Search found 738 matches

by dharrythomas
Sat Jun 24, 2017 2:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Another Roth vs. Traditional debate, but for high-income Feds
Replies: 15
Views: 1371

Re: Another Roth vs. Traditional debate, but for high-income Feds

We use Roth accounts exclusively now (except for the matching) in both TSP and IRAs. Over the last few years of my career before the Reserve pension kicks in, we'll probably sell some taxable investments to fund our Roth IRAs. I'm not nearly at the 150K salary level, but it's not that hard to get to...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax-sheltering and target retirement fund disadvantages
Replies: 45
Views: 3354

Re: Tax-sheltering and target retirement fund disadvantages

We've got two funds in taxable, Tax-Managed Balanced and Total World Stock index. If you use Total World, as you scale back the equity % in tax deferred, you'll maintain a significant portion of international equities. If you go with TSM, you may reach a point where you need to open another fund in ...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which Vanguard fund for Roth IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 1160

Re: Which Vanguard fund for Roth IRA

I recommend one fund, LifeStrategy Growth.
by dharrythomas
Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe says "Goodbye."
Replies: 336
Views: 37674

Re: Larry Swedroe says "Goodby."

Larry,

Thank you for all you've contributed and for what I've been able to learn from you.

Sorry that you were personally attacked.

Good luck and God Bless. Thanks again.

Harry
by dharrythomas
Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Single most important investing advice?
Replies: 97
Views: 11802

Re: Single most important investing advice?

Read "The Richest Man in Babylon" over and over until you internalize the lessons.

Unless you master the concepts "A part of all you earn is yours to keep" and "Don't eat your seed corn" the rest is a waste of time.
by dharrythomas
Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The Value of Debt in Retirement
Replies: 16
Views: 1388

Re: The Value of Debt in Retirement

Folks that spend more time than I on this stuff and are better educated than I, and are at least as smart as I, have blown up using leverage (see Long Term Capital Management and the banks and car companies in the 2008 fiscal crisis). Someone called this type of plan, picking up nickels in front of ...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 09, 2017 8:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 legs
Replies: 10
Views: 1607

Re: 3 legs

If you're considering #2, why not just go with Balanced Index? Same assets, one fund. Lower ER's and adjustable stock/bond ratios. OK, you save ~0.025 on the expense ratio, but the OP discussed a fixed asset ratio for each choice. The cost seems small for a true set and forget portfolio. Every time...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 09, 2017 8:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Handling the Details of a Large Inheritance
Replies: 54
Views: 4767

Re: Handling the Details of a Large Inheritance

I don't recommend your chosen course of action. I wouldn't try to estimate a safe withdrawal rate for a 60-80 year timeframe. Sequence of return risk is a killer. So are the low projected returns over the next decade. The whole plan appears dangerous. Inflation risk is another real risk over that ti...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 09, 2017 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Death of retail/malls to affect REITs?
Replies: 69
Views: 6912

Re: Death of retail/malls to affect REITs?

Undoubtedly, but if you and I are talking about it on a message board, it has probably already been priced in. I've come to the conclusion that since I don't spend all day every day on this stuff that by the time I figure it out, it is not actionable. :annoyed There have been store closings and vaca...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 09, 2017 7:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "We're changing how we report costs. You still benefit."
Replies: 14
Views: 2520

Re: "We're changing how we report costs. You still benefit."

I like it. And fankly, while the % difference barely moves, the actual cost difference between Vanguard and everyone else decreases substantially. The cost for non-Vanguard funds drops from 1.0 to 0.62 and the Vanguard cost advantage drops from 0.83 to 0.5 The 0.05 reduction in the Vanguard reported...
by dharrythomas
Sun Apr 09, 2017 7:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 legs
Replies: 10
Views: 1607

Re: 3 legs

If you're considering #2, why not just go with Balanced Index? Same assets, one fund.
by dharrythomas
Fri Apr 07, 2017 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth vs. Traditional w/pension
Replies: 8
Views: 972

Re: Roth vs. Traditional w/pension

Your analysis is reasonable. I like Roth IRAs for a number of reasons. Others think they are a mistake UNLESS you have a pension. There appears to be a consensus that Roth accounts are a good choice in the situation you describe.
by dharrythomas
Sat Apr 01, 2017 7:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Kindle Specials on Four Pillars and If You Can
Replies: 22
Views: 3307

Re: Kindle Specials on Four Pillars and If You Can

Bill,

Thank you. I got "Four Pillars" the last time it was on sale. I'm halfway through. It's a great read and I'd highly recommend it.

Harry
by dharrythomas
Sat Apr 01, 2017 7:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is anyone decreasing % of bonds this year?
Replies: 91
Views: 7524

Re: Is anyone decreasing % of bonds this year?

