Search found 4405 matches

by protagonist
Sat Dec 31, 2016 12:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Echo
Replies: 84
Views: 10083

Re: Amazon Echo

I just bought 6 Echo Dots- 2 for myself....I found them so much fun that I bought 4 more for holiday presents. I see no point in getting the more expensive models with built-in speaker.....the little dot offers far more flexibility. I have one playing through a good stereo system downstairs and anot...
by protagonist
Sat Dec 31, 2016 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Echo
Replies: 84
Views: 10083

Re: Amazon Echo

I just bought 6 Echo Dots- 2 for myself....I found them so much fun that I bought 4 more for holiday presents. I made 4 people very happy. I see no point in getting the more expensive models with built-in speaker.....the little dot offers far more flexibility. I have one playing through a good stere...
by protagonist
Sat Dec 31, 2016 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Delayed Gratification In Life & its fallacies
Replies: 56
Views: 5730

Re: Delayed Gratification In Life & its fallacies

I wonder how the other BogleHeads approach life... I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth. I financed my own education through loans, jobs and student teaching. I was a hippie back in the 60's/early 70s. I worked when I had to , in order to finance my next adventure. And I had a lot of them...
by protagonist
Sat Dec 31, 2016 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

Any folks on here decide they'd like to learn to play an instrument for the first time as an adult and total beginner? As in, you cannot even read music? If so, what did you try and how did it go? My daughter has been playing the flute for two years and had her first public recital this weekend. Sh...
by protagonist
Sat Dec 31, 2016 11:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein-"To Make Money They Didn't Need".....and Pascal's Wager
Replies: 187
Views: 18527

Re: Bernstein-"To Make Money They Didn't Need".....and Pascal's Wager

[quote="larryswedroe" b) the arguments should always consider the marginal utility of wealth which for most people, the vast majority, tends to decline very rapidly once they have "enough"--whatever that means to them, generally supporting a lifestyle that they are comfortable wi...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein-"To Make Money They Didn't Need".....and Pascal's Wager
Replies: 187
Views: 18527

Re: Bernstein-"To Make Money They Didn't Need".....and Pascal's Wager

If someone is 65 and has $1,600,000 you might say they have "won the game". Though they actually still have a 10% chance of "losing the game" by outliving their safe assets. Are you assuming that person has no other source of income, such as social security? If you have that muc...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: France or Switzerland
Replies: 50
Views: 4525

Re: France or Switzerland

Folks, we're debating whether to visit France during next summer. Terrorism is of course the big worry given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents. DW is worried that we'd be caught in it or be affected somehow. Hence Switzerland is the fall back option. Anyone have any perspective to share ? F...
by protagonist
Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein-"To Make Money They Didn't Need".....and Pascal's Wager
Replies: 187
Views: 18527

Re: Bernstein-"To Make Money They Didn't Need".....and Pascal's Wager

If someone is 65 and has $1,600,000 you might say they have "won the game". Though they actually still have a 10% chance of "losing the game" by outliving their safe assets. Are you assuming that person has no other source of income, such as social security? If you have that muc...
by protagonist
Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US
Replies: 16
Views: 1084

Re: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US

I believe they've done away with the 10% surcharge: http://www.havanatimes.org/?p=117419 I don't believe they have. From your article (3/16): "He said the decision should enter into force as soon as US authorities allow Cuban state institutions to use the dollar in transactions in the United S...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Decent quality reading glasses
Replies: 21
Views: 1735

Re: Decent quality reading glasses

Zenni optical
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help me understand if/why I should buy bonds in this environment
Replies: 21
Views: 2471

Re: Help me understand if/why I should buy bonds in this environment

Note: this isn't a "why should i invest in bonds when stocks generally do better and I can just invest it all in stocks?!"type of question. It's more a question about bonds in the abstract, because I cannot find any bond ETF or fund right now where I want to pour in 8% of my portfolio tom...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US
Replies: 16
Views: 1084

Re: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US

I called a currency exchange place in NYC and also visited two local banks here in MA. The "official rate" online states $1000 US is worth $1357 CAN or 956 euro. The local banks (including TD Waterhouse....thought I might do better buying CAD at a Canadian bank) as well as the NYC exchange...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 2:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US
Replies: 16
Views: 1084

Re: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US

I had to buy a large quantity of Euros a few weeks ago and my friends that work in banking recommended me to buy it at one of the currency exchange businesses in downtown Miami. I was surprised that they sold me Euros at a few pennies over the official rate (1.043 vs. 1.040 on that day) while Chase...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 2:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes
Replies: 18
Views: 1370

Re: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes

What Epsilon Delta says is apparently true. For MA: "An individual's domicile, or legal residence, depends upon all the facts and circumstances in each case, including the good faith of the individual. An individual may have multiple residences at one time, but only one domicile. The legal resi...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US
Replies: 16
Views: 1084

Best rate buying euros or Canadian $$ in US

I need to buy either Euros or Canadian dollars with US dollars in the US. I realize that is usually a losing proposition, but it is something I need to do. Does anybody know how or where I can get the best possible exchange rate? Most US banks charge a huge premium over the official rate. I need to ...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 27, 2016 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes
Replies: 18
Views: 1370

Re: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes

South Dakota specifically allows for residency if you have no other homestead. You must spend at least one night there physically. There is further information online. Here is the affadavit to be executed from the state's website: https://dps.sd.gov/licensing/driver_licensing/documents/RESIDENCYAFF...
by protagonist
Mon Dec 26, 2016 9:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%
Replies: 156
Views: 18225

Re: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%

Two things: 1. If you refer another person you can get $50 and the other person can get $50 if they do a direct deposit of at least $500. Does anybody know the details of this...both how to do it, AND if you have tried a direct deposit from another financial institution via EFT, which ones worked? A...
by protagonist
Mon Dec 26, 2016 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes
Replies: 18
Views: 1370

