Search found 232 matches

by Jacotus
Tue Jan 09, 2018 5:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: After tax investment suggestions...
Replies: 23
Views: 1801

Re: After tax investment suggestions...

Maybe Fidelity wouldn't be a good idea after all when taking tax efficiency of the mutual funds into account.

viewtopic.php?p=3711110#p3703628
by Jacotus
Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Taxable Fidelity Account - FSTVX vs ITOT
Replies: 53
Views: 3440

Re: Taxable Fidelity Account - FSTVX vs ITOT

Wow -- FSTVX is shockingly tax-inefficient. Its December distribution had a capital gains distribution which was 40% of the dividend distribution. That is just, wow. :shock: Thank you for the OP, as I will include FSTVX as a cautionary tale in my annual tax efficiency post. That is quite interestin...
by Jacotus
Mon Jan 01, 2018 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct and alternatives
Replies: 108
Views: 8080

Re: TaxAct and alternatives

TaxAct was great until a couple years ago when they sold the company. Then the new owners jacked up the prices and treat their customers with contempt. I switched to FreeTaxUSA, which I like, although I am a bit worried that it cannot handle certain complex situations. In particular, I think I read ...
by Jacotus
Wed Dec 27, 2017 12:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Statefarm Auto Insurance goes up every 6 months without reason?
Replies: 50
Views: 2897

Re: Statefarm Auto Insurance goes up every 6 months without reason?

In my experience, here is a partial list of what will cause auto insurance companies to raise rates:
  • Having a newer or more expensive car
  • Living in a more expensive area
  • Living in a not as nice area
  • Moving to a new zip code
  • Staying in the same zip code
  • Breathing
Shop around.
by Jacotus
Fri Dec 22, 2017 1:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Instant Pot users here?
Replies: 95
Views: 10030

Re: Any Instant Pot users here?

Although we like the Instant Pot, we still haven't found the magic combination of water/rice proportion and time to make the rice turn out like we used to get every single time with the rice cooker. DW isn't demanding her rice cooker back out of storage, but she isn't quite happy yet. Any suggestio...
by Jacotus
Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard will use blockchain to share index data
Replies: 29
Views: 2925

Re: Vanguard will use blockchain to share index data

This sounds like a trial run for Vanguard to get real-world experience at using blockchain technology in an application that is not one of their most sensitive. Large organizations need to build up experience and knowledge with technologies before they will feel ready to deploy them at massive scale.
by Jacotus
Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price of haircut?
Replies: 194
Views: 10845

Re: Price of haircut?

petulant wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:53 pm
LCOL but see upscale barber who incidentally does haircuts for NBA players. $35 per visit.
NBA haircuts run the gamut. How good are your barber's cuts, on a scale of Richard Jefferson to Gordon Hayward?
by Jacotus
Mon Nov 27, 2017 12:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Analysis Paralysis: Can you get to the bottom of things?
Replies: 136
Views: 9449

Re: "The Enemy of a Good Plan"

I have continued to run backtests and read widely and I can't find any reasonable reasons why the 3-fund portfolio isn't optimal. However, an absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. I haven't proven the 3-fund portfolio is perfect. You can spend eternity trying to prove that something is th...
by Jacotus
Sun Nov 26, 2017 1:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Analysis Paralysis: Can you get to the bottom of things?
Replies: 136
Views: 9449

Re: Analysis Paralysis: Can you get to the bottom of things?

You must embrace, or at least accept, the unpredictability and uncertainty of the future. There's a certain bliss that comes once you internalize that nobody knows what's going to happen, and it's all a series of more or less educated guesses. Rather than there being some kind of market-return func...
by Jacotus
Sat Nov 25, 2017 5:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Analysis Paralysis: Can you get to the bottom of things?
Replies: 136
Views: 9449

Re: Analysis Paralysis: Can you get to the bottom of things?

