising Interest Rates

Interesting discussion ... and in part what makes a market. Several points for thought. 1) If rates rise by a third, the firms weighted average cost of capital will not rise by a third. And if the REIT managers are properly hedged or use fixed rate loans, their cost may not go up at all. I think we ...
by steve r
Thu Jan 08, 2015 11:37 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 25
Views: 2466

Re: REITs and Rising Interest Rates

I think this is a case where assuming the past dictates the future, via the implication that correlations in historical data sets mean much going forward, is particularly unwise. If rates spike up now REIT's are going to get clobbered .... I think it is unwise to say this with such certainty ... yo...
by steve r
Thu Jan 08, 2015 10:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 25
Views: 2466

Re: REITs and Rising Interest Rates

There are REITs in the S&P 500 and other S&P indices. Should an indexer just own the S&P stock indices and let that determine his REIT position? I struggle with this one. The TSM / 500 way under represents the actual market cap of all commercial real estate and homes, etc. In this light...
by steve r
Thu Jan 08, 2015 9:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 25
Views: 2466

Re: REITs and Rising Interest Rates

I like the articles summary
"Using predictions of future interest rates to further make predictions of future REIT performance seems doubly silly."
by steve r
Thu Jan 08, 2015 9:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 25
Views: 2466

Re: REITs and Rising Interest Rates

Using the Simba/BH spreadsheet data
The long term annual correlation between TSM and REITS is 0.59 since 1973 (.51 since 1985 -- the spreadsheet also tests back to 1985)
REITS and total bond ... 0.21 (0.19)
REITS and long term treasuries near zero or slightly negative.
by steve r
Thu Jan 08, 2015 6:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity Customers, What Do You Hold at FIDO?
Replies: 43
Views: 4384

Re: Fidelity Customers, What Do You Hold at FIDO?

Spartan funds, almost without exception .... Then I have splits of: FSEVX (mid) FSSVX (small) FSIVX (international) FSGDX (international plus emerging) FSRVX (REIT) +1 I do think Spartan Funds are very good. No bid/ask spread, low fees, no ability to buy and sell during day are all pluses for me wh...
by steve r
Wed Jan 07, 2015 5:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: rebalance at 3% change ok?
Replies: 24
Views: 2054

Re: rebalance at 3% change ok?

I think it's a good idea to establish a schedule for rebalancing to help avoid untoward influence from pernicious truant whims. Personally I do it in October and April if an allocation is more than 3% different than plan. I think that's plenty, if not excessive. I think 3 percent is fine. For me, f...
by steve r
Wed Jan 07, 2015 11:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is "stay the course" a commandment or a suggestion?
Replies: 60
Views: 4276

Re: Is "stay the course" a commandment or a suggestion?

If we are to accept your perfectly reasonable interpretation of "stay the course" what are we supposed to make of Bogleheads luminary Rick Ferri? In case you missed the recent post on his website, and the thread discussing it on this website, he's telling us that he expects a major meltdo...
by steve r
Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is "stay the course" a commandment or a suggestion?
Replies: 60
Views: 4276

Re: Is "stay the course" a commandment or a suggestion?

I would put "stay the course" closer to a commandment then not. .... As we have seen even recently with that fascinating, but not surprising study by Fidelity the folks who did not touch, i.e. alter their accounts ended up doing better then those who did. It is very difficult for folks to...
by steve r
Mon Jan 05, 2015 8:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The Most Successful Investors Leave Their Money Alone"
Replies: 30
Views: 5496

Re: "The Most Successful Investors Leave Their Money Alone"

The irony is, the more books on personal finance I read and the more knowledgeable I become, the less there is for me to do. Now I just buy index funds and hold them till retirement. Boring! I guess I'd improve my investment returns by not buying any more personal finance books. +1 Perfect Comment ...
by steve r
Thu Jan 01, 2015 5:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with portfolio - no bonds
Replies: 12
Views: 1763

Re: Help with portfolio - no bonds

You could also look for low-volatility or minimum-volatility funds that attempt to limit market exposure (reduce beta), but note that many are heavily concentrated in defensive sectors and some have quite a high turnover, making them tax inefficient. Perhaps consider for tax-advantaged space, along...
by steve r
Tue Dec 30, 2014 6:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: current thoughts on international allocations
Replies: 4
Views: 607

Re: current thoughts on international allocations

Current thinking on international allocations is about the same -- one third (recent Vanguard paper) to one half (roughly market cap weight). I do not think current thinking has changed on EM. You are probably a touch heavier their than consensus (if there is one on this site) which is cap weight. F...
by steve r
Fri Dec 19, 2014 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: On average, how often do you check your investment balances?
Replies: 53
Views: 3573

Re: On average, how often do you check your investment balan

I put monthly ... but some months a bit more (just not weekly).
This is way down from what it was pre-Boglehead days. :happy
by steve r
Thu Dec 18, 2014 9:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Effect of 0.79 correlation: fantasy vs. reality
Replies: 58
Views: 5166

Re: Effect of 0.79 correlation: fantasy vs. reality

... If the correlation coefficient between SPY and VBR were 1.0 you could create a riskless, zero-variance portfolio. Is that something you might be interested in? Yes, I would be interested in a zero variance portfolio (of course) .... but am perplexed by how a 1.0 correlation could lead to that ...
by steve r
Thu Dec 18, 2014 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Effect of 0.79 correlation: fantasy vs. reality
Replies: 58
Views: 5166

Re: Effect of 0.79 correlation: fantasy vs. reality

... If the correlation coefficient between SPY and VBR were 1.0 you could create a riskless, zero-variance portfolio. Is that something you might be interested in? Yes, I would be interested in a zero variance portfolio (of course) .... but am perplexed by how a 1.0 correlation could lead to that ...
by steve r
Fri Dec 12, 2014 9:02 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do I split between VG & Fidelity?
Replies: 19
Views: 2274

Re: How do I split between VG & Fidelity?

If I understand your question you are asking should I have three funds in Fidelity and three funds in Vanguard. The answer is YES if you want to keep a simple three fund approach. I have a version of this approach with TIAA and Fidelity. It allows for rebalancing as needed. What Livesoft is suggesti...
by steve r
Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TBM too much treasury?
Replies: 67
Views: 4997

Re: TBM too much treasury?

I've come across a few articles ... investors should consider adding Intermediate corporate bonds to achieve a better diversification ..... There is no evidence to suggest that "corporate" bonds obtains better diversification from equities in the same set of "corporations" than ...
by steve r
Fri Oct 10, 2014 7:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance ARM to 15 year fixed with 5 years left?
Replies: 8
Views: 1160

Re: Refinance ARM to 15 year fixed with 5 years left?

I too had a similar issue. I had a seven year and switched to 15 year. I was aggressively trying to pay down the seven year ... in case rates went up I would pay a higher rate on a smaller loan. I also wanted the smallest loan on my house went kids went to college. The goal was to replace home payme...
by steve r
Sun Oct 05, 2014 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IOS 8 installed -- now I can't print
Replies: 2
Views: 412

IOS 8 installed -- now I can't print

Just updated iPads to IOS 8. Now I cannot print via "Air." Has anyone else had this problem? I called Apple and they think it is the printers fault. I do not see how this can be the case as I can still print from my PC and could print from iPads previously? Shouldn't IOS 8 be backwards com...

Go to advanced search