And do what exactly? Stocks are fully valued at this level particularly with the run up since the election. Rising interest rates usually hurt stocks, bonds, real estate, and precious metals--not to mention economic growth. Government and private debt are creating a anchor on growth. The best estima...
by dharrythomas
Sat Apr 01, 2017 7:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: low income earner, where to open an IRA
Replies: 11
Views: 904

Re: low income earner, where to open an IRA

You're doing fine. While there are many here that make orders of magnitude more than you, many of us don't. While making a modest income, you have a paid for home, some income producing property, no debt, some savings, and a plan to grow your business. With below median income, you've got an above m...
by dharrythomas
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Single Fund Portfolio in Roth IRA
Replies: 16
Views: 1218

Re: Single Fund Portfolio in Roth IRA

A single fund is fine. We've got 5 different retirement accounts. Target Retirement in one, TSP LifeCycle in another, LifeStrategy Moderate Growth in the other three. I'm not nearly as tempted to tinker as when I was slicing and dicing. We've only got two funds in taxable (Tax-Managed Balanced and T...
by dharrythomas
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New member, behind the curve and need help!
Replies: 7
Views: 1245

Re: New member, behind the curve and need help!

First, don't spend too much time feeling sorry for yourself. Instead of us, use the Federal Reserve's Survey of Consumer Finances as your benchmark. 3 year survey, data should be updated for 2016 in the fall. You're about at the median for your age. Not great from a financial perspective, but not aw...
by dharrythomas
Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Getting old and need advice on retirement goal & planning
Replies: 17
Views: 1699

Re: Getting old and need advice on retirement goal & planning

I don't understand how you're putting $18K each in a 401(K) and $15K each in a Roth 401(K). Both accounts count against one limit.
by dharrythomas
Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 9 Year Age Gap 401k ?
Replies: 9
Views: 1031

Re: 9 Year Age Gap 401k ?

In my case, having an older spouse drives several decisions based on her desire to enjoy some of the money we've saved and not to wait until I turn 70 when she thinks she may be too old to relax and enjoy traveling together. If nothing happens to her in the interim, my current thinking is to retire ...
by dharrythomas
Sun Mar 05, 2017 2:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 9 Year Age Gap 401k ?
Replies: 9
Views: 1031

Re: 9 Year Age Gap 401k ?

We're in a similar situation and still contribute a significant amount to the TSP. My goal (God willing) is to retire or at least slow down significantly at 62 so we can enjoy some time before the inevitable health declines, but that means saving and investing now. Good luck whatever your choice. Yo...
by dharrythomas
Sat Feb 11, 2017 4:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About Wellington VWENX
Replies: 14
Views: 1783

Re: About Wellington VWENX

I recommend LifeStrategy or Target Retirement, take your pick. Low cost, includes international stocks, Vanguard does the rebalancing, index funds.
by dharrythomas
Fri Feb 10, 2017 5:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 69 year old getting nervous
Replies: 12
Views: 4449

Re: 69 year old getting nervous

I recommend you simplify and then relax. Roll the 401(k) into you Vanguard IRA. Leave the cash, CDs and taxable investment account just the way it is except to take dividends and capital gains into you checking account rather than reinvest. Take both the Roth and the Traditional IRA into TargetRetir...
by dharrythomas
Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why go with an 80% stock / 20% bond portfolio?
Replies: 342
Views: 24218

Re: Why go with an 80% stock / 20% bond portfolio?

Ben Graham said all investors should be somewhere between 75/25 & 25/75. He lived, learned, and managed money through the Great Depression, is considered the Dean of Financial Analyst profession and the Father of Value Investing. If he tells me I can't handle 100% stocks and that I need more ret...
by dharrythomas
Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Federal Thrift Savings Plan (30 Years Old)
Replies: 22
Views: 1929

Re: Federal Thrift Savings Plan (30 Years Old)

Put it all in the L2050 fund, put all of you contributions into L2050 and don't look at it until you turn 40. Avoid debt and maintain an emergency fund. 10% of your salary, with 5% matching and a pension should be enough, but NOT if you leave it invested in the G fund. Don't worry over it the way we...
by dharrythomas
Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Best way to fund your Donor Advised Fund
Replies: 31
Views: 2118

Re: Best way to fund your Donor Advised Fund

Thanks...I guess I'll skip the DAF and go straight from IRA to Charity.
by dharrythomas
Thu Feb 02, 2017 7:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Best way to fund your Donor Advised Fund
Replies: 31
Views: 2118

Re: Best way to fund your Donor Advised Fund

If you're over 59.5 isn't funding it straight out of your IRA an even better tax option, or did I miss a restriction.
by dharrythomas
Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Don't Overcomplicate Your Portfolio"
Replies: 27
Views: 4824

Re: "Don't Overcomplicate Your Portfolio"

