Search found 843 matches

by ThePrune
Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: AXA Structured Capital Strategies
Replies: 7
Views: 375

Re: AXA Structured Capital Strategies

In general, avoid any investment you can't understand (and others in the posting stream have already reminded you of that basic fact of investing). But just for fun I decided to perform a quantitative analysis of one of the investment options offered by this AXA Variable Annuity (VA) product. Here i...
by ThePrune
Tue Jun 27, 2017 9:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities
Replies: 31
Views: 3349

Re: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities

As mentioned in the previous posting, more and more FIAs are being to be sold with attached Guaranteed Living Benefit (GLB) riders. Such riders will almost always have an associated annual fee ; I've typically seen fees from 70 to 125 basis points annually. To incorporate the "performance drag&...
by ThePrune
Mon Jun 26, 2017 3:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is structured notes sound investment choice?
Replies: 17
Views: 953

Re: Is structured notes sound investment choice?

Fidelity has some of these that are CD's with FDIC guarantees . Much more conservative but I have never seen anything very tempting. It can be a peculiar type of FDIC coverage, however. For example here is the exact description of the FDIC coverage on a 7 year J.P.Morgan Structured CD that was bein...
by ThePrune
Mon Jun 26, 2017 2:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The 5 Pitfalls of Mutual Funds by,....
Replies: 22
Views: 1704

Re: There are almost always better options than mutual funds.

At least when I gave them a thorough look 8 years ago, Fisher Investments (a Registered Investment Advisory firm, an RIA) used a " Separately Managed Account " approach. I know of a few local RIAs that also use Separately Managed Accounts. In essence the portfolio investment committee at t...
by ThePrune
Sun Jun 25, 2017 1:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is structured notes sound investment choice?
Replies: 17
Views: 953

Re: Is structured notes sound investment choice?

Mingfriz , please post the exact name of the structured note you are looking at, along with an internet link (if you have it) to the prospectus. This will help me give you some definitive advice. When I read your original posting, I realized that I could quantitatively model your structured note us...
by ThePrune
Sun Jun 25, 2017 5:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Use my HSA for another person
Replies: 7
Views: 543

Re: Use my HSA for another person

Are LTC insurance premiums even a qualified expense? I didn't think so. According to IRS Publication 969 on Health Savings Accounts, LTC insurance premiums are qualified medical expenses, at least up to a limit. Insurance Premiums . You can't treat insurance premiums as qualified medical expenses u...
by ThePrune
Sun Jun 25, 2017 5:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is structured notes sound investment choice?
Replies: 17
Views: 953

Re: Is structured notes sound investment choice?

Mingfriz , please post the exact name of the structured note you are looking at, along with an internet link (if you have it) to the prospectus. This will help me give you some definitive advice. When I read your original posting, I realized that I could quantitatively model your structured note us...
by ThePrune
Sat Jun 24, 2017 8:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities
Replies: 31
Views: 3349

Re: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities

I never viewed our FIa as investing but as Market insurance and a future income stream. We are coming up on the 5th anniversary on one of the GLWB FIa. Initial purchase at $100,000. Guess on Acct Value is ~$108,000 on 5th anniv. GLWB Income Acct value will be 127,628$ @5% compounding. We no longer ...
by ThePrune
Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Delaying pension benefits - what would you do?
Replies: 5
Views: 838

Re: Delaying pension benefits - what would you do?

