Search found 880 matches

by fundtalker123
Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is recharacterization of Roth contribution to Trad IRA a "contribution"?
Replies: 3
Views: 212

Is recharacterization of Roth contribution to Trad IRA a "contribution"?

I made a Roth IRA contribution for 2017. Later in 2017 I recharacterized this to Traditional IRA. I am not eligible to make deductible IRA contributions.

Is this recharacterization considered a "non-deductible contribution" that should be entered on Line 1 of Form 8606 of my 2017 tax form?
by fundtalker123
Mon Apr 02, 2018 4:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age is the best to give a child control of an inheritance?
Replies: 192
Views: 10735

Re: What age is the best to give a child control of an inheritance?

How about NEVER, in the following sense: A common approach in trusts is to specify the beneficiaries can spend the investment income, but not the principal. If they foolishly overspend, at least the principal should last a while - and the ongoing income could, for example, help them in retirement (w...
by fundtalker123
Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help needed before I go mad :D
Replies: 53
Views: 5244

Re: Help needed before I go mad :D

Set it and forget it using balanced funds. Everyone wants to make it more complicated, but that is unnecessary
by fundtalker123
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most Effective Rat Poison
Replies: 35
Views: 2837

Re: Most Effective Rat Poison

Just write your adviser a letter instructing to move your investments to Vanguard.
by fundtalker123
Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Problem with Roth IRA recharacterizations
Replies: 2
Views: 349

Tax Problem with Roth IRA recharacterizations

I messed up in Jan 2017 and contributed directly to Roth IRAs for 2016 and 2017. I was supposed to contribute to Traditional and convert to Roth (because I don't qualify for direct contribution to Roth). So before filing 2016 taxes I recharacterized both the direct Roth contributions. Then, in 2017 ...
by fundtalker123
Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New HSA provider Lively offers investments for $30/yr fee
Replies: 241
Views: 31405

Re: New HSA provider Lively offers investments for $30/yr fee

I spent a long time looking for a good HSA because my employer one "sucked" - I decided on "Elements Financial". After I invested the employer changed providers and the plan is much better. Now I'm considering switching to the employer contracted one...
by fundtalker123
Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Jeans without strong chemical odor
Replies: 36
Views: 1953

Re: Jeans without strong chemical odor

Lee & Levis seem ok
by fundtalker123
Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kauai Travel Tips
Replies: 43
Views: 2396

Re: Kauai Travel Tips

Alexa9 wrote:
Mon Jan 22, 2018 9:34 am

- Boat Tour of North Shore's Na Pali Coast
+++1, but inquire about whether the sea will be gentle or rough. If it is going to be rough, consider postponing, or buy anti-sea sickness medicine if that bothers you...
by fundtalker123
Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retirement causes brain function to rapidly decline, warn scientists
Replies: 13
Views: 2146

Re: Retirement causes brain function to rapidly decline, warn scientists

I'm a professor of biochemistry. I have so much administrative BS to deal with, I wish I could retire so I had time to think about biochemistry.
by fundtalker123
Mon Jul 17, 2017 2:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Reimburse UTMA expenditure without affecting gift tax exclusion?
Replies: 3
Views: 310

Re: Reimburse UTMA expenditure without affecting gift tax exclusion?

Google is your friend. Direct tuition payments to the institution are exempt from gift tax consideration: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/frequently-asked-questions-on-gift-taxes The only caveat is that you have to pay the university directly. Any sort of reimbursement...
by fundtalker123
Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Reimburse UTMA expenditure without affecting gift tax exclusion?
Replies: 3
Views: 310

Reimburse UTMA expenditure without affecting gift tax exclusion?

I want to pay my kid's $15k grade school tuition but don't have the cash readily available (I could make it available if I had to but it would be inconvenient). Instead can I pay it using funds in his UTMA account and then in a couple of months reimburse him $15k by transferring the same amount to h...
by fundtalker123
Thu Jul 07, 2016 4:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Simplification vs. "Optimization"
Replies: 36
Views: 3555

Simplification vs. "Optimization"

This issue has been discussed a lot before, but continues to bother me Should we: (1) Simplify by investing everything (where possible) in balanced, market cap weighted index funds like Vanguard Lifestrategy (2) "Optimize" expected reward/risk by tilting with "goodies" such as Small Cap Value, REIT,...
by fundtalker123
Fri Apr 17, 2015 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who is covered by your HSA?
Replies: 8
Views: 1508

Re: Who is covered by your HSA?

