Search found 923 matches

by bberris
Tue Apr 24, 2018 7:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Broker markup on t-bills: one data point at TDA
Replies: 2
Views: 262

Broker markup on t-bills: one data point at TDA

There's been some discussion here about dealer markup on govt securities, especially the lack of disclosure. Since brokers generally don't charge a fee on secondary issues, we know there must be some markup. I sort of accidentally bought the same issue two ways: in the secondary market pre-issue, an...
by bberris
Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life Settlement - Term insurance
Replies: 12
Views: 695

Re: Life Settlement - Term insurance

djpeteski wrote:
Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:27 pm
If this is term insurance, you can cancel it but not recoup any of the costs.
Not necessarily. Long-term level premium term insurance could have some small value in the last few years.
by bberris
Sun Apr 22, 2018 2:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying T-bills ..help needed
Replies: 17
Views: 1787

Re: Buying T-bills ..help needed

Can someone address the 2 questions under #3: how to sell t-bill before maturity? I have always held to maturity, but in the current rising yield environment, it may be wise to sell and replace with better yield new issues. But how to calculate the tradeoffs? TD ameritrade buys bonds and tbills. Bu...
by bberris
Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lending Club Investing
Replies: 26
Views: 2155

Re: Lending Club Investing

The real problem with the model of PTP is that it requires increasing investments in order to work. The main reason for borrowing at LC is to pay off other loans. LC is probably the second to last resort for these borrowers. In order to refinance the loans plus interest, more lenders need to be acqu...
by bberris
Sat Apr 21, 2018 10:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Want to be 100% in stock index funds ,
Replies: 31
Views: 2781

Re: Want to be 100% in stock index funds ,

You don't need anyone's permission to do that. (Well, ask your spouse if any.) The fact that you are asking means you have doubts. If you have doubts, I doubt you have the discipline to avoid selling in a crash. Look at the volatility this year and see if you have the stomach for that; it could get ...
by bberris
Sat Apr 21, 2018 7:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lending Club Investing
Replies: 26
Views: 2155

Re: Lending Club Investing

So does a default loan just get refunded back to you as original loan amount? You are the lender. If someone defaults, any remaining principal and interest is written off. LC started off as a good idea, then went full "we would make more money if we allowed really big financial institutions an oppo...
by bberris
Sat Apr 21, 2018 6:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying T-bills ..help needed
Replies: 17
Views: 1787

Re: Buying T-bills ..help needed

Looking at recent t-bill results at TDameritrade, it looks like buying new issues is better than secondary. Some of the best secondary offers require buying huge amounts (for me). If you have Private Client Service at TDA, new issue is free; otherwise it is a prohibitive $25. The downside of buying ...
by bberris
Fri Apr 20, 2018 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for ACA ? [Colorado]
Replies: 17
Views: 1436

Re: Applying for ACA ?

I think the previous poster was withdrawing unsheltered (taxable account) funds to live on. ACA does not care how much you spend, only how much MAGI. I'll re-emphasize the importance of the cliff. I watch it like an owl. If you can't live on your income below ACA, just borrow the rest. You can pay i...
by bberris
Thu Apr 19, 2018 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need for Medicare supplemental plan?
Replies: 150
Views: 7787

Re: Need for Medicare supplemental plan?

I'm curious about the Doc asking for a supplemental plan and refusing service if you don't have one. Isn't that just because the copays are hard to collect from the self insured? I have an individual plan (not medicare) with a 13,000 deductible. No one asks me to pay until I get the bill, even when ...
by bberris
Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: We crush stock indexes, Yale claims
Replies: 98
Views: 11085

Re: We crush stock indexes, Yale claims

Let me just grab this nit here: the number of investors outperforming and underperforming need not be (and certainly is not) the same. It is the amount of dollars above and below the average that must be the same.
by bberris
Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: We crush stock indexes, Yale claims
Replies: 98
Views: 11085

Re: We crush stock indexes, Yale claims

It is simply a math equation. The total outperformance of some equals the underperformance of the rest, minus costs. The net performance of all investors must equal the average performance minus fees. All this proves is that Yale got lucky. So as Dirty Harry says, "You've got to ask yourself one que...
by bberris
Sat Apr 14, 2018 7:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What hedge strategies do you employ?
Replies: 29
Views: 2513

Re: What hedge strategies do you employ?

