Search found 3641 matches

by Aptenodytes
Wed Dec 07, 2016 6:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help balancing stock/bonds in portfolio efficiently
Replies: 4
Views: 457

Re: Help on balance stock/bonds in portfolio efficiently

The company stock holding will probably make a bigger difference to your risk exposure than the shift in AA you are contemplating. But what you are doing makes sense regardless. Someone your age would normally want to keep bonds out of the Roth, so that the Roth will leave you with as much tax-free ...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Dec 02, 2016 8:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?
Replies: 38
Views: 1814

Re: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?

All the information to answer the question is in the OP. Convert 45 minute waits into dollars. Only you know your own exchange rate.

I have never regretted the purchase.
by Aptenodytes
Thu Dec 01, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cash vs Investments in HSA
Replies: 11
Views: 750

Re: Cash vs Investments in HSA

I think you have to make a decision one way or the other about whether or not to pay health expenses out of pocket to the extent possible. It sounds like you are leaning in that direction but you don't come right out and say it. Let say you take that last step and commit to paying health care out of...
by Aptenodytes
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The new normal: 2%, 3%?
Replies: 72
Views: 4288

Re: The new normal: 2%, 3%?

Well you have to be specific about assets. I believe the evidence that various analysts have compiled arguing that returns are going to be lower in the coming 30 years than they were in the past 30 years. I don't have confidence in anyone's specific projections about how much lower. But you and I ne...
by Aptenodytes
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 30 Yr Treasury Bonds - Why should't I do this?
Replies: 5
Views: 608

Re: 30 Yr Treasury Bonds - Why should't I do this?

You answered your own question the way I would answer it inflation would erode the value of the income stream but then you try to take it back with what to me seem like a bunch of non-sequitors: nothing is guaranteed, stocks are volatile, you don't need income for the next few years, you always plan...
by Aptenodytes
Wed Nov 30, 2016 1:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is a "standard" Small Cap tilt portfolio
Replies: 35
Views: 2814

Re: What is a "standard" Small Cap tilt portfolio

Livesoft seems to be the only one distinguishing asset allocations from fund allocations. Holding 100% of your equities in the Vanguard small-cap value fund only gets you to 32% of your equities in small-cap value assets. For me, it makes sense to manage your assets in terms of fund allocations, bec...
by Aptenodytes
Wed Nov 30, 2016 1:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: which factors matter to investors?
Replies: 10
Views: 875

Re: which factors matter to investors?

I didn't read the article as advocating that investors should design portfolios with respect to all identified factors, but rather that many investors appear to be inferring the presence of a "secret sauce" on the part of active managers when what they really see are known factor effects. ...
by Aptenodytes
Tue Nov 29, 2016 7:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Chagall Paintings Recently Left to Me By Family Member
Replies: 16
Views: 1358

Re: Chagall Paintings Recently Left to Me By Family Member

When I had to get a rough estimate of artwork value in connection with settling an estate, I used the Web site askart.com. You have to pay to get the data, but I don't recall the fee being unreasonable. What you can discern from Web sites like this is very roughly what price ranges are associated wi...
by Aptenodytes
Wed Nov 23, 2016 12:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Glide Paths : Help with Theory
Replies: 31
Views: 1703

Re: Glide Paths : Help with Theory & Analysis

There's only one body of research/discussion missing that I can think of as missing, and that's the stuff concerning the "sequence of returns" risk as covered in the work of people like Michael Kitces and Wade Pfau. You say you are focusing just on the accumulation phase, but there's an in...
by Aptenodytes
Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retreat to cash
Replies: 187
Views: 15022

Re: Retreat to cash

An all-cash position risks only loss of potential gains above 1%, while protecting against any loss should markets perform below that. Little downside risk. You have a weird definition of "little." In 2013 you would have lost 30%. In 2003 you would have lost 27%. You describe yourself as ...
by Aptenodytes
Mon Nov 21, 2016 2:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Trying to figure out the right blend of fixed-income investments
Replies: 4
Views: 504

Re: Trying to figure out the right blend of fixed-income investments

You could try to come up with a principled target for inflation protected bonds instead of just maxing I bonds. Use TIPS if you need to go higher or don't max out if you don't need to. Your logic about the pimco fund doesn't make sense. If you value diversification there are many better ways to get ...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Nov 20, 2016 10:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Investor Questionnaire recommends 100% stocks!
Replies: 56
Views: 4792

Re: Vanguard Investor Questionnaire recommends 100% stocks!

