Search found 113 matches

by animule
Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:13 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tesla - next big lottery ticket ?
Replies: 177
Views: 17456

Re: Tesla - next big lottery ticket ?

I am surprised that nobody seems to have mentioned Solar City in this thread. Solar City is a mess, and it seems to be getting worse. http://buffalonews.com/2017/06/23/750-million-question-solar-panel-jobs/ Then SolarCity, which had built a dominant market share as the nation's largest installer of ...
by animule
Thu May 11, 2017 9:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Muni risks other than interest rates
Replies: 7
Views: 1246

Re: Muni risks other than interest rates

The most obvious risk is default risk. It hasn't happened in a long, long time, but perhaps Connecticut will put an end to that streak at some point.
by animule
Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Death of retail/malls to affect REITs?
Replies: 69
Views: 7453

Re: Death of retail/malls to affect REITs?

To add to the post above, here is a "dead mall" located in the area where I live. When this mall debuted in the 1990s, it was the prettiest mall in the area. m There are three other major malls in the surrounding area, and two of them have lost ground in recent years. One is being turned i...
by animule
Sun Apr 09, 2017 8:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying high yielding Bonds 5-10%
Replies: 21
Views: 2147

Re: Buying high yielding Bonds 5-10%

I am an ex-customer of Frontier, based in a city that was the original home of Frontier. I would not touch Frontier bonds with a ten foot pole. The company has chronically under-invested in its core technology and is milking the cash cow until the cow comes up dry. After being without Frontier DSL s...
by animule
Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: An index isn't an index isn't an index...
Replies: 23
Views: 2939

Re: An index isn't an index isn't an index...

The S&P 600 is a superior index for small caps, mainly because of the earnings requirement (four consecutive quarters of positive earnings) which screened out a lot of internet startups trading at huge valuations with no profits around 2000, just before they cratered and cost investors tons of m...
by animule
Tue Jan 10, 2017 11:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone else having trouble with unrequested CVS auto-refills?
Replies: 55
Views: 4226

Re: Anyone else having trouble with unrequested CVS auto-refills?

Wow. I thought I was the only one. I have a prescription with them where I split pills and take the split pill every other day, which means you cannot do the "auto refill." I have told them a bunch of times to stop doing it, and I still get texts and phone calls pestering me to refill it. ...
by animule
Fri Dec 02, 2016 7:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pulling the trigger on TLH of muni bond fund
Replies: 3
Views: 397

Re: Pulling the trigger on TLH of muni bond fund

Thanks, Livesoft. Looking forward to seeing you go over 50k posts soon.
by animule
Fri Dec 02, 2016 7:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pulling the trigger on TLH of muni bond fund
Replies: 3
Views: 397

Re: Pulling the trigger on TLH of muni bond fund

Apologies for the re-post, but I should have rephrased the original post as a question. Is there anything materially wrong with the plan to tax loss harvest from the NY long-term municipal bond fund and re-invest back into the fund after the 30 day period expires in early January? Last purchase in t...
by animule
Thu Dec 01, 2016 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pulling the trigger on TLH of muni bond fund
Replies: 3
Views: 397

Pulling the trigger on TLH of muni bond fund

I have never tax loss harvested a municipal bond fund before, and want to make sure i have my ducks in a row before I pull the trigger on this. Here are the facts as of December 1st. - NY long-term muni fund is down 6% since October 3rd. - Interest rate has risen from 1.65% on October 3rd to 2.33% a...
by animule
Sun Oct 16, 2016 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Least expensive iPhone
Replies: 65
Views: 5735

Re: Least expensive iPhone

Bought an iPhone 5s at Target for Tracfone a couple of months ago. Was around $200 with a "free" 60 minutes card. Phone was a new unit.
by animule
Sun Oct 16, 2016 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road Scholar trip to Cuba - Need practical advice
Replies: 21
Views: 2169

