Search found 18326 matches

by grabiner
Sat Dec 10, 2016 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Premier Choice being suggested by agent for health insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 1186

Re: Premier Choice being suggested by agent for health insurance

When I spoke with him on the phone, he admitted that technically speaking I would be required to pay the penalty, but in his experience (he uses the plan as well) when you are filling out your taxes or talking to your accountant you just need to answer yes when asked if you have health insurance. W...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 10, 2016 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with ACA MAGI and tax loss harvesting
Replies: 1
Views: 81

Re: Help with ACA MAGI and tax loss harvesting

Your employer usually won't let you roll your 401(k) into an IRA while you are still employed. However, if you have a traditional IRA, you can convert some of it to a Roth IRA. You can't refuse to take the harvested loss, but if you have any stocks with unrealized capital gains, you can sell them fo...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 10, 2016 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: In a tough situation with a leased vehicle
Replies: 17
Views: 1433

Re: In a tough situation with a leased vehicle

I'm sure your company has a mileage reimbursement policy as listed above. I would be very surprised if that rate (even the statutory IRS rate) isn't higher than the $/mile penalty on your lease. The reimbursement rate should be higher, because it covers operating costs as well as depreciation. The ...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 10, 2016 9:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: investment horizon vis-a-vis asset allocation
Replies: 4
Views: 251

Re: investment horizon vis-a-vis asset allocation

You could view your investment horizon as being in the middle of retirement. If you are now 63, and plan to retire at 65 and live to 85, your investment horizon is 2-22 years, with an average of 12. If you knew that you would die at 85 (or, more realistically, you bought a longevity annuity which wo...
by grabiner
Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interesting new dynamic withdrawal option from Vanguard PAS
Replies: 2
Views: 322

Re: Interesting new dynamic withdrawal option from Vanguard PAS

Vanguard published a paper on this subject. Here's a thread about the paper, with a link to the paper and two related papers. new vanguard research paper showing benefits of total return approach over income approach

(This paper was available at the 2016 Bogleheads visit to Vanguard.)
by grabiner
Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VQNPX in taxable account [Vanguard Growth and Income Fund]
Replies: 2
Views: 252

Re: VQNPX in taxable account

Since you have $8K in long-term gains, you would have a $1200 tax cost if you sold, which is 4% of the fund value. Because the fund frequently distributes capital gains, and will distribute a gain again this year, it costs about an extra 0.5% compared to an index fund. Therefore, if you sell it and ...
by grabiner
Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: (When) should I move from individual stocks to VTSAX?
Replies: 14
Views: 1171

Re: (When) should I move from individual stocks to VTSAX?

One does not get a tax break for charitable giving unless one itemizes on Schedule A or does the QCD thing. But does avoid the capital gains tax on appreciated securities donated to charity, even if they do not itemize. This is a good point. If you are going to donate $5000 to charity, you might as...
by grabiner
Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Can One Do To Decrease Dividend Taxes?
Replies: 23
Views: 2225

Re: What Can One Do To Decrease Dividend Taxes?

Put muni bond funds in your taxable accounts and dividend-paying stocks in tax-advantaged. The OP is in California, which makes this a particularly good strategy, as CA muni bonds are exempt from CA as well as federal tax. My preferred muni strategy, if all your bonds are in the taxable account, is...
by grabiner
Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using part of taxable account for home down payment
Replies: 3
Views: 436

Re: Using part of taxable account for home down payment

If you aren't planning to buy the house until 2017, and you will have to sell for gains which exceed your losses, sell the shares for a loss in 2016, and wait until 2017 to sell shares for a gain. The advantage of doing this is that you will be able to deduct $3000 of your capital loss against ordin...
by grabiner
Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Can One Do To Decrease Dividend Taxes?
Replies: 23
Views: 2225

Re: What Can One Do To Decrease Dividend Taxes?

Put muni bond funds in your taxable accounts and dividend-paying stocks in tax-advantaged. The OP is in California, which makes this a particularly good strategy, as CA muni bonds are exempt from CA as well as federal tax. My preferred muni strategy, if all your bonds are in the taxable account, is...
by grabiner
Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Holding bonds in an HSA with state taxes
Replies: 2
Views: 251

Re: Holding bonds in an HSA with state taxes

The most tax-efficient things to hold your HSA are Treasury bonds. TIP, the iShares TIPS ETF, is commission-free and has 0.20% expenses. If you don't want TIPS, Vanguard's VGSH, VGIT, VLT are also all commission-free with 0.10% expenses, and you can compensate for having all Treasuries in your ETF b...
by grabiner
Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: (When) should I move from individual stocks to VTSAX?
Replies: 14
Views: 1171

Re: (When) should I move from individual stocks to VTSAX?

