Search found 1375 matches

by Stonebr
Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Reliving the Nightmare of the Crisis
Replies: 115
Views: 7527

Re: Reliving the Nightmare of the Crisis

You can argue forever about how much risk there really was. The problem is that far out of the normal that it doesn't fit the normal risk model of alert, sober truck driver behavior. Therefore you suspect that the model no longer applies and that the risk was probably greater than indicated by the ...
by Stonebr
Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wasps in Attic?
Replies: 2
Views: 286

Re: Wasps in Attic?

Live and let live. Unless the critters are doing damage or stinking, I don't see a problem.
by Stonebr
Fri Jul 22, 2016 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Acadia National Park - Tips?
Replies: 22
Views: 1442

Re: Visiting Acadia National Park - Tips?

A week in Acadia is just scratching the surface for many people. John D Rockefeller liked it so much he bought the whole island. When his kids got tired of it, they gave it to the government. This year is the 100 year anniversary. Depending on when you go puffins may still be nesting. You can take a...
by Stonebr
Fri Jul 22, 2016 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bordeaux wines
Replies: 17
Views: 1136

Re: Bordeaux wines

If you are vegan, some red wines are considered vegan and some are not whereas all white wine is vegan. Coming from someone who farms - if I apply manure to my vineyard, and the grapes are harvested to produce white wine - wouldn't that qualify the grapes as NOT being vegan? And while I'm at it - m...
by Stonebr
Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feeling discouraged
Replies: 60
Views: 5824

Re: Feeling discouraged

Many people don't realize that when you are starting out, your savings rate is MUCH more important than your rate of return. You have already done one of the single best things you could have done, which is to get an early start. At some point, there will be a tipping point where you start noticing...
by Stonebr
Mon Jul 18, 2016 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: beehive near deck
Replies: 20
Views: 1214

Re: beehive near deck

You might consider leaving them alone, depending on how far it is from the deck, or if people will be right under it: "Wasp nest? Let it be may be the best answer!" - Purdue University Department of Entomology ... excellent article. It says do nothing and the problem will go away by itsel...
by Stonebr
Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Maintenance for the Urban Dweller
Replies: 9
Views: 806

Re: Car Maintenance for the Urban Dweller

I parked on the street in downtown Boston for about 13 years. During that time I bought a new Honda. My only problems were with attempted theft and missing parts. It was safe for about 6-7 years and then when it got old enough, it became a sort of used parts inventory for some of my neighbors. I'd w...
by Stonebr
Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hatchback to match Camry on price/comfort/reliability?
Replies: 42
Views: 2950

Re: Hatchback to match Camry on price/comfort/reliability?

Prius.

Prius is a mid-size car that easily seats 5 adults. Most people don't seem to get that. It has more cargo space than a Camry, and with the hatchback it's more useful space. The rear seats fold flat -- and I mean flat. Reliability is, if anything, better than Camry.
by Stonebr
Sat Jul 16, 2016 7:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "John Bogle Gets the Last Laugh"
Replies: 8
Views: 2155

Re: "John Bogle Gets the Last Laugh"

I'm probably typical of Bogleheads of a certain age -- retired. It took a couple of decades for the message to get through my thick skull. I knew about EMT and CAPM and Malkiel's Random Walk and about the Vanguard 500 Index fund when I first started investing in 1981. I had worked as a grad student ...
by Stonebr
Fri Jul 15, 2016 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Contractor tipping: owner vs onsite supervisor
Replies: 24
Views: 1224

Re: Contractor tipping: owner vs onsite supervisor

Peak tipping. When we have to tip a contractor's help it's game over.
by Stonebr
Wed Jul 06, 2016 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Book Pro- do I need antivirus software?
Replies: 32
Views: 4213

Re: Mac Book Pro- do I need antivirus software?

I used Sophos for a year or two, but then switched to Avast. Sophos seldom found anything to block, but Avast does fairly often. It may be a sign of the times or it may be that Avast is more sensitive. Both are free, easy to install and use, but I have a higher confidence level with Avast.
by Stonebr
Fri Jul 01, 2016 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone own Ken Burns documentaries on DVD or BluRay?
Replies: 6
Views: 536

Re: Anyone own Ken Burns documentaries on DVD or BluRay?

