Search found 30385 matches

by nisiprius
Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What makes people succeed?
Replies: 38
Views: 2002

Re: What makes people succeed?

...That said, what I've also noticed is that most folks I've met who are in high positions and are successful (from my point of view) are usually off-the-cuff don't care for grammar types... Counterexample #1: John C. Bogle, whose net worth is something like $80 million, counts in my book as a reas...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 27, 2016 7:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bogleheads approach explained in one paragraph
Replies: 13
Views: 1300

Re: Bogleheads approach explained in one paragraph

This is a direct quotation of part of "The Twelve Pillars of Wisdom:" Pillar 1. Investing Is Not Nearly as Difficult as It Looks. The intelligent investor in mutual funds, using common sense and without extraordinary financial acumen, can perform with the pros. In a world where financial m...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 27, 2016 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is this strange piece of scientific glassware?
Replies: 46
Views: 4358

Re: What is this strange piece of scientific glassware?

I can confirm the casualness with which people used to treat mercury. Various kids' parents would ask their dentist to give them a little. (It must have been a lot cheaper then, because dentists were willing to give away ounces of the stuff). Kids would bring it to school and show how to make (silve...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 27, 2016 11:37 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: are the markets overvalued? Are Grantham/Hussman etal correct?
Replies: 84
Views: 4249

Re: are the markets overvalued? Are Grantham/Hussman etal correct?

...I'm more worried about bonds being overvalued than stocks... How much is that in numbers, please ? Just take some kind of stab at it. Just your opinion. In your opinion, by how many percent is the Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund overvalued right now, and how much of a tumble would it take ...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 27, 2016 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I worry about FDIC limits if only a short time period is involved?
Replies: 17
Views: 921

Re: Should I worry about FDIC limits if only a short time period is involved?

I can't say, but I would say this much. If you decide to take your chances on being over the FDIC limit, one thing you can do is to check the bank's financial strength rating at bankrate.com and at bauerfinancial.com. It doesn't take more than five minutes. Are these ratings reliable? Beats me, I ha...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 10:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Gold. OUNZ, PHYS, IAU, GLD, SGOL?
Replies: 7
Views: 454

Re: Gold. OUNZ, PHYS, IAU, GLD, SGOL?

I don't know about the others, but I know for sure that GLD is not an ETF and not a mutual fund. You don't even have to go to the prospectus to read that, it's right on their web page: GLD is not an investment company registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the "1940 Act") and...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 9:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 1719
Views: 403619

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

A Coffin for Dimitrios, by Eric Ambler. (First time I've read it).
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student loan: 1.9% variable vs. 2.625 fixed?
Replies: 10
Views: 714

Re: Student loan: 1.9% variable vs. 2.625 fixed?

When we bought our house in the mid-1970s, variable rate mortgages were fairly new. We had a choice of a fixed-rate mortgage at 9% with a larger down payment, or a variable-rate mortgage at 8-1/2% and a smaller down payment. The bank was pushing the variable-rate mortgages hard and pointing out how ...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: ConsumerReports Sep 2016~Robo Platforms
Replies: 3
Views: 468

Re: ConsumerReports Sep 2016~Robo Platforms

???? What Vanguard robo-advisor service? Is this something new, or is this Vanguard's "personal advisory service" which AFAIK is not a robo-advisor?
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fav books about crashes
Replies: 3
Views: 275

Re: Fav books about crashes

A must read: The Great Depression: A Diary by Benjamin Roth. Here's the Amazon description: When the stock market crashed in 1929, Benjamin Roth was a young lawyer in Youngstown, Ohio. After he began to grasp the magnitude of what had happened to American economic life, he decided to set down his i...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Improving Vanguard small cap value by shorting REITs?
Replies: 17
Views: 1365

Re: Improving Vanguard small cap value by shorting REITs?

It sounds to me like the story of The Lady Who Put Salt In Her Coffee , who tries to correct it by adding various counteracting flavors to it. If you believe the improvement in risk-adjusted reward from adding small-cap value is stable, reliable, robust, meaningful, and predictable, then it ought to...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Online Banks okay ?
Replies: 18
Views: 1263

Re: Online Banks okay ?

I've been using Capital One 360 since back in the day when it was ING Direct. At a quick glance... yeah... I've been using them since 2002. Have I had any problems? No, everything's gone as expected. I'd recommend them. As with a brick-and-mortar bank, you want FDIC deposit insurance, and depending ...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 25, 2016 8:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Total Stock Market Fund
Replies: 6
Views: 1059

Re: Total Stock Market Fund

Yes.

During the lifetime of TIEIX, its performance (blue) in detail, month by month, year by year, has been almost identical to Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (orange).

Source
Image
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 25, 2016 1:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SP 500: active or passive?
Replies: 11
Views: 722

Re: SP 500: active or passive?