Forgot 4) as I age, simpler is better. According to studies after the early 50s my ability to manage money is on the decline (considering the mistakes I made/make near my peak, the future may not be pretty).
by dharrythomas
Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Don't Overcomplicate Your Portfolio"
Replies: 27
Views: 4824

Re: "Don't Overcomplicate Your Portfolio"

Taylor, Thanks. I'm finally to the point of realizing that broad based indexes are good enough and have simplified our portfolio. 1) it's easier 2) I think my returns would have been better and 3) my wife doesn't have my unhealthy interest in this stuff so if something happens to me, simple is defin...
by dharrythomas
Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Oil Speculators, are you greedy or fearful?
Replies: 26
Views: 2141

Re: Oil Speculators, are you greedy or fearful?

What I've determined is that the odds for me are worse with commodities than the odds in a casino (and I hate to gamble). The markets can remain irrational longer than I can stay solvent and there is an unsymmetrical distribution of information. In other words, I'm the sucker at the table. Even thou...
by dharrythomas
Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA Vanguard Fund Help
Replies: 5
Views: 544

Re: Roth IRA Vanguard Fund Help

We use LifeStrategy in our Roth accounts and Target Retirement type funds in all traditional accounts. Set it and forget it. Vanguard does the rebalancing.
by dharrythomas
Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: On the Int'l Funds fence
Replies: 18
Views: 1385

Re: On the Int'l Funds fence

Over the long term, returns are similar so it probably doesn't make much difference. You pay slightly higher expenses for a diversification benefit (specific market risk and currency risk) that may or may not appear. I do think that if you hedge international equities, you are wasting your time--pay...
by dharrythomas
Sun Jan 29, 2017 9:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Suggestions for Retirement Portfolio - Dual Career Feds
Replies: 23
Views: 1791

Re: Suggestions for Retirement Portfolio - Dual Career Feds

I think you can simplify and relax. If you just keep up with inflation, you'll have above the median income in the country before you add SS and any withdrawals. You are doing fine. I'd put the TSPs in the appropriate LifeCycle Fund and the Roth in Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund. You're probably ...
by dharrythomas
Sat Jan 28, 2017 1:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dow hits 20,000. What next? Share your strategy
Replies: 107
Views: 9651

Re: Dow hits 20,000. What next? Share your strategy

Now that the dow is at all time record highs, what is your plan going forward? Boglechu: Easy question: Stay-the-course. Best wishes. Taylor I'm trying to follow Jack Bogle's advise and not do anything. Thanks Taylor and David Bach of "The Automatic Millionaire". (We did make Roth IRA con...
by dharrythomas
Sat Jan 28, 2017 12:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bill Bernstein "If You Can"
Replies: 18
Views: 4883

Re: Bill Bernstein "If You Can"

bertilak wrote:Image


Perfect 8-)
by dharrythomas
Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard TR or balanced index fund???
Replies: 28
Views: 2277

Re: Vanguard TR or balanced index fund???

I see no reason. Since it is in a Roth, you can change your mind along the way with no tax consequences. If you'd said you were in Balanced Index I'd have said the same thing. The thing I struggle with myself is that I honestly feel, quite seriously, is that staying the course is more important tha...
by dharrythomas
Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portafolio Allocation - Wealth Preservation - Moving away from wealth managers
Replies: 17
Views: 1395

Re: Portafolio Allocation - Wealth Preservation - Moving away from wealth managers

A couple of other people have tried to make this point nicely but you haven't addressed it directly so I'll be blunt. Why do you want a portfolio that is 80% US if you are neither a citizen no a resident of the US? Most of the discussions here are US centric and most of the portfolios also. I have m...
by dharrythomas
Sat Jan 21, 2017 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plenty of income, need portfolio help and advice badly :)
Replies: 12
Views: 2137

Re: Plenty of income, need portfolio help and advice badly :)

I'd route the taxable funds to pay off the lake property. I like free cash flow because something can always go wrong. You are carrying $300K in debt for illiquid assets that could very well be unsalable at the very time you've got other things going wrong. Our situation was very different as we got...
by dharrythomas
Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mathematics of international asset allocation
Replies: 44
Views: 4757

Re: Mathematics of international asset allocation

The biggest thing wrong with the model is that you're using expected values for 5 variables. You're guessing and need to be right 5 times.

