Search found 28717 matches

by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 27, 2016 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Converting from Oil heat to Gas or Electric
Replies: 40
Views: 1625

Re: Converting from Oil heat to Gas or Electric

Gas supply is de-regulated in NJ. You can shop price, but you'll be forced to lock-in contract once you do select supplier. Both gas and electric deregulated many years ago in NJ. Since we were already set up as a utility we thought we would jump right in and also sell gas and electric at the time....
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 27, 2016 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Converting from Oil heat to Gas or Electric
Replies: 40
Views: 1625

Re: Converting from Oil heat to Gas or Electric

Anyone know the process or price of Converting a home from Oil heat to Gas or Electric? Looking at a home in PA that we want to make an offer on but that has Oil heating. As per advice of others (re establishing cost of conversion, availability of gas) I would establish that first. I would convert ...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 27, 2016 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Converting from Oil heat to Gas or Electric
Replies: 40
Views: 1625

Re: Converting from Oil heat to Gas or Electric

Would the heat source (NG, Oil, electric etc.) for a home be the final determining factor in purchasing a home? Or if you really like a home does it matter much at all? would you take that into consideration when making an offer? (lower offer for more less energy efficient source, etc.) You can ima...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 27, 2016 3:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: John Bogle's home
Replies: 35
Views: 5968

Re: John Bogle's home

I read that Buffet's "old" house had an addition that included a racquetball court. The house was built in 1921. It was remodeled in 1989. The racquetball court is listed as an "add on" and is 1107 square feet. The house totals 5830 square feet with five bedrooms and 2.5 bathroo...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 3:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Good book on global economics?
Replies: 8
Views: 610

Re: Good book on global economics?

Not sure its technically global but I'm reading Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell simple layman explanations. So far I thinks its good. Sowell is, however, quite biased. Try Mankiw's book. He was former head of Council of Economic Advisers under President Bush, if you are worried about his political...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall
Replies: 43
Views: 2547

Re: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall

Anyway, they gave me a proposal for the replacement a few days later and it's around $11,000. How was the proposal generated? Did the technician perform a Manual J HVAC load calculation? You would know because in order to do it, the tech would have to walk around your entire house and count and mea...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall
Replies: 43
Views: 2547

Re: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall

Because your SEER could be on an old machine, 6, and a new one 15 (2.5x times more efficient). It's more correct to say that a new 15 seer unit would be 2.5 times as efficient, not 2.5 times more efficient. If you want a unit "2.5x times more efficient" than 6 seer, it needs to be 21 seer...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 20% In REITS?
Replies: 42
Views: 3131

Re: 20% In REITS?

I'm a 'lumper' (owning Total Stock Market, Total International Stock, Total Bond, TIPS) that has a 10% REIT Index holding as a nod to the 'slice n' dice' strategy. I've done this for the past 15 years or so and it's worked out well for diversification (future results may be different yadda yadda). ...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall
Replies: 43
Views: 2547

Re: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall

How about fixing the leaks? They can replace the evaporator coils fairly easily. If the leak is in the condenser that's a different story. And it won't take 3 days to find a leak that drained the system almost entirely of refrigerant in a month. A hole that big is obvious. Look for a pool of oil. T...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall
Replies: 43
Views: 2547

Re: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall

Hi all, I would like to seek your advice on my current HVAC issues. I have two carrier 2-stage AC systems, one is for the main floor and basement, the other is for the upstairs level. Both system were installed in 2004, 3 tons and able to contain 8lbs R410A. So last summer when a technician from Co...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:45 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stock Merger Arbitrage
Replies: 9
Views: 785

Re: Stock Merger Arbitrage

It's just an example...what im trying to understand is the math and how its done in real life because I thought you couldn't short 0.45 of a share? Doesn't the broker allow only full shares to be bought or shorted? The point is that the risk arbitrage desks and hedge funds do this for large number ...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Recession post-election?
Replies: 40
Views: 2771

Re: Recession post-election?

There are 2 inviolable secrets in the British State: - what the PM (the head of the legislature) and the Head of State (HM Queen Elizabeth the Second of the house of Sax Coborg Gotha (Windsor)) say to each other in their weekly meeting at Buckingham Palace - the contents of the letter from the new P...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Recession post-election?
Replies: 40
Views: 2771

Re: Recession post-election?

Just reading some articles saying no matter who wins the election America is "probably" heading towards a recession post-election. Do you believe this to be true? And if so, will you change anything in your retirement plans to prepare for that possibility? Or stay the course? I guess this...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Recession post-election?
Replies: 40
Views: 2771

Re: Recession post-election?

