Search found 1389 matches

by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Name something you had to have and now you regret purchasing it?
Replies: 275
Views: 24235

Re: Name something you had to have and now you regret purchasing it?

I splurged on some very expensive DNA preservation services for my oldest relatives because I am a little bit of a genealogy nut. (Thousands of dollars!) So, now, basically, I have futuristic looking metal canisters of perfectly preserved, dried DNA sitting on a shelf somewhere in storage. I am star...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's a good big e-reader?
Replies: 10
Views: 829

Re: What's a good big e-reader?

I'm really only going to be reading financial statements on this device, so I'm not too worried about getting locked out of Amazon's or some other vendor's ecosystem.

Thanks for the suggestions, everyone!
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 2:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any "average Joe" here actually make out well with individual stocks?
Replies: 108
Views: 12510

Re: Any "average Joe" here actually make out well with individual stocks?

It wouldn't be surprising to find folks who've done well the last few years through stock-picking. Anyone who's bought into the "growth" stories - companies like Amazon, Netflix, Tesla - would have had many chances to outperform the U.S. stock index. i'm one of these people, except over a slightly ...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Vanguard Debunks Dividend Myth
Replies: 112
Views: 11897

Re: Larry Swedroe: Vanguard Debunks Dividend Myth

I've always found the discussion about dividend-paying stocks pointless at this level of abstraction. Surely it's better for some companies to pay dividends, because they have no opportunity for deploying that capital at good rates of growth. And better for other companies to re-invest dividends, b...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's a good big e-reader?
Replies: 10
Views: 829

Re: What's a good big e-reader?

The Kindle DX is really the only option for an e-ink display. Anything else with a large screen was industrial=expensive. I have one and have read a couple of technical books on it. It's good for that. But honestly, for most PDFs you're probably better off with an iPad--yes the screen is reflective...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Vanguard Debunks Dividend Myth
Replies: 112
Views: 11897

Re: Larry Swedroe: Vanguard Debunks Dividend Myth

I've always found the discussion about dividend-paying stocks pointless at this level of abstraction. Surely it's better for some companies to pay dividends, because they have no opportunity for deploying that capital at good rates of growth. And better for other companies to re-invest dividends, be...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:49 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Oil - Price & Supply/Demand Conundrum
Replies: 62
Views: 3879

Re: Oil - Price & Supply/Demand Conundrum

[quote=Valuethinker} We are in a totally different world than the 1973 to 2010 period. We are in a totally different energy world. [/quote] If you really believed this - this being the position that energy prices are likely to be more stable and lower from here forward - I'm wondering if you'd take ...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any "average Joe" here actually make out well with individual stocks?
Replies: 108
Views: 12510

Re: Any "average Joe" here actually make out well with individual stocks?

It wouldn't be surprising to find folks who've done well the last few years through stock-picking. Anyone who's bought into the "growth" stories - companies like Amazon, Netflix, Tesla - would have had many chances to outperform the U.S. stock index. Everyone's a stock-picking genius when the broad ...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's a good big e-reader?
Replies: 10
Views: 829

What's a good big e-reader?

I want something big enough to be able to read PDF documents in approximately their original letter size (a little smaller is OK, but I have to be able to see the entire page and still have it be readable). The screen also has to be anti-glare (I cannot read on screens that are highly reflective and...
by Caduceus
Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a security freeze at Innovis really needed?
Replies: 68
Views: 25818

Re: Is a security freeze at Innovis really needed?

I can't seem to freeze my Innovis and the call wait times exceed 30 mins the last two times I've tried. Has anyone had the same problem?
by Caduceus
Tue Aug 01, 2017 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to dispose of Sony Cybershot
Replies: 2
Views: 417

How to dispose of Sony Cybershot

Does a sony cybershot digital camera have any internal memory apart from the memory card? I've removed the removable memory card, but was wondering if a camera was like a smartphone in the sense that it also had its own embedded memory. I'm selling it for $20 but don't want my personal photos (nothi...
by Caduceus
Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where did you make your wedding album?
Replies: 8
Views: 699

Where did you make your wedding album?

I am looking to print a family heritage album (of the sort of quality typically reserved for high-end wedding albums). I would like the album to use archival, acid-free paper, high-quality archival inks, and durable stitching. Internet reviews of places like Milk+Moleskin or ArtifactUprising seem am...
by Caduceus
Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it Safe to Get Your DNA Tested?
Replies: 71
Views: 7005

Re: Is it Safe to Get Your DNA Tested?

I've never done these tests before so I'm not sure how the application process works, but why not just send in a completely fictitious or truncated first name, with the caveat that if you do provide research-related answers to further science, you answer those honestly, and that you provide your tru...
by Caduceus
Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scan negatives or the photos?
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Scan negatives or the photos?