You're covering up the imprecision of the process and hiding it behind a precise answer to your equation.
by dharrythomas
Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Target Date Fund - Retirement Years
Replies: 29
Views: 3109

Re: Target Date Fund - Retirement Years

I'm almost 70 and DW is 66. DW has been using a target date fund for a number of years to avoid the hassle of rebalancing. I'm contemplating moving from essentially a four fund portfolio to either a target date or LS fund for all the usual reasons - automatic rebalancing, simplicity, etc. The switc...
by dharrythomas
Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Over what time period should stocks NOT lose money
Replies: 50
Views: 4612

Re: Over what time period should stocks NOT lose money

I don't think there is any timeline where anything is safe. People are incredibly bad at forecasting. Around the world, just in the 19-somethings, without trying to be all inclusive: Private property was confiscated in Russia, China, Eastern Europe, Cuba--foreign investment was nationalized and that...
by dharrythomas
Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Rick Ferri's reason to avoid International Bonds
Replies: 7
Views: 1620

Re: Rick Ferri's reason to avoid International Bonds

We own them in Target Retirement and LifeStrategy funds. I think the diversification benefit is not worth the cost and trouble, so I wouldn't bother with it in an individual fund. But it doesn't bother me enough to avoid the fund of funds in tax-free/deferred accounts.

Good luck.
by dharrythomas
Sat Dec 03, 2016 11:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Military Pension (Or any pension) - Roth vs. Traditional for 401K
Replies: 21
Views: 3305

Re: Military Pension (Or any pension) - Roth vs. Traditional for 401K

I'll have a Reserve pension in 5 years and a federal civilian pension when I retire. I started investing in IRAs in 1984, switched to Roth IRAs when they became available and contributed some to 401(K) and TSP. Since the Roth TSP has been available, I've used it and now put everything in the Roth. M...
by dharrythomas
Sat Dec 03, 2016 11:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm A Lapsed Indexer. Is Value Investing Better?
Replies: 24
Views: 4023

Re: I'm A Lapsed Indexer. Is Value Investing Better?

Park, The Bogle interview is a good article. Thanks, I went back and read it again. The paragraph before the quote you extracted, Mr Bogle said that if you could control the behavioral aspects, 3 to 1 leverage would be better. He didn't recommend that either. Mr Bogle recognizes the theoretical and ...
by dharrythomas
Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:24 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Reading journey - where to next?
Replies: 16
Views: 1484

Re: Reading journey - where to next?

Livesoft is right. Most of us would have been better off in a single Target Retirement fund from the start. Tweaking your asset allocation as the latest fad on factors change is the opposite of staying the course. The more I learned, the more I was tempted to tweak it and add stuff. I finally simpli...
by dharrythomas
Fri Dec 02, 2016 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pay off mortgage?
Replies: 107
Views: 8390

Re: Pay off mortgage?

We paid ours off early and don't regret it. We increased savings by about 50%. Then we backed off some as I realized that we're on track. When Warren Buffett moved back to Omaha in the 1950s, he paid cash for his house (about 1/6 of his net worth)--I'm pretty sure I have no business taking more risk...
by dharrythomas
Fri Dec 02, 2016 1:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm calling a bond bottom.
Replies: 31
Views: 7279

Re: I'm calling a bond bottom.

My crystal ball is cloudy. When we bought our second house in 1999, we borrowed at 7% and I never thought rates would get lower. I don't see far enough into the future to predict interest rates between market forces, government interference, and geopolitical shocks. My forecasting is cloudy in other...
by dharrythomas
Fri Dec 02, 2016 1:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm A Lapsed Indexer. Is Value Investing Better?
Replies: 24
Views: 4023

Re: I'm A Lapsed Indexer. Is Value Investing Better?

One good reason a value investor should have fixed income is that Benjamin Graham (the father of value investing) in "The Intelligent Investor" states that 50:50 should be the baseline for all investors and that everyone should be between 75:25 and 25:75 no matter how conservative or enter...
by dharrythomas
Fri Dec 02, 2016 9:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warren Buffett Books
Replies: 22
Views: 2273

Re: Warren Buffett Books

Snowball was an excellent read. Being an authorized biography, there were some personal details there that would be lacking elsewhere and some background on business ideas that I haven't seen elsewhere. While there is no explicit language, the book deals with his family issues. I'd recommend everyth...
by dharrythomas
Fri Nov 11, 2016 10:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: To ROTH or Not To ROTH...That Is The Question.
Replies: 15
Views: 1791

Re: To ROTH or Not To ROTH...That Is The Question.

The tax rate calculation is an incomplete analysis. One advantage to a Roth is the ability to not have required distributions. If you want to leave money to heirs, Roth is the way to go. On the other hand, if you want to make charatible contributions, a traditional account would be better. Then ther...
by dharrythomas
Fri Nov 11, 2016 2:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Stealth Wealth: I’m Just an Ordinary Average Guy"
Replies: 331
Views: 58396

Re: "Stealth Wealth: I’m Just an Ordinary Average Guy"

Neither a physician nor earning a physician like income. Just living below my means. I don't know that I'd define us as wealthy or furgal, we're above average but far from PAWs (The Millionaire Next Door). I'm only saving 15% in my Roth TSP plus moving taxable investments into Roth IRAs. Our house i...

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