Search found 1485 matches

by ourbrooks
Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help getting out of a tiaa traditional
Replies: 22
Views: 667

Re: Help getting out of a tiaa traditional

None of the Fidelity funds can come anywhere near close to TIAA Traditional. TIAA Traditional has the property that your balance never goes down, regardless of whether interest rates go up or down. Money market funds are like that but none of them are paying even 1/10th as much as TIAA Traditional. ...
by ourbrooks
Thu Apr 28, 2016 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Austin TX
Replies: 8
Views: 394

Re: Visiting Austin TX

Start downing the allergy pills now. There is something in the air there that just knocks me out. The allergies don't really stop in March; right now, pecan pollen is peaking and then there's the mold due to the recent rainfall. Which is worst, the allergies or the traffic? If you're staying downto...
by ourbrooks
Mon Apr 11, 2016 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wifi Booster
Replies: 22
Views: 1450

Re: Wifi Booster

You say you bought a new computer. Is the old computer still running and does it use a Wi-Fi connection? If they're both running at once and they're near each other, the problem may be interference. Even if the connections seem to be on different channels, on the 2.4 Ghz band, the channels overlap. ...
by ourbrooks
Sun Mar 27, 2016 7:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Predicting stock market returns accurately?
Replies: 52
Views: 3016

Re: Predicting stock market returns accurately?

You should read the same author's subsequent post, entitled "Valuation and Stock Market Returns: Adventures in Curve Fitting," which begins: The title, “The Single Greatest Predictor of Future Stock Market Returns”, was something of an intentional exaggeration, chosen not only to draw att...
by ourbrooks
Thu Mar 24, 2016 9:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Predicting stock market returns accurately?
Replies: 52
Views: 3016

Re: Predicting stock market returns accurately?

QuietWealth, I agree, I read the axis on the chart incorrectly. A corrected interpretation is that when people hold a lower percentage of stocks, they tend to buy more and prices go up and vice versa. 1975 would have been a good time to go into the market, given the relatively low percentage of equi...
by ourbrooks
Thu Mar 24, 2016 6:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Predicting stock market returns accurately?
Replies: 52
Views: 3016

Re: Predicting stock market returns accurately?

FWIW, Bogle repeatedly in books and interviews talks about valuations and uses the kind of Gordon's Equation modeling to predict future returns that is covered in the article, formulated here as Total Return = Price Return from P/E Multiple Change + Price Return from Earnings Growth (Realized if P/...
by ourbrooks
Sat Mar 19, 2016 1:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How long to plan for sequence of return risk?
Replies: 8
Views: 691

Re: How long to plan for sequence of return risk?

There's no absolute answer. 1. After a stock market drop of 10% or more, on average, it's taken 3 years to recover. 2. After the 1929 stock market crash, it took 25 years to recover. It also matters a great deal when in retirement the downturn happens. If it happens in the first five years, you end ...
by ourbrooks
Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SPIAs and safe withdrawal rates
Replies: 18
Views: 2042

Re: SPIAs and safe withdrawal rates

I also cringe when SPIAs are compared to bonds. SPIAs are insurance, not an investment. Not buying them because you can't get your money back is like not buying car insurance because you can't get your money back for past periods of coverage. There have been some recent studies by Wade Pfau in which...
by ourbrooks
Mon Mar 14, 2016 5:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SPIAs and safe withdrawal rates
Replies: 18
Views: 2042

Re: SPIAs and safe withdrawal rates

To add to the other good comments, the rate you're getting for an annuity is for a fixed payout that never increases throughout your life. (There are inflation adjusted annuities, but for a 55 year old currently, the payout is more like 1%.) The "safe withdrawal rate" is just for the first...
by ourbrooks
Thu Mar 10, 2016 7:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Concierge medicine Worth It????
Replies: 91
Views: 6782

Re: Concierge medicine Worth It????

Perhaps, I should have edited my post to say "you will certainly want to continue to purchase health insurance coverage in addition to the concierge coverage." Concierge coverage is a cost above and beyond the basic costs of health insurance. It's like purchasing an upgraded seat on an air...
by ourbrooks
Thu Mar 10, 2016 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Concierge medicine Worth It????
Replies: 91
Views: 6782

Re: Concierge medicine Worth It????

