Search found 3902 matches

by mptfan
Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quick Soc. Sec Estimate Question
Replies: 7
Views: 460

Re: Quick Soc. Sec Estimate Question

delamer wrote:Once you have 35 years of earnings, then an additional year will only impact your payment if it is higher than one of the 35 (adjusted for inflation).

Earnings before the year in which you turn 60 are not adjusted for inflation, they are adjusted by reference to the National Average Wage Index.
by mptfan
Thu Apr 06, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need more fixed income in tax-deferred accounts
Replies: 19
Views: 1213

Re: Need more fixed income in tax-deferred accounts

LaundryLady wrote:Am I right that if we hold this fund until interest rates stabilize at more normal levels that we will not lose principle?

What are "normal levels"?

P.S. "Principle" should be "principal."
by mptfan
Wed Apr 05, 2017 12:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I pay off my mortgage?
Replies: 22
Views: 2041

Re: Should I pay off my mortgage?

If your mortgage interest deduction causes your total deductions to exceed the standard deduction, then I think it is arguable and there are no right or wrong answers, it depends on you personal preference and how you view debt. If you do not itemize your deductions and instead you take the standard...
by mptfan
Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Delaying SS = Early SS+annuity or not?
Replies: 32
Views: 1593

Re: Delaying SS = Early SS+annuity or not?

If Rich dies suddenly at 71, he loses out big time on "overall benefits" by waiting until 70, but he dies happily with a happy retirement and peace of mind. I agree with you in general, but it's not as simple as you make it out to be. The issue that you are missing is Rich will also be sp...
by mptfan
Tue Apr 04, 2017 10:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The Case for High Yield Bonds
Replies: 36
Views: 3343

Re: The Case for High Yield Bonds

Valuethinker wrote:For a bond fund a verbal anomaly that they are called "(fund) dividends" when, in fact, they are interest payments.

I just looked at my Vanguard statement, and they describe the payment from my bond fund as "Dividend Received."
by mptfan
Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IS 200k household income "middle income" these days? Has that threshold increased?
Replies: 42
Views: 2624

Re: IS 200k household income "middle income" these days? Has that threshold increased?

$200-250k definitely isn't middle class, not even in places like Manhattan or San Francisco. That's solidly upper-middle class, bordering on upper class depending on which definition you use. What if someone makes $200k and lives in a low cost of living area and spends $50k a year and saves the res...
by mptfan
Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The Case for High Yield Bonds
Replies: 36
Views: 3343

Re: The Case for High Yield Bonds

Also, I was under the impression that the purpose of bonds is to offset stock declines... That is ONE purpose of bonds, but by no means is it the only purpose. One of the other purposes of bonds (and in my opinion one of the primary purposes of bonds) is to generate income in the form of dividends....
by mptfan
Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IS 200k household income "middle income" these days? Has that threshold increased?
Replies: 42
Views: 2624

Re: IS 200k household income "middle income" these days? Has that threshold increased?

$200-250k definitely isn't middle class, not even in places like Manhattan or San Francisco. That's solidly upper-middle class, bordering on upper class depending on which definition you use. What if someone makes $200k and lives in a low cost of living area and spends $50k a year and saves the res...
by mptfan
Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IS 200k household income "middle income" these days? Has that threshold increased?
Replies: 42
Views: 2624

Re: IS 200k household income "middle income" these days? Has that threshold increased?

My gut feel is that wages have inflated higher than what the CPI numbers are telling us. Your gut feeling that wages have inflated more than the price of goods and services is correct, but the CPI numbers do not tell us that because the CPI numbers do not measure wage inflation, they measure price ...
by mptfan
Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The Case for High Yield Bonds
Replies: 36
Views: 3343

Re: The Case for High Yield Bonds

Also, I was under the impression that the purpose of bonds is to offset stock declines... That is ONE purpose of bonds, but by no means is it the only purpose. One of the other purposes of bonds (and in my opinion one of the primary purposes of bonds) is to generate income in the form of dividends.
by mptfan
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Massive Student Loan Debt - Girlfriend
Replies: 86
Views: 7129

