Search found 1892 matches

by bpp
Mon May 21, 2018 9:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where to invest – moving overseas [Australia ex-pat, US citizen spouse]
Replies: 6
Views: 494

Re: Where to invest – moving overseas [Australia ex-pat, US citizen spouse]

TedSwippet wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 8:28 am
For both of you:
- Non-US investor's guide to navigating US tax traps
TedSwippet, just wanted to note what a fantastically detailed wiki page that is. Very useful.
by bpp
Mon May 14, 2018 4:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 3026
Views: 932081

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

The Roman Republic , by Michael Crawford. I am disappointed, I hoped for more discussion of the inception and workings of the Roman Republic rather than a history of it's downfall. The book is plagued with incomprehensible run-on sentences. I don't think that I will finish the book. Try SPQR: A His...
by bpp
Mon May 14, 2018 12:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cancer - tips?
Replies: 37
Views: 6684

Re: Cancer - tips?

You may have already thought of this, but I would suggest trying to simplify finances as much as possible. In particular, consolidate financial accounts to the bare minimum number needed. This will make life easier to manage with chemo brain. Also makes the executor's job easier, should it come to t...
by bpp
Tue May 08, 2018 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: most compelling TV character ever
Replies: 175
Views: 16031

Re: most compelling TV character ever

Marvin the Paranoid Android.
by bpp
Sat May 05, 2018 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3531
Views: 1004823

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Darkest Hour. Disappointed in the historical inaccuracies (fatal flaw for an historical drama), but also the characterization of Churchill seemed off somehow. I think it was that the eyes seemed wrong, making him look like a scared rabbit all the time, even when delivering his most famous, impassion...
by bpp
Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Traveling to Asia-need advice
Replies: 46
Views: 3533

Re: Traveling to Asia-need advice

For South Korea, learn the writing system, hangul. It is very quick and easy to learn, and will help tremendously. Even in Seoul, there are places where you need to be able to read hangul to navigate the subway. For Japan, learn katakana. Foreign loan words are written in katakana, so especially hel...
by bpp
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Foreign national - Trouble opening Ally account - Help !
Replies: 6
Views: 418

Re: Foriegn national - Trouble opening Ally account - Help !

Ally is a US financial institution, is it not? In which case they are not doing any FATCA reporting anyway, as far as I understand. They might in the future, if the US ever decides to live up to its promises of reciprocity, but for now they should not be reporting anything special under FATCA. And e...
by bpp
Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3531
Views: 1004823

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Murder on the Orient Express (2017) with Kenneth Branagh as Poirot Of course there is only one Poirot, David Suchet. Never-the-less, this production got the mustache correct, if one goes by Agatha Christie's writings. The acting for the main characters was quite good. The plot is, of course, Dame A...
by bpp
Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3531
Views: 1004823

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Darth Xanadu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:51 am
Diogenes wrote:
Mon Nov 03, 2014 2:27 pm
If you don't mind thinking, and have some knowledge of history:

Two Lives (Liv Ullmann)
The Lives of Others

Both very powerful. Very.
The Lives of Others was awesome. I found it absolutely gripping.
I second (or third) the recommendation for The Lives of Others. Excellent film.
by bpp
Tue Apr 10, 2018 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ivy school education. Is it worth it?
Replies: 238
Views: 13242

Re: Ivy school education. Is it worth it?

does anyone here really think the quality of the degree from harvard is that much better than a well regarded public school? do they know the american civil war that much better? is the curriculum that much more rigorous? its not. it is 100% scarcity, branding and differentiation. I do not think th...
by bpp
Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ivy school education. Is it worth it?
Replies: 238
Views: 13242

Re: Ivy school education. Is it worth it?

1. The Ivy League is a football conference. It's a football conference whose members happen to be among the top universities in the Unite States but it is, in the end, nothing more than that. So we shouldn't get hung up on those words. To add to this, I think in Japan HYPSM are known, and would be ...
by bpp
Sun Mar 18, 2018 8:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Automatic tax deadline extension if outside USA on tax day
Replies: 6
Views: 620

Re: Automatic tax deadline extension if outside USA on tax day

Three is no two months extension for FBAR. Is this stated somewhere on the IRS website? The burden is not on the IRS to state there is no automatic extension for FBAR. The IRS does not impose FBAR deadlines. FinCEN does. Here is FinCEN 's clarification of the deadline and extension policy. The defa...
by bpp
Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3531
Views: 1004823

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Kin-Dza-Dza!

Reportedly a critique of Soviet society, but actually seems to work well as a critique of any human society that I am at all familiar with.

Anyway, a thoroughly delightful film, even without getting the in-jokes.