Regarding reimbursement for medical expenses for a child dependent, couldn't withdrawal from the HSA for reimbursement for expenses while they were a minor/dependent occur long after the child is no longer a minor dependent? e.g. Pay $100 out of pocket for doctor visit, not withdrawing HSA funds, wh...
by fundtalker123
Sat Dec 27, 2014 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electronic gizmos and apps you actually use a lot
Replies: 14
Views: 2260

Electronic gizmos and apps you actually use a lot

Most people buy electronic Gizmos and apps (software) nowadays. Some end up collecting dust while others are life changing. What are the gizmos and apps you actually find that you use and enjoy at lot? Here are the ones I actually use: Iphone 5, $600 - Google maps - Camera - Amazon prime music & clo...
by fundtalker123
Tue Dec 02, 2014 10:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A simple coffee maker
Replies: 38
Views: 6227

Re: A simple coffee maker

Tough question. Does it need to have wi-fi or not? When you say "switch", I assume you mean smartphone enabled switch over wifi?
by fundtalker123
Fri Nov 21, 2014 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: lease car to family member - liability insurance?
Replies: 1
Views: 895

lease car to family member - liability insurance?

I own two cars in my name. One is often driven by a family member. My understanding is that if he causes an accident I can be sued as the car is registered in my name, is that right? I have a lot of assets and he has zero assets. My insurance company won't allow him to be covered under my umbrella i...
by fundtalker123
Tue Oct 14, 2014 9:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)

No offense and not to be cynical, but don't think it matters what you or your wife think. If she works for a big employer it ONLY matters how seducible the one calling the shots in HR or on the benefits committee is to the financial advisors pitching the product. If you have questions/ reservations...
by fundtalker123
Tue Oct 14, 2014 9:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)

The cash balance contribution comes from the employer. I assume they are offering a 401(k) as well but your wife doesn't have to make a contribution to a CB to benefit. It's a free benefit to her. Unless you are making the claim that her increased benefit in the CB plan will reduce her benefit in 4...
by fundtalker123
Tue Oct 14, 2014 2:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)

The cash balance contribution comes from the employer. I assume they are offering a 401(k) as well but your wife doesn't have to make a contribution to a CB to benefit. It's a free benefit to her. Unless you are making the claim that her increased benefit in the CB plan will reduce her benefit in 4...
by fundtalker123
Tue Oct 14, 2014 1:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Re: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)

The main question is who pays for the plan. Does it come from her salary or this from the company in addition to her salary. Sounds like the former. If so then this isn't such a good deal for you bc of the huge fees associated with it. I believe it would be mainly from her salary, but the return of...
by fundtalker123
Tue Oct 14, 2014 12:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)
Replies: 16
Views: 1735

Offered Cash Balance Plan - RED FLAGS? (physician)

Wife's employer, a large physician group, is considering offering a "Cash Balance Plan" and wants employee feedback. I've read previous posts on this topic, but need feedback on the specific plan. - Allows more pre-tax savings on top of $52k (401k+profit sharing) limit. Vaguely stated to be up to ~$...
by fundtalker123
Mon Aug 04, 2014 5:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: not all small value funds are created equal
Replies: 48
Views: 5053

Re: not all small value funds are created equal

Another very conspicuous difference is that the expense ratio of the bridgeway fund is 0.6%, plus it is only available through an advisor. The advisor will probably charge an extra fee of at least 0.4%, so the total expense ratio is >1% Compare that with the 0.1% expense ratio of the Vanguard Small ...
by fundtalker123
Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Change the name of the "Backdoor Roth" to something else?
Replies: 41
Views: 3199

Re: Change the name of the "Backdoor Roth" to something else

I think it is possible that some lawmakers read some online discussion forums. I do not like the idea that if they read about something described using language which incorrectly suggests some trick being pulled, as opposed to simply describing a perfectly legal, logical, and (one can only assume) i...
by fundtalker123
Sun Apr 06, 2014 11:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can minor child claim self exemption on 1040? [generally no]
Replies: 3
Views: 300

Re: Can minor child claim self exemption on 1040?