+1 I agree with #Cruncher 's strictly financial analysis. From a Risk Control perspective : (1) Do you have any reason to believe that future pension payments would be at risk of severe reduction or termination? (Example: a public pension paid by Illinois). If so, it might be a reason to start the p...
by ThePrune
Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Use my HSA for another person
Replies: 7
Views: 543

Re: Use my HSA for another person

The answer to almost any H.S.A.-related question can be found in IRS Publication 969 - Health Savings Account and Other Tax-Favored Health Plans . According to this IRS document, here are the rules for taking a Qualified (i.e. tax and penalty-free) Distribution from your H.S.A.: Qualified medical ex...
by ThePrune
Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities
Replies: 31
Views: 3349

Re: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities

Yet another update for the Fixed Index Annuity - Monte Carlo Modeler : This time I've added the capability to analyze two types of FIA-like Hybrid Annuities : Buffer Design and Floor Design . Such Hybrid Annuities are legally a type of Variable Annuity and must be registered and sold as securities. ...
by ThePrune
Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 20 pct bonus on fixed index annuity
Replies: 22
Views: 1067

Re: 20 pct bonus on fixed index annuity

Stan Haithcock (AKA "Stan the Annuity Man") published the RetireMentors article Annuity up-front bonuses are not what they appear to be in Feb. 2016. If you've read this far in this posting stream, I think you'll find his entire article interesting. Here is just a bit: Annuity bonuses are ...
by ThePrune
Mon Jun 19, 2017 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Suggestions for my mother's annuities
Replies: 5
Views: 646

Re: Suggestions for my mother's annuities

Besides the tax situation two other concerns that I have are: Her getting another call from a "friend at the bank" life insurance agent insinuating that she needs to cash in these annuities and purchase some new high cost/commission product. Because of your mother's advanced age (you said...
by ThePrune
Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Suggestions for my mother's annuities
Replies: 5
Views: 646

Re: Suggestions for my mother's annuities

My concern is that these annuities have already built up $77K in untaxed income and may trigger an excessive tax bill if my mother dies. Since one of your questions has to do with death benefits, do you have and understand the details of who are listed in the two contracts as primary and contingent...
by ThePrune
Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities
Replies: 31
Views: 3349

Re: Investor Analysis of Index Annuities

I've finished updating the Excel-based, Fixed Index Annuity - Monte Carlo modeler with stock index returns through April 2017. This modeler allows investment returns simulation for FIA contracts using any of the following price indexes: S&P Composite (1926+) - Robert Shiller's data S&P 500 (...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 09, 2017 4:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When is Municipal Bond Interest NOT "Tax-free"...
Replies: 15
Views: 1376

When is Municipal Bond Interest NOT "Tax-free"...

... potentially when that municipal bond interest is being received by retirees who are also receiving Social Security benefits. Retirees receiving Social Security benefits need to carefully evaluate recommendations to purchase municipal bonds/funds because of their, "tax-free income". A r...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 09, 2017 2:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: social security spousal benefit denied
Replies: 8
Views: 2568

Re: social security spousal benefit denied

Social security denied my request for a spousal benefit based on my wife's benefits because I had previously received a reduced benefit (now suspended) when I was below full retirement age. I am now 66, my full retirement age. They say that even though I have suspended my benefits I have already re...
by ThePrune
Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Book - The New Retirementality
Replies: 26
Views: 3365

Re: Book - The New Retirementality

I've read this book repeatedly over the "editions" (now the 4th). This is my favorite book to recommend to folks wanting to think more deeply about the non-financial aspects of retirement.
by ThePrune
Tue May 30, 2017 4:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: ? help on taking ss at 62
Replies: 15
Views: 1505

Re: ? help on taking ss at 62

Here are some generally accepted statements about Social Security claiming decisions: (1) The decision of when to start SS benefits should be made as part of a comprehensive retirement income plan, not in isolation of other aspects of your plan. Have you created a comprehensive plan? What does it in...
by ThePrune
Sun May 21, 2017 6:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Using guaranteed yield in life insurance policy
Replies: 9
Views: 896

Re: Using guaranteed yield in life insurance policy

People on the forum are sometimes a little to quick to dismiss permanent life insurance. Because your policy was purchased so long ago you appear to have a very high legacy cash balance interest rate - which could be quite valuable. I suggest you ask your insurance agent for an in force illustration...
by ThePrune
Sun May 14, 2017 5:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The recent WannaCry ransomware
Replies: 60
Views: 6727