It's a nitpick. It's a tiny technicality. It's become popular as a stick to beat indexing with. "You're not a passive investor anyway, so as long as you're going to hold an actively managed fund, why not hold our actively managed fund?" In 1957, when it was launched, the S&P 500 was in...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 25, 2016 1:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy and hold an index. You can't possibly compete with the Masters of the Universe!
Replies: 9
Views: 1329

Re: Buy and hold an index. You can't possibly compete with the Masters of the Universe!

One might reasonably conclude that here was publicly available information that the share price did not reflect, at least until it became even more publicly available. This is hard to reconcile with a perfectly efficient market. On the other hand, investors did manage to buy Nintendo stock and not ...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 25, 2016 11:53 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Help Me Understand: Why Shouldn't AA Be 100% Stocks During Accumulation Phase?
Replies: 178
Views: 8874

Re: Help Me Understand: Why Shouldn't AA Be 100% Stocks During Accumulation Phase?

...I will interject here and say that the portion of total market that was not the SP 500 performed better than the SP 500 since 03 VXF + VFINX = total market. Yes, but how was the risk-adjusted return ? Anyone who looks only at return without looking at risk has the potential to be bamboozled by a...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy and hold an index. You can't possibly compete with the Masters of the Universe!
Replies: 9
Views: 1329

Re: Buy and hold an index. You can't possibly compete with the Masters of the Universe!

And as far as I can see, Bogleheads (including me) made 89 posts in a thread entitled "Pokemon Go" -- should buying Nintendo have been obvious? without one person pointing out that not only did you need to be able to predict that Pokemon Go would be a hit, you also needed to be able to pre...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 9:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Reliving the Nightmare of the Crisis
Replies: 119
Views: 8378

Re: Reliving the Nightmare of the Crisis

...Their only solution to a crash is more paper money. That is the main reason that I think everyone should have some gold. "In a social democracy with a fiat currency, all roads lead to inflation."...Bill Fleckenstein. If 2008-2009 wasn't a crash, it will do until the real thing comes ar...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 9:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reading Kindle text on an iPad - can it be "expanded" (magnified)?
Replies: 12
Views: 862

Re: Reading Kindle text on an iPad - can it be "expanded" (magnified)?

I've had the same experience. It represents incompetence on the part of publishers because it's easy enough to put high-res graphics into a Kindle eBook, but it's very, very, very common. The vast majority of photographs and illustrations in Kindle books seem to have a resolution in the ballpark of ...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: LCG vs LCV over the last 23 years
Replies: 32
Views: 1773

Re: LCG vs LCV over the last 23 years

...There hasn't been a value "premium" in large-cap stocks over the past 35 years... And yet, let's look at the recommendations of purveyors of factor-based investing. The Bill Schultheis Coffeehouse Portfolio splits large-cap allocations equally between large-cap blend and large-cap valu...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 5:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: High Yield Junk Bonds
Replies: 45
Views: 3521

Re: High Yield Junk Bonds

I thought the Zweig article was great. The reason I don't like bonds that are not investment grade (aka "junk," aka "high yield") is that they are an obfuscated asset class. "Don't invest in what you don't understand." Sure, nobody understands any investment perfectly a...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 11:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Help Me Understand: Why Shouldn't AA Be 100% Stocks During Accumulation Phase?
Replies: 178
Views: 8874

Re: Help Me Understand: Why Shouldn't AA Be 100% Stocks During Accumulation Phase?

The magic of "100%" bothers me. People are constantly talking about that specific number. The Vanguard Target Retirement Funds stay at 90% stocks from the beginning up until 25 years before retirement, i.e. up until age 40. https://s32.postimg.org/tqurc1eg5/Captura_de_pantalla_2016_07_24_a...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 9:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Trying the Impossible - Financing 30-Year Retirements with 40-Year Careers
Replies: 70
Views: 8780

Re: Trying the Impossible - Financing 30-Year Retirements with 40-Year Careers

At a glance, this presentation is full of spin. Distracting us from the "data ink" by decorating it with pictures of hale elder celebrities is anecdotal evidence at its worst. Looks prove nothing. Eisenhower looked a lot older after his heart attack. John Adams lived to be 90. That doesn't...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 24, 2016 9:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Trying the Impossible - Financing 30-Year Retirements with 40-Year Careers
Replies: 70
Views: 8780

Re: Trying the Impossible - Financing 30-Year Retirements with 40-Year Careers

If it is impossible to finance a thirty-year retirement with a forty-year career, then there cannot be any such thing as a retired professional athletes.
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 23, 2016 5:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SPY / TLT Portfolio [SPDR S&P 500 / iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond]
Replies: 19
Views: 1086

Re: SPY / TLT Portfolio

...Yes the long term correlation is close to zero, not negative. The correlation during financial crises, perhaps when it matters most, has been negative. And the correlation lately has been negative... Yes, but you also have to ask: how much is that in dollars? Even when the correlation is negativ...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 23, 2016 3:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Declining or Rising equity allocation in retirement?
Replies: 110
Views: 6695

Re: Declining or Rising equity allocation in retirement?