Re: Massive Student Loan Debt - Girlfriend

My generation (barely a millennial) has been told since we could understand language to go to a good college with absolutely no regard to making it a cost/benefit decision. There is no education on how long it takes to pay off 100k of student debt or even what the payments would be. I agree that so...
by mptfan
Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

From both the bank/credit union position and the consumer position, this work both ways. The consumer can take whatever position he or she wants, but it has no bearing on whether or not he or she gets her money back from a bank after a fraudulent transaction. It is only the bank's position that mat...
by mptfan
Sat Mar 25, 2017 12:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

That's a fair question. I just think that it's rare. Once you point out to the low-level employee that there is a federal regulation, they will confirm with their compliance department. If you still think the bank made a mistake, you can report them to their federal regulator. For most large banks,...
by mptfan
Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: So why exactly is everyone gloomy about bonds?
Replies: 34
Views: 4233

Re: So why exactly is everyone gloomy about bonds?

For a community that insists upon the unpredictability of the market as one of its central tenets, there does seem to be a consensus that "the bull run in bonds is over", "expected real return is zero", and such like. If my perception is accurate... Your perception is not accura...
by mptfan
Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

Under Regulation E, banks must provide provisional credit within 10 business days. It didn't sound like most of the people posting realized that. The bank then has 45 (or 90 days) to resolve the dispute. If the bank can't prove that the consumer was responsible the charges, the bank must make the p...
by mptfan
Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

It was suggested that the solution to the problem of the cyber crime perpetrated on the OP was as simple as to "never use a debit card - Period." That is not the solution True, because I haven't used a debit card (other than for ATM withdrawals) in at least 15 years. Cash, it is true that...
by mptfan
Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

It was suggested that the solution to the problem of the cyber crime perpetrated on the OP was as simple as to "never use a debit card - Period." This is not correct. My suggestion to not use a debit card was in response to a post by Miakis, not the OP, in which Miakis wrote the following...
by mptfan
Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

My advice is to be very, very careful about giving out your checking account information to anyone, including credit card companies and utilities.... This information is on every single check you write. It does not require confidentiality. Perhaps you missed my follow up post... By that definition,...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: AA after reaching your "freedom number"?
Replies: 39
Views: 4056

Re: AA after reaching your "freedom number"?

I agree with pepperz that many folks on this forum believe that bonds should be used just for that purpose. I also agree that many folks on this forum believe that. But saying that many folks believe that bonds are supposed to be used to combat the volatility of the stock market is different than s...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

But I don't know if any of it really makes a difference. I have a client who had her business debit card hacked and duplicated - it was never lost - but it was mysteriously being used to purchase airplane tickets and hotel stays. She was using it for only a couple of transactions per month as her c...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

I always do pushes too, but doesn't the receiving company still have access to your bank account information? That depends on what you mean by access. Name on the account and account number? By that definition, everyone who has possession of one of your checks has access to your account, so yes. Bu...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: AA after reaching your "freedom number"?
Replies: 39
Views: 4056

Re: AA after reaching your "freedom number"?

I know we are supposed to use bonds to combat the volatility of the stock market... Says who? I'm sure there are some people who use them for that purpose, but I do not agree that they are "supposed" to be used that way. If your goal was to combat the volatility of the stock market, cash ...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

delamer wrote:I always do pushes too, but doesn't the receiving company still have access to your bank account information?

That depends on what you mean by access.
by mptfan
Thu Mar 23, 2017 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...
Replies: 130
Views: 15355

Re: So someone drained $13k from my checking account...

But now I'm thinking about what lessons to draw from this. How did the fraudster get the account number? The only direct withdrawals and deposits to the account are from paychecks, utilities, credit card companies, ACH links to other financial institutions, and the (very) occasional check. Was one ...
by mptfan
Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do people invest in Long Term Bonds now?
Replies: 51
Views: 7342

Re: Why do people invest in Long Term Bonds now?

123 wrote:People buy long-term bonds or bond funds because yields tend to be higher on long-term bonds.

Exactly. Why is that so hard to understand?
by mptfan
Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?
Replies: 20
Views: 1756

Re: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?