There are many details that could be discussed, but to cut to the chase, the best option is to scan with a person who does this professionally. Tim I am definitely doing this for the negatives as they seem tough to work with, but I have been thinking of buying a scanner for the photos. Do you think...
by Caduceus
Mon Jul 17, 2017 8:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scan negatives or the photos?
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Scan negatives or the photos?

How were the negative and the print photo each scanned? Did you have the option to specify things like dust removal or color correction? What format were the 18MB files that you received? Also, if they were not jpg, do you know the color depth? What is the image size? Do you happen to know what the...
by Caduceus
Sun Jul 16, 2017 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scan negatives or the photos?
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Scan negatives or the photos?

Can you see the "chickenpox" when you look at the negative? No. They only appear during the scan itself. They are really tiny though, so perhaps I can't see them on the negative without using a magnifying glass. since they are very old (from the 1970s) :shock:[/quote] :D Do you mean that the negati...
by Caduceus
Sun Jul 16, 2017 12:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scan negatives or the photos?
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Scan negatives or the photos?

I do want to enlarge some of these photos to be framed, eventually. What I don't understand is that the negatives scans produce files that have a size of 18 MB per frame, whereas the scan of the photo produces a file with a size of 300 MB (at 1200 dpi TIFF). Even at 600 dpi, the file size of the sca...
by Caduceus
Sun Jul 16, 2017 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scan negatives or the photos?
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Scan negatives or the photos?

I have both the negatives and the photos of a historic wedding I'd like to scan. I understand that the negatives are the original and contain more information, but after getting the first roll back (as a test) yesterday from the lab, the negatives scans have different kinds of defects, since they ar...
by Caduceus
Mon Jul 10, 2017 5:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Background Jazz
Replies: 5
Views: 741

Background Jazz

Does anyone have good recommendations for forgettable background instrumental jazz music? The type that cafes play in the background - completely non-intrusive and after you walk out of the cafe you won't be able to remember the tune. I've clicked on more than two dozen samplers on Amazon and everyt...
by Caduceus
Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need help progressing in life after a massive setback
Replies: 35
Views: 6621

Re: Need help progressing in life after a massive setback

You are in your mid-20s, so really, what you think of as a "massive setback" is just fairly normal. Most of us do not go through life with uninterrupted success. I would suggest against both the MD and the MBA. Why? They are such different things, and the fact that you're considering both makes me t...
by Caduceus
Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Incorporating uncertain pension amount into net worth calculation
Replies: 35
Views: 2508

Re: Incorporating uncertain pension amount into net worth calculation

The conservative way to do it would be to value your pension first by assessing the NPV of the pension stream (using a conservative discount rate) if you were fired tomorrow, and then further discounting the NPV by assessing the credit risk of the company that's guaranteeing the pension stream. This...
by Caduceus
Fri Jun 30, 2017 4:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How did you handle the costs of your child's wedding?
Replies: 170
Views: 13723

Re: How did you handle the costs of your child's wedding?

Most weddings are a waste of time, especially if they are really huge and ostentatious. I have gone for many weddings of close friends where I barely got to speak to them. It's like paying for this over-priced ticket to a one-day play where everyone's performing a role. The one wedding that I really...
by Caduceus
Wed Jun 28, 2017 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question about selling phone
Replies: 2
Views: 369

Question about selling phone

Is it enough to do the "reset to factory settings" option if I want to sell my phone and erase all my information? There isn't anything personal on my phone, but I did have my Apple account linked to this phone to download apps. I wasn't sure if erasing data would also erase the default setting that...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 27, 2017 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you check your dividends?
Replies: 16
Views: 1732

Do you check your dividends?

It's been a long-term habit of mine to check that I actually receive my dividends every quarter, but while it is simple enough to do, it is somewhat tedious, especially for positions that I have automatic re-investment for dividends, because then I have to verify the executed price was reasonable fo...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 27, 2017 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annuities
Replies: 12
Views: 1182

Re: Annuities

It's good that you are thinking so far ahead, but this is really a little too far ahead :D You don't have to be researching annuities now at all. You probably won't even buy an annuity at the point that you retire. Many get them only well into retirement because they are less expensive to purchase a...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 27, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to find a financially like-minded significant other?
Replies: 140
Views: 9592

Re: Where to find a financially like-minded significant other?