One of the things to worry about is what happens if you need either a specialist or hospital care since your concierge relationship covers neither. Also, drugs would not typically be covered. You probably want to purchase health insurance in addition to the concierge coverage. One of the issues you ...
by ourbrooks
Mon Mar 07, 2016 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: new gas range + convection oven, is it all that?
Replies: 14
Views: 979

Re: new gas range + convection oven, is it all that?

A convection oven is just a regular oven with a fan to circulate the air. The ones I've used offer you a choice; some things want only bottom heat and cook better on the conventional setting. Worse case, the fan breaks and you decide not to repair it, you can still use the oven as a conventional ove...
by ourbrooks
Sat Mar 05, 2016 6:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is TIAA the opposite of Bogle? Massive confusion- help please
Replies: 32
Views: 2183

Re: Is TIAA the opposite of Bogle? Massive confusion- help please

Formally speaking, there is no way to avoid annuitization of your TIAA Traditional balance. The way you take money out of TIAA Traditional is via a (drumroll) Transfer Payout Annuity! There is also no requirement that you withdraw from your TIAA Traditional account when you retire, although you will...
by ourbrooks
Fri Mar 04, 2016 6:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is TIAA the opposite of Bogle? Massive confusion- help please
Replies: 32
Views: 2183

Re: Is TIAA the opposite of Bogle? Massive confusion- help please

The Bernanke portfolio is very understandable: 50% of contributions to TIAA Traditional and 50% to CREF Stock fund. Why is it called the Bernanke portfolio? When Ben Bernanke was chairman of the Federal Reserve he was required to disclose his holdings. As part of his Princeton retirement plan, he ha...
by ourbrooks
Wed Feb 24, 2016 7:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What withdrawal % are you planning on?
Replies: 89
Views: 6118

Re: What withdrawal % are you planning on?

Taylor,
Why did you decide to take out 4% a year? Why didn't you decide to take out 7%? Seven percent would have given you much more to spend on vacations, etc. Why did you choose such a low number?
by ourbrooks
Sun Feb 21, 2016 8:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need an awesome smartphone?
Replies: 73
Views: 4540

Re: Do I need an awesome smartphone?

Screen resolution is something you might want to pay more money for. Higher resolution screens display the same size of text using more pixels; this makes the text more legible. If you want, you can use a smaller font on the higher resolution phone and still be able to read it, so you can get more r...
by ourbrooks
Wed Feb 17, 2016 8:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Music Technology - new solutions?
Replies: 20
Views: 1441

Re: Music Technology - new solutions?

Any DVD player will also play CDs; you can get a good quality DVD player for $50. Look for one that has analog outputs with RCA jacks. Also get yourself some powered speakers. You can get little 3" ones intended for use with a computer for $30 on up to JBL studio monitors at only $250 a piece. ...
by ourbrooks
Tue Feb 16, 2016 7:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Who enforces EMH?
Replies: 25
Views: 2059

Re: Who enforces EMH?

The efficient market hypothesis doesn't require that each individual has identically the same information at any point in time. Suppose some significant event occurs but only half of the potential buyers and sellers of the stock learn about it during the first week. The efficient market hypothesis s...
by ourbrooks
Wed Feb 10, 2016 7:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Internet becoming "Small"
Replies: 23
Views: 2593

Re: Internet becoming "Small"

You would think that with international news networks, that the news in every country would be pretty much the same. Surprisingly, it's not. Most foreign news web sites, even the ones in English, have different stories than the ones on U.S. news web sites. The Birmingham Mail doesn't even cover the ...
by ourbrooks
Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Boglehead mentality re todays oil price
Replies: 22
Views: 2180

Re: Boglehead mentality re todays oil price

Rig count is down, but lots of producing wells are now shut in and could come back online with minimal effort. https://www.aei.org/publication/top-10-things-i-learned-on-my-summer-trip-to-the-bakken-oil-fields-part-ii/ Expected production life of a Bakken oil well: 45 years What do you mean by &quo...
by ourbrooks
Fri Feb 05, 2016 4:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Boglehead mentality re todays oil price
Replies: 22
Views: 2180

