Search found 2064 matches

by MathWizard
Thu May 26, 2016 7:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: If TSM and SP500 are so alike, why even do TSM?
Replies: 48
Views: 4153

Re: If TSM and SP500 are so alike, why even do TSM?

I do both.

I prefer TSM , but my 403b has the SP500
with a much lower ER than TSM,
so I chose it over TSM there.
In my Vanguard IRA I hold TSM

If the funds are similar chose the one with lower
ER.
by MathWizard
Thu May 26, 2016 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Forced use of automatic ACH withdrawals?
Replies: 17
Views: 1296

Re: Forced use of automatic ACH withdrawals?

OP, For ACH withdrawals, I set up a separate account, and transfer the correct amount of money into it each month to cover all the withdrawals. My wife ran an in-home daycare for several years, so I can see the other side also. Years of shoveling the drive at 5:30am so we'd be ready for the first of...
by MathWizard
Thu May 26, 2016 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you educate your kids on finances
Replies: 17
Views: 890

Re: How did you educate your kids on finances?

Opportunistic learning. When in line at the bank, I showed one son how a larger CD, or longer duration CD gets better interest. I explained why that is talking about transaction costs and how the bank uses the money to loan out. Stocks going up/down would be too much for them, as it is for many adul...
by MathWizard
Thu May 26, 2016 3:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roll call Warren Buffet 90/10 portfolio
Replies: 38
Views: 2656

Re: Roll call Warren Buffet 90/10 portfolio

I'm 90/10 not counting my EF.

I rebalanced into stocks during the 2008/9 recession.
by MathWizard
Wed May 25, 2016 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Berkshire Hathaway always beats SP500
Replies: 47
Views: 4212

Re: Berkshire Hathaway always beats SP500

If you look at total return over a reasonably long period you will see BRK A and SP 500 total return being about the same, and you can get either to win by picking the right endpoints. However, if you look at returns looking back over a period that starts before the 2008 crash, you will see much bet...
by MathWizard
Tue May 24, 2016 5:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Berkshire Hathaway always beats SP500
Replies: 47
Views: 4212

Re: Berkshire Hathaway always beats SP500

Berkshire does not give out dividends, while some companies in the SP500 do.
Did you compare total return?

I believe that VTSAX gets around 2% of its returns through dividends, likely the SP00 is similar,
so if you just compared stock price, I'd expect that BH would look about 2% better.
by MathWizard
Tue May 24, 2016 5:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Nominal Price Illusion
Replies: 6
Views: 889

Re: The Nominal Price Illusion

Since they are investing in individual stocks, they have a different mindset, so maybe I can't draw conclusions, but even so, one extra advantage of smaller prices is that they can diversify easier. You can't buy 1% of a share so if the stock is like Berkshire Hathaway class A stock, the price is so...
by MathWizard
Fri May 20, 2016 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing landline/DSL with cell only
Replies: 35
Views: 1705

Re: Replacing landline/DSL with cell only

We use low cost (Tracfone) for cells, $100/yr. which includes enough talk/text/data for us, since I almost always use data via wireless, which I have almost everywhere. I got a Tracfone prepaid flip phone for $15 at Target. Talk and text by the minute. Buy top-off cards a lot of places. I advise ag...
by MathWizard
Thu May 19, 2016 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing landline/DSL with cell only
Replies: 35
Views: 1705

Re: Replacing landline/DSL with cell only

I don't think that you will be able to use a cell phone for your household internet. Think about how much bandwidth windows update alone would chew up. We uses netflix HiDef for streaming and often are near or exceed our cable internet monthly cap of 250GBytes . If you use more than 5 Gbytes in a mo...
by MathWizard
Thu May 19, 2016 11:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Defined benefit plan. Should I "buy" extra years of service?
Replies: 22
Views: 2167

Re: Defined benefit plan. Should I "buy" extra years of service?

Maybe this is not relevant, but could this reduce your SS payment under the Windfall Elimination Program?

Also, is the benefit inflation adjusted?

If WEP does not apply, and if the benefit is inflation adjusted, I'd probably buy some years.
by MathWizard
Thu May 19, 2016 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing landline/DSL with cell only
Replies: 35
Views: 1705

Re: Replacing landline/DSL with cell only

We have internet only through the cable company, since DSL was way too slow (1.5Mb/s max for the same price as 15Mb/s via cable) Phone quality was also getting poorer, so we went with Vonage for phone service. I plugged in our wireless phone base to the wired ethernet, and roam the house on the wire...
by MathWizard
Thu May 19, 2016 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pride in no inheritance to kids?
Replies: 233
Views: 156

Re: Pride in no inheritance to kids?