Have you checked your public library? Ours has just about everything he's done -- Baseball, Civil War, National Parks, Jazz...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 29, 2016 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where were you financially when you were at 30?
Replies: 217
Views: 21180

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

I am 64. When I turned 30 I had just started my first white collar job. Previously, I'd been a student (BA, MA and work toward a PhD in Math), did blue collar jobs when I wasn't studying. At 30 I had no debts and about $1500 in savings -- mostly in a money market mutual fund earning about 15%. The M...
by Stonebr
Mon Jun 27, 2016 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reducing Electric Bill- Point of Diminishing Returns?
Replies: 34
Views: 3504

Re: Reducing Electric Bill- Point of Diminishing Returns?

Gee, that sounds cheap to me. Over the past 3 years we've put over $20k into our house for energy savings. We figure it will take about 15 years for payback.

But the big change is comfort. Nobody ever mentions that the comfort level of your house will improve big time.
by Stonebr
Sun Jun 26, 2016 5:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension Buyout - now or wait?
Replies: 12
Views: 1129

Re: Pension Buyout - now or wait?

It sounds like the (former) employer is either freezing or terminating their defined benefit pension plan. The financial liability for your life benefit will be on somebody's books for the next 34 years -- either the company or an insurer that takes on the liability through a "closeout annuity ...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using toll roads without transponder?
Replies: 19
Views: 1555

Re: Using toll roads without transponder?

We did not do anything to pre-register with Florida when we were there in February with our Maine registered car. I don't know about other states, but Florida takes a photo of your license plate as you pass through their tolls. At the end of the month they send you a bill through US Postal Service. ...
by Stonebr
Tue Jun 21, 2016 4:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirement savings withdrawals
Replies: 20
Views: 2366

Re: Retirement savings withdrawals

You're running up against your employer's 401(k) disbursement policies, not against laws. I'm not sure exactly what the 15-year part means. Maybe you can start and stop. Maybe not. This is my take, too. In my own situation my 401k allows the following: 1) take everything at once; 2) take 120 instal...
by Stonebr
Sun Jun 19, 2016 8:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FICO score drops
Replies: 9
Views: 1239

Re: FICO score drops

I have happily ignored FICO scores all my life. I suggest you do the same.
by Stonebr
Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Iceland triggering second thoughts on foreign bonds?
Replies: 39
Views: 2952

Re: Iceland triggering second thoughts on foreign bonds?

You can default on your car payments, mortgage, and credit cards and not violate any laws. The days of debtor prisons are, thankfully, long gone. General Motors and Chrysler can default on their bonds. Countries like Mexico and Russia have defaulted in one way or another, so why not Iceland? There's...
by Stonebr
Sun Jun 12, 2016 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying summer cottage overseas
Replies: 17
Views: 2126

Re: Buying summer cottage overseas

sunny_socal wrote:While we live in California but there's a summer cottage in Finland I'm thinking of buying:



Well that's convenient. :twisted:
by Stonebr
Sun Jun 12, 2016 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace timing belt and water pump - dealer or indepedent?
Replies: 20
Views: 1331

Re: Replace timing belt and water pump - dealer or indepedent?

Make sure they use genuine Toyota parts, no matter who does the work.
by Stonebr
Mon May 30, 2016 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: buying art?
Replies: 17
Views: 1163

Re: buying art?

I think you should buy what you like and pay what you want. Fine art is beautiful and fun to live with. It's all entirely subjective, so don't expect any two "experts" to agree on anything. "Art" is too big a subject to become an expert at anyway -- especially if you have only a ...
by Stonebr
Mon May 16, 2016 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any beekeepers out there?
Replies: 35
Views: 2454

Re: Any beekeepers out there?

Look into Xerces Society The honey bee is an introduced species from Europe. Don't know anything about Xerces Society, sure it is fine group, but in defense of honeybees as pollinators, which indeed were brought over by first Spanish, French and English colonists (native Americans called them white...
by Stonebr
Mon May 16, 2016 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it OK to leave home wifi on?
Replies: 55
Views: 3881

Re: Is it OK to leave home wifi on?

I turn ours off every night to save money. It's on a power strip with the modem and printer. All the idling phantom loads on this one power strip burn about 20Watts. This saves about 73 kWh per year (10 hours a night/365 days a year -- actually more when we go on vacation). I do this with every othe...
by Stonebr
Mon May 16, 2016 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any beekeepers out there?
Replies: 35
Views: 2454

Re: Any beekeepers out there?