If the individual stocks are no more than 5% of your portfolio, and you would have a capital gain, it's probably not worth selling them and paying the tax bill. Keep them and treat them as part of your large-cap allocation; use them for charitable contributions, or to sell when you need the money. I...
by grabiner
Wed Dec 07, 2016 10:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Advantage accounts - one consequence
Replies: 8
Views: 1714

Re: Vanguard Advantage accounts - one consequence

[When converting an ETF] i guess i was trying to do more lot specific if possible rather than the vanguard default of average cost - any idea if that is possible? If your shares are non-covered, Vanguard only keeps track of average-cost basis, but you are allowed to use specific identification. The...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student loan refinancing
Replies: 5
Views: 500

Re: Student loan refinancing

Welcome to the forum! What is the current rate? Will you be able to make the payments on the refinanced loans? (If you have federal loans, you might be eligible for some form of income-based repayment, which will improve your cash flow; this goes away if you refinance.) Are you eligible for Public S...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Advantage accounts - one consequence
Replies: 8
Views: 1714

Re: Vanguard Advantage accounts - one consequence

What happens with cost basis when converting from mutual fund to an ETF? The prices for the mutual fund and the etf are different so do they recalculate what the cost basis should be for the conversion into the ETF? The basis of the lot remains the same; it is just a different number of shares. Say...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond funds in taxable account
Replies: 11
Views: 1410

Re: Bond funds in taxable account

In the 15% tax bracket . . . If you need to holds bonds in your taxable account in the 15% bracket, don't use munis; in that bracket, munis probably have a lower after-tax yield than corporate bonds of comparable risk. You might use Treasuries or TIPS in a high-tax state . In a no-tax state also, c...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What you should know before you do factor investing
Replies: 18
Views: 1430

Re: What you should know before you do factor investing

From Mr. Swedroe's lips to your ears: But I tell people I think 80% of our clients maybe shouldn’t have it, because they won’t understand it and it will go through say three, four, five year periods of underperforming and then they’ll bail out. http://awealthofcommonsense.com/2016/12/know-your-audi...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity International FSIVX -- Dividend timing
Replies: 4
Views: 428

Re: Fidelity International FSIVX -- Dividend timing

In this fund, I would suggest waiting for the dividend before selling, because this dividend will be taxed at a very low rate, and the capital loss is more valuable. If you receive a dividend and are in the 25% tax bracket, the actual tax due is likely to be about 12%. Say you receive $930, which i...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A very safe no-bond asset allocation?
Replies: 24
Views: 3036

Re: A very safe no-bond asset allocation?

Many retirees say that their pension and social security cover their basic expenses, and their portfolio provides money for fun activities, such as travel, grandchildren, etc. Yet they maintain an asset allocation of around 50/50 (stock/bond). If my social security covers 50% of my living expenses,...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Another "emergency fund in muni bonds" question...
Replies: 14
Views: 1211

Re: Another "emergency fund in muni bonds" question...

I would tend to agree with you, however the average duration in the NY long-term tax exempt fund is 6 years, Federal intermediate-term tax exempt fund is 5 years, and Total Bond Index is 5.8 years. I am not sure how much additional volatility this really adds here, nor if it's fair to say NY long-t...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TWHIX [American Century Heritage]
Replies: 6
Views: 728

Re: TWHIX [American Century Heritage]

I am in the 15% federal capital gains bracket and 9.3% CA state. This fund is in a taxable account as it is an UGMA I inherited. It's still worth selling. If your basis numbers are correct, you will lose about 15% of the fund to taxes if you sell. But if you keep the fund, you will lose about 1% to...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond funds in taxable account
Replies: 11
Views: 1410

Re: Bond funds in taxable account

In the 15% tax bracket, it is better to hold stocks in your taxable account and bonds in your IRA/401(k), because the tax cost on stock funds is essentially zero. Qualified dividends are taxed at 0%, and if you sell the stock fund, your long-term gains are also taxed at 0% as long as your total inco...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k, IRA and Taxable Question?
Replies: 7
Views: 344

Re: 401k, IRA and Taxable Question?

Is it common to spread the individual funds of a three fund portfolio across three different account types? For example: 401k Bond Fund Roth IRA U.S. Stock Fund Taxable International Stock If yes, then how does rebalancing come into play? You won't usually have one fund per account. You will have a...
by grabiner
Tue Dec 06, 2016 9:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Simplyfying to 1-Fund Portfolio?
Replies: 13
Views: 1408

Re: Simplyfying to 1-Fund Portfolio?

Harm of going to a single fund is that when you want to take money out, you can't decide which part of the portfolio it comes from. So you may have to sell at 40-60 equities-bonds even if equities are way down. But the balanced fund reallocates on its own. If you have, say, LifeStrategy Conservativ...
by grabiner
Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Move IRA to private shares?
Replies: 18
Views: 1250

Re: Move IRA to private shares?