Re: Road Scholar trip to Cuba - Need practical advice

Heard from someone who traveled there in past year - bring toilet paper - especially outside of your hotel.
by animule
Thu Jun 09, 2016 11:09 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 529 Plan Bo-Boo - Over-funded by $2k, need advice
Replies: 21
Views: 1673

529 Plan Bo-Boo - Over-funded by $2k, need advice

I have a 529 plan account for one of our kids and have invested $16k in the fund for 2016 without realizing that the gift tax limit is $14k. Is there anything I can do about the $2k overage? I have another child's 529 that has funding room for 2016, but I'm not sure if any of the $16k can be shifted...
by animule
Thu May 12, 2016 6:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Muni-bond holdings getting hit by "full calls", questions
Replies: 8
Views: 1904

Re: Muni-bond holdings getting hit by "full calls", questions

Thanks for all of the responses, Bogleheads. Owning individual municipal bonds sounds like running your own mutual fund - something I have no interest in ever doing. I'll invest the "full call" bond money into Vanguard municipal bond funds and leave it at that.
by animule
Wed May 11, 2016 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Muni-bond holdings getting hit by "full calls", questions
Replies: 8
Views: 1904

Muni-bond holdings getting hit by "full calls", questions

Hi Bogleheads, I have a portfolio of New York state municipal bonds that seems to be self-liquidating. In just the past week, I have received "full calls" for bonds in the portfolio totaling about 8% of the portfolio's total value. The bonds were acquired as part of an inheritance and gene...
by animule
Sat Feb 27, 2016 11:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Identify theft issue: Mother-in-law gave out SS# to scammers
Replies: 6
Views: 1176

Re: Identify theft issue: Mother-in-law gave out SS# to scammers

Thanks for the advice, everyone. I will suggest that she freeze her credit. This may help stem some of the damage.
by animule
Sat Feb 27, 2016 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Identify theft issue: Mother-in-law gave out SS# to scammers
Replies: 6
Views: 1176

Identify theft issue: Mother-in-law gave out SS# to scammers

Wise Bogleheads, Looking for some advice on how to handle a situation with my mother-in-law that cropped up earlier today. She apparently got an email from Apple that said her account would be cancelled unless she updated her details. One of those details was her Social Security number. She gave the...
by animule
Sun Feb 14, 2016 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bond premium on tax-exempt bond question
Replies: 12
Views: 3640

Re: Bond premium on tax-exempt bond question

Thanks for the responses. I assume this means that the "amortized bond premium" for tax-exempt bonds should NOT be listed as an investment expense on my taxes. Correct?
by animule
Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bond premium on tax-exempt bond question
Replies: 12
Views: 3640

Bond premium on tax-exempt bond question

I inherited a portfolio of municipal bonds about a year ago, and have a question about what to make of line 13 in my 1099-INT form for the portfolio which goes under the heading "bond premium on tax-exempt bond." It isn't clear to me if the number here is just for information purposes for ...
by animule
Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Northwestern Mutual - investment advice
Replies: 39
Views: 6840

Re: Northwestern Mutual - investment advice

This is a shark attack - all the way. You go to a person that sells insurance for a living in search of investment advice and - surprise, surprise - he recommends you buy all kinds of insurance. This is like going to a barber and asking if you need a haircut, or going to an automobile dealer and ask...
by animule
Fri Aug 21, 2015 8:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Potential Energy Downside?
Replies: 27
Views: 2861

Re: Potential Energy Downside?

