Search found 158 matches

by hirlaw
Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 50% Cash, 50% Stocks: The Opportunistic Portfolio
Replies: 43
Views: 4029

Re: 50% Cash, 50% Stocks: The Opportunistic Portfolio

It also depends on how you define "cash." If a 5-year CD is considered "cash", then I would consider it roughly equivalent to bonds in the present environment.
by hirlaw
Thu Jul 13, 2017 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple iMac problem?
Replies: 49
Views: 2924

Re: Apple iMac problem?

I get this sometimes when using Firefox browser on my IMac. If I switch to a different browser it solves the problem -- the beach ball has bounced off to another lucky user.
by hirlaw
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: REIT Fund Question
Replies: 11
Views: 982

Re: REIT Fund Question

I would go with Vanguard's VNQ. Unless you plan on repeated purchases, the $5 brokerage fee to purchase at Fidelity is negligible. The IShares ETF (USRT) is too thinly traded.
by hirlaw
Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?
Replies: 61
Views: 3990

Re: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?

I also have a Vanguard variable annuity. At some point I will probably annuitize a portion of it or (depending on the rate at the time) do a 1035 exchange into another annuity and annuitize through the new annuity. I am only 61 and I think it is too early to annuitize. Also, I am hoping for higher i...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How did you handle the costs of your child's wedding?
Replies: 170
Views: 11693

Re: How did you handle the costs of your child's wedding?

When our daughter was in college, I started a separate account that I actually called "___'s Wedding Account." I initially funded it with $25k and periodically added to it. When she married last summer, about 5 years after graduation, it had about $50k in it. This covered a good chunk of t...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Yes, This Is Market Timing: If the CAPE Goes Above 30, Bring on the Larry
Replies: 142
Views: 9751

Re: Yes, This Is Market Timing: If the CAPE Goes Above 30, Bring on the Larry

If you are near retirement or in early retirement and concerned with CAPE valuations and long-term sequence of return risk, you may want to read this article: https://www.kitces.com/blog/valuation-based-tactical-asset-allocation-in-retirement-and-the-impact-of-market-valuation-on-declining-and-risin...
by hirlaw
Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Regret early retirement/downsizing
Replies: 230
Views: 37627

Re: Regret early retirement/downsizing

Question for those who retired "early". I am 61 and considering retirement (I can do it financially :happy ). Some writers on the subject say that you shouldn't just retire from something, you should have something to retire to. I have in mind the usual suspects: reading, volunteering, som...
by hirlaw
Fri Jun 16, 2017 2:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ally Bank No penalty CD for parking cash, is there a catch?
Replies: 37
Views: 4848

Re: Ally Bank No penalty CD for parking cash, is there a catch?

I have a money market account (.85% interest) and a savings account (1.05% interest) at Ally. I recently moved a large chunk of the savings account to the 11 month "no penalty" CD to take advantage of the higher rate (1.35%). The only "catch" I see is that you have to leave your ...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 14, 2017 1:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Direct CD vs. Brokered CD
Replies: 18
Views: 1584

Re: Direct CD vs. Brokered CD

Thanks all for your responses.

So, on brokered CD's (and individual bonds), what is everyone doing with the periodic interest payments? Are you just putting them in a money market, putting them in a bond fund?
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 14, 2017 11:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Direct CD vs. Brokered CD
Replies: 18
Views: 1584

Direct CD vs. Brokered CD

I have several direct CD's at Ally and CIT. It would certainly be more convenient to have brokered CD's through Fidelity, but besides the liquidity issue, the brokered CD's do not compound interest. The interest is paid out periodically, rather than being rolled back into the CD. This creates a prob...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: JP Morgan Marked Linked CD
Replies: 21
Views: 1388

Re: JP Morgan Marked Linked CD

You can also do a homemade market linked CD, without the expense. If you want to invest $100,000, put about $89,300 into a regular 5-year CD earning 2.3%. Put the remaining $10,700 in the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index fund or ETF. You now have guaranteed that you will receive a minimum of $100,0...
by hirlaw
Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Difficulties with CIT bank website
Replies: 3
Views: 310

Re: Difficulties with CIT bank website

I currently have 4 CD's at CIT. I had no trouble registering, but I agree that the website navigation is very poor. I also have accounts/CD's at Ally. If the rates and terms being offered are relatively equal, I would much prefer Ally.
by hirlaw
Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are CD investors more likely (than bond investors) to have sustainable withdrawals?
Replies: 13
Views: 1635

Re: Are CD investors more likely (than bond investors) to have sustainable withdrawals?

Would the fact that 5-year CD's are paying 2.2% and 5-year treasuries are only paying 1.7% make a difference in the comparison analysis?
by hirlaw
Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anti virus protection
Replies: 27
Views: 2288

Re: Anti virus protection

Avast for Mac.
by hirlaw
Mon Jun 05, 2017 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why
Replies: 54
Views: 8802

Re: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why

I will try to limit this to some of my favorite current thriller writers (leaving off past greats like Clancy, Crichton, Ludlum)

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Childs - Pendergast Series

James Rollins – Sigma Force Series

I Am Pilgrim – Terry Hayes
by hirlaw
Fri Jun 02, 2017 9:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice with a whole life policy
Replies: 9
Views: 784

Re: Advice with a whole life policy

I second (third?) the idea of a 1035 exchange into a low cost (e.g. Vanguard) annuity. I did this several years ago with a NWM policy.