Wow. It took me a while to understand that. So I guess there's no need to put higher risk stuff in a taxable account. It still isn't intuitive for me but what you say makes sense. I like what you said about only owning 75% (for example) of your TIRA. But why did you say it's slightly better to take...
by grabiner
Mon Dec 05, 2016 12:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?
Replies: 37
Views: 2497

Re: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?

Maybe i missed it, but Vanguard index funds should be less tax efficient than a fund that tracks the same index - if that fund has a higher expense ratio. Similarly, Investor shares are more tax-efficient than Admiral and ETF shares of the same fund, but this doesn't make them better; it is what yo...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Self employed HSA or no?
Replies: 3
Views: 344

Re: Self employed HSA or no?

Hey everyone, I have a question regarding changing my current health insurance and opening up an HSA account. As the title states, I'm self employed so I'm coming out of pocket to provide insurance for my family. I'm currently on a non-HDHP (so no HSA option) and I'm paying $1360.00/month. The fami...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $100,000 to invest; pay-off 2nd mortgage or invest all?
Replies: 38
Views: 2859

Re: $100,000 to invest; pay-off 2nd mortgage or invest all?

To answer the questions, the "financial planner" is my Dad, a very smart investor. No fees at all. That is actually a very good reason not to follow his advice. You won't be happy with your father if his investment idea loses half its value, and that can happen with any stock investment. ...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Given EE bonds - what to do?
Replies: 12
Views: 1197

Re: Given EE bonds - what to do?

Personally, I would keep these EE bonds for as long as possible. You cannot get those rates anymore. This is correct even for the 1998 bond, which yields 1.31%. The gain is 1.31% risk-free and can be withdrawn penalty-free at any time, unlike a CD. And the longer you wait, the longer you defer the ...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Traditional vs Roth
Replies: 26
Views: 1811

Re: Traditional vs Roth

I expect my tax bracket will be lower in retirement, which would make traditional more advantageous but a certain financial advisor has repeatedly lauded the tax-free growth aspect of Roth. If I keep growing my retirement accounts for another 20 years or so maxing out the 401k, would the tax free g...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quick question on capital gains to confirm my understanding
Replies: 8
Views: 490

Re: Quick question on capital gains to confirm my understanding

As one of the financial planning items we're working through now that my father has passed, my mother is planning on selling some vacant land that my they owned. The land is worth $180k or so. In 2017 she'll have ~$24k of pension, ~$24k of SS and no other income, and will take the standard deductio...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which is higher priority? Convert MF to index or ira Roth conversion?
Replies: 7
Views: 757

Re: Which is higher priority? Convert MF to index or ira Roth conversion?

To maximize my accuracy in knowing my dividends/distributions for 2016 but leaving myself enough time cushion to get the shares sold before the closing of the year, what day this month should I be targeting to sell these shares? If you sell online, you can sell on December 30; this will also give y...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?
Replies: 37
Views: 2497

Re: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?

If you're a buy and hold investor in a mutual fund, frequent traders are not your friend: you share in the costs of their trading and any resultant taxes. However, if you're a buy and hold investor in an ETF, frequent traders might be your friend. You don't pay for the costs of their trading and th...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TSP Lifecycle Fund Question
Replies: 7
Views: 549

Re: TSP Lifecycle Fund Question

Can you explain what you mean by this? Would there be any reason for me to split my TSP investment 50/50 in 2020 and 2030 instead of fully in 2030? ...there isn't a good basis for saying that the 2030 fund is optimal for someone who starts withdrawals in 2030 rather than 2027... The numbers aren't ...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 20% Match on 401k.. sorta.
Replies: 25
Views: 2091

Re: 20% Match on 401k.. sorta.

The 20% match on all contributions doesn't meet the IRS safe harbor rules for a minimum matching amount, so highly compensated employees might find their contributions limited. (The IRS requires either an automatic 3%, or a 100% match on the first 3% and 50% on the next 2%).
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:02 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: ETFs vs mutual funds for bond?
Replies: 1
Views: 302

Re: ETFs vs mutual funds for bond?

The market stress isn't much of an issue for investments in highly liquid bonds. The funds you are considering hold Treasuries, GNMAs, and high-quality corporate bonds. It might be an issue for junk-bond funds, although most junk-bond funds hold some cash to cover redemptions and avoid selling. (And...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Swapping Tax Exempt for Taxable
Replies: 2
Views: 378

Re: Swapping Tax Exempt for Taxable

In the 15% tax bracket, you should have stocks, not bonds, in your taxable account, because the federal tax on stocks is usually zero (no tax on qualified dividends or long-term gains). Thus you might sell the muni fund in your taxable account, buy Total Stock Market Index, and move an equal amount ...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maxing 401k deferral affects what categories in my paycheck?
Replies: 5
Views: 744

Re: Maxing 401k deferral affects what categories in my paycheck?