Re: The recent WannaCry ransomware

The best way to protect yourself against ransomware, etc. is to have an offline backup of your system. As in, an external hard drive with your backups, that is unplugged from your system after the backup has completed. +1 I've been doing this for years. It really works. About 4 years ago my wife cl...
by ThePrune
Sun May 14, 2017 4:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Regret early retirement/downsizing
Replies: 230
Views: 36368

Re: Regret early retirement/downsizing

I retired 10 years ago at age 53. Never regretted it! That said, it is extremely important for any retiree (regardless of age) to have a definite plan for "Meaningful Activity" in their new life. Vacationing, golfing and the like do not count as meaningful. For me, I started out as a half ...
by ThePrune
Thu May 11, 2017 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How I use I-ORP, and who shouldn't
Replies: 36
Views: 2893

Re: How I use I-ORP, and who shouldn't

Withdrawal Strategies — I suspected the usual default of most of the planners was not optimum for us. Most planners are static in emptying first taxable accounts, followed by 401K and IRA, and leaving ROTH accounts to the end of plan. This is the "default" only for the uneducated planners...
by ThePrune
Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The Value of Debt in Retirement
Replies: 16
Views: 1388

Re: The Value of Debt in Retirement

Intriguing, but wouldn't work in my case since almost all my wealth is in Qualified Plans, trad. IRAs or Roth IRAs. Once any of these is used as collateral, "legally" the IRS considers you to have withdrawn the funds from the accounts and owe to all applicable taxes.
by ThePrune
Tue Apr 18, 2017 6:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Leaving Edward Jones...where to start?
Replies: 4
Views: 684

Re: Leaving Edward Jones...where to start?

As a former EJ client who transferred all family accounts to Vanguard, there is one further detail that applied to me and might apply to you as well. Besides the account closure fees (unavoidable) EJ also charges annual account fees. But these annual account fees are waived if you have enough invest...
by ThePrune
Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Most sophisticated tax software?
Replies: 6
Views: 696

Re: Most sophisticated tax software?

Although I've not used it personally, many retirement planners I respect like to use BNA Income Tax Planner. You might want to Google it's website and read about its capabilities.
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for a source to analyze Fixed Index/Equity Indexed Annuities
Replies: 18
Views: 1134

Re: Looking for a source to analyze Fixed Index/Equity Indexed Annuities

Therefore, what I am looking for specifically if anyone knows of a resource to analyze his annuities and provide and informed analysis. There are companies that supply such an analysis for whole life insurance policies and for variable annuities, but I've found none that perform independent analyse...
by ThePrune
Thu Apr 06, 2017 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fixed Indexed Annuity
Replies: 12
Views: 801

Re: Fixed Indexed Annuity

One of them is Fidelity and Guaranty Life Safe Income and the other one is Nationwide New Heights 9 fixed indexed annuity. I've performed detailed simulations of FIAs from both Fidelity and Guaranty and from Nationwide, but it's been a few years for both. Neither was as good as (odds were very high...
by ThePrune
Thu Apr 06, 2017 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fixed Indexed Annuity
Replies: 12
Views: 801

Re: Fixed Indexed Annuity

First, lets be clear why the insurance agent is recommending fixed index annuities to your boyfriend. The agent will earn between 6% - 8% of the dollar amount invested if they can sell an index annuity, but only 2%-3% if they sell a more typical annuity. Since insurance agents have no legal obligati...
by ThePrune
Wed Apr 05, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Income Annuity Question
Replies: 2
Views: 382

Re: Deferred Income Annuity Question

I'm not sure from your posting if you are entirely clear about what you are seeking to learn. But that's fine! Often you have to do some poking around with financial stuff to even begin to learn what you should actually be asking. Lets get things started with a pension annuity comparison by answerin...
by ThePrune
Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Spousal Benefit
Replies: 10
Views: 1267

