Search found 687 matches

by bberris
Fri Oct 20, 2017 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need ACA help due to underestimated income
Replies: 8
Views: 757

Re: Need ACA help due to underestimated income

Not sure if you've done this, but IRA, 401k, and HSA all lower your ACA income. As someone else posted, even borrowing the money to do this is worth it.
by bberris
Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Odds against Renaissance Medallion Fund if Efficient Markets Hypothesis is valid?
Replies: 18
Views: 1232

Re: Odds against Renaissance Medallion Fund if Efficient Markets Hypothesis is valid?

The market drop in 1987 does not disprove (one of) the EMH's. The point of EMH is not that prices are always "right" or justified by fundamental theory. Rather, that one cannot predict the future movement of prices using publicly available information. What publicly available information (or even pr...
by bberris
Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 314
Views: 16074

Re: TD Ameritrade Free ETF program changing...

No Vanguard, no Ishares. Only some thinly traded (SPTM has 800 shares so far today), obscure ETF's, with higher expense ratios and larger spreads.
by bberris
Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA stay below 250% FPL for 2017?
Replies: 16
Views: 1265

Re: ACA stay below 250% FPL for 2017?

CSR is required by law. The executive order merely stops the federal treasury reimbursement to insurance cos. There are lawsuits challenging the legality of the payments. So now, Congress can authorize CSR reimbursement, or the states can pay them, or nothing could happen. In the case of nothing, in...
by bberris
Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Beware of Malware at Equifax website
Replies: 6
Views: 973

Re: Beware of Malware at Equifax website

You don't have any choice as to whether Equifax keeps a file on you. But clearly any company this incompetent should be avoided to the greatest extent possible. I have their website blocked at the router.
by bberris
Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why no stable value accounts for "retail" investors?
Replies: 11
Views: 1293

Re: Why no stable value accounts for "retail" investors?

The stable value fund works because of the limited potential for withdrawals and the captive group for contributions. As a result, the fund does not have to deal with "runs" as a publicly available fund would. A run on the fund might require the sale of paper at a loss, which would break the $1.00 v...
by bberris
Sat Oct 07, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm thinking about cashing completely out of equites....
Replies: 75
Views: 8088

Re: I'm thinking about cashing completely out of equites....

Are you correct that the market is “overdue a correction”? If so, you should sell all equities and take a short position in equities with your cash. I realize I could be wrong about anything so I just maintain my AA according to my IPS. Regards, John That would be increasing his risk. OP wants to r...
by bberris
Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Senior citizens can lose everything [to professional guardians via court rulings]
Replies: 111
Views: 9194

Re: Senior citizens can lose everything [to professional guardians via court rulings]

It looks like Minnesota has some protections that Nevada does not. The court must notify the person being "protected". There must be "clear and convincing evidence" of incompetence. If you refuse an examination, it would be hard to provide clear and convincing evidence. You have the right to a free ...
by bberris
Fri Oct 06, 2017 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Senior citizens can lose everything [to professional guardians via court rulings]
Replies: 111
Views: 9194

Re: Senior citizens can lose everything [to professional guardians via court rulings]

I don't see how annuity or maximized social security helps this. The crooked guardian simply takes the annuity payments instead of the assets.
by bberris
Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where do you think the money will come from to move the overall market higher?
Replies: 31
Views: 2239

Re: Where do you think the money will come from to move the overall market higher?

I wonder about this too, although for a slightly different reason. Total student loan debt in this country: $1,400,000,000,000.00 Total credit card debt in this country: $1,000,000,000,000.00 Total auto loan debt in this country: $1,000,000,000,000.00 And all are growing. This can't possibly end we...
by bberris
Mon Oct 02, 2017 6:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Minimizing income in taxable account
Replies: 13
Views: 1447

Re: Minimizing income in taxable account

The trouble with selling before x-dividend is, if you did that every time, you would only have short term cap gains (hopefully) taxed at ordinary income rate. You might do an etf screen for low fees and low dividends. This would probably lean your portfolio to small cap. BRK is not very diversified,...
by bberris
Sat Sep 30, 2017 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Borrowing $ from Wife to Receive Premium Tax Credit
Replies: 9
Views: 907

Re: Borrowing $ from Wife to Receive Premium Tax Credit

This doesn't sound like a real loan, but either way loan proceeds aren't income so you are good for 2017. Problem is 2018, when you have an extra 5K withdrawal adding to income. Will you be on Medicare then? How do you keep your income under the Obamacare cliff? I know, borrow and pay back in 2019, ...
by bberris
Thu Sep 28, 2017 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accidentally Underpaid Income Taxes – Please Advise
Replies: 8
Views: 773