You must embrace, or at least accept, the unpredictability and uncertainty of the future. There's a certain bliss that comes once you internalize that nobody knows what's going to happen, and it's all a series of more or less educated guesses. Rather than there being some kind of market-return funct...
by Jacotus
Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mozilla Firefox Donations?
Replies: 20
Views: 2050

Re: Mozilla Firefox Donations?

jebmke wrote:
Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:37 pm
The new version just updated my browser. It appears to have dropped support for Noscript. Too early to tell on other add-ons but they appear gone.
The updated version of NoScript should be coming later today, according to the developer.
by Jacotus
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard expects "decent sized correction" soon, sometime, maybe later
Replies: 68
Views: 7691

Re: Vanguard expects "decent sized correction" soon

A "decent sized correction" at "some point." Really stepping out on a limb there, Vanguard. :) Of course there will be a decent sized correction at some point. If Vanguard didn't collectively believe that, it would be delusional. I too don't see the word "soon" in the quote. Not there "will be". Th...
by Jacotus
Sat Jul 01, 2017 11:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does Vanguard gain anything from us investing more internationally?
Replies: 28
Views: 2838

Re: Does Vanguard gain anything from us investing more internationally?

It does sound like Vanguard's research experts have concluded that adding a certain amount of international stocks and bonds are beneficial, and therefore recommend it for everyone. But let me explore another aspect that could also result in greater pressure from Vanguard. I think it natural for Van...
by Jacotus
Mon Jun 26, 2017 12:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Things to do in Iowa/Nebraska
Replies: 73
Views: 4659

Re: Things to do in Iowa/Nebraska

We plan to be in Nebraska August 21st with the hope of seeing the total eclipse of the sun. I won't say you should delay your trip six weeks, though. This is my plan as well. I am traveling to Colorado for work that week, and luckily that brings me a lot closer to the eclipse than where I live. A q...
by Jacotus
Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:08 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Favorite Feature of Vanguard Website?
Replies: 67
Views: 6965

Re: Favorite Feature of Vanguard Website?

My favorite (un)feature: from the Balances and Holdings page, if you open two holdings in new tabs in quick succession, their display under Recent Purchases is identical; the first tab that was opened uses the values from the second-opened tab. This error has occurred for at least 7 years according ...
by Jacotus
Fri Apr 14, 2017 4:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Vanguard Is Growing Faster Than Everybody Else Combined]
Replies: 34
Views: 2959

Re: NYT article on Vanguard

Nice article. A good reminder of who brought us to this golden age. In the last three calendar years, investors sank $823 billion into Vanguard funds, the company says. The scale of that inflow becomes clear when it is compared with the rest of the mutual fund industry — more than 4,000 firms in tot...
by Jacotus
Mon Apr 10, 2017 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Viewing Northern Lights (the full colors)
Replies: 17
Views: 2001

Re: Viewing Northern Lights (the full colors)

My recollection is that this effect is biological. The reason you see much more vivid color on a camera is because of the way human eyes work at low levels of light. Our eyes have evolved so that the parts of the eyes sensitive to low levels of light, the rods, are not very sensitive to color. The c...
by Jacotus
Mon Mar 27, 2017 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toyota vs. Honda
Replies: 58
Views: 5604

Re: Toyota vs. Honda

I've owned (mostly) Toyota's and Honda's for the last 20 years. My experience has been Toyota being far more reliable and less expensive to maintain. Honda seems to charge more for basic maintenance in addition to having a high number of recalls. The most specific serious issues (recalls) I've had ...
by Jacotus
Sun Feb 12, 2017 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Wall Street Journal to close Google loophole entirely
Replies: 169
Views: 29721

Re: The Wall Street Journal to close Google loophole entirely

The google trick may not be working, but facebook referral still gets the job done. edit: to clarify, this can be done automatically with a bookmarklet, which I call WSJ in my bookmarks bar, consisting of the Javascript code: javascript:window.location="https://m.facebook.com/l.php?u="+encodeURICom...
by Jacotus
Fri Feb 10, 2017 2:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Four fund share classes for Vanguard Total Stock Market Index, yes there really are four.
Replies: 13
Views: 1665

Re: Four fund share classes for Vanguard Total Stock Market Index, yes there really are four.