I'm curious if your rebalancing bands are really as narrow as your answer to number 8 suggests. I would recommend 80-90 percent stocks based on your answers. If I were programming the Vanguard robot that's what I'd have it do. I suspect the Vanguard robot has an artificial and illogical need to max ...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Nov 20, 2016 9:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whole life - 7 "pithy" questions to ask the salesman
Replies: 43
Views: 3748

Re: Whole life - 7 "pithy" questions to ask the salesman

I agree with everyone saying that your strategy will not work.
by Aptenodytes
Sun Nov 20, 2016 9:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: roth allocation [very long time frame]
Replies: 7
Views: 744

Re: roth allocation [very long time frame]

You've got everything right except Roth is a dude's name, not an acronym. This is assuming your calculations are all correct and you don't need to spend from your Roth IRA. I plan to spend from mine during the period in between retirement and taking social security, in order to stay out of the 25% t...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Nov 18, 2016 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's the best Cashback CC for "general" uses?
Replies: 27
Views: 2866

Re: What's the best Cashback CC for "general" uses?

There are hundreds of thousands of posts about this question, and several good Web sites.

For the card you use by default, before taking into account special bonuses, anything that gets you 2% without an annual fee is good. I use the Fidelity Visa.
by Aptenodytes
Sat Nov 05, 2016 12:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Higher expected returns = Lower expected losses?
Replies: 25
Views: 1595

Re: Higher expected returns = Lower expected losses?

You still aren't explaining what you mean but you are getting close. Here's my guess what you mean -- is it right? You are interested in the probability distribution of rates of return for some point about 10 years in the future. You want to compare such distributions across different equity asset c...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio advice needed
Replies: 17
Views: 1475

Re: Portfolio advice needed

With the 401k would it be advised to not go with the Target date fund? With the expense ratio being low and the solid diversification it seems like less I have to worry about with an actively managed fund. My 401k may be the only place I use a balanced fund and I feel that in my Roth and taxable ac...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Nov 04, 2016 6:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio advice needed
Replies: 17
Views: 1475

Re: Portfolio advice needed

1) Your emergency fund is very large. Maybe you need it, but maybe you could be investing more of that total. Depends on your needs and risks. Maybe it isn't even an emergency fund, but a "first house downpayment fund" or something like that. 2) You ask about international equities, but yo...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Nov 04, 2016 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing between bond funds
Replies: 17
Views: 1452

Re: Choosing between bond funds

The choice seems bad to me. I wouldn't commit to anything before finding the answer to Livesoft's question, and probing your ability to do what Nisi suggests -- holding bond funds in a tax-sheltered account outside your 401k. I think you ought to have more control over the duration of your bond hold...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Nov 04, 2016 4:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Doubting Your Portfolio Tilts
Replies: 51
Views: 3933

Re: Doubting Your Portfolio Tilts

To take the criticisms to a higher level of generality, the thought process recommended by the OP is a horrible way to make almost any decision you can think of. It leads you to fall victim to something like a one-person variant of Arrow's Impossibility Theorem . No matter what investment approach y...
by Aptenodytes
Mon Oct 31, 2016 4:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How To Own The Entire Market?
Replies: 9
Views: 1589

Re: How To Own The Entire Market?