Just reading some articles saying no matter who wins the election America is "probably" heading towards a recession post-election. Do you believe this to be true? And if so, will you change anything in your retirement plans to prepare for that possibility? Or stay the course? I guess this...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 20% In REITS?
Replies: 42
Views: 3131

Re: 20% In REITS?

Is 20% of your stock portfolio to much to have in REITS? I am trying to figure out what the sweet spot/percentage is to allocate of your stock portion to REITS. This is if you solely hold the Vanguard Total U.S. Stock Market Index and no international. If you take a look at the 2008-09 chart of the...
by Valuethinker
Fri Jul 22, 2016 3:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Low P/E Misleading?
Replies: 11
Views: 1250

Re: International Low P/E Misleading?

Hello, I notice that many tout the lower P/E ratio/valuations of international stocks. However, can you really compare those valuations to US valuations? In recent history US companies had to change how they report - which resulted in lower earnings across the board. Some might even argue that non-...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Times article-Shiller on land and homes
Replies: 18
Views: 2675

Re: NY Times article-Shiller on land and homes

Shiller is trying to explain his data. His data is probably as good as we can get it. His explanation may be incorrect. It's certainly counterintuitive. A few thoughts: - location matters, a lot - housing areas with constrained land (eg due to zoning) particularly around the US coastal areas have te...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just got back from Europe...ready to sell my International...
Replies: 82
Views: 9384

Re: Just got back from Europe...ready to sell my International...

I can see why some may not want international equities for a number of possible reasons. But one of them is not that European society is any less stable than the US, ratings-induced media hysteria about terrorism to the contrary. I live in London, which is top of the target list for just about any ...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just got back from Europe...ready to sell my International...
Replies: 82
Views: 9384

Re: Just got back from Europe...ready to sell my International...

I have a neighbor who just returned from a 7 day Mediterranean cruise with stops in Athens. She said the city was decimated...shops closed, Olympic village full of squatters, broken windows and general decay. I believe her, but I'm not sure I would change 25% of my portfolio based on our conversati...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: cost of borrowing vs inflation
Replies: 11
Views: 951

Re: cost of borrowing vs inflation

this may seem like a dumb question so I appologize, however I am having trouble wrapping my head around this. I invest via margin loan at interactive brokers (I know, I know). The cost to borrow is 1.8%, but it is variable and tied to the federal fund rate. I think I have been mistaken in thinking ...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: money supply effect on stock prices
Replies: 15
Views: 1174

Re: money supply effect on stock prices

I do not disagree with the competitive market forces, but on a theoretical level, increased efficiency is a point that allows for company profits to grow independent from money supply factors. Additionally, I believe that is is quite plausible that if you owned a fund that contained an equal percen...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 10:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Farmland REITs?
Replies: 26
Views: 1886

Re: Farmland REITs?

I am not a farmer, and have basically no direct knowledge of farming. However, I do live in the Midwest (suburbs of a city) and have looked into farmland (and timberland) in the past. From what I can tell, farmland is generally priced at something like a cap ratio. i.e. If the land will produce $30...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 9:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: money supply effect on stock prices
Replies: 15
Views: 1174

Re: money supply effect on stock prices

If we start from the assumption that in the long-term stocks's prices rise (because it always happened, referring to the global stock market), I tried to understand why this assumption should be true. The value of the stock market grows because the companies earn more money (profit) (let's leave ou...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: money supply effect on stock prices
Replies: 15
Views: 1174

Re: money supply effect on stock prices

"Deflation tends to have nasty periods of recession where prices are adjusted downwards so I am not advocating for that." You dont want to be able to buy more with your money? Mainstream economists agree with you In the real world prices and wages are "sticky". In particular, th...
by Valuethinker
Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Levered & Hedged CEF portfolio
Replies: 15
Views: 651

Re: Levered & Hedged CEF portfolio

Hi all, New to this forum but have been investing passively over the past 5 years and work in finance (structured credit / derivatives/ cmbs / rmbs). First of all I realize this is bogleheads and most here are opposed to any kind of active management - however, I want to discuss the merits and shor...
by Valuethinker
Thu Jul 14, 2016 8:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm a 25 year old irish/uk (duel nationality) student about to finish my degree. I want to start investing. Need help.
Replies: 18
Views: 784

Re: I'm a 25 year old irish student about to finish my degree. I want to start investing. Need help.

Unrealistically developed country equities (shares). 6 to 7 percent is your best case Impossible for bonds Emerging market equities you might get that but prepare for a bumpy ride. Look at the volatility of the fund over recent years. If you buy properties with mortgage money and let them out you mi...
by Valuethinker
Thu Jul 14, 2016 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!
Replies: 20
Views: 2337

Re: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!

