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Re: Please Help with 401K Investment Options

I see your plan is administered through Fidelity. You need to click on the tab labeled Fees, second from the right, to see the costs for each fund. But the Spartan indexes are probably your best bet.
by telemark
Sun Sep 21, 2014 8:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please Help with 401K Investment Options
Replies: 5
Views: 382

Re: Leeraar's Three-Holding Portfolio

I think the problem with balanced and target funds in taxable is not so much that they contain bonds as it is the daily rebalancing which generates taxable events. Your plan avoids this, but you will still need to rebalance occasionally and now you need a spreadsheet to do it. Not sure how that is a...
by telemark
Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Leeraar's Three-Holding Portfolio
Replies: 27
Views: 1931

Re: What are the components of inflation?

Inflation: too much money sloshing around and driving prices up.

Deflation: the money gets trapped in deep puddles from which it can't escape, leading prices to fall.

See? It is simple :D
by telemark
Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are the components of inflation?
Replies: 33
Views: 1618

Vanguard web site now showing daily change as %

I complained some time ago that Vanguard's web site only showed daily changes in dollar amounts, e.g. fund XYZZY is up $0.13, FNORD is down $2.12, etc. Just noticed that they now show both the dollar amount and the percentage change, which I personally find much more useful. Good job Vanguard!
by telemark
Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard web site now showing daily change as %
Replies: 2
Views: 636

Re: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?

From an epistemological standpoint, an unfalsifiable theory is meaningless. I agree, but the thing to remember is that investing is not a science. You can't do repeatable experiments, studies of the past are highly sensitive to the period chosen, and we can't even be certain that the rules don't ch...
by telemark
Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:45 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?
Replies: 109
Views: 7445

Re: We have a grocery problem... [Household budget]

He's not a cooker - he can do easy things like things from a box and can grill, but he does not know how to make big meals (his dinner almost every night when he was a bachelor was hamburger helper) and we cannot grill at our apartment. He makes breakfast though. Sounds a lot like me :happy One sug...
by telemark
Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: We have a grocery problem... [Household budget]
Replies: 126
Views: 7750

Re: New and Trying to Make Good Decisions

Those are great 401K plans. I wish mine was that good. In your place I would be trying to move some of your cash on hand into the 401K plans. You can't do this directly, but you can get the same effect indirectly by maxing your 401K contributions and spending down the cash to make up the difference.
by telemark
Fri Sep 19, 2014 12:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New and Trying to Make Good Decisions
Replies: 17
Views: 1190

Re: What Movie Have You [Recently] Watched?

We have recently watched a couple of Netflix sub-titled foreign movies. One was a 1997 German film "Comedian Harmonists". We were inspired to view this film by the recent Barry Manilow musical "Harmony" that we happened to see about the same 1920's/30's group. JW Netflix recomme...
by telemark
Thu Sep 18, 2014 9:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 105
Views: 4415

Re: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?

Alex, I guess I just get tired of the one-liner posts that say "Stay the course" or "Tune out the news". Those kind of posts tend to overshadow the more thoughtful posts that do point to more variety in Boglehead investing. So I guess I was just railing against the stereotype, n...
by telemark
Thu Sep 18, 2014 8:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?
Replies: 109
Views: 7445

Re: Inflation Bonds - Staying the Course?

Rebalancing as needed. I own TIPS as a diversifier, so will happily buy more if the price drops.

As for the Yahoo article, I would treat that as noise. We've seen a lot of very wrong predictions about inflation, especially when the Fed is involved, and this sounds like more of the same.
by telemark
Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Inflation Bonds - Staying the Course?
Replies: 43
Views: 3103

Re: Convert from Investor to Admiral?

You can convert it manually as described, or if you wait long enough Vanguard will do it for you. I don't remember what the waiting period, as I usually get excited and convert as soon as possible :)
by telemark
Wed Sep 17, 2014 1:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Convert from Investor to Admiral?
Replies: 6
Views: 830

Re: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?

In the future, people will not own any mutual funds or stocks and bonds in their retirement accounts. There will be no asset allocation or rebalancing to worry about. No small-cap value vs. total stock market. No 100% stocks vs. age in bonds. No glide paths, safe-withdrawal rates, lazy portfolios, ...
by telemark
Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:18 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?
Replies: 109
Views: 7445

Re: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?

The whole point of Boglehead investing is "getting your fair share." By definition, before costs, only 50% of the money can beat the market. Once we take into consideration index funds cost less than active funds, on average, index funds MUST outperform active funds. This is a rather stro...
by telemark
Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:11 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?
Replies: 109
Views: 7445

Re: Very lost on random inherited bonds in portfolio

Boglegrappler wrote: You have what amounts to a two year note with a 6% + coupon, a five year note at 5.72, and a three year note at 5.70.