Re: Accidentally Underpaid Income Taxes – Please Advise

Not an expert here but this is what I would do. File an amended return and pay (only) the taxes that you owe. Don't wait for a letter. Explain your mistake in a letter attached to the return. Beg for mercy and ask for the penalty to be waived; (never hurts to ask) Don't calculate or pay the penalty,...
by bberris
Wed Sep 27, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can I have 2 HSA accounts
Replies: 18
Views: 1683

Re: Can I have 2 HSA accounts

If you are both over 55, and you want to max out your contributions, you need two accounts to get 2 x $1000 catch up contributions.
by bberris
Sun Sep 24, 2017 8:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA or SS First
Replies: 8
Views: 844

Re: IRA or SS First

I live in a state with a pretty hefty income tax (7%) but it does not tax SS. I am 66 years old and my financial plan was to start drawing from my IRA in 2018 and start SS at 70. However, since my state does not tax SS should I start there first and let my IRA grow until RMD kicks in? I am in the 1...
by bberris
Wed Sep 20, 2017 8:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin AA - Just out of Curiousity
Replies: 51
Views: 2633

Re: Bitcoin AA - Just out of Curiousity

Like the stock tips from the shoeshine boy in 1929, the 2017 version is BH threads discussing bitcoin.
by bberris
Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help in understanding annuity benefit base, free amount, etc.
Replies: 8
Views: 761

Re: Help in understanding annuity benefit base, free amount, etc.

No one can help you unless you post the entire contract. Even then I don't think anyone wants to read hundreds of pages. There are no standard definitions in the annuity world and there are tons of catches where words don't have their ordinary meaning.
Ask your sales droid?
by bberris
Sat Sep 16, 2017 2:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why are so many Chinese visiting my website?
Replies: 14
Views: 2482

Re: Why are so many Chinese visiting my website?

They are probably using VPN. Russians again!
I'll second recommendations on improving security but filtering by nationality probably isn't enough.
by bberris
Tue Sep 12, 2017 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Nature of fraud (or, what I was afraid of)
Replies: 8
Views: 1820

Re: Nature of fraud (or, what I was afraid of)

Credit card fraud amounted to 0.3 % of $ transactions in 2015. I'm guessing uncollectible debt is much higher than that. Also the much ballyhooed convert to chip did not change the fraud numbers much; just moved it to card-not-present. I have been impressed with the ability of the credit cards to de...
by bberris
Mon Sep 11, 2017 9:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What index funds that will benefit from resent disasters
Replies: 21
Views: 1777

Re: What index funds that will benefit from resent disasters

Before I became bogled, I took positions in dividend payers, and for tax reasons, still have them (True confession, I still dabble). I ended up too heavy in insurance. With the first news of the hurricanes these shares got clobbered. When the "resent" disasters actually happened, they recovered. Jus...
by bberris
Sat Sep 09, 2017 8:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NW ~$0. Advice for next steps please!
Replies: 10
Views: 1636

Re: NW ~$0. Advice for next steps please!

I wouldn't be too hard on yourself; you invested in your education which will have a very good return.

But if you are dead, that money went to waste. Do you have term life insurance?
by bberris
Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 47170

Re: Equifax customer information leak

sid hartha wrote:
Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:03 am
I am starting a company to rate the credit raters. Equifax will not be getting a very good rating.
But you have to give them high marks for waiting 9 weeks to release the news.
by bberris
Thu Aug 31, 2017 4:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment Ideas At The Top Of The Market (Structured Notes)
Replies: 4
Views: 912

Re: Investment Ideas At The Top Of The Market (Structured Notes)

No, this is never an appropriate investment. If you are an expert investor (maybe you are, given the detailed analysis you have done), you can duplicate this product at much lower cost using options and futures. ( The cost is much higher than the explicit fee mentioned.) After all that is what the b...
by bberris
Tue Aug 29, 2017 4:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Bitcoin] question
Replies: 125
Views: 8934

Re: Bit Coin question

LOL WOW... those are some crazy answers and crazy people investing in FILES people can just MAKE UP. No crazier than investing in some paper with a picture and some numbers printed on it. [/quote] There is a world of difference. Besides, no one really invests in a dollar; they use dollars. LRQ
by bberris
Sat Aug 26, 2017 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At age 66, should let my $1MM life insurance policy lapse?
Replies: 32
Views: 4352

Re: At age 66, should let my $1MM life insurance policy lapse?

Even in good health, I am not sure I would drop life insurance in the last years of the term. OP was 66, and his expected value using SS life tables from life insurance was 6.8 x his premium. Even if his chance of dying by disease was 1/5 of the average, adding in accidental death brings a positive ...
by bberris
Wed Aug 23, 2017 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At age 66, should let my $1MM life insurance policy lapse?
Replies: 32
Views: 4352

Re: At age 66, should let my $1MM life insurance policy lapse?