Honestly, some women just need to be shown that instead of buying the $500 Manolo Blahnik shoes, buy the $150 Via Spiga shoes on sale at Nordstrom Rack, which are basically just as good, and put the other $350 in a Roth IRA. Haha me and you could be friends ;) I am at loss why so many women are obc...
by Caduceus
Mon Jun 26, 2017 5:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Practices for Managing Paper Receipts
Replies: 28
Views: 2562

Re: Best Practices for Managing Paper Receipts

Here's what I do. I have three folders, one for tax-related receipts, one for business receipts, and another for personal receipts that exceed $50. For the last folder, I toss out the receipts once I've checked that the credit card statements are accurate. There's no reason to keep those. At tax tim...
by Caduceus
Mon Jun 26, 2017 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early IRA withdrawal vs 401k loan for legal bills
Replies: 10
Views: 809

Re: Early IRA withdrawal vs 401k loan for legal bills

If you have to pay an average of 25% federal and 0% state income tax plus the 10% penalty for a total of 35.% you'll have to withdraw $30,769 in order to pay the taxes and penalty of $10,769 and have $20,000 left to pay the expenses. jimb Hi Jimb, do you mind explaining how you calculated the tax a...
by Caduceus
Mon Jun 26, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I need a strategy to address debt and savings
Replies: 38
Views: 4556

Re: I need a strategy to address debt and savings

Don't be anxious; you can knock out the debt with a steady plan. 1. Get the employer match. The return is far higher than any interest on any of the debts you have, so you should definitely contribute at least 5% to the employer plan. 2. Knock off the credit card debts immediately; if your job is st...
by Caduceus
Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to backup Mini-DV tapes?
Replies: 10
Views: 1018

Re: How to backup Mini-DV tapes?

I'm reporting back about my experience! The guy who processed the tapes told me my tapes were VHS-C tapes and not Mini-DV (oops), but they managed to convert them to .avi format still. The files were not quite that big (about 13 GB per hour of video), and the final cost ended up being about $25 per ...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to backup Mini-DV tapes?
Replies: 10
Views: 1018

Re: How to backup Mini-DV tapes?

It really depends on your technical proficiency. I don't find it difficult but I'm very familiar with this. If you're asking these sorts of questions and cannot/will not find the answers on your own then you probably should pay to have it done. Thanks, everyone! Takeshi, you've convinced me to hire...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 10:09 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth contribution limits for sole proprietors
Replies: 2
Views: 290

Re: Roth contribution limits for sole proprietors

So what does the "deferred compensation" in Publication 590 refer to, then? Isn't the $2,000 that he earned in 2015 but which he received in 2017 "deferred compensation", which is specifically excluded from the definition of compensation for the purposes of contributing to an IRA in Publication 590?
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 10:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax implications of investing through London Stock Exchange for non-resident investors
Replies: 23
Views: 2009

Re: Tax implications of investing through London Stock Exchange for non-resident investors

You are subjected to three different tax regimes in the example you give. There is a 15% dividend tax for some of the stocks in the fund that you own, but it may not be immediately obvious to you. In your case, you are a citizen of Singapore who invests in a fund that is domiciled in Ireland, and th...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 6:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth contribution limits for sole proprietors
Replies: 2
Views: 290

Roth contribution limits for sole proprietors

I was debating this question with a friend of mine and would like to know what the answer is. He's retired and a cash-basis sole proprietor who does odd jobs for fun. (He doesn't need the money.) He charged multiple clients $5,000 for a job in 2015. He received $3,000 in 2015, and the remaining $200...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to fix several years of excess contributions to Roth IRA?
Replies: 26
Views: 2698

Re: How to fix several years of excess contributions to Roth IRA?

I totally agree with Mark except on the one point about special coding for the 33k distribution. For the distribution of the 33k of 2010-2015 excess contributions, there is no special coding option. The 1099R will look like an ordinary withdrawal, coded J. Best not to even mention excess contributi...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Overcharged for tax returns
Replies: 28
Views: 3152

Re: Overcharged for tax returns

I doubt your return could be done in one hour. It takes the tax preparer time to understand your situation, assess what forms you even need to file, analyze the optimal deductions/credits you are eligible for, and after that populate the return. This is not counting the time that it takes to gather ...
by Caduceus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to backup Mini-DV tapes?
Replies: 10
Views: 1018

How to backup Mini-DV tapes?

I just received 10 Mini-DV tapes (the ones that people used to use in camcorders) from a relative. I would like to back-up the videos in these Mini-DV tapes without any loss in quality. My purpose is to archive the original information. Output file size is not a problem. How do I do this? What equip...
by Caduceus
Thu May 18, 2017 10:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it possible to patch a blanket?
Replies: 6
Views: 817

Is it possible to patch a blanket?