[...]They ratchet up the fine whilst you wait. It might go into the Border Security Agency computer then you will have trouble getting into the UK (even to change a plane) forever more. And with the fall in the pound, this is at least 10% cheaper than it was 2 weeks ago ;-). Look you are not being ...
by Valuethinker
Thu Jul 14, 2016 8:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Jobless with a decent amount of money [Canada]
Replies: 37
Views: 2494

Re: Jobless with a decent amount of money [Canada]

Reading the thread, I was guessing that you were a poker player before you revealed it. I'm not surprised that you feel the way you do. I love poker, but I have met some of the most callous, sick human beings at poker tables. I've watched people destroy themselves at a poker table, succumbing to va...
by Valuethinker
Thu Jul 14, 2016 8:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Germany issues 10-year bond with negative yield
Replies: 33
Views: 2564

Re: Germany issues 10-year bond with negative yield

Switzerland was negative to 50 years earlier this week. :oops: Talk about irrational. Think again Deflation= positive real return Currency appreciation = positive return Uncertainty 're credit risk major financial instns = flight to safety Further stagnation = lower bond yields and thus positive re...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 13, 2016 9:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Jobless with a decent amount of money [Canada]
Replies: 37
Views: 2494

Re: Jobless with a decent amount of money [Canada]

Hey all! I have worked on my own for the past 5 years, and I am now looking to move on, as my income has taken a drastic dive, and since I've lost all my passion. I am 23, live in Toronto, Canada. I have no investments at the moment, and have about 200K CAD. I am looking to invest both my time and ...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 13, 2016 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!
Replies: 20
Views: 2337

Re: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!

Re: They actually scent me a couple of letters, but haven't extradited me yet. If they went to the trouble of sending me, say, a lilac scented notice, I would probably pay it. Stay away from Heathrow and UK Border Control is my advice. You have just acquired a ticket to Refused Entry, potentially.
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 10, 2016 10:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Brexit - minor blip
Replies: 27
Views: 1986

Re: Brexit - minor blip

Today, Bloomberg reports that Serena's Wimbledon prize is worth $380,000 less after Brexit. Very real impact on *someone*. Free floating currency markets are, by design, a way that an economy can rapidly adjust to bad news, without forcing monetary authorities to raise interest rates or fiscal poli...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 10, 2016 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Brexit - minor blip
Replies: 27
Views: 1986

Re: Brexit - minor blip

Otherwise, the negative effect is likely to be a slow erosion rather than an immediate collapse and will be felt only tangentially in the US. The forecasts were for UK GDP losses in 2017 after negotiations, increases in unemployment in 2018, and a drop in GDP of about 6% by 2020 - not tomorrow. The...
by Valuethinker
Sun Jul 10, 2016 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Brexit - minor blip
Replies: 27
Views: 1986

Re: Brexit - minor blip

Yes much hype and fear mongering by those who opposed Brexit. As if. The movement on GBP/ EUR and GBP/ USD plus the drop in the FTSE 250 (the FTSE100 *rises* if GBP falls against USD) gives you a good feel of the market's initial judgement. It is around 10%. The UK (now the world's 6th largest econ...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do people invest in Long Term Bonds now?
Replies: 44
Views: 4857

Re: Why do people invest in Long Term Bonds now?

I have noticed in the literature and also by some in this forum suggestions of investing in long term treasury bonds. I wonder why anyone would do that in this environment when there is a matter of time before rates go up. Can someone explain that? If you bought 30 year bonds in Germany or Switzerl...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do people invest in Long Term Bonds now?
Replies: 44
Views: 4857

Re: Why do people invest in Long Term Bonds now?

Long-term bonds have had higher return and more risk than the intermediate-term bonds (in the form of Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund) that have been traditionally suggested in this forum. (I'll call these "traditional" bonds, which fulfill the function of a lower-risk anchor to win...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Bonds - Update
Replies: 55
Views: 4076

Re: International Bonds - Update

Note in a theoretical sense us stocks cannot outperform forever. Have international stocks ever out performed the USA over a 20 year period? Or even 10 years? I am referring to an S&P ETF vs. some international ETF. I am aware a specific country might do it, but typically international means mu...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to finance M7 MBA
Replies: 20
Views: 1966

Re: How to finance M7 MBA

I am trying to decide the best way to finance my full-time M7 MBA. Here is my situation: 27, Married, spouse will continue working (~75K/year salary). Cost of attendance: Tuition: 6 total payments of ~$24,000 due at the beginning of each quarter over the next 2 years Living: ~$2,600/month Assets: ~...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bayesian market predictions?
Replies: 75
Views: 3991

Re: Bayesian market predictions?