Keep the policy even if you don't need it. Here's the math on your policy. A man aged 66, your chance of dying in the next year is 0.016986 (Social security table). The expected value is 1,000,000 x 0.016986 = 16,986, or 6.8 x your premium. If you really don't want the policy, you may be able to sel...
by bberris
Mon Aug 21, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dental Insurance/Costs
Replies: 25
Views: 1920

Re: Dental Insurance/Costs

Most people will probably about break even or come out slightly head on dental insurance if they get twice yearly cleanings, if you get fillings or any other services you'll probably come out significantly ahead by having insurance. Most the time the only way to have lower costs by not having denta...
by bberris
Sun Aug 20, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dental Insurance/Costs
Replies: 25
Views: 1920

Re: Dental Insurance/Costs

I have not been to a dentist in many years but have quite a bit of non-emergency work I need to get done. Mostly cavities and one crown. Does anyone have any ideas on how to alleviate the cost? Does dental insurance cover "pre-existing" dental issues? Mexico: http://wheelingit.us/2013/01/18/getting...
by bberris
Sat Aug 19, 2017 10:03 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New to 401k. How is this Match?
Replies: 14
Views: 1504

Re: New to 401k. How is this Match?

It seems a little stingy for a match; I've seen and had at least 3 % of contribution rather than a flat limit. But then you have to look at your compensation and benefits as a whole. The health insurance looks pretty good. Anyway, I'm not sure what action you can take except to make sure you contrib...
by bberris
Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drinking water price craziness
Replies: 79
Views: 7801

Re: Drinking water price craziness

Expensive bottled water is strictly a US thing. In Italy and France, a 1 L bottle costs less than 25 c at the grocery store, even the neighborhood minimarts. The fact that people will pay high prices is due to what economists call an inverse-demand curve. The higher the price, the more people want i...
by bberris
Sat Aug 12, 2017 11:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal mortgage loan
Replies: 16
Views: 835

Re: Personal mortgage loan

What is the goal here? You do realize that a loan won't help him qualify for a mortgage, but a gift will.
by bberris
Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TSA Pre-check for free
Replies: 75
Views: 5819

Re: TSA Pre-check for free

I just signed up for TSA Pre-check for my wife and I . I did this based on the new security requirements imposed by the TSA and I thought it was a good idea. Well I though so anyway. A friend of mine says I wasted my money . He says that whenever he flies " primary Jet Blue and Southwest " he alway...
by bberris
Wed Jul 26, 2017 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Green Dot cards are ID fraud!
Replies: 22
Views: 3107

Re: Green Dot cards are ID fraud!

If they don't use credit, what would someone gain by opening a card in your name? Isn't it a stored-value card? If they put money on it you could take the money. Some people will put money on it, or link their bank account, tax refund, or welfare. People without bank accounts might be fooled into d...
by bberris
Wed Jul 26, 2017 8:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are bitcoins nonsense?
Replies: 73
Views: 4974

Re: Are bitcoins nonsense?

A US dollar (or US treasury issue - just another form of paper IOU) is backed by the full faith and credit of the US government. I have no idea what is backing the "value" of a bitcoin. The backing of the US Government only has weight because other countries and people say it does, the same is true...
by bberris
Wed Jul 26, 2017 7:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are bitcoins nonsense?
Replies: 73
Views: 4974

Re: Are bitcoins nonsense?

LRDave wrote:You've got to have something to pay ransomware with.....
I know you're kidding but there is a grain of truth to it. Ransom is a kind of tax (you don't want to pay, you have to pay), and taxes drive money.
by bberris
Tue Jul 25, 2017 9:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?
Replies: 48
Views: 2374

Re: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?

No way would I stop the 401k to get the match. That is free money you will never get back.
Is day care really worth it? That second income is being taxed at least 33 % income and payroll taxes and maybe more state. Consider having the lower paid of you stay at home.
by bberris
Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: What Drives Municipal Bond Yields
Replies: 42
Views: 3568

Re: Larry Swedroe: What Drives Municipal Bond Yields

The article is silent on the big one to me, calls. Almost all munis are callable, treasuries never. So the buyer of a muni takes almost all the risk of rising interest rates and gets almost no benefit from falling interest rates. Not at all. There are plenty of munis that are not callable. Hopefull...
by bberris
Sun Jul 23, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: What Drives Municipal Bond Yields
Replies: 42
Views: 3568

Re: Larry Swedroe: What Drives Municipal Bond Yields

The article is silent on the big one to me, calls. Almost all munis are callable, treasuries never. So the buyer of a muni takes almost all the risk of rising interest rates and gets almost no benefit from falling interest rates.
by bberris
Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alternatives to Sansa Clip+ MP3 Player
Replies: 29
Views: 2128