Available for free on youtube courtesy of Mosfilm.
by bpp
Wed Feb 28, 2018 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good Modern Science Fiction
Replies: 283
Views: 37007

Re: Good Modern Science Fiction

Wait until the 3rd book in the series. I enjoyed it. I expect "fiction" in science fiction. I would guess if this area was my area of expertise that there would be dubious aspects. The 3rd book really took off and brought some thought provoking options into play. I am o.k. with fiction in my SF. As...
by bpp
Mon Feb 26, 2018 10:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Systemic Risk in Ten Stocks?
Replies: 17
Views: 1484

Re: Systemic Risk in Ten Stocks?

Can "stock pickers" effectively create their own investment list that is likely to match the market's returns? And if so, can they do it with as few as ten stocks? The following wiki page summarizes some studies on this issue: Passively managing individual stocks TLDR: Probably want more than 10 st...
by bpp
Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expat tax question: How to be eligible for MFJ with non-resident spouse?
Replies: 14
Views: 1112

Re: Expat tax question: How to be eligible for MFJ with non-resident spouse?

As I understand, we could file as MFJ again if she moved to the US. Are there any other ways we could file as MFJ? For example, could she spend enough time per year in the US to qualify as a resident for tax purposes? What if we purchased a house together in the US? What if my family's US business ...
by bpp
Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expat tax question: How to be eligible for MFJ with non-resident spouse?
Replies: 14
Views: 1112

Re: Expat tax question: How to be eligible for MFJ with non-resident spouse?

Firstly, you are not eligible to file as Head of Household if you are married. HoH is only for unmarried individuals who are responsible for dependents. Your options for filing status are either Married filing separately, or Married filing jointly. No other options if you are legally married, regar...
by bpp
Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Living abroad. Retirement savings options?
Replies: 45
Views: 5450

Re: Living abroad. Retirement savings options?

Can someone point me to the IRS reference that states you may not take a partial exclusion when claiming FEIE? The IRS told me this directly, back when they used to actually answer questions like that. So I've heard it first-hand from the horse's mouth. And now you've heard it second-hand from a ra...
by bpp
Sat Jan 27, 2018 9:06 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: [New forum request] International investing and US non-resident section
Replies: 36
Views: 3751

Re: [New forum request] International investing and US non-resident section

As for any new forum name, if we are to have one... the wiki uses 'International Domiciles' to cover all things non-US. While imperfect for a number of reasons, it seems that ' Investing - International Domiciles ' might be enough to attract both US and non-US investors with cross-border investment...
by bpp
Sat Jan 27, 2018 2:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in index funds as a US citizen living in Japan
Replies: 6
Views: 601

Re: Investing in index funds as a US citizen living in Japan

Is your friend moving to Japan permanently, or just for a few years? If the former, she is better off trying to invest through a Japanese broker, for Japanese tax reasons. The only brokerage I know for sure that will let her buy Vanguard ETFs and give her a 1099 for them is Nomura. Actually, the 109...
by bpp
Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Japan. iShares gone. Replacements ?
Replies: 2
Views: 547

Re: Japan. iShares gone. Replacements ?

Greetings. Im American and set up a NISA account at SMBC based on research here and the main page on Investing in Japan. I went to re-balance my funds and was not able to purchase. I went down to the SMBC Nikko office to ask why and they told me that iShares funds are being removed from Japanese st...
by bpp
Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3531
Views: 1004823

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Blade Runner 2049 . Highly recommended if you are a scifi or film fan. Impressive accomplishment feeling like a genuine sequel of the original. I want to see this too. Do you need to have seen the original? I recently rewatched the original on TV. I don't think my wife has seen it. I loved the orig...
by bpp
Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3531
Views: 1004823

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

A Hologram for the King . Disappointing, in the same way Lost in Translation was, with an entire culture being reduced to a 2-D background. Nostalghia (Tarkovsky). A much better take on the "mid-life crisis abroad" theme than the above. Recommended. Voyage of Time: Life's Journey . Watch it with th...
by bpp
Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spine healthy recliner or lounge chairs, Euro etc
Replies: 8
Views: 1279

Re: Spine healthy recliner or lounge chairs, Euro etc

I got a Stressless, and I'm loving it. It cost nowhere near $4,000, so may be a lower grade model than what you're looking at, but lumbar support is still great. Note that if you tilt it back, the headrest automatically tilts forward a bit, though you can then flatten it back down if you prefer. Ver...
by bpp
Thu Aug 10, 2017 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxability of Contributions to Japanese Pension for US Expats
Replies: 4
Views: 486

Re: Taxability of Contributions to Japanese Pension for US Expats

I am also living in Japan and saw the same post in "US Expat Tax Questions" group. Like you I have been excluding my income using the FEIE, but have not been reporting employer contributions to my Japanese pension. I believe that since the pension is not a personal "account" like a 401(k), it is no...
by bpp
Sat Jun 24, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Poaching chicken
Replies: 51
Views: 6070

Re: Poaching chicken

dm200 wrote:When I first read the title, I thought of another meaning of "poach"
Indeed. There is no need for poaching, when one can just wait for chicken-hunting season and bag 'em legally.
by bpp
Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: BlackRock Japan Equity Tracker Fund D Acc
Replies: 4
Views: 543

Re: BlackRock Japan Equity Tracker Fund D Acc

The expense ratio seems pretty low, so that is good.