I just had an Aha! moment, which I'd like to get feedback on. All financial market assessments, predictions, and other discussions seem to be rooted in the frequentist statistics. We discuss how many data points we have and whether they are meaningful. We argue whether the statistical distribution ...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!
Replies: 20
Views: 2337

Re: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!

My wife and I returned two weeks ago from a trip to England where I rented a Hertz car at Heathrow Airport. in checking my American Express online this week I noticed a charge from Hertz that was different than the rental charge which they had also already charged on my account. Not knowing what it...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!
Replies: 20
Views: 2337

Re: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!

Judging by all the cameras you see all over UK and along the highways there, all this stuff is now automated. So once you're in the "bus lane" you're going to get cited. It's not like the US where we object to machines issuing citations. I doubt whether there is any way to fight this -- j...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!
Replies: 20
Views: 2337

Re: United Kingdom Traffic Ticket--Funny story though!!

Depends if you are ever going back. I got a speeding ticket in the Australian outback from a plane, don't plan on returning so never got around to paying it. They actually scent me a couple of letters, but haven't extradited me yet. 1. recovery processes are better these days. Who knows, when the f...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can I get a little house or townhouse for under $400K in Maryland or Virginia?
Replies: 59
Views: 4291

Re: Can I get a little house or townhouse for under $400K in Maryland or Virginia?

I've been looking at maps and housing rentals and for sale in Maryland and Virginia. Its difficult to tell what an area is like unless you live there. I have a little house in Michigan that suits me perfectly - quiet neighborhood - except that they are tearing down little houses like mine and build...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 10:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Bonds - Update
Replies: 55
Views: 4076

Re: International Bonds - Update

If an investor takes the time to read the fund reports one thing will jump out. That is, Total Bond Index includes foreign bonds issued in U.S. dollars and Total International Bond includes U.S. companies issuing bonds overseas. Total Bond Market only has 6.1% in non-US bonds. Although I don't reca...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Bonds - Update
Replies: 55
Views: 4076

Re: International Bonds - Update

I do not own international bonds and do not intend to. I understand the diversification argument, but the US bond market is huge and quite diversified in its own right. IMO, the added cost, risk and currency risk with international and EM bonds seems to be contradictory to the reason I hold bonds i...
by Valuethinker
Sat Jul 09, 2016 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Bonds - Update
Replies: 55
Views: 4076

Re: International Bonds - Update

In the long run, stocks out perform bonds. In the long run, USA out performs international. I stick with US large cap stocks. They have a lot of international exposure anyway. And as of now, US bonds do not yet have negative rates. If you were a UK investor you just learned the problem w "home...
by Valuethinker
Fri Jul 08, 2016 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: UK REIT Suspends Redeptions - Brexit Swan
Replies: 15
Views: 1919

Re: UK REIT Suspends Redeptions - Brexit Swan

Perhaps I am confused as to why this is a "black swan" at all. Real estate is by definition not terribly liquid, and it's not like the fund can sell off an office building at a whim. First, Brexit is the Swan. Who could have guessed? Second, while real estate is illiquid the funds are exp...
by Valuethinker
Thu Jul 07, 2016 11:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International Bond Fund: yes or no
Replies: 33
Views: 1924

Re: International Bond Fund: yes or no

Past performance does not predict future performance.

For bond funds, the best forecast of future performance is yield (less expected defaults + expected recoveries).

So you are adding a very small expected return and taking on more credit risk and (maybe) more interest rate risk.

Why bother?
by Valuethinker
Thu Jul 07, 2016 11:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: UK REIT Suspends Redeptions - Brexit Swan
Replies: 15
Views: 1919

Re: UK REIT Suspends Redeptions - Brexit Swan

The autocorrect on this device is vicious. For diets read r e I t s I'm speculating that this may be more like the TIAA CREF real estate fund that directly owns real estate. Would that be accurate? Yes. From memory there are now about 7 funds so frozen-- over £10bn. Total investment in Commercial R...
by Valuethinker
Wed Jul 06, 2016 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are zero interest rates the natural order of things?
Replies: 14
Views: 1121

Re: Are zero interest rates the natural order of things?

I've been reflecting on the shock of zero or negative interest rates from things like gov't bonds or gov't insured CDs, but maybe this is how things should be. Isn't all positive return on money ultimately sourced from profits under capitalism? Why should I expect earnings on investments to come fr...

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