From Pub 17 -- "You can take one exemption for yourself unless you can be claimed as a dependent by another taxpayer. If another taxpayer is entitled to claim you as a dependent, you cannot take an exemption for yourself even if the other taxpayer does not actually claim you as a dependent. " Seems...
by fundtalker123
Sun Apr 06, 2014 10:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can minor child claim self exemption on 1040? [generally no]
Replies: 3
Views: 300

Can minor child claim self exemption on 1040? [generally no]

Question: If a parent chooses to NOT claim a minor child as a dependent, then can the child claim 1 "self" exemption (line 6a) on the child's 1040 (filed to report investment income). I have not located clear instructions on this -- line 6a says "If someone can claim you as a dependent, do not check...
by fundtalker123
Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is 529 plans that bad? [White Coat Investor article]
Replies: 35
Views: 3709

Re: Is 529 plans that bad? [White Coat Investor article]

Example below where the tax savings could be at least ~$500k and probably more - do I have anything wrong? Two kids and you front load $250k (the current cost of 4 years private college) into each of their 529s (by starting to contribute before birth and changing beneficiary). Invest in Vanguard 529...
by fundtalker123
Fri Nov 08, 2013 11:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Confusing analysis of my HSA vs PPO costs
Replies: 5
Views: 1089

Confusing analysis of my HSA vs PPO costs

Below is my attempt to compare effective costs of the HSA health plan vs. PPO plan we are offered. I think the HSA is the clear winner for us, but find it pretty confusing given tax considerations so any feedback is appreciated The PPO option costs $4400/yr (pretax), no deductible, mostly only small...
by fundtalker123
Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?
Replies: 18
Views: 1592

Re: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?

I assumed no state income tax in this example (that is, I assumed the itemized deductions were all mortgage interest, property tax, and charitable donations) to avoid muddying this examination of the federal tax structure. Hmmm, could it be that my calculation is muddied by the inclusion of a const...
by fundtalker123
Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?
Replies: 18
Views: 1592

Re: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?

Even if I add 1,000,000 to wages (i.e., raise it from 490,000 to 1,490,000) the tax only goes up 330,000, implying 33% marginal rate, when I expected it to be 35%. 33% is only the average tax rate for that next $1,000,000 in wages, not the marginal tax rate. It could be possible that the next $286,...
by fundtalker123
Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?
Replies: 18
Views: 1592

Re: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?

Tables say 2012 marginal tax rate is 35% for income >388k. Our taxable income is ~490k (virtually all due to ordinary wages), so I thought 35% applied. But if I add $1k to wage income using turbotax the calculated tax due goes up ~28%, so seems like the marginal rate is 28%. Same happens if I add $...
by fundtalker123
Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?
Replies: 18
Views: 1592

Re: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?

In practice, virtually no marginal dollar will get taxed at the "Marginal Tax Rate" listed in the tables. All the various factors (some of which are mentioned by Bob's not my name, above) are just too complicated. Based on the numbers you gave, I am guessing you have a lot of charitable deductions....
by fundtalker123
Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?
Replies: 18
Views: 1592

Re: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?

Sounds like you're comparing marginal rate to average rate. Sounds like you might also be overlooking tax effects outside the nominal brackets, such as AMT, phaseouts of personal exemptions and itemized deductions, ACA tax on wages, etc. Thanks for your reply. I'm not calculating average rate. I ad...
by fundtalker123
Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?
Replies: 18
Views: 1592

Marginal tax rate per turbotax lower than expected?

Tables say 2012 marginal tax rate is 35% for income >388k. Our taxable income is ~490k (virtually all due to ordinary wages), so I thought 35% applied. But if I add $1k to wage income using turbotax the calculated tax due goes up ~28%, so seems like the marginal rate is 28%. Same happens if I add $1...
by fundtalker123
Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A Dangerous Misunderstanding about Bond Rates?
Replies: 124
Views: 15080

Re: A Dangerous Misunderstanding about Bond Rates?

A stable value fund yielding 3% is an excellent choice for fixed income. The yield is quite a bit higher than something like total bond fund (2%-2.2%), and the risk is much less. It's a win/win as far as I'm concerned. Kevin I have a different opinion of SV funds - at At least the ones available to...
by fundtalker123
Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: RMD and the tax trap
Replies: 33
Views: 3040

Re: RMD and the tax trap

Articles like this almost make it sound like it is a bad idea to end up with a lot of money in IRAs. But what is the alternative - just save in taxable accounts? Isn't that a worse idea? We are in the maximum possible tax brackets (federal + state) and have been putting the maximum possible pre-tax ...
by fundtalker123
Wed Apr 24, 2013 9:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: yet another mini flash crash Tue Apr 23 2013
Replies: 25
Views: 2631

Re: yet another mini flash crash Tue Apr 23 2013

It wasn't a flash crash, it was just a RBM - "Really Bad Minute". But fortunately my IPS doesn't require that I buy on every RBM.
by fundtalker123
Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?
Replies: 9
Views: 765

Re: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?

mhc wrote:Age: ~45
Stocks: 80%
Adj Stock: 80%

Not too interesting if there are no liabilities.
But that's a good comparison for me, Thanks.