JDDS wrote:There is actually another share class recently added last year, Institutional Select which has an even lower expense ratio. Personally, I think it is getting a bit out of control.
Wow. $5 Billion minimum. You save .01% over Institutional plus, which saves at least $500,000 per year!
by Jacotus
Wed Dec 07, 2016 3:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy a house in Roth IRA
Replies: 5
Views: 1415

Re: Buy a house in Roth IRA

Houses, especially ones you live in, currently get absurdly favorable capital gains tax treatment compared to stocks. Why would you want to do this?
by Jacotus
Wed Oct 19, 2016 1:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct pre-purchase discount
Replies: 144
Views: 21716

Re: TaxAct pre-purchase discount

mikep wrote:I suspect this is the year I dump taxact.
I'm with you.
by Jacotus
Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct pre-purchase discount
Replies: 144
Views: 21716

Re: TaxAct pre-purchase discount

I had happily been using TaxAct since around 2008. It had been around $17 for federal and state filing. This year, doing my taxes in late March or early April, I was surprised to see the price had gone up to about $50. I paid it because I didn't feel at the time like looking for alternatives, but I ...
by Jacotus
Mon Oct 17, 2016 5:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Mega Backdoor Roth IRA
Replies: 424
Views: 148796

Re: The Mega Backdoor Roth IRA

If you are doing frequent rollovers (every pay period or so), there is no time for any substantial gains or losses. Given the short-term volatility of equities, most people would just use a money market fund or a stable value fund. For those who are doing frequent rollovers, are you concerned at al...
by Jacotus
Thu Oct 06, 2016 12:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Corelle dish pattern
Replies: 9
Views: 1334

Re: Corelle dish pattern

Let me introduce you to a feature whereby you can search the web using an image instead of a keyword. I dragged your image into the google search bar. Google says: Best guess for this image: corning wildflower salad plate. --> The pattern is called wildflower. According to this page, it is discontin...
by Jacotus
Mon Sep 19, 2016 12:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone accidentally tell a friend about your inheritance?
Replies: 83
Views: 11387

Re: Anyone accidentally tell a friend about your inheritance?

Good for you for being wise with the money and investing when you are young.

If this person is really your friend, you should be able to ask him that he not tell anybody. You can say you only told him because he is a very good friend and you don't want it being common knowledge.
by Jacotus
Sun Sep 18, 2016 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Graduate Student Tax Implications (Stipends)
Replies: 13
Views: 1292

Re: Graduate Student Tax Implications (Stipends)

aridneptune wrote:(4) Does my tuition waiver count as income? My department pays for my tuition fully. Do I have to report that as income and then take a full deduction for it? The tuition is approximately $60k annually.
You do not report this as income and do not take a deduction for it.
by Jacotus
Fri Aug 26, 2016 1:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do people earn regular income by investing?
Replies: 10
Views: 2325

Re: How do people earn regular income by investing?

OP, I mean this in the best way. It makes me sad that you can be sad about making "only" $300k-325k per year as a household. You are extremely well off, and I challenge you to name something you are deprived of.
by Jacotus
Sun Aug 21, 2016 11:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best/safest/easiest way to send sensitive files to another person over the internet?
Replies: 40
Views: 3630

Re: Best/safest way to send sensitive files to another person over the internet?

Upload to a Dropbox folder, send the file URL to the recipient, and delete the file from Dropbox immediately after download. Depending on the level of sensitivity, this method may be sufficient.
by Jacotus
Fri Aug 05, 2016 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Struggling with maxing out Roths. Advice?
Replies: 40
Views: 3337

Re: Struggling with maxing out Roths. Advice?