I now wonder if the "Sell-in-a-panic-at-the-bottom Investor" is actually a rarity and a mythical creation of financial news media and institutions in order to make normal [the majority of] investors feel good about themselves for not selling. I doubt it. A big problem is that people who s...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 23, 2016 1:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Crazy to hold (BNDX) International Bonds?
Replies: 39
Views: 2243

Re: Crazy to hold (BNDX) International Bonds?

...Nisiprius – Most of my money is in USD and I earn money in USD. If the USD crashes it will be a lot more expensive for me to buy anything that imported... 1) During 2002-2008, the dollar weakened about 35% relative to a basket of world currencies. Did you notice a problem then? During 1985-1988,...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 23, 2016 12:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SPY / TLT Portfolio [SPDR S&P 500 / iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond]
Replies: 19
Views: 1086

Re: SPY / TLT Portfolio

...The 2 have a negative correlation... Please do not say things like that. Please be accurate... so that you will be accurate inside your own head... and say, "in the past, the two have had a negative correlation." This isn't a detail. Just as you always need to be asking, in the forefro...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Reliving the Nightmare of the Crisis
Replies: 119
Views: 8378

Re: Reliving the Nightmare of the Crisis

Warning, car analogy! :D A semi trailer is 8-1/2 feet wide. A highway lane is 12 feet wide. A car is six feet wide. Normally, a semi approaching you on a two-lane road clears you by 1-3/4 + 3 = 4-3/4 feet. Semis are not always exactly in the center of the lane, so there is fluctuation in the clearan...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 23, 2016 8:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is buy low, sell high the same as market timing?
Replies: 29
Views: 1864

Re: Is buy low, sell high the same as market timing?

1) No, "buy low, sell high" is not the same as market timing, because you do not need to do any market timing in order to buy low, sell high. There are no absolutes but according to past statistics, a strategy of buying a portfolio as close as feasible to the S&P 500, simply waiting tw...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 8:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. Stock Market Increasingly Detached from U.S. Economy
Replies: 19
Views: 2417

Re: U.S. Stock Market Increasingly Detached from U.S. Economy

You say "those wishing to increase their exposure to the U.S. economy may want to focus more on small and mid-cap stocks or REITs (with less overseas revenue exposure), rather than the broad market indexes." But never do you give a rationale for why you would want to do a thing like that. ...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 6:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: High Yield Junk Bonds
Replies: 45
Views: 3521

Re: High Yield Junk Bonds

I think a small slice (5%) of true junk is probably OK as long as the rest of the bond allocation is solid. I would probably not do this myself though. I think the Vanguard high yield funds are not rated as junk. Last I checked they were actually in the mid quality range, not low quality. According...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 3:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Declining or Rising equity allocation in retirement?
Replies: 110
Views: 6695

Re: Declining or Rising equity allocation in retirement?

Nisiprius Good write up but with one BIG flaw, that study you cite (with the 3% SWR) would only show that result if you foolishly looked only at US data, a triumph of the optimists mistake of classic proportions. Try that in other countries like Japan and see what happens. And note with today's low...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: World VCR production is ending next month. What to do with my old VHS tapes?
Replies: 57
Views: 4365

Re: World VCR production is ending next month. What to do with my old VHS tapes?

...Alert to all good frugal BHs - Used DVDs are now incredibly cheap! We are progressively buying used DVD copies of our favourite movies, TV series, etc and chucking out the VHS tapes. DVD seems a far more robust and hence longer-lasting medium. Thank you for that. I never even thought about that....
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 9:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are you feeling uncomfortable? [with your investments]
Replies: 42
Views: 4180

Re: Are you feeling uncomfortable? [with your investments]

I'm comfortable, Vanguard says my personal rate of return for 1 year has been 3%, but inflation has only been 1%, so I've been growing. Nothing to brag about, but enough. I've done nothing with my investments to make myself uncomfortable, and I'm not going to do so just to conform with some saying. ...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 8:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Declining or Rising equity allocation in retirement?
Replies: 110
Views: 6695

Re: Declining or Rising equity allocation in retirement?