I have this blanket: m Recently it's developed a relatively big hole, maybe the size of three paperbacks in the middle, but the rest of the blanket is in really great condition. I'm not even sure how the hole first came about but I should have taken care of it earlier. Is there any way to get it rep...
by Caduceus
Sat May 13, 2017 8:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do I have to file Form 4868 for extension of Solo 401k contribution deadline?
Replies: 5
Views: 434

Re: Do I have to file Form 4868 for extension of Solo 401k contribution deadline?

Thank you, Spirit Rider. This is most helpful! I did file the extension, so if you're right then I am all good to go Would you mind pointing me to where to look for the actual citation? Was this in any IRS publication? I read many, many pages and could not find it. If you could just tell me which pu...
by Caduceus
Sat May 13, 2017 5:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do I have to file Form 4868 for extension of Solo 401k contribution deadline?
Replies: 5
Views: 434

Do I have to file Form 4868 for extension of Solo 401k contribution deadline?

I have a Solo 401k plan. I've been reading that I have until the tax-filing deadline (including any extensions) to make the contribution. But here's my question: Do I have to file Form 4868 and request the tax-filing extension in order to also extend my Solo 401k contribution deadline? Another way o...
by Caduceus
Tue May 09, 2017 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which add-on tests are worth the money?
Replies: 11
Views: 1072

Re: Which add-on tests are worth the money?

OK, I guess it is really hard to answer this without going into medical discussions, so please consider this thread closed. :D
by Caduceus
Tue May 09, 2017 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do Bogleheads buy cars?
Replies: 71
Views: 8650

Re: How do Bogleheads buy cars?

I think the new generation of Bogleheads will just uber everywhere. No more car purchases. :D
by Caduceus
Tue May 09, 2017 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which add-on tests are worth the money?
Replies: 11
Views: 1072

Which add-on tests are worth the money?

I'll be visiting friends overseas in a week or so and have the option of getting some fairly inexpensive health screening tests done. There's a basic package that covers the usual (blood count, liver profile, etc.) but the doctors there also offer add-on tests. Which ones are worth it to get? (Witho...
by Caduceus
Fri Apr 07, 2017 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the green stuff growing on my clay pot?
Replies: 1
Views: 322

What is the green stuff growing on my clay pot?

I was given an antique pot (more than 100 years old) from one of my relatives that has a fair bit of family history attached to it. There's a layer/sheen of green stuff on the inside of the pot and after quite a bit of googling, I'm still not sure what it is, so I thought I'd try my luck here. Does ...
by Caduceus
Fri Mar 24, 2017 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Indoor plants that smell nice
Replies: 2
Views: 358

Indoor plants that smell nice

Anyone have suggestions for indoor plants that smell nice and that are not that hard to care for?

I like citrus smells (the smell of lemons always puts me in a great mood), so something along those lines would be really nice.
by Caduceus
Fri Mar 24, 2017 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wimbledon 2017 - Experiences?
Replies: 10
Views: 893

Re: Wimbledon 2017 - Experiences?

If you go, you might want to get good seats. If you are too far away, watching the match on TV is definitely better as you will barely see the ball. But the good seats are really expensive for the good matches, so it's a tough one. I would definitely go at least once just for the experience if you r...
by Caduceus
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it safe to use an antique mold pan?
Replies: 10
Views: 1392

Re: Is it safe to use an antique mold pan?

I was told it was brass by the person who gave it to me. It has a dull golden sheen to it but parts of it look like silver/iron underneath, so I don't know if it is 100% brass. I'm more concerned about whether the metals will be food safe. Maybe older alloys or metals weren't as safe as modern ones ...
by Caduceus
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it safe to use an antique mold pan?
Replies: 10
Views: 1392

Is it safe to use an antique mold pan?

I was recently given an old baking mold cake pan (I don't really know what to call it - it's made of brass and has holes with patterns that you then pour batter into ) by a relative. The patterns are really nice and I like the idea of baking with something so old. I think it is probably over 60 year...
by Caduceus
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can't get a really good scan of a black-and-white photo
Replies: 15
Views: 1171

Re: Can't get a really good scan of a black-and-white photo

OK, thanks everyone. I think I will just hand this over to the experts. Actually, I have already been using professional services for this, but it seems like I need a particular type of expert for the job I want! :beer
by Caduceus
Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Funding 401k to Roth IRA conversion taxes for a non-resident alien
Replies: 11
Views: 1168

Re: Funding 401k to Roth IRA conversion taxes for a non-resident alien

How are you dealing with the withholding? Your OP suggested that you could opt out of withholding, but for NRAs, isn't there a mandatory 30% withholding tax for non-resident aliens who withdraw/transfer any money out of the Roth, or is this a special UK treaty exemption? My impression was that the b...