You are neglecting one factor that is likely to kick energy stocks in the gut at exactly the wrong time - dividends. Exxon Mobil has a dividend yield that is pushing 4%. Other oil companies have even higher dividend yields as stock prices in the sector have cratered. I don't think these companies ca...
by animule
Thu Jul 16, 2015 7:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 20 yr review of Mel's Unloved Midcaps
Replies: 19
Views: 3648

Re: 20 yr review of Mel's Unloved Midcaps

The reason that the Vanguard Mid Cap fund did better than most in the 1999 to early 2000's period was because it tracked the S&P Mid Cap 400 index which required companies to post consecutive periods of earnings before gaining inclusion into the index. This is the same requirement that helped th...
by animule
Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Fund Name is Not Enough
Replies: 24
Views: 3130

Re: The Fund Name is Not Enough

Oppenheimer has been pulling this garbage for a while now. Forbes documented it in 2013. m Puerto Rico has a struggling economy and is facing a staggering burden of unfunded pension liabilities. But some municipal bond fund managers have been gobbling up Puerto Rico’s debt like they were kids with a...
by animule
Wed Jun 24, 2015 7:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Tax-Managed Small-Cap Fund
Replies: 15
Views: 2498

Re: Vanguard Tax-Managed Small-Cap Fund

Great thread. I thought I was the only one that used the Vanguard Tax-Managed Small-Cap Fund in a tax advantaged account, but I guess not. I bought the fund specifically because it tracks the S&P Small Cap 600. After the tech crash, I looked at what worked and what didn't, and it was clear at th...
by animule
Sun Apr 26, 2015 4:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why is international mid cap such an unloved asset class?
Replies: 6
Views: 590

Re: Why is international mid cap such an unloved asset class

Good answers so far. I really don't have much in international mid/small. Investment there is some in GWX ETF and some in ACINX mutual fund. I had a fairly large investment in US small caps that I have let drift down as I have invested more in other areas, but the drift down is low enough that I nee...
by animule
Sun Apr 26, 2015 2:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why is international mid cap such an unloved asset class?
Replies: 6
Views: 590

Why is international mid cap such an unloved asset class?

For my stock portfolio, I try to maintain some balance between large, mid- and small cap stocks. This is easy to do for US stocks, but there seems to be a dearth of good offerings in the international mid-cap space since I want to maintain a US/international split across all three capitalization ban...
by animule
Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drive a local car, rent for trips ?
Replies: 40
Views: 4680

Re: Drive a local car, rent for trips ?

It depends on the length of the trip. My daughter attends college about 8 hours away. I use the "regular" car for the fall drop-off and end of year pick-up where I need to haul a lot of stuff there and back, but rent cars otherwise. There's a variety of reasons for this that may be unique ...
by animule
Thu Mar 26, 2015 12:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Worst performing asset class since 2008
Replies: 3
Views: 1120

Worst performing asset class since 2008

Hi Everyone, I'm looking to invest a modest amount of new money in the worst performing stock asset class since the financial crisis of 2008 (within the confines of my asset allocation). I'm just not sure what that might be. It may be emerging markets, based on the chart below, but I am looking for ...
by animule
Tue Dec 02, 2014 8:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Small-Cap Performance Edge on the Wane"
Replies: 99
Views: 8780

Re: "Small-Cap Performance Edge on the Wane"

Excellent thread. I have been tracking small cap stocks for a long time, and one thing that seems to be taking place is a big separation in performance between U.S. small caps, and international small caps. Check out the performance for Vanguard's VTMSX (tax managed small cap - tracks the S&P Sm...
by animule
Fri Oct 31, 2014 6:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax consequences of UGMA account transfer to former minor
Replies: 13
Views: 1280

Re: Tax consequences of UGMA account transfer to former mino

Also be aware that a student in her graduation year may have a marginal tax rate on LTCG as high as 41% if she happens to be in the Lifetime Learning Credit phaseout and NY, so the timing of a sale should be considered carefully. The account is for my daughter and she did graduate from college this...
by animule
Thu Oct 30, 2014 9:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax consequences of UGMA account transfer to former minor
Replies: 13
Views: 1280

Re: Tax consequences of UGMA account transfer to former mino

Thanks, Livesoft. Yes, taxes have been paid on dividends and prior distributions - that went on my daughter's tax return. The sale amounts were low enough not to trigger the kiddie tax. I just thought a fund needed a Roth or IRA wrapper to ensure a "transfer" without any tax consequences. ...
by animule
Thu Oct 30, 2014 8:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax consequences of UGMA account transfer to former minor
Replies: 13
Views: 1280