Re: Social Security Spousal Benefit

I am wondering if there may be a surprise of some kind that I am overlooking. For example, she works part time and will earn about $25,000 in 2017. Anytime you deal with changes in Social Security benefits it is worthwhile to run a trial calculation of your federal taxes owed. In some cases the mar...
by ThePrune
Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: withdrawal of Roth conversions made before 5 years ago vs. after
Replies: 5
Views: 743

Re: withdrawal of Roth conversions made before 5 years ago vs. after

Refer to the IRS form 8606 Instructions! The section that covers line 22 has the information you seem to be asking about.
by ThePrune
Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Planning Today Course
Replies: 16
Views: 1580

Re: Retirement Planning Today Course

I have both good and bad to say about this class that I took about 2 years ago. First, it was developed and is marketed as a business development tool for registered Investment Advisor Representatives (IARs). As of about 2 years ago they paid about $4,000 for the exclusive rights to a "market r...
by ThePrune
Sat Apr 01, 2017 12:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do REITs have high growth if housing only keeps up with inflation?
Replies: 19
Views: 1900

Re: Why do REITs have high growth if housing only keeps up with inflation?

The real estate that only keeps up with inflation is personally owned homes. Unlike commercial property, it doesn't generate any ongoing rental/lease income to give a bump to returns. I've seen plots that separate out REIT index fund returns into a capital appreciation component (which would also ap...
by ThePrune
Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should Implementation Of Asset Allocation Targets Account For Taxation At Withdrawal?
Replies: 21
Views: 1307

Re: Should Implementation Of Asset Allocation Targets Account For Taxation At Withdrawal?

How do you calculate the post-tax value for the taxable account though? I suppose if you are using average cost-basis this would be reasonable, but anything else would be a real pain to keep track of, no? Great question, since I didn't address this. As a pre-RMD retiree the only funds now left in m...
by ThePrune
Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should Implementation Of Asset Allocation Targets Account For Taxation At Withdrawal?
Replies: 21
Views: 1307

Re: Should Implementation Of Asset Allocation Targets Account For Taxation At Withdrawal?

Sorry for the delay in answering your question. I perform all the calculations using an Excel spreadsheet which I custom developed for this purpose. If you have some spreadsheet design experience, the following description should be enough to guide you through. (1st) decide on the asset classes and ...
by ThePrune
Mon Mar 27, 2017 4:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should Implementation Of Asset Allocation Targets Account For Taxation At Withdrawal?
Replies: 21
Views: 1307

Re: Should Implementation Of Asset Allocation Targets Account For Taxation At Withdrawal?

Although I keep track of my AA both ways, my working rebalance bands are based on my effective, after-tax account values.
by ThePrune
Mon Mar 27, 2017 4:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Illusion of poverty/wealth
Replies: 159
Views: 21347

Re: Illusion of poverty/wealth

Another interesting Behavioral Finance article by the team at UCLA Anderson school.
by ThePrune
Mon Mar 27, 2017 2:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Annuity to defer interest income
Replies: 11
Views: 1009

Re: SPIA to defer interest income

Good question. I mean a product for which you make a single purchase and get a single payment an intermediate time in the future such as 5-10 years. I thought this could be considered both a single premium intermediate annuity (SPIA) or a deferred annuity but I may be confused, having never bought ...
by ThePrune
Sat Mar 18, 2017 5:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?
Replies: 20
Views: 1972

Re: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?

I used my Fidelity card in France, Germany and Czech Republic last Sept. without problems. The card shows up as a "chip and signature" card, so merchant has you sign rather than enter pin. For getting cash at bank ATMs, I did have to enter the card's PIN, so make sure you have that memoriz...
by ThePrune
Sat Mar 11, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA's - I Didn't Know This!
Replies: 0
Views: 592

HSA's - I Didn't Know This!