I have traveled to Europe a few times a year for the past 15 years so "we've met." American cards are chip and signature unless otherwise bragged about by the issuer. Even cards that are capable of chip and PIN will default to chip and signature. The Fidelity card will be chip and signatu...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Convincing Someone To Dump A Bad Financial Advisor
Replies: 39
Views: 3225

Re: Convincing Someone To Dump A Bad Financial Advisor

I'm always, amazed, too, how children have no credibility. My wife is a PharmD, and her mother won't listen to a word she says re: problems with some medicine, etc., but her neighbor down the street, however.... I refer to that as the "diaper principle." If someone once changed your diape...
by mptfan
Thu Mar 16, 2017 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Convincing Someone To Dump A Bad Financial Advisor
Replies: 39
Views: 3225

Re: Convincing Someone To Dump A Bad Financial Advisor

Did your mother ask for your advice? If the answer is no, then you should mind your own business and stay out of it. Unsolicited advice is rarely welcomed and almost never followed.
by mptfan
Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?
Replies: 20
Views: 1756

Re: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?

Hodor wrote:I never had any problem using my chip-and-signature (Capital One Quicksilver) in Europe. It even worked in automated machines at the train station.

What PIN did you use? If a card is a pin and signature, doesn't that mean there is no PIN?
by mptfan
Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?
Replies: 20
Views: 1756

Using the Fidelity Rewards Visa in Europe?

I am planning a trip to Italy next month. I recently got the Fidelity Rewards Visa Signature card with 2% cash back and I have been using it as my primary card recently and I am very happy with it based on my experience in the U.S., but I plan on using the card when I am in Italy and I would like to...
by mptfan
Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Charles Schwab Checking + Brokerage Account
Replies: 76
Views: 11928

Re: Charles Schwab Checking + Brokerage Account

There is no difference between investor checking and the CMA account. The differences are minor, but they do exist. The checking account is from Schwab Bank, whereas the CMA account is from Schwab brokerage. Schwab Bank and Schwab Brokerage are related entitites, but they are not the same. Banks an...
by mptfan
Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Helping sister with investment of inheritance
Replies: 34
Views: 2328

Re: Helping sister with investment of inheritance

NiceUnparticularMan wrote:
mptfan wrote:Did your sister ask for your help?


That's a very good question. In the past, she has asked me for a lot of help dealing with her personal finances, including for advice. So, all this is in anticipation she will do so again...

Until she does, this entire discussion is premature.
by mptfan
Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Helping sister with investment of inheritance
Replies: 34
Views: 2328

Re: Helping sister with investment of inheritance

Did your sister ask for your help?
by mptfan
Fri Mar 10, 2017 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cuttting the cable tv negotiation & the scam
Replies: 33
Views: 3274

Re: Cuttting the cable tv negotiation & the scam

.. and a few local broadcast channels available by using a digital antenna. There is no such thing as a digital antenna. Describing an antenna as "digital" is nothing but marketing hype. "The design of a television broadcast receiving antenna is the same for the older analog transmis...
by mptfan
Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Total Annual Expenses
Replies: 57
Views: 4080

Re: Total Annual Expenses

SQRT wrote:A poll would work better?

If only they were allowed...
:-?
by mptfan
Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Less than Half of Americans Have An Emergency Fund
Replies: 2
Views: 530

Re: Less than Half of Americans Have An Emergency Fund

The converse of that is also true... 60% of Americans have an emergency fund. If there are 330 million Americans (I recognize that includes children) then there are almost 200 million people who have an emergency fund.
by mptfan
Wed Mar 01, 2017 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3043

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

...even in common law states, the debt may be split depending on what it was for and whether both spouses benefited from it. This is a common misconception... a court cannot "split" a debt that one person owes among other people. For example, if the husband is the primary cardholder on a ...
by mptfan
Mon Feb 27, 2017 12:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should we pay off our mortgage?
Replies: 44
Views: 2232

Re: Should we pay off our mortgage?