Far better than you can get with the junkiest of high yield bonds. If you had the opportunity to buy new fixed income today at these yields, would you take it?
by telemark
Tue Sep 16, 2014 5:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Very lost on random inherited bonds in portfolio
Replies: 8
Views: 633

Re: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?

A large majority of active managers outperforming the index, after fees, would be pretty decisive, but I don't much expect to see that. On the other hand, I already know I'm wrong, in the sense that I'm not 100.00000% correct, and that my portfolio is not optimal. Fortunately I'm content to be satis...
by telemark
Tue Sep 16, 2014 4:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What evidence would prove the Boglehead mentality wrong?
Replies: 109
Views: 7445

Re: External backup drives - Seagate vs Western Digital

I don't have any personal experience, but I notice the Wirecutter recommends buying an empty NAS enclosure and filling it with drives you buy separately. They explain their reasoning here http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/zyxel-nsa310-best-cheap-nas/
by telemark
Mon Sep 15, 2014 4:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: External backup drives - Seagate vs Western Digital
Replies: 43
Views: 2674

Re: Glitchy Web-Browsing

retiredjg wrote:I have a couple of user accounts. I tried them and the guest account - all have the problem.

Ok, that eliminates user settings, so it's probably something with your new ISP, or possibly your wifi network. Did your new provider give you a new router or modem?
by telemark
Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Glitchy Web-Browsing
Replies: 21
Views: 996

Re: Glitchy Web-Browsing

Create a new OS X user account, log in to that, and see if you have the same problems there. This should tell us if the problem is something in your user settings or, as seems more likely, something to do with your new "internet source." To create a new account, go to System Preferences an...
by telemark
Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Glitchy Web-Browsing
Replies: 21
Views: 996

Re: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky

Did your professor also mention Galloping Gertie ? I don't remember him doing so but I watched a great documentary on it. To be fair to the designers they were really pushing the state of the art at that time, still it stands as a pretty substantial warning not underestimate the value of safety fac...
by telemark
Sat Sep 13, 2014 9:53 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky
Replies: 119
Views: 9549

Re: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky

When I was going to college for engineering back in the early 90s I had a professor who described the profession this way "An engineer is someone who can do for $1 what any idiot could do for $2". His classic example was bridge building since you could build a bridge fairly simply by drop...
by telemark
Fri Sep 12, 2014 7:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky
Replies: 119
Views: 9549

Re: The dangerous practice of rebalancing...

The dangerous practice of rebalancing hasn't only been blessed by Congress, but has been mandated by law. The Pension Protection Act of 2006 specifies that those with 401(k)'s who don't make an investment choice are forced into one of the following: These are strange new meanings for mandated and f...
by telemark
Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The dangerous practice of rebalancing...
Replies: 188
Views: 12877

Re: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky

MPT is a useful framework for thinking about investments and markets, even though it is almost certainly not correct in every detail. As one speaker at an engineering conference I attended said in a plenary lecture, "A theory doesn't have to be right to be useful." Not completely right, a...
by telemark
Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky
Replies: 119
Views: 9549

Re: Citi: Just use leverage for 10% bond returns

If you want to see the effects of bond leverage, about 5x or 6x, just follow some mortgage reits. A mortgage reit ETF is MORT. Paul Hilarious ticker symbol if you speak French. :) Made me look :happy According to Google , mortgage derives from the old French for "death pledge." Further br...
by telemark
Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Citi: Just use leverage for 10% bond returns
Replies: 28
Views: 2959

Re: Good Modern Science Fiction

Jack Vance is not exactly "modern" -- though he was publishing into the 2000s when he was in his 90s. Still, I cannot recommend him highly enough. He's one of that rare cadre of science fiction writers who are remarkable for their writing ability as well as for their ideas. A unique Engli...
by telemark
Thu Sep 11, 2014 6:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good Modern Science Fiction
Replies: 129
Views: 5329

Re: Citi: Just use leverage for 10% bond returns

How do you do that when you invest into (normal) bonds ? Bonds give you some 2-4 % right now - where can you borrow money for less than you get back from a bond.....(and why would the bank not do that on their own) ? I know a guy who used to talk about doing this with credit cards, back when compan...
by telemark
Thu Sep 11, 2014 6:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Citi: Just use leverage for 10% bond returns
Replies: 28
Views: 2959