More information on helping pollinators in these books: Bringing Nature Home - Douglas Tallamy 100 Plants to Save the Bees - The Xerces Society Attracting Native Pollinators: The Xerces Society Guide, Protecting North America's Bees and Butterflies - The Xerces Society Also, check into your local Au...
by Stonebr
Mon May 16, 2016 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any beekeepers out there?
Replies: 35
Views: 2454

Re: Any beekeepers out there?

very interesting. thanks for the reply. With the horrible shortage of bees I'm just wondering what each of us can do to help. So many bees have been lost. Look into Xerces Society. http://www.xerces.org/ You can do more about the pollinator problem by planting native North American plants, avoiding...
by Stonebr
Tue May 10, 2016 7:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 30 minute commute?
Replies: 80
Views: 7219

Re: 30 minute commute?

texasdiver wrote:Anyone here drive a 30 minute commute on a daily basis and not find it too bad?



Reach for something better: my best commute was a 15 minute walk each way. I had it for 14 years.
by Stonebr
Fri May 06, 2016 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: remodel: energy-independent house!
Replies: 37
Views: 2994

Re: remodel: energy-independent house!

Like the business cliche, you can't manage what you haven't measured. You need to get a handle on kWh of electricity and therms of gas. As someone above mentioned, the home energy yardstick is a good place to start... https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=HOME_ENERGY_YARDSTICK.showGetStart...
by Stonebr
Tue May 03, 2016 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity or Vanguard
Replies: 91
Views: 7473

Re: Fidelity or Vanguard

My wife and I have accounts at both Vanguard and Fidelity. I can't tell a difference in customer service. But then with buy and hold Boglehead portfolios there isn't much we need in the way of service. The web interfaces are different, but I wouldn't rate one better than the other -- just different....
by Stonebr
Sat Apr 23, 2016 7:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: dividend stocks
Replies: 175
Views: 10432

Re: dividend stocks

In a taxable account, all dividends are taxed as regular income. LT capital gains are taxed at a lower rate. Uh. Excuse me? My qualified dividends and cap gains are both taxed at a 0% rate. It all depends on your bracket. This is a nice deal for retirees with lots of assets and little income (other...
by Stonebr
Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: James Dale Davidson's prediction of 2016 collapse
Replies: 42
Views: 5007

Re: James Dale Davidson's prediction of 2016 collapse

James Dale Davidson has been predicting collapse since at least 1987. His books like Blood in the Streets (1987), and The Great Reckoning (1991) are firmly in the gloom and doom genre. He runs an advisory service that caters to the fears of his clients. As I recall, his typical portfolio is big on c...
by Stonebr
Thu Apr 21, 2016 10:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Advice- Young Medical Professional
Replies: 1
Views: 424

Re: Portfolio Advice- Young Medical Professional

1. 90/10 will work great until you run into your first big bear market, then when your pants are soiled you'll realize it may not have been the smartest idea. But this is something only experience can prove. It is very interesting to me that when I was your age the market catastrophes affected me em...
by Stonebr
Sun Apr 17, 2016 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not buy a DIVIDEND stock?
Replies: 36
Views: 3629

Re: Why not buy a DIVIDEND stock?

I tried the dividend stock thing about 15 years ago and all the dividends got cut or the stocks got killed. These were what looked (at the time) like great companies -- BP, GE, Pfizer, ConocoPhillips, Fannie Mae, etc. Some were companies with AAA rated bonds (at the time). Note the repeated parenthe...
by Stonebr
Sat Apr 16, 2016 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coin Collecting (will coins increase or decrease in value?)
Replies: 36
Views: 3463

Re: Coin Collecting (will coins increase or decrease in value?)

Not a bad idea to wind down and sell off hobby collections before you die. Heirs seldom know or care enough about your hobby to make the right decisions. These things just end up an annoyance and delay final settlement of an estate.
by Stonebr
Mon Apr 04, 2016 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: led vs cfl
Replies: 102
Views: 7062

Re: led vs cfl

My opinion is that CFL is a clumsy, obsolete technology that has only existed as a transition step to better things. LED technology is here to stay and has reached the price and function that makes it the use of choice far and away. My house is almost completely converted to LED including even T8 t...
by Stonebr
Fri Apr 01, 2016 9:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GRE Study Materials
Replies: 22
Views: 1360

Re: GRE Study Materials

A good 4 year education in arts and sciences is the best preparation. If you are cramming, I'd suggest Shakespeare, Mark Twain and Calculus by Thomas.
by Stonebr
Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Boglehead: Portfolio review (retirement, reallocation, and new management)
Replies: 14
Views: 1728

Re: New Boglehead: retirement, reallocation and new management??