"owning the entire market" is an unfortunate term. It means whatever you want it to mean -- it is totally arbitrary. So whether any given portfolio "exemplifies owning the entire market" doesn't matter. Regarding equities, it is hard to argue with your choice. For the most part, ...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Oct 30, 2016 9:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A new tilt to consider - ALL CAPS
Replies: 35
Views: 3227

Re: A new tilt to consider - ALL CAPS

I can't tell which of these responses are serious and which are seeking to continue the absurdist tone of the original Bespoke communication. For some reason the Wiki software logs me out quite rapidly, sometimes in the middle of composing a post. When that happens the post is lost and I have to sta...
by Aptenodytes
Sat Oct 29, 2016 7:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Returns Math Conundrum - Simplified Dietz Method
Replies: 4
Views: 441

Re: Returns Math Conundrum - Simplified Dietz Method

It isn't clear to me if the method you use to estimate the return on the combined portfolio is the same as you use on the individual portfolios. You imply it is different because you use different words. If you use different methods then I'd expect different results and the outcome you report would ...
by Aptenodytes
Wed Oct 26, 2016 8:15 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A new tilt to consider - ALL CAPS
Replies: 35
Views: 3227

A new tilt to consider - ALL CAPS

Quartz has an amusing piece reporting on a tongue-in-cheek email from Bespoke Investment Group pointing out that so far this year companies whose names are spelled using only capital letters have outperformed the S&P 500. Quartz prepared the following chart to show the power of an all-cap tilt. ...
by Aptenodytes
Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Input on bond allocation
Replies: 3
Views: 752

Re: Input on bond allocation

I would approach the question differently. I don't think percentage allocations do much good once you are done accumulating. You act like you have a high tolerance for risk and cite evidence from behavior during the crash, but I don't see it that way. Once you retire the sequence of return risk mani...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Who disagrees with Jack. . .
Replies: 73
Views: 5472

Re: Who disagrees with Jack. . .

1) Add corporate bonds because of current bond environment: Yes, but for me only high-yield. Investment-grade bonds don't pay enough for the risk, for me. 2) There is no conceivable way not to take social security payments into your investment planning. We all do it, even those who say they don't. H...
by Aptenodytes
Sat Oct 22, 2016 5:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question re: biicycle pump for car tires
Replies: 16
Views: 1357

Re: Question re: biicycle pump for car tires

From what I recall of physics and what I remember from experience the heat will build up at the junction between the thing you are compressing and the thing that carries air to the tire. In my bike pump that's a brass threaded deal, with a flexible tube coming out of one side -- the threads go into ...
by Aptenodytes
Thu Oct 06, 2016 11:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing Questions
Replies: 10
Views: 792

Re: Rebalancing Questions

If it is true that you want to rebalance as soon as a threshold is crossed, then you are going to be checking the AA every day, or whatever time unit you consider to be "immediate" -- it may be a week or month. As long as you are checking regularly, it isn't much more work to direct new co...
by Aptenodytes
Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Small (VSS/VFSVX) Underperforms ALL Active Funds
Replies: 25
Views: 2369

Re: International Small (VSS/VFSVX) Underperforms ALL Active Funds

You should also consider how well VSS tracks its target benchmark (hint: well), as that's the mark of an effective index fund. The emerging markets will have their day. The only question is if you'll be in a fund which can capture that. I agree. I've never felt any need to consult Morningstar's ran...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Oct 02, 2016 2:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Switching from slice/dice to 2/3 fund portfolio
Replies: 3
Views: 521

Re: Switching from slice/dice to 2/3 fund portfolio

It seems you are asking two main questions: 1) What do you think of me abandoning my small-value tilt? 2) If I proceed with the change in AA, what funds should I be buying? 1) abandon the tilt? Normally, if someone is devising an AA from scratch, people here will respond to a choice between a small-...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Oct 02, 2016 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Total Bond Market vs. 2% CD
Replies: 39
Views: 8188