I would not put any money into 529 plans until the Roths are funded. One can always withdraw contributions from the Roths to pay for college. Plus 529 plan money will hurt a family more than Roth IRA money when it comes to financial aid . Since your family is "Struggling with maxing out Roths", the...
by Jacotus
Fri Aug 05, 2016 9:51 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Your 10 Most Important Financial Decisions"
Replies: 21
Views: 3646

Re: "Your 10 Most Important Financial Decisions"

This is a fantastic list. It's easy to focus on investing minutiae, but these are the big guns.

Most people might not think much about #1, #2, and #8 as financial decisions, but #3-7 are HUGE. I can't speak for #10 as it's a long way off for me, so it doesn't seem like a big deal :D.
by Jacotus
Fri Aug 05, 2016 9:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing a bond fund with Fidelity
Replies: 12
Views: 1482

Re: Choosing a bond fund with Fidelity

If it makes you feel any better, there's probably no wrong decision. The choices are close enough that the difference between the after-tax yields are probably within a few percent of each other. So you have a few percent difference on a yield of a few percent. And you say the account is under $25,0...
by Jacotus
Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing a bond fund with Fidelity
Replies: 12
Views: 1482

Re: Choosing a bond fund with Fidelity

How are these your only options in a taxable account?
by Jacotus
Sun May 01, 2016 11:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Jonathan Clements: higher % stocks -> higher % of stocks international
Replies: 14
Views: 1906

Re: Jonathan Clements: higher % stocks -> higher % of stocks international

From context, it's clear that he means: if you have a larger percentage of your portfolio in stocks, then a larger percentage of your stocks should be international. I don't actually think this is what Clements concludes, despite this dramatic first sentence: The more you have in stocks, the more y...
by Jacotus
Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PhD gift ideas
Replies: 17
Views: 1491

Re: PhD gift ideas

+1 getting the diploma framed. It's a pretty good gift because many PhD grads don't want to have to spend the couple hundred dollars for it, but would appreciate it for a long time to come.
by Jacotus
Sun Apr 10, 2016 10:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What percetage of Small Cap Value would approximate 50% total stock market
Replies: 11
Views: 1305

Re: What percetage of Small Cap Value would approximate 50% total stock market

I will Nth the praise for nisiprius explaining his process clearly.
by Jacotus
Fri Apr 08, 2016 9:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Question on bizarre performance of S&P 500 Fund in Fidelity 401k plan
Replies: 10
Views: 1426

Re: Question on bizarre performance of S&P 500 Fund in Fidelity 401k plan

I wonder if you are using the same set of endpoint dates. The problem is that the 1-3-5 numbers that are commonly quoted are usually "the last 1-3-5 years, up to now," where "now" is usually the end of the last month since they produced the numbers. Please go back and look at th...
by Jacotus
Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Question on bizarre performance of S&P 500 Fund in Fidelity 401k plan
Replies: 10
Views: 1426

Re: Question on bizarre performance of S&P 500 Fund in Fidelity 401k plan

With the ER of .02% you quoted, I would bet it's not a Mutual Fund you're being offered, but rather a Commingled Investment Trust "CIT" which has different reporting requirements than a mutual fund, they don't necessarily have daily quotations and whatever chart you're looking at may not ...
by Jacotus
Fri Apr 08, 2016 1:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Question on bizarre performance of S&P 500 Fund in Fidelity 401k plan
Replies: 10
Views: 1426

Question on bizarre performance of S&P 500 Fund in Fidelity 401k plan

For the first time in my life, I have access to a 401k. It's managed through Fidelity. There seems to be a very odd S&P 500 index fund option, with low expense ratio, that initially looked very good. Here are the main options: Fund; Gross Expense Ratio; Notes Target Retirement 2010-2060 0.06% --...
by Jacotus
Fri Apr 08, 2016 12:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Financial Applications of Calculus of Variations?
Replies: 20
Views: 2523

Re: Financial Applications of Calculus of Variations?