I am not in the position where I know that my wife and I will leave and inheritance. When following a withdrawal plan that has had high 90%+ rate of success, the most likely event is a huge terminal value in the portfolio, but that is far from guaranteed. My kids, plus some charities, are certainly ...
by MathWizard
Wed May 18, 2016 3:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where does ER income come from?!
Replies: 14
Views: 1282

Re: Where does ER income come from?!

From your retirement accounts , using rule 72t to avoid early withdrawal 10% penalty

See the boglehead wiki:

https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Substantially_equal_periodic_payments
by MathWizard
Wed May 18, 2016 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it common for a step mother to inherit everything?
Replies: 105
Views: 7679

Re: Is it common for a step mother to inherit everything?

... When my grandfather died, my grandmother insisted that I receive $75. This was decades ago, so perhaps that would be a few hundred now at best. I bought a set of stainless flatware, and told my grandmother that I would think of my grandfather and her with EVERY meal. She cried with joy about th...
by MathWizard
Tue May 17, 2016 7:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For those of you in the Accumulation Phase - How often do you check?
Replies: 62
Views: 4750

Re: For those of you in the Accumulation Phase - How often do you check?

About once a week. I update a file with the total which I use for estimation of retirement income.
It makes it easier for me to see long-term trend.
by MathWizard
Mon May 16, 2016 8:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Money Monster Movie
Replies: 5
Views: 1114

Re: Money Monster Movie

Planned to watch it when it comes on redbox or netflix.

With a 55 in. Ultra HiDef TV, I only go to movies for Special effects movies.
by MathWizard
Mon May 16, 2016 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College - In state - Children staying close to parents
Replies: 54
Views: 2633

Re: College - In state - Children staying close to parents

Do the following assumptions make sense? The children go to in state versus out of state college. They would be close to parents during college for approximately six years. There are higher chances that they would take a job in state. It would lead to higher chances of children staying close to par...
by MathWizard
Mon May 16, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 403B Roth in 28% tax bracket now.
Replies: 13
Views: 2295

Re: 403B Roth in 28% tax bracket now.

I've thought about the Roth 403B myself, while sitting at the 15/25% line, and expecting to retire into something on the upper end of the 15% bracket assuming tax brackets/exemptions/SD stay the same. We should have about 20% of retirement funds in our ROTH IRAs, the rest in regular 403Bs. Other tha...
by MathWizard
Thu May 12, 2016 8:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need barest, skeleton, almost non-existent cell plan.
Replies: 22
Views: 1569

Re: Need barest, skeleton, almost non-existent cell plan.

The same company s straight talk has tracfone. $100/yr. You can bring your own phone now. I use a phone with triple minutes, and get 1200 min + 1200 texts + 1200MB of data for $100/yr. mInutes/test/data roll over as long as you keep service. I'm up to over 3000 minutes, and mostly use wifi for data....
by MathWizard
Thu May 12, 2016 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sci-Fi ... your favorite movies and episodes??
Replies: 145
Views: 11980

Re: Sci-Fi ... your favorite movies and episodes??

Galaxy Quest A movie which honours Sci Fi fandom and Star Trek even as it mercilessly makes fun of them. The new JJ Abrams Star Trek is even more like the ST that Galaxy Quest is satirizing than the original ST was! Tim Burton (?) as William Shatner is hilarious. And the late, great Alan Rickman (H...
by MathWizard
Thu May 12, 2016 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: paid off mortgage...what happens next?
Replies: 19
Views: 3148

Re: paid off mortgage...what happens next?

If you had escrow funds for property taxes and insurance, you should get a check for the balance, but you'll need to make sure you are paying these. Of course if you are selling in a month, this may not be an issue. Boy, you sure are not going to have much time to enjoy a paid up house. Does the nex...
by MathWizard
Thu May 12, 2016 12:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Downsize to One Auto in Retirement ?
Replies: 43
Views: 3229

Re: Downsize to One Auto in Retirement ?

Most of my siblings are retired and have more than one vehicle per person.

My guess is that we will have at least one per person, as long as we both can drive.
Now maybe on-demand driverless cars might change the dynamic.
by MathWizard
Thu May 12, 2016 12:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to lose a billion dollars...Beer heiress Frances Strohl
Replies: 19
Views: 3600

Re: How to lose a billion dollars...Beer heiress Frances Strohl

The quote I remember is that the first generation makes the business, the second generation maintains the business, and the third generation loses the business. Knowing how to create new businesses or maintain existing ones is not genetic. This is actually good for the economy, since new "first...
by MathWizard
Wed May 11, 2016 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renegotiating 3 year contract with balloon payoff and seller breach
Replies: 9
Views: 1627

Re: Renegotiating 3 year contract with balloon payoff and seller breach

I would agree with getting a lawyer. What the seller has done may be stronger than a breach of contract. What is the value of an insurance businesses, if not the current contracts and the customer base? If the former owner sold the business, and yet was taking money that belonged to the business, th...
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 11:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Noise Reduction
Replies: 59
Views: 4581