On the other hand, as a UK investor, why are you interested in overweighting Japan particularly?
I'm a Japanese investor, so I overweight Japan for currency reasons, but I don't try to overweight the UK.
by bpp
Wed May 31, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond Fund Selection For US Expat
Replies: 4
Views: 630

Re: Bond Fund Selection For US Expat

My advisor says I should just invest in Vanguard's Total Bond Fund (BND), but I've seen people on the forums recommend otherwise because of tax issues. I've searched around but I'm quite confused. I don't know how Hong Kong would tax BND, but for a US citizen, it is a very good choice in terms of U...
by bpp
Thu May 18, 2017 10:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing a foreign broker. 1099-DIV issue.
Replies: 3
Views: 474

Re: Choosing a foreign broker. 1099-DIV issue.

The 1099-DIV is somewhat convenient, but I wouldn't pay those greater expenses just for that. (The service might be worth paying for, but I'm just talking about the 1099 itself here.) If you're going the individual stock route, you will need to keep good records by yourself anyway, so the 1099 doesn...
by bpp
Thu May 18, 2017 10:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Healthcare costs in Japan?
Replies: 1
Views: 601

Re: Healthcare costs in Japan?

The calculations for the national health insurance scheme (国民健康保険) are rather complicated and location-dependent , but very roughly seem to come to about 8-9% of gross income. There is an absolute cap on the premiums, so for sufficiently high income levels the rate starts going down. When you use th...
by bpp
Sun May 07, 2017 1:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with 401k (Japan), nenkin, investments etc.
Replies: 1
Views: 284

Re: Help with 401k (Japan), nenkin, investments etc.

Hi :) I'm an Aussie that has been living in Japan for the past three years, self employed. I have NISA account which I have been using to start off my savings here. I have super from my time working in Australia and also some money in managed funds over there (currently attracting 30% taxation due ...
by bpp
Sun May 07, 2017 12:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What happens to NISA investments (Japan) after 5 years?
Replies: 1
Views: 268

Re: What happens to NISA investments (Japan) after 5 years?

No NISA accounts have reached the 5-year mark yet, but my understanding is that whatever was in them just gets converted to taxable status, and dividends start getting taxed. Also, the basis for whenever you eventually sell the asset is set to be whatever the market value was when it converted from ...
by bpp
Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Beginner advice for a Brit in Japan
Replies: 16
Views: 1520

Re: Beginner advice for a Brit in Japan

For Japanese bonds, there is not much point in paying any kind of expense ratio for a fund of them, given how low yields are now.
Might as well just buy 個人向け国債. The 10-year floating-rate ones at least offer some protection if rates rise in the future.
by bpp
Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Beginner advice for a Brit in Japan
Replies: 16
Views: 1520

Re: Beginner advice for a Brit in Japan

As for theo, it does indeed charge 1% per year but the first 3 months are 0.5% (not that it makes a huge difference). I'm not sure if I trust myself to make correct investment decisions elsewhere that would outweigh that 1% fee (yet), especially in Japan. They take care of all the withholding tax i...
by bpp
Thu Mar 23, 2017 3:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying Taxes in Japan
Replies: 2
Views: 433

Re: Paying Taxes in Japan

1. Of the two types of dividends, do we therefore only need to pay tax in Japan on Total Ordinary Dividends (since Qualified Dividends are included in Total Ordinary Dividends)? Correct. 2. Which column of your kakutei shinkoku did you list dividends, capital gains, etc., from foreign investments? ...
by bpp
Thu Feb 23, 2017 4:36 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: behavior and bogleheads wiki page on passively owning individual stocks
Replies: 10
Views: 1262

Re: behavior and bogleheads wiki page on passively owning individual stocks

The https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Passively_managing_individual_stocks wiki page says: empirical studies have shown that individual investors exhibit multiple behavioral errors that result in poor performance. and Owning individual stocks instead of an index fund is kind of like seeing how the pr...
by bpp
Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: American in Japan need advice
Replies: 13
Views: 2418

Re: American in Japan need advice

Thank-you, I don't have a preference to a particular style right now, 2 Fund, 3 fund, couch potato, permanent etc. I've got the SMBC Nikko NISA set up now so I would like to do the best I can with that, and get active with investing. Looking at the 'Investing in Japan' page it seems I have the opti...
by bpp
Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Replicating Index with Individual Stocks vs Index Fund
Replies: 28
Views: 3383