At the same time, you can't say a home is a risk free return. Your home has a value and it can certainly drop - ask 2008 about that. I was not referring to the "return" of the home and I did not say that a home is a risk free return because homes do not have a return. Rather, I was compar...
by mptfan
Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should we pay off our mortgage?
Replies: 44
Views: 2232

Re: Should we pay off our mortgage?

ved wrote:With that logic, one should not invest (at least in a taxable account) until the mortgage is completely paid off.

I agree.
by mptfan
Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should we pay off our mortgage?
Replies: 44
Views: 2232

Re: Should we pay off our mortgage?

Paying off your home at this point will be like buying a bond paying a guaranteed 2.875% interest and maturing in 11 years. There are many here who would jump on that like a pack of dogs on a three-legged cat. ... the 10-year is at 2.35% (it was at 2.6% a few weeks ago). If you can get a higher ris...
by mptfan
Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should we pay off our mortgage?
Replies: 44
Views: 2232

Re: Should we pay off our mortgage?

Yes. Definitely yes.
by mptfan
Sun Feb 26, 2017 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What if someone gets your password and transfers money from your bank to theirs?
Replies: 42
Views: 5976

Re: What if someone gets your password and transfers money from your bank to theirs?

That is not true... you can add banks with a different name for ACH transfers (no name is required when setting these up online). Of course via bank policies you are supposed to only use your own account - not someone else's. But you can do it. That said, it would be a silly robbery if the thief tr...
by mptfan
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What if someone gets your password and transfers money from your bank to theirs?
Replies: 42
Views: 5976

Re: What if someone gets your password and transfers money from your bank to theirs?

nisiprius wrote:My recollection is also that I can't add someone else's bank account to the "external accounts" list. It has to be mine.

That is my recollection as well. I don't think I or anyone else could transfer funds to an account that was not titled in my name even if I or they wanted to.
by mptfan
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3043

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

Beezthree wrote:yes, they are joint cards...

Do NOT assume this just because both of you have a card on the same account. See my previous post.
by mptfan
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3043

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

I know credit cards are assumed debt for each of us... This is not necessarily true. It depends on whether the cards are joint or individual. You can have an individual card with your spouse as an authorized user, in which case your spouse is not legallly responsible for the debt. Or you can have a...
by mptfan
Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Talking with parents' financial advisor
Replies: 52
Views: 4758

Re: Talking with parents' financial advisor

silentslinkies wrote:Yeah, I absolutely do not want to take over as their advisor or planner on this. I'd just love to make sure whoever is handling it cares about it a lot more than this current advisor.

You cannot make someone care.
by mptfan
Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Talking with parents' financial advisor
Replies: 52
Views: 4758

Re: Talking with parents' financial advisor

You are wasting your time and your parents' time. FAs have tons of practice answering these questions in ways that help re-enforce their assertion that this is way too hard for untrained mortals to understand. He will tell you that the individual stocks have no ER (because they don't) and that the ...
by mptfan
Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What if someone gets your password and transfers money from your bank to theirs?
Replies: 42
Views: 5976

Re: What if someone gets your password and transfers money from your bank to theirs?

If you have 2 factor authentication, having your username and password is not enough if someone tries to access your account from an unrecognized computer...they would need to have the second factor as well. If your bank does not offer two factor authentication, you should change banks. Also, anytim...
by mptfan
Thu Feb 23, 2017 3:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stay in cash until rates rise?
Replies: 27
Views: 2715

Re: Stay in cash until rates rise?

capgain22 wrote:Since bond funds decrease in value rather quickly when the fed raises rates...

As pointed out by others, your question assumes facts that are not necessarily true. What is the basis for your statement that bond funds will decrease in value "rather quickly?"
by mptfan
Thu Feb 23, 2017 2:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anyone else have (possibly too much) fun dealing with finances?
Replies: 69
Views: 5330

Re: Does anyone else have (possibly too much) fun dealing with finances?

I enjoy learning and dealing with finances, and I really enjoy playing with spreadsheets. Put the two together and it's like peanut-butter and jelly... the two together are way better than each one individually. Yeah, I'm probably not normal, but I've spent countless hours playing with financial sp...

Go to advanced search