Re: Noise Reduction

Grew up next to a busy federal highway (60 mph speed limit at night, 70 during the day) and a railroad on the other side of that. Cheap house, single pane windows, Slept right through it. The bedroom were on the other side of the house from the highway, so maybe that helped. When I've stayed in hote...
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any Farmers? Question about Leasing Land
Replies: 12
Views: 2064

Re: Any Farmers? Question about Leasing Land

My parents were dryland farmers all their lives, raising wheat and other grains in a midwest state. My father passed away and now my mother (age 65) owns all the land and intends to keep it and lease it out. She only wants a cash rent lease, no crop shares, and plans to continue this setup until sh...
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 4:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: public pension plan unfunded liabilities
Replies: 64
Views: 6871

Re: public pension plan unfunded liabilities

One other actionable item:

Public employees who can opt for a 403b rather than a pension.
The status of funding in very relevant and actionable for those folks.
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 3:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Don't stay the course
Replies: 118
Views: 16389

Re: Don't stay the course

Most stock is owned by individuals in the highest tax brackets. With the current tax code, where dividends are taxed at your marginal rate and LTCG are fixed at less than the top federal rates, corporate boards are going to favor capital appreciation over dividends. Even at the same rate, capital a...
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 3:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund or Invest?
Replies: 11
Views: 1275

Re: Emergency Fund or Invest?

I'd leave your $24K EF where it is. I keep 6 months expenses in a credit union, but have another year's worth of Roth contributions as a second tier EF. Contrary to the usual advice in this forum, I have the second tier of the EF invested aggressively. This has allowed that portion to grow to 2x wha...
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 11:00 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 18 year College Bound Roth IRA advice
Replies: 11
Views: 761

Re: 18 year College Bound Roth IRA advice

I've been filling out the FAFSA for 8 years, and retirement assets are not counted on the parent's side, and I do not believe on the student's side either. Now for income, payments to a tax-deferred account do get added back into income in the year that they were deferred. Income is weighted much mo...
by MathWizard
Tue May 10, 2016 10:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gifted math program for 1st grade
Replies: 66
Views: 6511

Re: Gifted math program for 1st grade

Ideally, every child would be taught at their level in each subject. The problem with that is that it is expensive. (You could end up with one or more teachers per student.) Instead, we have 20-30 children with one teacher who has the choice of 1) teaching to bottom of the class in each subject to n...
by MathWizard
Mon May 09, 2016 1:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Don't stay the course
Replies: 118
Views: 16389

Re: Don't stay the course

I have a couple of issues with the article referenced. 1) The return mentioned appear to be nominal, not real. Ignoring inflation, especially in the 80s, is clearly faulty reasoning. 2) The article bases a low expected return in stocks just on the lower dividends that stocks return. The assumption i...
by MathWizard
Sun May 08, 2016 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need help with Social Security strategy for wife
Replies: 15
Views: 1296

Re: Need help with Social Security strategy for wife

Look at how deemed filing rules work before claiming before FRA. My gut feeling is that waiting to FRA (66) taking spousal then and your own + deferred credits at 70. This allows you to have more money in the case that your husband lives more than short time. The SSA mortality tables at https://www....
by MathWizard
Fri May 06, 2016 12:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "When the Rich Jump Ship"
Replies: 6
Views: 2116

Re: "When the Rich Jump Ship"

Getting out during Sept 2008, and jumping back in during Mar 2009 would have been a profitable move. Suppose you get out Oct 1, 2008 when the SP500 was at 968.80, then get back in on Mar 1, 2009 when the SP500 was 757.13 You now own 28% more stock. (Of course you missed out on any dividends paid in ...
by MathWizard
Thu May 05, 2016 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Safe withdrawal rates
Replies: 51
Views: 7529

Re: Safe withdrawal rates

I'm planning using the 4% rule, but will establish a floor with SS and an inflation adjusted SPIA that will handle base expenses (food , housing, medical, taxes ...). Discretionary spending can then be extremely variable. I do plan to delay SS, which is like buying an inflation adjusted SPIAs with s...
by MathWizard
Thu May 05, 2016 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not at fault Car accident, should I file for Arbitration?
Replies: 26
Views: 1961

Re: Not at fault Car accident, should I file for Arbitration?

I've never had a problem like this. When in an accident, either I was at fault or the other party was. I reported the accident to my insurance agency, and gave them the info of the other agency, and everything was taken care of. I would ask your Geico Insurance agent to handle this. If they will not...
by MathWizard
Tue May 03, 2016 4:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Numeracy and Wealth
Replies: 44
Views: 6162

Re: Numeracy and Wealth

Part of the problem is the shift in math education in elementary school to math appreciation. Its what you'd get if you tried to teach someone how to throw and catch by explaining it to them and having them explain it back, rather than just throwing and catching repetitively. The dismissiveness tow...
by MathWizard
Tue May 03, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sci-Fi ... your favorite movies and episodes??
Replies: 145
Views: 11980

Re: Sci-Fi ... your favorite movies and episodes??