Re: Replicating Index with Individual Stocks vs Index Fund

Nobody has mentioned the main reason one would consider buying the stocks directly: A legal restriction or tax structure that disadvantaged using funds. PFIC is but one example. Yes, the PFIC issue is why I use individual stocks myself. Tax-loss harvesting is another big reason people do it. In gen...
by bpp
Thu Jan 19, 2017 3:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Replicating Index with Individual Stocks vs Index Fund
Replies: 28
Views: 3383

Re: Replicating Index with Individual Stocks vs Index Fund

Statman(2002) comes to this conclusion using 1926 - 2001 data: The expected annual benefit of increasing diversification from 20 stocks to the 3,444 stocks of the Total Market fund is 2.22% while the expected annual benefit when diversification increases from 50 stocks to 3,444 stocks is 0.94%. Eve...
by bpp
Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: American in Japan need advice
Replies: 13
Views: 2418

Re: American in Japan need advice

Is Vanguard Total Bond Market Index not available in Japan or becomes a PFIC ? It seems Mitsubishi-UFJ Domestic Bond Index Fund would be the best choice in the 1) plan mentioned above ? Thanks ! It is the reverse. Vanguard Total Bond Market Index ETF (BND) is available in Japan, though not through ...
by bpp
Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage recast strategy - Feedback needed
Replies: 54
Views: 6762

Re: Mortgage recast strategy - Feedback needed

3. Can any of you please share your personal experience with recasting (good or bad)? I have done much the same as you are planning, doing yearly pre-payments and recasts to gradually bring the monthly payment down. Here in Japan (at least at my bank), when one wants to make a principal pre-payment...
by bpp
Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: US citizen in Japan - Advice for my painful tax situation
Replies: 15
Views: 2291

Re: US citizen in Japan - Advice for my painful tax situation

My Inherited Traditional IRA: JP takes 20% of dividends and 20% of capital gains, then US smacks me around and taxes me again like it was normal income when I take it out. This is again the clear loser. Can you cash out the Trad. IRA in the same year that you take the capital gains, and claim the J...
by bpp
Tue Dec 20, 2016 5:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fixed income asset placement and selection - US citizen in Japan
Replies: 4
Views: 845

Re: Fixed income asset placement and selection - US citizen in Japan

My tax accountant takes the position that dividends and distributions in Roth IRA / 401k accounts are not taxable in Japan because they are not accessible to me without restriction, contra the wiki. Let's assume for the moment that their position is right and would be upheld if ever challenged. Thi...
by bpp
Tue Dec 20, 2016 4:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: US citizen in Japan - Advice for my painful tax situation
Replies: 15
Views: 2291

Re: US citizen in Japan - Advice for my painful tax situation

Problems: 3. I want to put some money in Vanguard Total US Bond Market, and I have the following options for placement: My US Taxable: US takes a 10% bite of dividends, and JP takes another 10% after foreign tax credit. US doesn't take any capital gains, but JP takes 20%. Strictly speaking, the US ...
by bpp
Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax software for U.S. expat in Japan?
Replies: 3
Views: 690

Re: Tax software for U.S. expat in Japan?

I use the NTA site for Japanese taxes, and either TurboTax or TaxAct for US taxes.
I don't have self-employment income, but all other categories you list are handled ok.
by bpp
Mon Dec 12, 2016 3:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Forever stocks (and building your own index fund)
Replies: 62
Views: 7065

Re: Forever stocks (and building your own index fund)

An added advantage of this approach is that one has nearly complete control over the taxes, unlike a mutual fund or an ETF where you can get hit with capital gains because someone else sold out of the fund. I am interested in knowing if anyone uses this, or a similar, approach, rather than buying a...
by bpp
Fri Dec 09, 2016 3:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retiring in a Decade after Graduation
Replies: 131
Views: 17728

Re: Retiring in a Decade after Graduation

My dream is to retire in a decade or less and then move to Japan and teach english since I have my bachelors degree. Why not find an engineering job in Japan now? That's what I'm thinking. Is your dream specifically to teach English in Japan, or is it really just to live in Japan, with English teac...
by bpp
Fri Nov 25, 2016 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Black Friday - is this overdone?
Replies: 77
Views: 9844

Re: Black Friday - is this overdone?

Now on the news, this 'new' custom of Black Friday was featured. I smell paid placement. A proposal was even presented to declare the last Friday of every month Premium Friday... Well, thinking more about it, nothing wrong with sales per se. Just don't import the associated death tolls, please. Thin...
by bpp
Fri Nov 25, 2016 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What IS this? Salad tongs for elves?
Replies: 63
Views: 9272

Re: What IS this? Salad tongs for elves?

Wow, learned something really cool today about Victorian fashion accessories.