Re: Alternatives to Sansa Clip+ MP3 Player

Here's a link to bestbuy.com with sansa clip that show some options at $35, $49 and $59: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/searchpage.jsp?st=sansa+clip&_dyncharset=UTF-8&id=pcat17071&type=page&sc=Global&cp=1&nrp=&sp=&qp=&list=n&af=true&iht=y&usc=All+Categories&ks=960&keys=keys I looked at the manual for ...
by bberris
Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Security trades with an IRA (ROTH)
Replies: 3
Views: 340

Re: Security trades with an IRA (ROTH)

Not trying to speak for Livesoft, but if you wash a taxable-account loss with an ira buy, you lose the tax deduction forever. That is kind of a big deal. If you had washed the sale in taxable you only defer the deduction. That would be "No big deal".
by bberris
Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OuiGo and OuiBus: Any experience?
Replies: 1
Views: 217

Re: OuiGo and OuiBus: Any experience?

I used OuiGo train a few years ago. As I remember, there were two cars attached to the far end of a regular SNCF. They check your ticket as you board instead of later. No other difference I could tell.
by bberris
Fri Jul 21, 2017 7:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Cryptocurrencies
Replies: 45
Views: 3590

Re: Cryptocurrencies

Calling something a currency does not make it money. I realize bitcoin is used for extortion and other illegal activities, and maybe for something legitimate here and there. But anyone doing this (except the bitlocker guys) will immediately exchange their bitcoin for real money. Think if you were a ...
by bberris
Thu Jul 20, 2017 2:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car lease buyout at term end - how negotiable?
Replies: 25
Views: 2268

Re: car lease buyout at term end - how negotiable?

Not very. The dealer would rather sell/lease another new car to you. And if you return the car they can always sell it. (Maybe you can buy it then!) The only way they would take less than residual is if the car has depreciated below that number. In that case, wouldn't it be in your interest to turn ...
by bberris
Thu Jul 20, 2017 1:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Delay Social Security to age 70 and Spend more money at 62
Replies: 203
Views: 32867

Re: Delay Social Security to age 70 and Spend more money at 62

I've read through this entire thread, and I don't think this was covered (sorry if it was and I missed it). How do you account for a couple that has similar salaries and work history, and thus very similar SS benefits. For simplicity, let's say each person would receive $2,000/month SS benefit at a...
by bberris
Thu Jul 20, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 74k in unrealized gains in a high fee, taxable account.
Replies: 5
Views: 718

Re: 74k in unrealized gains in a high fee, taxable account.

I've learned about the Bogle world in the past year and was unsure of what to do since the market seems to keep going up. But now I am ready to dive in. About 13 years ago I received a windfall of about 200k. Having no clue on what to do, I was advised to put half in stocks and half in CD's. I went...
by bberris
Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 7538

Re: Personal loan to a family member

Conventional wisdom is a loan to friends/family = a gift you will never see repaid. could giving $$ in this way be considered a 'gift' and generate some form of taxable event? https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i709.pdf If there is a promise to pay, it's not a gift. Even if they never pay, it's not a ...
by bberris
Sun Jul 16, 2017 1:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 401Ks and mergers
Replies: 5
Views: 567

Re: 401Ks and mergers

Is the "new" stock already trading? If it's really new, hard to say. No company decides the prices of their stock; buyers and sellers do that. The merger proxy statement should tell you something. And in theory, a merger by stock swap shouldn't change the total value any.
by bberris
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: can a city mandate garbage & recycling service? is that legal?
Replies: 36
Views: 2558

Re: can a city mandate garbage & recycling service? is that legal?

Is it legal for a City to mandate that a homeowner has curbside recycling service? and charge them for it in/on their property tax? even if as a separate 'fee' on the prop tax bill (pays for local private hauler to pick up your recycling 1x a week) same question about garbage service (private haule...
by bberris
Wed Jul 12, 2017 6:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying Life Insurance
Replies: 25
Views: 3719

Re: Buying Life Insurance

Don't cancel the old policy. Level-term life in the last few years of the term is a very good deal. Look at life expectancy tables for your age, run the numbers and you will see what I mean. You can always buy another policy without canceling the old one.
by bberris
Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Jewelry insurance. Is it ever worth it?
Replies: 42
Views: 4745

Re: Jewelry insurance. Is it ever worth it?

By definition, someone who buys expensive jewelry can afford to lose it. Your life would not change one whit by losing a $10,000 ring. Most of the purchase price was lost on the day of sale. On the other hand, if you inherit valuable jewelry, sell it.