Big Star Trek fan (watched the original as a child when we were still reaching for the moon.) Favorites of Original Series: Guardian of Forever ; Doomsday Machine; Assignment Earth Non-trek Movies: Forbidden Planet; Stargate; The Day the Earth Stood Still; Authors: Clarke, Asimov; Heinlein ; Bradbur...
by MathWizard
Mon May 02, 2016 8:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much House
Replies: 64
Views: 6273

Re: How Much House

For all of the BH homeowners... What was the purchase price of your house in comparison to annual income, NW, etc? Did you pay cash or finance? How close are you to work? Do you feel like you are living comfortably or is too much/too little house? Thanks. Mortgage was 1.85x higher earner's income a...
by MathWizard
Mon May 02, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to double check CPA work?
Replies: 24
Views: 1930

Re: How to double check CPA work?

If you are really worried, think significant money is at stake, and do not want to do it yourself, use two CPAs from competing firms next year, providing them with the same info. You are just getting a second opinion then. If you don't see much difference, pick the one you feel the most comfortable ...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please Help: Have Advisor, Would Rather Have Gains
Replies: 19
Views: 2260

Re: Please Help: Have Advisor, Would Rather Have Gains

OP, Welcome to the forum. I don't think you are going to get tough words. You've come seeking help, and you'll get it. I would just suggest setting up some form of Solo 401K. As a freelancer, it would seem that you are a contractor (correct?). If so, you have your own business. Doe that sound right?...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 28, 2016 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Young Male Living with Parents
Replies: 83
Views: 4678

Re: Young Male Living with Parents

Clearly financially the situation you have is better.

There is a lot of recency bias on the part of your friends.

In the US, it has not been that long since living with your parents until marriage, and maybe a while after
that was the norm. This was true both for my parents and my wife's.
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are females just not interested in investing in general or is it just the women that I date?
Replies: 89
Views: 9778

Re: Are females just not interested in investing in general or is it just the women that I date?

Financially, I've always been more interested in the long term and my wife in the short term. I also grew up poorer than she did, so that may play into that dynamic as well. We respect each other's opinions, even when we disagree. This actually gives us a good balance, as otherwise I might end up on...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 27, 2016 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy used or new? Which of these small SUVs are best for families?
Replies: 39
Views: 2965

Re: Buy used or new? Which of these small SUVs are best for families?

With three kids, you probably want a minivan. I've had good luck going to a state auction and buying one that was in the motor pool of one of the state Universities. These are well maintained vehicles. The one I bought it in 2006 was 5 years old, with 55K miles it has served us well. We still use it...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I Hate My Job: Politics at Work (Advice Needed)
Replies: 108
Views: 12315

Re: I Hate My Job: Politics at Work (Advice Needed)

I think that your assessment of the likelihood of you being continued is probably accurate. I would continue to work there as amiably as possible, and look for a better position elsewhere. It is possible that you are in too high a level R&D organization to be able to be the main PI at this stage...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 26, 2016 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to tell your child about Bill for tax preparation
Replies: 53
Views: 5347

Re: What to tell your child about Bill for tax preparation

I think that it is great that your son will come to you for advice in money matters. I hope that my sons continue to do so as well. (My oldest is 26, so not much different form your situation.) Next year, I suggest you purchase turbotax and do your taxes yourself as well as have the CPA firm do them...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stanley Kubrick's 2001 a space odyssey
Replies: 154
Views: 15583

Re: Stanley Kubrick's 2001 a space odyssey

I saw it the first weekend it came out. I *loved* it, my girlfriend hated it. I've probably seen it 15 times since then, and it made me a lifelong Kubrick fan. Still married to her, and she still hates it. :happy Saw it with my wife (girlfriend at the time) and sister. They both walked out during t...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Economics Math and Differences (from another thread)
Replies: 4
Views: 655

Re: Economics Math and Differences (from another thread)

I believe you are correct.

See the SSA website, and use the calculator
https://www.ssa.gov/OACT/quickcalc/early_late.html

to see this. I am assuming that the SSA calculator is correct.
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost to refinish hardwood floors and to install new floors
Replies: 16
Views: 1192

Re: Cost to refinish hardwood floors and to install new floors

This does not seem out of line to me. 11 years ago I had 800 sq ft sanded/refinished plus 200 of new red oak installed and that ran about $5K. You are adding much more to the install and have demolition of the tile, and it is 11 yrs later. You could try a calculator like: http://www.homewyse.com/cos...

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