On the face your 80/20 portfolio looks more risky than my 70/30.

But since I have a mortgage my equity allocation is probably more risky than yours.
by fundtalker123
Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?
Replies: 9
Views: 765

Re: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?

If you want to consider home equity as an investment, I also think it is interesting to calculate: (stocks + home equity) / (investment portfolio + home equity - liabilities) For this I get 89%. To me it indicates I'm effectively heavier in equity like investements than my 70/30 investment portfolio...
by fundtalker123
Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?
Replies: 9
Views: 765

Re: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?

I never characterized my mortgage as being leverage for my equities. Not sure the benefit of not counting home equity but counting mortgage(which to me is an expense to live somewhere) when calculating the risk of your asset allocation. I can't sell my home to pay for my retirement because then I w...
by fundtalker123
Sat Mar 30, 2013 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?
Replies: 9
Views: 765

Survey: your liability adjusted stock allocation & age?

I have seen surveys on this forum of age vs. asset allocation, but I would like to survey age vs. % in stocks relative to investments minus liabilities For example, age ~40, I have 70% stocks in my investment portfolio (not including home equity) But, stocks / (investment portfolio - loans) = 87% Hy...
by fundtalker123
Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: should we think about retirement?
Replies: 105
Views: 9069

Re: should we think about retirement?

[personal comment removed by admin alex, followups by other members also removed]
by fundtalker123
Tue Feb 19, 2013 12:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opinions on Taxable Investing vs 529?
Replies: 4
Views: 481

Re: Opinions on Taxable Investing vs 529?

Can probably only use 529 withdrawals at selected universities in the USA
by fundtalker123
Fri Feb 15, 2013 11:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plan to simplify portfolio (17 accounts)
Replies: 2
Views: 539

Plan to simplify portfolio (17 accounts)

Seeking comments on plan to simplify portfolio. We have 17 different accounts: Taxable, 2x403b, 457, DCP, 401k, Money Purchase, Profit Sharing, 2xRoth IRA, Variable Annuity, 2x529s, Bank CDs, 3xTreasury Direct To achieve the desired allocation, due to fund choices, I use 18 different funds. Rebalanc...
by fundtalker123
Fri Feb 08, 2013 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are actively managed bond funds a better choice ?
Replies: 20
Views: 1682

Re: Are actively managed bond funds a better choice ?

Suppose you only had two bond funds to choose from in your retirement plan, a long bond index with mean duration ~20 years and an active bond fund wherein the manager could adjust the duration at whim. Suppose interest rates were at a historically low point and happened to sharply rise over the next...
by fundtalker123
Fri Feb 08, 2013 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why not to delay all gratification
Replies: 30
Views: 6055

Re: Why not to delay all gratification

Fortunately it has been shown that over the last 30 years that small value stock returns correlate with frequency of meteor impacts, so those who tilt should be safe for the next millenium or so. If a meteor hits your house, your small value stocks will probably go up enough that you can buy a new h...
by fundtalker123
Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Help Understanding Swedroe's Minimizing Fat Tails Portfolio
Replies: 49
Views: 8187

Re: Help Understanding Swedroe's Minimizing Fat Tails Portfo

First, never invest in anything you don't fully understand because when it underperforms you will be prone to confusing strategy and outcome and abandon the strategy Second, I have backtested the strategy to 1970 and it has held up remarkably well in all environments. Third, IMO it is the most dive...
by fundtalker123
Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Better to rebalance daily when market is dropping sharply?
Replies: 9
Views: 882

Re: Better to rebalance daily when market is dropping sharpl

Neither of the poll options fit for me. I rebalance when my rebalancing bands are exceeded. Whether that turns out to be daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, or less frequently is dictated by the behavior of the market. I do not rebalance to "target", but to a point within the band. Events like 2007-200...
by fundtalker123
Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Better to rebalance daily when market is dropping sharply?
Replies: 9
Views: 882

Better to rebalance daily when market is dropping sharply?

In a recent poll I asked "If the stock market drops 50% in one week will you rebalance?" I should have specified "rebalance IMMEDIATELY" (i.e., daily following sharp daily drops) Many seem to say "Yes", presumably because they imagine they will capture the "inevitable" sharp rise in stocks following...
by fundtalker123
Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If market drops 50% in a week will you rebalance?
Replies: 118
Views: 7755

Re: If market drops 50% in a week will you rebalance?

livesoft wrote:I wouldn't wait for it to be a 50% drop, so I would probably be rebalancing all the way down.
Fair enough, but is there some point where you would start to get nervous?