I'm going to max out my 401k deferral for at least the upcoming 6 months. ($18k + 6k/year). Will try for the full 12 months if I can swing it. Will this reduce the withholding in categories other than 'Federal Income withholding' ? The 'other categories' would be Social Security, Medicare, state an...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Installment loan to boost credit score.
Replies: 20
Views: 1029

Re: Installment loan to boost credit score.

Credit scores are being used for much more than issuing credit. They are used by insurance saleswomen, employers and landlords. Landlords and employers use credit reports, but not scores. Your score is an estimate of the probability that you would default on a new loan. This is not what your employ...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Adjust Bond Holdings?
Replies: 8
Views: 625

Re: Adjust Bond Holdings?

#1) Our President elect is expected to be good for business. Does this translate to a new position for corporate bonds ? Bond traders know this as well. If the new president's policies will reduce the risk of a particular corporation's bonds, those bonds already rose in price when the election resu...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TSP Lifecycle Fund Question
Replies: 7
Views: 549

Re: TSP Lifecycle Fund Question

If you value the simplicity of the L fund, then L 2030 is a reasonable approximation of what you want for your TSP; there isn't a good basis for saying that the 2030 fund is optimal for someone who starts withdrawals in 2030 rather than 2027. (You can see this difference because 2030 funds from diff...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?
Replies: 37
Views: 2497

Re: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?

Where this does consistently show up as an issue with is their fixed income ETFs. For example, scroll down to the bottom of this list. https://personal.vanguard.com/us/insights/article/preliminary-capital-gains-112016 The iShares or Schwab equivalents of these funds never have such distributions. h...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Credit Score after paying off Mortgage
Replies: 27
Views: 1789

Re: Credit Score after paying off Mortgage

Hi Grabiner, we were discussing the subset of people with top-tier scores to start with. Score changes seem relatively more comprehensible for people with lower scores. I'm not sure anyone can really speak with authority across all the non-transparent scoring models out there, but it seems safe to ...
by grabiner
Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [favorite] Boglehead quotes
Replies: 70
Views: 8638

Re: [favorite] Boglehead quotes

Quoted in What we should know before buying Long-term Treasury, LT Corporate Bonds, High-yield Corporate Bonds fund index and, but frequently used in similar form by nisiprius:

"The beer is the same, but mutual fund is the beer in a bottle and ETF is the beer in a can."
by grabiner
Sat Dec 03, 2016 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Credit Score after paying off Mortgage
Replies: 27
Views: 1789

Re: Credit Score after paying off Mortgage

It seems this is a flaw (or maybe "bias" is a better word) in credit scores. The scores are biased in a self-serving way for the credit industry to maximize perpetual profits from consumer payments of interest on debt, and you are penalized for closing or paying off debts, or having long ...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 03, 2016 5:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: another New York rental question
Replies: 39
Views: 2277

Re: another New York rental question

Whatever she does, do not live in Brooklyn. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/26/nyregion/l-train-will-shut-down-between-manhattan-and-brooklyn-in-2019-for-18-months.html? This is relevant only to a few specific areas, and not even to all commuters in those areas. Wherever you live in NY, you should c...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 03, 2016 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard, It doesn't get any better
Replies: 3
Views: 1220

Re: Vanguard, It doesn't get any better

In a rollover IRA, I've been accumulating a position in a Vanguard international equity fund. When I signed in (to the Vanguard website) this morning, the website "asked" me if I wanted to convert the position to the cheaper Admiral shares. How cool is that? And I once had this type of re...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 03, 2016 4:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pay off mortgage?
Replies: 107
Views: 6958

Re: Pay off mortgage?

Suppose I do buy the muni fund. How would you account for that in the overall portfolio allocation? As a bond fund, but then you should account for the mortgage as a negative bond. If you have a mortgage which requires a payment every month for the next 84 months, and a bond portfolio which makes a...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 03, 2016 4:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Boglehead Contest Inspired Brain Teaser
Replies: 15
Views: 922

Re: Boglehead Contest Inspired Brain Teaser

There is a similar game-theoretical issue in the real Boglehead contest. The ratio of bulls to bears in the contest is higher than the ratio of bull markets to bear markets, so if you project a market decline, you are more likely to win. If I actually believed the market would drop 10%, I wouldn't b...
by grabiner
Sat Dec 03, 2016 4:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Walk me through donating appreciated shares (tax question)
Replies: 19
Views: 787

Re: Walk me through donating appreciated shares (tax question)

...if you donate shares you bought within the previous year (including reinvested dividends), you can only deduct what you paid for the shares, not the current value; it is better to sell such shares, pay the tax, and donate the cash if you want to donate to charity. Is that right? Bought shares fo...

Go to advanced search