Re: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky

"The market" is not perfectly efficient. It tends towards efficiency, but there are also sources of inefficiency. Some parts are more efficient than others. Which market do you mean, anyway? EMH says you can?t beat the broader market because it's always perfectly priced. If that's how they...
by telemark
Thu Sep 11, 2014 12:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: Modern investment theory is horse-pucky
Replies: 119
Views: 9549

Re: Citi: Just use leverage for 10% bond returns

More precisely, they're saying that if for some reason you insist on leveraging bonds, it's safer to leverage junk bonds than it is to leverage Treasuries or investment grade bonds. A surprising result, as they also mention.
by telemark
Wed Sep 10, 2014 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Citi: Just use leverage for 10% bond returns
Replies: 28
Views: 2959

Re: Bank Closing My Account With No Reason Given

But surely they could've tried to contact me if they had any concerns? Shown some consideration for the fact that I've been banking with them for a decade. It's a bank :( For a worldwide bank with many physical branches in Asia, I like HSBC. For what it's worth, I tried to close my savings account ...
by telemark
Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank Closing My Account With No Reason Given
Replies: 38
Views: 3955

Re: Should you care about risk-adjusted returns?

Hmm. Reducing a complex problem to a single number (which happens to be conveniently easy to measure) and then focusing exclusively on maximizing that number. Is this ever a good idea?

See also maximizing expected return.
by telemark
Mon Sep 08, 2014 1:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should you care about risk-adjusted returns?
Replies: 13
Views: 799

Re: Proper Way To Wear Suspenders

Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:In the words of the late Justin Wilson, Cajun chef and professional member of the American Society of Safety Engineers:
I wear a belt and suspenders. I take no chances, I guarantee.

Here's to you, Justin, wherever you are. :sharebeer

PJW


:thumbsup The right kind of engineer.
by telemark
Sat Sep 06, 2014 8:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Proper Way To Wear Suspenders
Replies: 29
Views: 1847

Re: Six-Figure Incomes—and Facing Financial Ruin [WSJ articl

My point is that computers did not have bad days when credit card companies extended credit to Flores after her first bankruptcy. The creditors took a calculated risk that the fees they would collect from Flores and other borrowers like her would exceed losses from occasional bankruptcies. And the ...
by telemark
Sat Sep 06, 2014 6:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Six-Figure Incomes—and Facing Financial Ruin [WSJ article]
Replies: 59
Views: 9298

Sweeping generalizations

I think it's more useful to focus on what lazy portfolios and the three fund portfolio have in common -- diversification, low costs, using index funds where practical, not timing the market -- than it is to speculate on the motives of people who were, in many cases, writing years before the three fu...
by telemark
Thu Sep 04, 2014 3:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does anyone have 'Lazy Portfolios'?
Replies: 85
Views: 6546

Re: Home Depot Breach - zip codes revealed

The code to check is the one for the store you go to, this may be different than your home zip code (it is in my case).
by telemark
Thu Sep 04, 2014 3:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Depot Breach - zip codes revealed
Replies: 43
Views: 5851

Re: General Direction & Help

The Core Plus Bond Fund is probably PIMCO Total Return, PTTRX. We kick it around here from time to time but it's a decent choice. You won't go very wrong with it and you might do very well. Besides, it's the only bond fund in the plan. You might move a portion of that to the Stable Value Fund, depen...
by telemark
Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: General Direction & Help
Replies: 4
Views: 419

Re: Coin Counting Machines

I just use the coins I have the next time i go to the store. That way I never have more than $1 in coins. This of course is only for two places, Aldi is one, that don't take credit cards. Me too, though I've noticed lately that a lot of cashiers get confused when you give them extra coins. I always...
by telemark
Wed Sep 03, 2014 3:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coin Counting Machines
Replies: 58
Views: 4041

Re: Determining who makes it past age 90?

This is another case where a good process doesn't guarantee a good outcome. It's not good to be skinny when you're old. You need enough strength to be able to move around and do ordinary things easily. Too much or too little weight can interfere with that. And maintaining muscle mass gives your body...
by telemark
Tue Sep 02, 2014 12:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Determining who makes it past age 90?
Replies: 32
Views: 1909

Re: Will Bill Gross beat the Total Bond Market Index?

"Everyone knows" that interest rates must go up real soon now. They still haven't, years after Everyone Knew they had to, but that's beside the point: since everyone knows it, it's already priced into the market and hence the index. To beat the index a manager has to know, or guess, someth...
by telemark
Mon Sep 01, 2014 8:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Will Bill Gross beat the Total Bond Market Index?
Replies: 38
Views: 3769

Re: Online Security: Are there any sites you do not trust?