Tax consequences of UGMA account transfer to former minor

Hi Everyone, I have a UGMA account for my daughter where I am the custodian. My daughter is over the age of 21 and there is some money left over in the fund after paying college expenses. I'd like to remove my name from the account since she is no longer a minor. I called Vanguard and they sent me s...
by animule
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ham and Egger's Theory? [Buy Whatever Cap Size is lagging) ]
Replies: 38
Views: 5138

Re: Ham and Egger's Theory? [Buy small cap when under-perfor

Small cap has over-performed for the past half-decade or longer, so this recent under-performance barely chips away at those earlier gains. To put this into perspective, I am aiming for an asset allocation with about 12% of total retirement funds dedicated to small cap in a 66% stock, 34% bond portf...
by animule
Mon Oct 20, 2014 7:02 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"
Replies: 29
Views: 3345

Re: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"

Update - "Pension Funds Eye Reducing Hedge-Fund Investments." m Can universities be far behind? Pension-fund managers across the U.S. are rethinking their investments in hedge funds in the wake of a retreat by the California Public Employees’ Retirement System. In San Francisco, the chairm...
by animule
Fri Jul 25, 2014 3:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: i bonds or EE bonds?
Replies: 48
Views: 10030

Re: i bonds or EE bonds?

Another point on EE bonds that may not have been mentioned here. They provide better protection during deflation than I-bonds would. True, I-bonds would not lose purchasing power, but they would gain almost nothing. Deflation is something that few people seem to be worried about; maybe more should. ...
by animule
Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bubble watch: automobile loans
Replies: 17
Views: 2489

Re: Bubble watch: automobile loans

New York Times article adds additional quantification to growing bubble in automobile loans. m Auto loans to people with tarnished credit have risen more than 130 percent in the five years since the immediate aftermath of the financial crisis, with roughly one in four new auto loans last year going ...
by animule
Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Chip" credit card for foreign travel
Replies: 105
Views: 19372

Re: "Chip" credit card for foreign travel

Thought I would update my experience with using credit cards in Portugal, just having gotten back from a trip there. I didn't have to use the chip credit card at all, but did have to use a PIN number for the non-chip credit card. This was required every time I used the card, at every place. I'm not ...
by animule
Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: i bonds or EE bonds?
Replies: 48
Views: 10030

Re: i bonds or EE bonds?

I am not sure if anyone mentioned another big advantage with EE bonds versus I-bonds. They are certain to double in 20 years, and make a great "guaranteed" pension if you ladder them so that you can cash some in every year. For the growing percentage of the population that does not have a ...
by animule
Tue Jul 01, 2014 6:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bubble Watch: Credit cards for "riskiest customers"
Replies: 8
Views: 1010

Re: Bubble Watch: Credit cards for "riskiest customers"

If they compare the stats against 2008, then I am not worried. But if the stats are similar to 2006's, then I might be worried. I wonder why the reporter didn't show the stats before 2007. The credit card article may have been missing this information. But today, The Wall Street Journal updated the...
by animule
Mon Jun 30, 2014 7:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bubble Watch: Credit cards for "riskiest customers"
Replies: 8
Views: 1010

Bubble Watch: Credit cards for "riskiest customers"

Saw this in the news over the past few days and wonder if this is another sign that credit is becoming too "easy," planting the seeds for the next recession. m Cards Issued to Subprime Borrowers Rose 39% in First Quarter Lenders are courting risky credit-card borrowers more aggressively th...
by animule
Mon Jun 09, 2014 6:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bubble watch: automobile loans
Replies: 17
Views: 2489

Re: Bubble watch: automobile loans

A couple of other points to note here. Stretching out the term for new car loans means, by definition, that the market is attracting a more marginal and financially stressed buyer. This is almost the same scenario we saw for subprime mortgages. The last couple of years of the subprime mortgage boom ...
by animule
Sun Jun 08, 2014 10:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bubble watch: automobile loans
Replies: 17
Views: 2489

Re: Bubble watch: automobile loans

Car loans + student loans = two loan bubbles.