Concentrating solely on portfolio failure statistics, as Pfau and Kitces did, leaves out two very important elements. 1) Failure to take risk tolerance seriously. Pfau and Kitces make what is almost an aside: The clear caveat of this approach is that it may create concerns for seniors in their later...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 7:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With Ranking the Risk/Safety of Investments
Replies: 1
Views: 168

Re: Help With Ranking the Risk/Safety of Investments

I just don't think it's a useful exercise. It's certainly not useful unless you say what you personally mean by "risk" and "safety." Even then, you can't do it with any real precision. Somewhere in A Random Walk Down Wall Street , Burton Malkiel has a too-whimiscal cute chart... ...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 22, 2016 7:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard site shows funds not owned?
Replies: 14
Views: 1130

Re: Vanguard site shows funds not owned?

This has annoyed me for maybe ten years. The problem is that "hide zero balances" doesn't really take care of it. It's just cosmetic and it's just on that page. For example, if you decide to download transactions, accounts with zero balances are still displayed. You are given the option to...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: World VCR production is ending next month. What to do with my old VHS tapes?
Replies: 57
Views: 4365

Re: World VCR production is ending next month. What to do with my old VHS tapes?

One important tip. The biggest problem in keeping old equipment alive, for me, involves remotes. For about twenty years now, the gear can't really be operated with full functionality from the front panel--you need the remote. But not only do remotes get lost, it's easy to forget them and neglect to...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: in a digital world, why does "cash" have a storage cost?
Replies: 22
Views: 1454

Re: in a digital world, why does "cash" have a storage cost?

I heard that podcast, and I believe they were discussing the (serious!) alternative of storing physical currency . They were saying that it's a little easier in the Eurozone because there are €1000 notes, and that you could store the equivalent of about €10 million in a suitcase... but that the peop...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where do you buy individual stocks?
Replies: 43
Views: 2161

Re: Where do you buy individual stocks?

Given your plan, you won't be making all that many trades, so I don't see that it matters much where you do it. If I understand correctly, you already have a Roth IRA. Where do you have it? If it is a full-service brokerage, just buy your stocks at the same place; why complicate things by creating a...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 21, 2016 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LED lights or bulbs
Replies: 21
Views: 2085

Re: LED lights or bulbs

You might find this article interesting http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/the-l-e-d-quandary-why-theres-no-such-thing-as-built-to-last Hah! The problem we're having is that we just love LED bulbs (compared to CFL's) because the color rendering is soooooo much better, and because they come ...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 21, 2016 10:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Crazy to hold (BNDX) International Bonds?
Replies: 39
Views: 2243

Re: Crazy to hold (BNDX) International Bonds?

My opinion: it's not crazy to hold Vanguard Total International Bond index Fund. It's not crazy not to hold any Vanguard Total International Bond Index Fund. I can't believe it can make much difference either way. What I think is crazy--or at least would be crazy for me--would be to hold un hedged f...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 21, 2016 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LED lights or bulbs
Replies: 21
Views: 2085

Re: LED lights or bulbs

(Shrug) LED technology is still new, different companies do have different technology, the electronics in them is sensitive to different temperatures... one possibility is just to follow the line of least resistance and go back to using incandescents. Do the math on electricity costs and bulb costs....
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which factors have risk-based explanations and which don't
Replies: 8
Views: 671

Re: Which factors have risk-based explanations and which don't

The study looked at the FOUR new factors which came AFTER the FF four factors of beta, size, value and momentum. yes MOM is almost surely a behavioral story, though some risk explanations have been tried. I don't buy them My new book will cover each of the factors and the intuition behind them Re M...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 20, 2016 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why did the car salesman stop replying to my emails
Replies: 78
Views: 7458

Re: Why did the car salesman stop replying to my emails

There's no universal rule but many salespeople really want to get you to come in in person. It's more likely that they will be able to close the sale. You've made an investment of time to come in. They have a better chance to read your body language, and make momentary adjustments in the deal. If th...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 20, 2016 6:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity beats Vanguard in ER
Replies: 30
Views: 2755

Re: Fidelity beats Vanguard in ER

Schwab did something like this a year or so go, revamping their line of index ETFs and giving all of them expense ratios that were 0.01% lower than Vanguard's. It's not of much significance except as a marketing move. I have some brand loyalty to Vanguard but as of 2016 the nice situation is that a ...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 19, 2016 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: OK to stay in cash if you have 40-50x annual expenses?
Replies: 61
Views: 5136

Re: OK to stay in cash if you have 40-50x annual expenses?

I think there's some confusion here surrounding the word "cash" (as there often is). In part this is because investment companies want to convince people that there is something wrong with keeping your money in the bank. Literal cash, physical currency, bundles of $100 bills in a safe depo...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 19, 2016 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much are these microscopes worth and what should I do with them?
Replies: 15
Views: 1201

Re: How much are these microscopes worth and what should I do with them?

I agree with those who suggest spending a few minutes on eBay to see what similar microscopes are selling for on eBay. I think that selling them on eBay, if you're willing to take the time to write good descriptions, is probably the way to get the most money for them. I agree with FreeAtLast that &q...

Go to advanced search