Any cloud service, including but not limited to Apple's iCloud.
by telemark
Mon Sep 01, 2014 7:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Online Security: Are there any sites you do not trust?
Replies: 14
Views: 1501

Re: Will Bill Gross beat the Total Bond Market Index?

Will Gross beat the index? I don't know, tune in next decade to find out. What I do know is that the fund will collect its expenses either way.
by telemark
Mon Sep 01, 2014 7:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Will Bill Gross beat the Total Bond Market Index?
Replies: 38
Views: 3769

Re: Does anyone have 'Lazy Portfolios'?

One thing I'm curious about is the core portfolios the site recommends have TIPS instead of Total Bond Market. Can someone explain why this may or may not be a better allocation to the portfolio? [Edited] to clarify my question? The only reference I can find on that is an article by Scott Burns fro...
by telemark
Sun Aug 31, 2014 12:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does anyone have 'Lazy Portfolios'?
Replies: 85
Views: 6546

Re: Editing files stored on a Mac from a Chromebook - Dual b

For an old school approach install a secure shell client on the Chromebook, log into the Mac, and edit your files with emacs or vi.
by telemark
Sun Aug 31, 2014 11:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Editing files stored on a Mac from a Chromebook - Dual boot?
Replies: 14
Views: 591

Re: Trip to the Caribbean - Suggestions

There are two kinds of islands in the Caribbean: coral reefs and volcanos. As you might guess, the coral islands are flat while the volcanic islands often have some respectable heights inland. I've been to Aruba, which is coral and barely rises above sea level. My personal opinion: after seven days ...
by telemark
Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trip to the Caribbean - Suggestions
Replies: 39
Views: 2590

Re: Compute Mathematical Best/Fastest Way to Pay off Car Loa

There's some room for interpretation in the quoted example, but as I read it any additional payment goes into what amounts to a separate holding account. The money in the holding account is applied to future payments as they come due, unless it exceeds 3 * the payment amount and then any excess is u...
by telemark
Wed Aug 27, 2014 4:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Compute Mathematical Best/Fastest Way to Pay off Car Loan?!
Replies: 16
Views: 1093

Re: Compute Mathematical Best/Fastest Way to Pay off Car Loa

If I make a payment for more than my monthly payment, how will the additional amount be applied to my account? Any additional amount is applied to future payments, up to the next 3 payments, unless otherwise required by law. Any remaining amounts will be applied to the principal balance owed on you...
by telemark
Wed Aug 27, 2014 1:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Compute Mathematical Best/Fastest Way to Pay off Car Loan?!
Replies: 16
Views: 1093

Re: Savers vs. Spenders: Default Mode

Money's purpose (or telos, in the philosophical sense) is to be spent. I want to "enjoy" every dollar that I spend, because I use it to provide for my needs and to give me the pleasure of the things that I want. If I don't enjoy spending my money, then the money hasn't served its purpose....
by telemark
Wed Aug 27, 2014 11:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Savers vs. Spenders: Default Mode
Replies: 34
Views: 2235

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Friday , by Robert A. Heinlein. I already had it in paperback, so I thought it was worth a try. The opening was interesting, but then he dropped down to the stereotypical female attitudes that I despised in I Will Fear No Evil . That's the usual pattern for late Heinlein. A rattlingly good start, e...
by telemark
Tue Aug 26, 2014 12:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1159153

Re: Juice up your cash returns (!) [What do you consider cas

My mix of I Bonds and FDIC insured savings accounts yields over 1% with no default risk. If I wanted to juice that up I'd start shopping for CDs. He's right that money market funds are a good thing to avoid.
by telemark
Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:35 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Juice up your cash returns (!) [What do you consider cash?]
Replies: 11
Views: 2201

Re: "including the possible loss of the money you invest"

As part of Vanguard's program of cost cutting, they are replacing five dollar words with shorter, less expensive ones :happy
by telemark
Thu Aug 21, 2014 6:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "including the possible loss of the money you invest"
Replies: 4
Views: 958

Re: Subaru Blues

Toons wrote:Consider a Toyota or Honda :happy

Sudden acceleration? Transmission failures? Some auto makers are better than others, but none of them is perfect.
by telemark
Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Blues
Replies: 87
Views: 7977

Re: Do-It-Yourself Waxing (Hair Removal) [help needed]

I used it a few years ago and then got lazy and stopped. It's a pretty tedious process; I can see why people pay salons to have it done. I used to figure one and a half jars to do everything, but your mileage may vary. Moom keeps forever, so I'd buy in bulk to get free shipping. For those of us with...
by telemark
Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do-It-Yourself Waxing (Hair Removal) [help needed]
Replies: 6
Views: 944
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