1. No recent experience with CS (Charles Schwab? I assume?). As for the "issues" with Vanguard, I have happily ignored them. As a passive investor in index funds, I seldom need any customer service, and I haven't seen a capital gains distribution in living memory. I keep my own records for...
by Stonebr
Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Binoculars for Birding Boglehead-wise
Replies: 23
Views: 1723

Re: Binoculars for Birding Boglehead-wise

I don't think you can go wrong with 8x40 (or 42) in the $300 to $600 price range. Brand names don't matter too much. Like you, I started with inexpensive 7x35 but eventually found that they just didn't cut it in low light situations like dusk or deep forest. You want something that's comfy in your h...
by Stonebr
Wed Mar 16, 2016 6:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: One boring day in the market, one legendary fund bucks the trend
Replies: 28
Views: 5840

Re: One boring day in the market, one legendary fund bucks the trend

I think the OP was right to bring this to the forum's attention. This is about something more than just a one day drop in fund price. IMO, it is about a once top notch fund that has seemingly lost its way. I would agree. Sequoia is not just any fund, it's a kind of benchmark for active management -...
by Stonebr
Mon Mar 14, 2016 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Audiobooks performed by the author
Replies: 12
Views: 920

Re: Audiobooks performed by the author

Judy Collins -- Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music

Her reading voice is as great as her singing. This is her autobiography.
by Stonebr
Mon Mar 14, 2016 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fixed index annuities
Replies: 6
Views: 482

Re: Fixed index annuities

Here's the skinny from the bogleheads wiki page: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Equity-indexed_annuity Fixed Index Annuity is another term for Equity-indexed annuity (according to Nationwide's own website). Whatever you call them, these annuities are high-cost, high-commission, high-complexity &quo...
by Stonebr
Sat Mar 05, 2016 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: home weatherization--worth it?
Replies: 28
Views: 2978

Re: home weatherization--worth it?

My house IS more comfortable, and I am saving ~25% on my annual heating and cooling bills. On a cost basis, my work has an 8 year simple payback, but I am very satisfied due to a combination of better comfort and health (lower allergies/dust) and energy savings. +1 This is a really key point. So ma...
by Stonebr
Fri Mar 04, 2016 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Belize City
Replies: 28
Views: 2187

Re: Visiting Belize City

I have not been there but the state department has information on destinations that you should read. See the tab under safety. http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/country/belize.html At least there is no travel warning like for some other countries, such as Columbia. For some people, the S...
by Stonebr
Fri Mar 04, 2016 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Belize City
Replies: 28
Views: 2187

Re: Visiting Belize City

It has been more than 20 years since I was there, but I can't imagine it's changed much. The city is really a small town. We could walk around in the daytime, but at night it was better to be in a car. Sin city. We were there during a national holiday and there was a parade -- kids, young women, peo...
by Stonebr
Thu Mar 03, 2016 6:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do You Give Your Friends Investment Advice?
Replies: 58
Views: 4463

Re: Do You Give Your Friends Investment Advice?

I steered my elderly parents through the investment world for a couple of decades -- Vanguard LifeStrategy. About 14 years ago I was asked by two co-workers on separate occasions for suggestions on an investment vehicle that would be suitable. Both were investing through IRAs, both had been burned b...
by Stonebr
Mon Feb 29, 2016 4:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Stable Value Fund in 401K Good Alternative to Money Market?
Replies: 14
Views: 1362

Re: Is Stable Value Fund in 401K Good Alternative to Money Market?

That said, if the SVF purported to yield anything in excess of 3%, I'd get a bit nervous. At 4%, I'd get both nervous and jerky. Old plans with lots of old participants sometimes have lots of "old money" in their SV, which may have been invested years and years ago. My own company's plan ...
by Stonebr
Mon Feb 29, 2016 1:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Stable Value Fund in 401K Good Alternative to Money Market?
Replies: 14
Views: 1362

Re: Is Stable Value Fund in 401K Good Alternative to Money Market?

There's an excellent write up in the bogleheads wiki: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Stable_value_fund For what it's worth, many of us still use our company plans' stable value accounts. I'm several years retired and continue to use SV as my primary fixed income investment. For all the years I work...
by Stonebr
Thu Feb 25, 2016 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter Tire Tips
Replies: 30
Views: 2196

Re: Winter Tire Tips

Yeah, well, here I am driving through Florida with my Hakkapeliittas. Too lazy to switch out before we left, and we didn't know what the weather would be on the way down from Maine or going back. :(
by Stonebr
Thu Feb 25, 2016 9:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do I pay capital gains on trades within an IRA
Replies: 19
Views: 1805

Re: Do I pay capital gains on trades within an IRA

And another thing... You won't even have to keep track of buy and sell transactions as long as they occur within the shelter of the IRA. This is one of the chief advantages of IRAs -- simplified record keeping.

Go to advanced search