Re: Total Bond Market vs. 2% CD

Those choices are so different that for me it wouldn't make sense to choose one or the other. TBM has maximum diversification across term risk and some diversification across default risk, while the CD obviously has zero diversification. I don't think a 2% yield is sufficient to justify giving away ...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 25, 2016 5:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Merriman knocks TSM
Replies: 34
Views: 4514

Re: Merriman knocks TSM

Really, Paul is making the factors argument that Larry Swedroe makes. Larry says that proper diversification is to invest across factors. A Merriman tilted small/value portfolio diversifies you across market, size, and value factors rather than just market. Merriman's portfolio is hard to square wi...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 25, 2016 8:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Merriman knocks TSM
Replies: 34
Views: 4514

Re: Merriman knocks TSM

Only three of the Lazy Portfolios have 40% allocation to fixed income (Merriman, Bernstein's Smart Money and Coffeehouse) and none have as much allocated to international (50%) as he does. So I am not sure this is an apples to apples comparison. Correct -- there's no legitimate reason to compare th...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 25, 2016 8:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA CD question
Replies: 32
Views: 2289

Re: IRA CD question

Dandy wrote:But always keep in mind that the real value of your CDs is safety not yield.

That used to be true, but not any more. The 3% the OP is getting on a 7-year CD is better than Baa corporate offerings. Over the last year or so CDs have indeed become a legitimate yield play.
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 25, 2016 8:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA CD question
Replies: 32
Views: 2289

Re: IRA CD question

Andrews Federal C.U. special 3% 7 year ONLY for IRA / Roth click on traditional IRA / Roth and you will see the 84 month https://www.andrewsfcu.org/personal/checking-and-savings/share-certificates.html But if you play that game you are going to end up with IRAs at dozens of banks, possibly more. No...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 25, 2016 6:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA CD question
Replies: 32
Views: 2289

Re: IRA CD question

Andrews Federal C.U. special 3% 7 year ONLY for IRA / Roth click on traditional IRA / Roth and you will see the 84 month https://www.andrewsfcu.org/personal/checking-and-savings/share-certificates.html But if you play that game you are going to end up with IRAs at dozens of banks, possibly more. No...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 25, 2016 6:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Merriman knocks TSM
Replies: 34
Views: 4514

Re: Merriman knocks TSM

Market Watch tracks eight "Lazy Portfolios." Mr. Merriman's portfolio contains the most funds (11). The Merriman" Fund Advice Ultimate Buy and Hold portfolio currently has the worst 3, 5, and 10 year returns of ALL eight portfolios. The Lazy Portfolios that Market Watch tracks vary t...
by Aptenodytes
Sun Sep 18, 2016 2:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My bond portfolio - Comments
Replies: 21
Views: 2433

Re: My bond portfolio - Comments

If I were in your shoes I would be more targeted and more selective. I'd put my risky bond money in high yield corporates. I'd put most of my safe money in CDs, leaving some in short term treasuries to help with liquidity needs. I don't consider your bond funds as good bets.
by Aptenodytes
Sat Sep 17, 2016 8:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to invest HSA funds
Replies: 6
Views: 785

Re: How to invest HSA funds

Normally you are better off not treating the HSA or part of it as an emergency fund, because that squanders a valuable tax benefit. But sometimes you have no other choice. Decide what you want your emergency fund to be and keep that in a short term bond fund or even your HSA provider's money market ...
by Aptenodytes
Sat Sep 17, 2016 12:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSABank: How to withdraw money and reflect it in taxes?
Replies: 56
Views: 3361

Re: HSABank: How to withdraw money and reflect it in taxes?