Yes, it's easy to repo a car. But if easy credit disappears, how much collateral do you actually have?

It's hard to repossess a college class, or a college education.

It would be interesting to see the numbers on these two loan areas, combined.
by animule
Sun Jun 08, 2014 10:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bubble watch: automobile loans
Replies: 17
Views: 2489

Bubble watch: automobile loans

The search for the next bubble may have ended. The car market is looking more than a little frothy. m A new report finds that auto loans are becoming more supercharged than ever as financing terms reach record highs. The average auto-loan term increased to 66 months during the first quarter, accordi...
by animule
Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Blind sided by IRS Audit of 2012 return: 529 plan earnings
Replies: 2
Views: 873

Blind sided by IRS Audit of 2012 return: 529 plan earnings

I just received a letter from the IRS on my 2012 tax return on "proposed changes to my return" which is essentially an audit result. The IRS ran the numbers and determined I owe just under $2k in taxes. One mistake appears to be mine - unreported income from my wife that will require furth...
by animule
Sat Mar 15, 2014 4:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: USA Today inadvertently makes case for EE bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 2661

Re: USA Today inadvertently makes case for EE bonds

Nisiprius, I enjoy your posts. I ran across something in Nassim Taleb's book Antifragile that I thought you would appreciate as it speaks to stock risk. I'll quote: ..."they take the worst historical recession, the worst war, the worst historical move in interest rates, or the worst point in un...
by animule
Sat Mar 15, 2014 10:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: USA Today inadvertently makes case for EE bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 2661

USA Today inadvertently makes case for EE bonds

Interesting article from USA Today on investing lessons over the past 14 years. The return of the S&P 500 over that time period was roughly what you can get right now from a Series EE savings bond with zero return risk, held to maturity since these bonds are guaranteed to double over 20 years. m...
by animule
Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Small Cap Tilting
Replies: 84
Views: 11375

Re: Small Cap Tilting

VTMSX is different in one important regard.

It is based on the S&P 600 which requires a company to have at least 3 years of profitable results.

Because of this the fund did not load up on dot com garbage during the tech boom.

This offered some downside protection vs other small cap indexes.
by animule
Tue Feb 25, 2014 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Layover in Amsterdam
Replies: 23
Views: 1555

Re: Layover in Amsterdam

Spent about a week there a couple of years ago with our family. We did most of the museums while there. The one I liked the best was the Dutch Resistance Museum which covered the World War II period. Fascinating. It's near the zoo. And take one of the canal tour boats. It's great to see the place fr...
by animule
Mon Feb 24, 2014 8:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"
Replies: 29
Views: 3345

Local college invests 56% of assets in "alternatives"

Local newspaper just wrote an article on the University of Rochester's endowment. I thought it was interesting that the endowment is so aggressively invested in "alternative" investments. According to the summary page on the plan, it is 56% invested in "alternative" investments l...
by animule
Sat Feb 22, 2014 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LED lightbulbs
Replies: 212
Views: 23602

Re: LED lightbulbs

Bought several Cree bulbs at Home Depot in October for a home office. Use them in a basement office on a dimmer switch.

First one just burned out. Think the bulb has a 10 year guarantee; but need to mail it back to Cree for a replacement.

Pain in the rear.

Hang onto your receipts.
by animule
Mon Feb 17, 2014 9:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are reliable refrigerator brands these days?
Replies: 51
Views: 31010

Re: What are reliable refrigerator brands these days?

Bought a Whirlpool about four years ago; model has refrigerator on bottom, freezer on top. Freezer said to be the "most efficient" unit on the market with the lowest energy costs. Thing was a lemon from the get-go. Spent about 5-6 days using the garage as the refrigerator/freezer after it ...