Financial applications often use stochastic differential equations, and for every stochastic differential equation of Langevin type, there is a corresponding Fokker-Planck equation. There exists a stochastic calculus of variations whereby the Fokker-Planck equation can be cast into a stochastic Lagr...
by Jacotus
Sun Mar 27, 2016 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Urge to Splurge with Plastic NYT article
Replies: 30
Views: 3739

Re: The Urge to Splurge with Plastic NYT article

A closely related, well-known psychological effect is the endowment effect . One of the most famous examples of the endowment effect in the literature is from a study by Daniel Kahneman, Jack Knetsch & Richard Thaler,[4] in which participants were given a mug and then offered the chance to sell ...
by Jacotus
Mon Mar 21, 2016 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Academic Prize and 1099-MISC
Replies: 15
Views: 1962

Re: Academic Prize and 1099-MISC

This reminds me of a time when a fellow PhD student at a top university insisted that her stipend was not taxable. I told her, not getting a W-2 doesn't mean you get off free, the IRS says plain as day that fellowship income is taxable. She didn't listen, and my mind boggled. I wonder how many grad ...
by Jacotus
Thu Mar 17, 2016 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Better to use backdoor Roth IRA when close to income limit?
Replies: 3
Views: 444

Re: Better to use backdoor Roth IRA when close to income limit?

Thanks for your comments. You're right, I expect that in a few years my income will be over the limit anyway, so no harm in getting used to the process now.
by Jacotus
Thu Mar 17, 2016 10:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Better to use backdoor Roth IRA when close to income limit?
Replies: 3
Views: 444

Better to use backdoor Roth IRA when close to income limit?

I project that my total income will be close to but a little under the Roth IRA income limit. In general, I'd prefer to contribute to the Roth IRA at the beginning of each year. However, there's the possibility that I might have some unexpected income if, late in the year, I decide to sell some stoc...
by Jacotus
Thu Feb 25, 2016 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Grad student W2 - no SS and no Medicare
Replies: 7
Views: 870

Re: Grad student W2 - no SS and no Medicare

As a graduate student with a stipend, at different times I: ⋅  Had no W2 and no FICA taken out ⋅  Had a W2 and had FICA taken out ⋅  Had a W2 and no FICA taken out So it's certainly possible and depends on exactly how the money is received (Fellowship, TAship, etc). Asi...
by Jacotus
Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Nest Thermostat: Worth it
Replies: 19
Views: 3572

Re: Nest Thermostat: Worth it

Misleading title alert!
by Jacotus
Fri Aug 07, 2015 10:01 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Congrats to Laura Dogu
Replies: 67
Views: 9904

Re: Congrats to Laura Dogu

Congrats, Ambassador Dogu! Such a well-deserved honor for the Queen among us :D
by Jacotus
Thu May 28, 2015 10:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need 60k for downpayment, take from VTIAX or VTSAX?
Replies: 11
Views: 1196

Re: Need 60k for downpayment, take from VTIAX or VTSAX?

Do you have a 401k or IRA account you can rebalance with?
by Jacotus
Tue Jan 13, 2015 1:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?
Replies: 296
Views: 27674

Re: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?

I still like the idea of splitting it up into 100 bets of $1 each, if there's no limits. Diversification, essentially. If you do that, every time you do you would expect to end up with about $125. Then make 125 bets of $1 each. Keep going infinitely. Ideally, you would have a computer program that ...
by Jacotus
Mon Jan 12, 2015 6:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?
Replies: 296
Views: 27674

Re: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?

@Jacotus, you are dredging up old misconceptions (as had some other people before) that had already been dealt with earlier in the thread. Read the thread. You said "I am not a mathematician, but I am a physicist who spends most my time doing math." Then surely you should be able to easil...