Re: Boglehead mentality re todays oil price

Regardless of the inflation adjusted historical prices, there are two facts which suggest that oil is currently underpriced. One is the plummeting rig count. There are fixed costs associated with a well that include the cost of seismic surveys to find a location for the well, the cost of leases and ...
by ourbrooks
Wed Feb 03, 2016 7:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard energy fund
Replies: 14
Views: 1963

Re: Vanguard energy fund

There may not be any real assets left when fracking companies go bankrupt. The actual physical equipment for the well generally isn't worth much; the market for downhole tubing, pumps and tanks isn't all that great and is small compared to the drilling and completion costs. The one exception might b...
by ourbrooks
Wed Feb 03, 2016 12:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard energy fund
Replies: 14
Views: 1963

Re: Vanguard energy fund

To add yet more complexity to decisions, it could well be the case that use of hydrocarbon fuels drops and oil company profits soar. How could that be? Over the long term, the cost of finding and producing oil continues to rise. All of the "easy" oil has been found and pumped and what is l...
by ourbrooks
Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACH transactions on holidays/weekends?
Replies: 36
Views: 1924

Re: ACH transactions on holidays/weekends?

No one in the banking industry responded to the post and I was curious. I think this link https://www.paypalobjects.com/en_US/vhelp/paypalmanager_help/about_ach_payments.htm has your answer. Read the last section on the page. If I read what's in this link correctly https://www.nacha.org/news/what-ac...
by ourbrooks
Mon Dec 28, 2015 7:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: John Bogle vs. John "Age In Bonds" Bogle
Replies: 29
Views: 2115

Re: John Bogle vs. John "Age In Bonds" Bogle

Yes, John Bogle has been somewhat unclear about his position on "age in bonds." There are two things he has been clear about; one is that "age in bonds" is a starting point, not a recommendation, for thinking about reducing risk in retirement. The second thing is that he includes...
by ourbrooks
Fri Dec 18, 2015 7:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Large Energy stocks - why not?
Replies: 158
Views: 10992

Re: Large Energy stocks - why not?

Actually, the effect of the Paris accords might be to increase the value of oil/natural gas over the next few decades. The largest source of CO2 emissions are coal fired power plants; replacing them with natural gas fired plants is a low capital way of reducing emissions substantially in the short t...
by ourbrooks
Fri Dec 18, 2015 6:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: American UN employee confused about Roth options
Replies: 4
Views: 395

Re: American UN employee confused about Roth options

I've also dealt with this situation. I agree with expat; UN income is still U.S. income, just as if you'd earned it working for a company. The UN instructions are to report it as salary income, not as business income. The UN is not really paying your taxes. They already withheld the money from your ...
by ourbrooks
Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Math to include large fixed pension/annuity in retirement planning.
Replies: 19
Views: 2136

Re: Math to include large fixed pension/annuity in retirement planning.

Once you have determined the gap determine what % of your portfolio would you have to draw down each year to close the gap. Ignore inflation for now but factor in some tax so it is the gross draw down you need. If it is more than 4% you are probably withdrawing more than your portfolio can support ...
by ourbrooks
Thu Nov 26, 2015 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The end of our Teflon pans is near...now what do we buy?
Replies: 63
Views: 7142

Re: The end of our Teflon pans is near...now what do we buy?

What you should get depends on how you cook. If you want your pans to get as hot as possible as quickly as possible and you use very little or no fat when you cook, then a non-stick coating is a must but you want to buy thin pans because they'll heat up faster. Cheaper pans tend to be thinner so you...
by ourbrooks
Tue Nov 24, 2015 7:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Term Maturity bond ETFs
Replies: 8
Views: 849

Re: Term Maturity bond ETFs

The general name for this type of ETF is a defined maturity fund. Here's a Vanguard paper about them: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiXvs_zqKrJAhWBPT4KHXHoCKMQFggeMAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fpersonal.vanguard.co...
by ourbrooks
Wed Oct 28, 2015 7:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help me decide between Lexus GX460 and Toyota Highlander (Hybrid/Non-Hybrid)
Replies: 75
Views: 8063

Re: Help me decide between Lexus GX460 and Highlander Hybrid

The Lexus doesn't have four wheel independent suspension. The front wheels do have independent suspension, but the rear is a solid axel that runs all the way across. Why does this matter? Car with four wheel independent suspension generally corner better; they can make quicker, tighter movements in ...
by ourbrooks
Wed Oct 28, 2015 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Clearing brush -- electric wood chipper?
Replies: 23
Views: 1340

Re: Clearing brush -- electric wood chipper?