Here's the Learning: Starting at age 65 you can use Health Savings Account (HSA) funds to pay for your portion of premiums associated with employer sponsored retiree health insurance. Based on IRS Publication 969 (Health Savings Accounts and Other Tax-Favored Health Plans) I previously knew that you...
by ThePrune
Sun Aug 21, 2016 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: annuity with long term care benefits
Replies: 10
Views: 925

Re: annuity with long term care benefits

the advisor explained that the fixed deferred annuity is built on a whole life chassis. the interest rate he quoted me was 4% on the annuity. I looked at the information in the links you supplied. Your adviser explained WRONG. There is no annuity involved. This is a life insurance contract with a r...
by ThePrune
Sat Aug 20, 2016 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: annuity with long term care benefits
Replies: 10
Views: 925

Re: annuity with long term care benefits

If my previous post seemed too negative, let me suggest that there are some types of FIXED annuity (FA) products that do offer reasonable LTC protection, but without much inflation protection. Here we are talking about DEFERRED fixed annuities - you won't access those funds until you need LTC (that ...
by ThePrune
Sat Aug 20, 2016 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: annuity with long term care benefits
Replies: 10
Views: 925

Re: annuity with long term care benefits

I won't go into any more details because everybody's situation is different. so here's the link: https://www.oneamerica.com/products-services/individuals-long-term-care-solutions/annuities/ltc-annuities The link provides VERY LITTLE useful information. What is really needed is either (1) a Sample C...
by ThePrune
Wed Jul 08, 2015 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worst financial book you have read (or will admit you have read)
Replies: 94
Views: 13647

Re: Worst financial book you have read (or will admit you have read)

The Barefoot Retirement Plan: Safely Build a Tax-Free Retirement Plan - Doyle Shuler I think that most Bogleheads just are't aware of just how BAD these Indexed Universal Ilfe Insurance (IULi) books truly are :twisted: The sad thing is that Indepenent Maketing Organizations (IMO's) for insurance ag...
by ThePrune
Tue Jul 07, 2015 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worst financial book you have read (or will admit you have read)
Replies: 94
Views: 13647

Re: Worst financial book you have read (or will admit you have read)

InvestorAdam wrote:The "Retirement Miracle" a book about a tax-free retirement using indexed universal life.

+1
I can't believe someone else here had even read this miserable book! I wrote a scathing review for Amazon.com.
by ThePrune
Tue Jul 07, 2015 3:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excel Monte Carlo
Replies: 12
Views: 2090

Re: Excel Monte Carlo

To get by this problem, I've created a bin that goes from -3.4, -3.3, -3.2 ....... 2.9, 3 . Each z score is then multiplied by the sample stdev of historical returns, added to the mean and a bin is created. From this, I generate random numbers and then vlookup the returns . Others have largely igno...
by ThePrune
Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Style Box breakdown of U.S. companies
Replies: 5
Views: 630

Re: Style Box breakdown of U.S. companies

Um, why? The data are for an adult education class I teach on investing (from a Bogleheads perspective, naturally). I like class participants to clearly understand just how few U.S. companies make up the "large cap" universe while how many companies make up the "smaller cap" uni...
by ThePrune
Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Style Box breakdown of U.S. companies
Replies: 5
Views: 630

Style Box breakdown of U.S. companies

Several years ago I had found a breakdown of the number of U.S. companies that were located in each of the Morningstar equity style box cells for the total U.S. equity market. I'm interested a similar breakdown as of this year, 2014. In other words, how many: Large+Mega cap Value companies, Large+Me...
by ThePrune
Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life insurance with Long term care rider
Replies: 34
Views: 4052

Re: Life insurance with Long term care rider

technovelist wrote:And I probably wouldn't have bought the policy just for the "LTCI" benefit. But given that:
1. I really HATE the official LTCI contracts and wouldn't buy one for that reason, and
2. I needed new life insurance anyway,

this seemed like a nice "freebie".

I like your reasoning!

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