I understand what you mean by hedging, but that is not the classical meaning of the word. I'm surprised no one mentioned it so far, that the riskiest stock for you is the one you work for. Since many people get stock awards, or options, or RSUs, it is unavoidable to an extent. And there are politica...
by bberris
Fri Apr 13, 2018 9:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ditched bond fund for money market. Thoughts?
Replies: 40
Views: 3696

Re: Ditched bond fund for money market. Thoughts?

You are set for underperformance with that move. At least do something like a 5 year cd ladder. I can post multiple sites that talk about bond fund performance in a rising rate environment, but will settle on just this one: From vanguard https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/s807.pdf We recognize that ...
by bberris
Thu Apr 12, 2018 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Suggest “TDA available” short term bond fund
Replies: 5
Views: 323

Re: Suggest “TDA available” short term bond fund

As an alternative, you might consider brokered CDs and secondary treasuries.
by bberris
Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prescription drug costs
Replies: 22
Views: 1218

Re: Prescription drug costs

I thought the price comparison for 5 sample drugs among various outlets was interesting. Costco was generally the cheapest among brick-and-mortar places. The one thing that surprised me was the CVS/Target was most expensive (of those in the sample). My brother recently had to change his prescriptio...
by bberris
Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CD market values down after purchase; why?
Replies: 20
Views: 1771

Re: CD market values down after purchase; why?

I assume Schwab like all the big brokers maintain a secondary market for CDs. Brokered CDs can't be cashed before maturity, but they can be sold. There isn't a big secondary market for CDs as there is for treasuries. The broker themselves may be acting as the principal in this case, and the value yo...
by bberris
Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 96 percent of stocks are no better then TBills
Replies: 29
Views: 6756

4 of 7 Stocks underperform 1 mo T-Bills

[Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek] I was about to title this "Stocks underperform T-bills" but that was too click baity. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2900447 Only the top performing 4 percent of stocks account for all of the gain in the market since 1926. ...
by bberris
Sun Apr 08, 2018 8:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Penalty for not having health insurance in 2017
Replies: 3
Views: 284

Re: Tax Penalty for not having health insurance in 2017

This may apply: What happens if I don't pay the fee? The IRS will hold back the amount of the fee from any future tax refunds. There are no liens, levies, or criminal penalties for failing to pay the fee. So you just have to make sure you don't get a refund for the rest of your life. There are also ...
by bberris
Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you cancel a bid on ebay?
Replies: 7
Views: 533

Re: How do you cancel a bid on ebay?

There is a good reason for restrictions on cancelling a bid.
by bberris
Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax withholding allowances
Replies: 6
Views: 557

Re: Tax withholding allowances

I have nothing withheld and pay quarterly online, using a tax calculator to get the estimate.

Here's a simple calculator:
https://smartasset.com/taxes/minnesota-tax-calculator
by bberris
Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tequila and Magaritas
Replies: 59
Views: 4409

Re: Tequila and Magaritas

I think we have no scientists here. The only way to settle this is a double blind experiment. I offer my services if anyone can raise the funding for this important endeavor. My hypothesis is that tasters can easily distinguish between tequila neat, but not in a sugary, citrusy, frozen concoction th...
by bberris
Wed Apr 04, 2018 8:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any seasoned advisors to discuss best sectors/mutual funds for market out-performance?
Replies: 93
Views: 4462

Re: Any seasoned advisors to discuss best sectors/mutual funds for market out-performance?

Okay, a high NW, high earning couple with millions invested or waiting to be invested, probably millions more to come, and likely to not ever even need the invested money..... The question my simple mind has about that would be, why would you even need to beat the market in that situation? :confuse...
by bberris
Wed Apr 04, 2018 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Builder wants $800 to vent a gas cooktop
Replies: 53
Views: 3995

Re: Builder wants $800 to vent a gas cooktop

There's no need for exterior venting. We have a gas cooker, and the microwave is elsewhere. There is just a recirculating fan. New houses have an air exchanger to bring in fresh air, with two speeds. If it's really intense cooking, you can go high speed and open a window. The exhaust fan brings in f...
by bberris
Wed Apr 04, 2018 7:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Financial Advisor fees? Am I paying too much?
Replies: 54
Views: 3874

Re: Financial Advisor fees? Am I paying too much?

You are paying more than 1.5 %. The fund expenses come out of the return and are not line-itemed.