For cutting up 1" brush, a set of loppers with some kind of rachet mechanism will do the job; the highest end Fiskars model claims to do 2" If you find you don't have the arm strength to do all of the work, a battery operated reciprocating saw ("Sawzall") will handle up to 5"...
by ourbrooks
Fri Oct 23, 2015 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [visiting] Austin, TX
Replies: 22
Views: 2078

Re: Austin, TX

Check the coming events calendar very carefully. Austin is plagued by an endless series of festivals/events like ACL and the F1 race which tie up hotel rooms and produce long waiting lines in restaurants. I doubt whether you want your wife's memories of the surprise to be standing in line. If you st...
by ourbrooks
Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Austin, TX
Replies: 35
Views: 3989

Re: Moving to Austin, TX

If the job is downtown, then everything within a 30 minute commute will be over $200/sq. ft. Think $500-600,000 for a 2500 sq. ft. house on a quarter acre lot in Crestview, Rosemont, Brentwood, or Northwest Hills. In Northwest Hills, any house which comes on the market for less than $500,000 will ge...
by ourbrooks
Fri Oct 02, 2015 3:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Selected Value and Energy Fund outlook
Replies: 23
Views: 2223

Re: Selected Value and Energy Fund outlook

What I have seen is that fracking activity has continued: they have seriously cut back on costs. Since fracked wells have short production lives, eventually the low oil price will kick in and hit production ($60/bl was a number that was being bandied about for breakeven, but it's probably more like...
by ourbrooks
Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Aging and Increased Investing Risk
Replies: 50
Views: 3506

Re: Aging and Increased Investing Risk

Now, you've got me really worried. I thought I know what assets and liabilities were, but according to Appendix 1-A, p. 39, from the study, the correct answer is the one in italics. 1. Net worth is equal to: 1. Total assets 2. Total assets plus liabilities 3. Total assets minus liabilities Had I kno...
by ourbrooks
Wed Sep 09, 2015 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Basic annuity questions
Replies: 10
Views: 1219

Re: Basic annuity questions

The annual payout of a single premium annuity as percentage of the purchase price can be estimated by adding 1/remaining-life-expectancy + 10-year-t-bill-rate/2. If you look at that formula, age is the most important factor in payout; the older you are when you buy the annuity, the larger the payout...
by ourbrooks
Fri Aug 28, 2015 6:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax free income
Replies: 8
Views: 1458

Re: Tax free income

Go look at what happened to VWALX in 2008. High yield bonds tend go up and down along with stocks. What makes up VWALX are all kinds of special purpose bonds used for things like stadiums and paid back out of the stadium revenues, not real estate taxes. If the economy hits a bad patch and people qui...
by ourbrooks
Wed Aug 26, 2015 8:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Aloha Shirt: Yes or No
Replies: 80
Views: 7768

Re: Aloha Shirt: Yes or No

All of the Authentic 'Hawaii Shirts' I've seen are 100% Silk. The cheaper knockoffs are Cotton, Rayon. (Some of these are nice and I have a few), but if you want the 'real thing' you have to go 100% Silk. Like this one .... http://www.tommybahama.com/TBG/Men/Shirts/Camp_Shirts/PRD_T311896/Keep+Palm...
by ourbrooks
Wed Aug 26, 2015 5:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Using the signaling power of treasury bonds
Replies: 10
Views: 1426

Re: Using the signaling power of treasury bonds

I looked for tests of statistical significance and didn't find any. What did I overlook?
by ourbrooks
Sat Aug 15, 2015 6:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: College savings
Replies: 40
Views: 2492