While the annuities have a cost downside, the upside in some states is that they are exempt from creditor collection.
by hirlaw
Thu Jun 01, 2017 11:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About to retire
Replies: 11
Views: 1776

Re: About to retire

I am withdrawing from my tIRA during my bridge years to reduce my future RMDs.


Question: Rather than make withdrawals from the IRA during the bridge years, would it make sense to instead do Roth conversions?

Thanks
by hirlaw
Tue May 30, 2017 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is anyone here allocated 30/70 a la Rick Ferri's "new center of gravity?"
Replies: 35
Views: 5392

Re: Is anyone here allocated 30/70 a la Rick Ferri's "new center of gravity?"

We are 61/62. Over the last 5 years we have moved from 55/45 to about 40/60, mainly due to sequence of return risk concerns close to retirement. I would like to move to about 35/65, but I am running out of room to re-balance to fixed income in our after-tax accounts and don't won't to incur capital ...
by hirlaw
Tue May 30, 2017 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laptop Purchase at Costco?
Replies: 45
Views: 20125

Re: Laptop Purchase at Costco?

Agree that the ability to return is the biggest factor, especially when you are buying a finicky item such as a computer. Nothing worse than being stuck with a frozen or weird acting computer with only the ability to call the useless support line.
by hirlaw
Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DFA Retirement Income Strategies
Replies: 83
Views: 8802

Re: DFA Retirement Income Strategies

A bit off topic, but does anyone share my concern that TIPS may not actually keep up with actual inflation from a retiree's viewpoint? Currently, actual health care cost inflation exceeds the govt. inflation rate. Health care costs, especially in later retirement, may make up a significant portion o...
by hirlaw
Wed May 24, 2017 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity customer protection guarantee-void if you use Mint?
Replies: 39
Views: 3184

Re: Fidelity customer protection guarantee-void if you use Mint?

It sounds like Chase is (or has already by now) allowing Mint access without sharing passwords.
http://fortune.com/2017/01/25/chase-intuit-mint-password/
by hirlaw
Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)
Replies: 13
Views: 1096

Re: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)

Spirit Rider: We normally pay, rather than receive a refund. Last year we paid about $8k. If the taxes on the partnership distribution are around $50K, that would be about $60k in withholding to add to the current withholding. Sounds like a lot.
by hirlaw
Thu Apr 20, 2017 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)
Replies: 13
Views: 1096

Re: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)

nordsteve: I don't think that would work for us, especially considering that we would be starting so late in the year.
by hirlaw
Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)
Replies: 13
Views: 1096

How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)

I own a share of a limited partnership that is selling its major asset. In about a week I will be receiving funds and will incur about a $220K long term gain. Any suggestions on how to deal with the taxes to avoid penalties? I have read about the "safe harbor" provision for estimating taxe...
by hirlaw
Wed Apr 19, 2017 1:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule
Replies: 2
Views: 424

Re: Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule

Thank you for your detailed response!
by hirlaw
Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule
Replies: 2
Views: 424

Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule

Hi All: I am 60. I have a regular post-tax IRA's. I also have a Roth 401k. If I do a partial conversion of my IRA to a Roth IRA, does that start the 5 year rule clock running even for later contributions? For example, if I convert half in 2017 and half in 2020, does the five years end in 2022 for bo...
by hirlaw
Thu Mar 30, 2017 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lastpass bug
Replies: 18
Views: 2203

Re: Lastpass bug

I am concerned about a dishonest employee or principal of the company. Also, I worry about a company going out of business -- how secure will the servers/security be in a liquidation setting.
by hirlaw
Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive
Replies: 24
Views: 4394

Re: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive

Do we even know whether Federal tax credits will be available if a plug-in vehicle is purchased in 2017? Isn't there a possibility that a "tax overhaul" would remove or limit these credits?
by hirlaw
Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why buy short-term bond funds when you can get 1% in savings acct?
Replies: 29
Views: 3046

Re: Why buy short-term bond funds when you can get 1% in savings acct?

You may consider mixing. For the short portion of the yield curve, I have money in ALLY money market and CD's. However, I also have funds in the following (which are also available as mutual funds). Vanguard Short Term Bond ETF (BSV): Duration 2.68, yield 1.78% Vanguard Short Term Corporate Bond ETF...
by hirlaw
Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller says market is "way overpriced" - what a shocker
Replies: 34
Views: 4558

Re: Shiller says market is "way overpriced" - what a shocker

Clickbait. If you watch the interview, he never said that and in fact said that he doesn't know which way the market will go --- He even said that this could be like 1997 where the market did just fine with a high CAPE.
by hirlaw
Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Open bond fund now or wait till Fed rate increase next week
Replies: 15
Views: 1514

Re: Open bond fund now or wait till Fed rate increase next week

No one really knows.