If you were paying only 1.5 %, that is the equivalent of a 38 % tax rate. Without expenses, your safe withdrawal rate would be 4 %, but the expense brings you down to 2.5.
by bberris
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finished?
Replies: 129
Views: 9715

Re: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finis

Epsilon Delta wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 1:54 pm
GratefulinNC wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 6:33 am
Crypto currencies are fiat currencies. There is nothing backing them up -- no gold, no oil, no governemnts, and no guns.
So crypto currencies doesn't even have a fiat.
Fiat means by law. Crypto's are anti-fiat.
by bberris
Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Microsoft tech support scam - how to recover?
Replies: 39
Views: 4183

Re: Microsoft tech support scam - how to recover?

Windows 7 and 10 allow you to make install media. You don't need to buy another copy. Your PC has a sticker with a license.

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/hel ... tion-media
by bberris
Tue Apr 03, 2018 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Microsoft tech support scam - how to recover?
Replies: 39
Views: 4183

Re: Microsoft tech support scam - how to recover?

Is the computer functional? First step I would do is disconnect Internet from it so it is completely offline. Then back up your important files. Be selective, don’t just copy the whole C drive. Then, unfortunately, wipe it and reinstall the OS. How can you reinstall the OS when it came preloaded on...
by bberris
Mon Apr 02, 2018 6:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity w guaranteed 5-6% return [payout]?
Replies: 50
Views: 4473

Re: Annuity w guaranteed 5-6% return?

A friend told me recently he & his wife bought an annuity with a guaranteed 5-6% return. I'm not an annuity expert, but I thought if the current rates are really low, its a bad time to buy an annuity. How can the annuity company make any money and guarantee that kind of return? Did my friend pay to...
by bberris
Sun Apr 01, 2018 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: state tax for capital gains and dividends
Replies: 16
Views: 1240

Re: state tax for capital gains and dividends

Well, every state probably handles this differently. I think the default position the state would take is that you must file in the state you left. For your sake, I hope it is one of those states that don't tax income. But it is very easy to become a resident of a no-tax state if you truly don't wan...
by bberris
Sun Apr 01, 2018 8:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finished?
Replies: 129
Views: 9715

Re: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finis

If you think crypto is 0 then you haven't been paying attention. For the past 8 years crypto has been going through the same boom/bust cycles. Which is why it will never function as an exchange currency outside very small niche markets (mostly in gray/illegal areas where anonymity is worth the vola...
by bberris
Sun Apr 01, 2018 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: state tax for capital gains and dividends
Replies: 16
Views: 1240

Re: state tax for capital gains and dividends

You pay state income taxes on investments to the state you live in, if they tax that sort of income.
by bberris
Sat Mar 31, 2018 7:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: free dinner investing seminar
Replies: 287
Views: 19739

Re: Got my Ruth's Chris seminar invitation, "Surviving Retirement"

I predict a steak swimming in butter and higher cholesterol. Skip it and save money on statins.
by bberris
Sat Mar 31, 2018 5:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finished?
Replies: 129
Views: 9715

Re: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finis

"How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg? Four. Saying that a tail is a leg doesn't make it a leg." Abraham Lincoln When you use the word, "CryptoCurrency", you have already come to a false conclusion. All of the crypto currencies fail at all three requirements of money: means of e...
by bberris
Sat Mar 31, 2018 6:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finished?
Replies: 129
Views: 9715

Re: What Are Your Thoughts On The Recent Bitcoin Bust? Is It Apart of the Boom/Bust Cycle or Is The CryptoCurrency Finis

"How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg? Four. Saying that a tail is a leg doesn't make it a leg." Abraham Lincoln When you use the word, "CryptoCurrency", you have already come to a false conclusion. All of the crypto currencies fail at all three requirements of money: means of ex...
by bberris
Thu Mar 29, 2018 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If I got money from the ACA and my income drops below 12k in Missouri would I have to pay back the money at tax time?
Replies: 15
Views: 973

Re: If I got money from the ACA and my income drops below 12k in Missouri would I have to pay back the money at tax time

Hmmm... good point about MO. This might be a case where staying above the 100% cliff is important. But of course below the 400% one. One of the rare instances when tax GAIN harvesting makes sense, assuming you have any assets in taxable. Note that wash sale rules do not apply to gain harvesting. Yo...
by bberris
Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?
Replies: 65
Views: 4942

Re: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?

This is sort of a status symbol. If your employer pays for it, go for it. We get TSA precheck almost all the time without it. I'm not sure why, but I suspect it's because of our birthdays being in the distant past. I've never experienced long waits getting into the US, but I have had long lines in M...
by bberris
Mon Mar 26, 2018 6:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone Deleting Facebook?
Replies: 329
Views: 21730

Re: Anyone Deleting Facebook?