Right about how long to keep tax returns, but the regs you quote confirm my understanding that you don't have to actively prove no deductions, you just have to able to prove in the event of a challenge. Thank you, nps. In the meantime, I found a gotcha. The IRS wants you to prove that you have not c...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering a 20% swing in my asset allocation
Replies: 41
Views: 3216

Re: Considering a 20% swing in my asset allocation

If you want to be able to be prepared for a big emergency or be ready to splurge on something expensive when the moment finally strikes, then I think you want to stay at 50% stocks. A 30%-equity portfolio exposes you to high inflation risk without any clear offsetting benefit to make it seem justifi...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSABank: How to withdraw money and reflect it in taxes?
Replies: 56
Views: 3361

Re: HSABank: How to withdraw money and reflect it in taxes?

Thank you, nps. In the meantime, I found a gotcha. The IRS wants you to prove that you have not claimed these medical expenses as itemized deductions. If I am to take distribution for the expenses that I have made in 2011, I must keep my Form 1040 including Schedule A from 2011 until now. Victoria ...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Sep 16, 2016 9:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is Warren Buffett the ultimate free rider?
Replies: 23
Views: 4050

Re: Is Warren Buffett the ultimate free rider?

You are assuming the Berkshire shares aren't marked to market but they are.
by Aptenodytes
Fri Sep 16, 2016 12:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I am going to stop tilting. Sanity check.
Replies: 66
Views: 6446

Re: I am going to stop tilting. Sanity check.

You can be pretty faithful to the small-value tilt without paying so much for international small-value. .65% is too high for me; settle for small-international and the ERs are far lower. You can get the domestic small-value at very low ERs. Your premise that a small-value tilt has underperformed i...
by Aptenodytes
Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:49 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I am going to stop tilting. Sanity check.
Replies: 66
Views: 6446

Re: I am going to stop tilting. Sanity check.

You can be pretty faithful to the small-value tilt without paying so much for international small-value. .65% is too high for me; settle for small-international and the ERs are far lower. You can get the domestic small-value at very low ERs. Your premise that a small-value tilt has underperformed in...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Sep 02, 2016 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to allocate money - am I too cash heavy?
Replies: 13
Views: 1560

Re: How to allocate money - am I too cash heavy?

I don't think it helps to think of things this way. Better to look at the whole picture focusing on your needs, abilities and opportunities. E.g. one opportunity might be to refinance the mortgage to 15 years. Directing your savings abilities in that direction mighty pay off more than what you're co...
by Aptenodytes
Fri Sep 02, 2016 7:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: RBD fans, Dan Wiener has news! [Really Bad Day]
Replies: 40
Views: 5151

Re: RBD fans, Dan Wiener has news! [Really Bad Day]

I'm not seeing any substance here. What is the decision rule he tested? Smells like meaningless blather unless I'm just missing it in the nooks of my phone's screen. It isn't even clear what he has in mind implicitly. Some kind of variable equity allocation I suppose, but who really knows. It kind o...
by Aptenodytes
Sat Aug 20, 2016 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2017 Chevy Volt - Buy vs Lease
Replies: 22
Views: 2126

Re: 2017 Chevy Volt - Buy vs Lease

leasing an electric car can make sense, but when I was looking for Volts in 2015 I found enormous disparity among lease offers around the country and in my area none of the lease offers were any good. So before you spend too much time crunching numbers and wondering what to do, it may pay off to che...
by Aptenodytes
Thu Aug 11, 2016 4:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TIPS
Replies: 9
Views: 945

Re: TIPS

Depends on what you mean by "middle-aged." I don't think the case for TIPS becomes compelling until you are about 10 years from retirement. And at that point, I don't think simple rules of thumb are going to work very well in figuring out how much to hold in TIPS. You have to take into acc...
by Aptenodytes
Tue Aug 09, 2016 11:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anything wrong with having say 50% of my bond allocation in muni bonds?
Replies: 41
Views: 3991

Re: Anything wrong with having say 50% of my bond allocation in muni bonds?

... 3) For CDs to be beating bonds by so much is unusual, but it is the present reality. And if you are investing under $250,000 they make more sense than Treasuries. Above $250,000 I believe there are still ways to get the FDIC insurance. [you may want to keep some treasuries for liquidity needs] ...

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