When the Fed raised rates in December 2015, the 10 year rate actually went down rather significantly afterwards.
by hirlaw
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to buy municipal bonds
Replies: 11
Views: 1368

Re: How to by municipal bonds

If you have a Fidelity brokerage account, their website has a very good bond screener wherein you can select individual muni (or other type) individual bonds. You will be able to screen ratings, maturity, yield, etc. I am sure other brokerage companies have similar online features.
by hirlaw
Tue Jan 31, 2017 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Utilizing a trainer to maintain fitness in retirement
Replies: 39
Views: 2881

Re: Utilizing a trainer to maintain fitness in retirement

I'm 60 and have been going to the gym for over 30 years. I don't use a trainer, but I can see the benefit of a good trainer setting up a program for you to then follow on your own. I currently go at least 3 days a week. Many days you won't feel like going, so I recommend setting specific days to go ...
by hirlaw
Tue Jan 17, 2017 12:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Short Term TIPS in retirement portfolio
Replies: 23
Views: 2402

Re: Short Term TIPS in retirement portfolio

I am in about the same time frame as you in starting withdrawals (but I don't plan on taking withdrawals from the TIPs for a while). I presently only have about 5% of my fixed income in TIP funds. Like you, I am unsure of short vs. intermediate TIPS. I decided to split the difference and have half i...
by hirlaw
Thu Jan 12, 2017 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to build passive income
Replies: 45
Views: 4893

Re: How to build passive income

As for real estate, Vanguard REIT index currently pays over 4% (and no plumber or bad tenants to deal with!)
by hirlaw
Thu Jan 05, 2017 10:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity FullView
Replies: 15
Views: 1495

Re: Fidelity FullView

Personally, I think aggregators are too risky. Once a quarter or so I manually input my holdings into Morningstar's X-Ray feature to determine my asset allocation.
by hirlaw
Thu Dec 29, 2016 3:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: All your eggs in one basket vs. concern about being hacked?
Replies: 41
Views: 5122

Re: All your eggs in one basket vs. concern about being hacked?

Here is a quote from Jaime Dimon this year:
"If you wake up tomorrow and there's no money in your bank account, that's my problem. But if you gave your passcode away to a company and that company itself did something wrong, that's your problem."
by hirlaw
Thu Dec 29, 2016 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: All your eggs in one basket vs. concern about being hacked?
Replies: 41
Views: 5122

Re: All your eggs in one basket vs. concern about being hacked?

Some brokerages/banks are making an exception to their fraud reimbursement policies in the case of a client's passwords being hacked from third party aggregators, such as Mint.
by hirlaw
Thu Dec 29, 2016 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FIRE motivator - stressful profession or my personality?
Replies: 3
Views: 771

Re: FIRE motivator - stressful profession or my personality?

I am near the end of my legal career, spent as a commercial and bankruptcy litigator. Is the stress you or the job? I would say maybe a combination of both. Litigation, by its nature, is extremely confrontational and often unpleasant, for both the parties and the attorneys. Accusations are made by b...
by hirlaw
Tue Dec 27, 2016 11:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Picking Individual Stocks Is Dangerous
Replies: 58
Views: 6101

Re: Picking Individual Stocks Is Dangerous

I have rented a blindfolded monkey to pick my stocks. 8-)
by hirlaw
Tue Dec 27, 2016 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?
Replies: 174
Views: 12833

Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

For heaven's sake... what's the point of having money if you're not allowed to spend it?


Agree! Although, I have 1 qualification. Only buy it if paying with cash doesn't hurt.
by hirlaw
Wed Dec 21, 2016 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VWIUX Vanguard Intermediate Tax Expt - Should I trade out?
Replies: 22
Views: 2753

Re: VWIUX Vanguard Intermediate Tax Expt - Should I trade out?

107, but into Vang. Tax-exempt money market. Will be back in Intermediate in 31 days.
by hirlaw
Wed Dec 21, 2016 3:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stable Value Funds in Portfolio
Replies: 45
Views: 5958

Re: Stable Value Funds in Portfolio

Each athlete brings something to the team.


Brock Osweiler too?
by hirlaw
Tue Dec 20, 2016 4:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The True Cost of Owning a Dog
Replies: 176
Views: 15473

Re: The True Cost of Owning a Dog

I posted this reply back in August: "Owner of 12 year old Shih Tzu here. He was recently diagnosed with Cushings Disease. The medication alone is $300/month. That does not include blood work-ups, etc. that run a few hundred dollars a visit. That is before the usual heartworm/flea medication, pr...
by hirlaw
Fri Dec 16, 2016 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirees: How much cash do you keep?
Replies: 103
Views: 10318

Re: Retirees: How much cash do you keep?

Is a stable value fund considered "cash?" If so, we have a lot of cash!
by hirlaw
Tue Dec 13, 2016 4:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller CAPE levitating
Replies: 17
Views: 1662

Re: Shiller CAPE levitating

S&P 500 price to sales ratio is also currently very high.

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