You can also just get rid of the companies tracking you on FB.
by bberris
Sat Mar 24, 2018 4:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Building a bridge to Social Security: When to start?
Replies: 34
Views: 3984

Re: Building a bridge to Social Security: When to start?

The SS disability trust fund is scheduled to run dry in 2016. I think that is your clue to the future.
by bberris
Sat Mar 24, 2018 7:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: avoiding taxable interest income and dividends?
Replies: 12
Views: 1553

Re: avoiding taxable interest income and dividends?

Muni bond income counts as income for ACA.

Even when you stay under the ACA limit, you lose 9.5 % of your income from the subsidy loss. So effectively muni's are taxed 9.5 %
by bberris
Sat Mar 24, 2018 6:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: changing my signature when signing checks and credit card receipts
Replies: 47
Views: 3245

Re: changing my signature when signing checks and credit card receipts

The signature is there to prove to you that you did the transaction. Same with a pin. The checkout guy is not a handwriting expert.
by bberris
Sat Mar 24, 2018 5:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: avoiding taxable interest income and dividends?
Replies: 12
Views: 1553

Re: avoiding taxable interest income and dividends?

I am using ACA. Between state and fed income tax, loss of ACA subsidy, and loss of property tax refund, my marginal rate is 29 %. So Roth conversions make no sense. I think you need to get an HSA compliant plan (subtract almost 9,000 for married over 55). That would bring you down to about $70,00 in...
by bberris
Fri Mar 23, 2018 4:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I need title insurance?
Replies: 43
Views: 4073

Re: Do I need title insurance?

.... I was searching for opinions on title insurance and came upon this thread. It seems the above is not true. I found a lender that does not require title insurance, not even for the lender. Instead, you pay for an attorney to do a title search (or some such search), and then they issue a letter ...
by bberris
Thu Mar 22, 2018 10:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Building a bridge to Social Security: When to start?
Replies: 34
Views: 3984

Re: Building a bridge to Social Security: When to start?

The future of Social Security benefits, and how they are taxed, is unknown because it is subject to the whim of Congress. The future of your investments is unknown for different reasons. But it does not follow that one claims benefits as soon as possible. And let's put to rest the notion that the SS...
by bberris
Wed Mar 21, 2018 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drink package on Royal Caribbean, worth it?
Replies: 73
Views: 6616

Re: Drink package on Royal Caribbean, worth it?

David Jay wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:36 pm
On our last cruise we met at least 2 people who told us they were "not drinking enough" to get their money's worth. One said that they needed to have 5-6 drinks a day to pay off.

Doesn't seem like a great motivation...
Well, you could use the money you saved to pay for a liver transplant.
by bberris
Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How/when to sell high-cost funds with capital gains?
Replies: 12
Views: 1118

Re: How/when to sell high-cost funds with capital gains?

The question can't be answered until you provide the total value of the funds, not just the capital gains part. The expenses are levied on the entire holding. For example, if your capital gains are only 10 % of the total, the tax would be only 1.5 % of the total. You would make that up in two or thr...
by bberris
Wed Mar 21, 2018 8:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Suggestions for Paying Tax on Annuities with Wife Still Working?
Replies: 3
Views: 277

Re: Suggestions for Paying Tax on Annuities with Wife Still Working?

Another way is to have more money withheld from the working spouse. The W4 has a line for an additional dollar amount.

If you really want to accurately forecast your tax, use the 2018 planner:

https://sites.google.com/site/excel1040 ... ew-tax-law
by bberris
Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Impending market correction
Replies: 28
Views: 1759

Re: Impending market correction

Don't market corrections loom rather than impend?
by bberris
Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: your cash is trash at brokers J.Zweig - WSJ
Replies: 23
Views: 4405

Re: your cash is trash at brokers J.Zweig - WSJ

I now realize that I am better off buying 1 month CDs at Ameritrade, than trading in BIL. Interest rate is higher, and the short term trading fee holds BIL to a 1 month term anyway.
by bberris
Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scottrade to Ameritrade
Replies: 5
Views: 591

Re: Scottrade to Ameritrade

As a former Scottrade client, I had two individual stocks purchased at least two years in the past. After the transition to Ameritrade, the account does not indicate any data on when the stocks were purchased or cost/basis. Does anyone know whether that data were migrated to Ameritrade, and if not ...