Re: College savings

A major factor (the major factor?) in the rise in college costs has been the increase in the student population. Between 1965 and 2005, the number of college students tripled because of a combination of Baby Boomers reaching college age and an increased rate of college attendance. This meant that th...
by ourbrooks
Thu Aug 13, 2015 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a "dinosaur" laptop
Replies: 28
Views: 4003

Re: Buying a "dinosaur" laptop

Look at a refurbished Dell from their business line, not their home, line, e.g., a Latitude or OptiPlex, not an Inspiron. Some of the "refurbished" machines are, in fact, new overstock. Regardless of the history, most of them come with a 3 year ON-SITE warranty. After staying on the phone ...
by ourbrooks
Sun Aug 02, 2015 6:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Is Wise Not To Factor Social Security/Medicare Into Your Retirement Plans?
Replies: 20
Views: 1784

Re: Is Is Wise Not To Factor Social Security/Medicare Into Your Retirement Plans?

If you want to model what happens if both Social Security and Medicare disappear, you could start out using their current value and projecting forward using an assumed inflation rate. 1. Right now, Social Security of $20,000 for a couple is worth about $600,000 at present. I know John Bogle has gues...
by ourbrooks
Sat Aug 01, 2015 1:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ready to Give Up on Emerging Market Stocks?
Replies: 47
Views: 5343

Re: Ready to Give Up on Emerging Market Stocks?

At least as its summarized in the original post, the underlying basis for the authors' prediction remains a mystery. There's a common misconception that emerging market companies grow because emerging market economies grow. To have a large market cap and be in the index, a company has to have lots o...
by ourbrooks
Fri Jul 31, 2015 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Router Upgrade
Replies: 42
Views: 3457

Re: Router Upgrade

The 50 Mbps figure is usually qualified by the phrase, "up to." Often, the typical speed is much lower; you may already be getting the maximum speed you can get from your ISP. If this is so, buying a new router won't help. Do you have a separate router connected to the ISP box? If so, plug...
by ourbrooks
Sun Jul 26, 2015 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: prepaid phone less than $50 with Android Lollipop 5.0
Replies: 10
Views: 1179

Re: prepaid phone less than $50 with Android Lollipop 5.0

I hope that your desire to use a physical device is not standing in the way of learning to use the emulator really well. From the Android developer web site: Note: When developing on a device, keep in mind that you should still use the Android emulator to test your application on configurations that...
by ourbrooks
Sun Jul 26, 2015 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Edelman -- best days, worst days
Replies: 26
Views: 2204

Re: Edleman -- best days, worst days

It should be obvious that no market timer could capture all the highs and miss all the lows Paul Enter: algorithmic market software equations that take care of that ..(afaik) :| Not likely. People have been trying literally for centuries to predict markets. In the pre-computer era, they used charts...
by ourbrooks
Sat Jul 25, 2015 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: CrashPlan NOT a whole-drive system backup solution?
Replies: 33
Views: 2784

Re: CrashPlan NOT a whole-drive system backup solution?

What I'm not sure about is if a computer goes belly up, and can't be revived, can the system files be put onto a *different* computer, or would anti-piracy protections interfere? And would this be a problem for other full imaging programs? My only experience restoring a disk image is with a replace...
by ourbrooks
Sat Jul 25, 2015 1:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 529 Asset Allocation
Replies: 20
Views: 1945

Re: 529 Asset Allocation

Time frame is very important in asset allocation, particularly for shorter terms. The stock market has had a NEGATIVE return in about 14% of historical, rolling five year periods. Even over 15 years, there's still a small probability of a loss. When you are withdrawing for retirement, the withdrawal...
by ourbrooks
Fri Jul 24, 2015 6:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: CrashPlan NOT a whole-drive system backup solution?
Replies: 33
Views: 2784

Re: CrashPlan NOT a whole-drive system backup solution?

I love CrashPlan, but yeah it does not do image level backups. I don't think I'd want it to anyway. A full image level backup is quite large and would take too long to download from the cloud. I back up everything except Program Files and the Windows folders with CrashPlan: documents, mp3s, movies,...

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