Re: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes

Say your income is coming from SS, or from, say, index fund investments at Vanguard or Fidelity (a likely scenario since a retiree is more likely to be in a position of traveling around or living in several homes and not having a single domicile)? Thus not from a specific state? And some states (FL ...
by protagonist
Mon Dec 26, 2016 8:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes
Replies: 18
Views: 1370

Re: Declaring state residency for tax filing purposes

That's a very interesting question. Many states seem to have a requirement of six months of residency per year, and certainly there are many people who probably have significant income but don't live in any one state for more than half time. Not my situation, but I would be interested in reading res...
by protagonist
Sat Dec 24, 2016 9:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogle backfire?
Replies: 81
Views: 12648

Re: Bogle backfire?

There are items where by buying a quality item your chances of appreciation or at least maintaining value are nearly guaranteed, if you know what you are buying. I think fine vintage instruments fall into that category. The vintage 1955 Mark VI saxophone I bought maybe 7 or 8 years ago has tripled i...
by protagonist
Sat Dec 24, 2016 9:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good Modern Science Fiction
Replies: 210
Views: 20941

Re: Good Modern Science Fiction

The Long Run by Daniel Keys Moran.

A little known classic. One of the best ever. Just read the reviews.
by protagonist
Tue Dec 20, 2016 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery cart rolls into side of car, dent, scratched
Replies: 92
Views: 6543

Re: Grccery cart rolls into side of car, dent, scratched

Life is short and time is valuable. Is this really how you want to spend it? Fighting a likely futile battle over minor cosmetic damage to a 7 year old car? A famous person said: "That to which you give your attention only grows stronger in your life". (Or maybe the famous person plagiariz...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 20, 2016 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cutting the cord in NYC, but I love my channels
Replies: 18
Views: 881

Re: Cutting the cord in NYC, but I love my channels

It keeps changing but I currently pay about $135/month for Verizon Fios in NYC, which gets me: - High speed (around 50/50 Mbps) internet - TV, basic cable, HBO, Showtime - Phone (I think it's voip, but it's close to a landline in quality) - Cable card rental for my Tivo XL4 And then we pay $9/mo fo...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 20, 2016 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

I recall seeing posts here by people who were interested in learning ukelele. Fortuitously, I just received this email. Long shot I know, but if anybody who wants to learn (or explore learning) ukelele is in shouting distance of Southern Vermont, this might interest you: Hey Music Fans. During the m...
by protagonist
Mon Dec 19, 2016 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

Is the dulcimer similar to the ukele in ease of learning? The sound is quite different, but the dulcimer's is lovely. Have been hearing it often on holiday songs and I'm thinking of trying it out. What little I know about dulcimers is that they are tuned to an open chord and they play a diatonic sc...
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card plans and thoughts?
Replies: 10
Views: 1103

Re: Credit Card plans and thoughts?

Jags4186 wrote:
I think the OP should be a guinea pig...that's how all the good information is found out anyway.


Even if OP can get it, there are only 12 days left in Dec. OP would have to receive the card in the mail and then book the flight and have it post. It's cutting it fairly close.
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

I purchased a bass clarinet a few years ago with a goal to join the municipal band. It was pretty easy to get to a basic level, as I had played clarinet in school. Now, we've moved and there isn't really a municipal band option near us. So, it sits collecting dust. Same as the 4-5 guitars that I ow...
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can I use this as a carry on?
Replies: 10
Views: 1082

Re: Can I use this as a carry on?

One tip....whenever possible get your boarding pass online and go straight to the gate.
Harried gate officials do not like having to check baggage if they don't have to. Your chances of slipping by are greater than if you show up at the ticket counter with your bag.
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:04 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity ERs - Look Into Your Crystal Ball
Replies: 21
Views: 1704

Re: Fidelity ERs - Look Into Your Crystal Ball

I've been using a Vanguard IRA for several years and have always been somewhat...disappointed...with their website's features. But, I've stuck with them for their ultra-low expense ratios and the fact I'm a fan of them bring investor owned...the same reason I recently switched to a credit union. Wi...
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card plans and thoughts?
Replies: 10
Views: 1103

Re: Credit Card plans and thoughts?

Hello all, looking for some opinions or suggestions on my plans for credit cards. I am trying to earn some extra cash for free since I basically put everything on a credit card and pay it off right away. Currently, the only card I have is the Chase Freedom card. After some research, I am looking in...
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need Help: Drowning in Debt
Replies: 60
Views: 5785

Re: Need Help: Drowning in Debt

This is a budgeting issue. Are you able to go back and determine where you spend your money each month? What items can you cut in order to be cash flow positive? It is 100% a budgeting issue. With an income that high, there's got to be a several thousand dollar a month leak in your pocket. You have...
by protagonist
Sun Dec 18, 2016 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?
Replies: 133
Views: 16767

Re: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?

I thought I qualified my comments by saying Roth conversions are not for everyone . You are right about CD and bond-based IRAs. But since this thread started out talking about conversions for high net worth individuals and has attracted many of them, that is who I was primarily addressing. How do y...
by protagonist
Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

I purchased a bass clarinet a few years ago with a goal to join the municipal band. It was pretty easy to get to a basic level, as I had played clarinet in school. Now, we've moved and there isn't really a municipal band option near us. So, it sits collecting dust. Same as the 4-5 guitars that I ow...
by protagonist
Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

I purchased a bass clarinet a few years ago with a goal to join the municipal band. It was pretty easy to get to a basic level, as I had played clarinet in school. Now, we've moved and there isn't really a municipal band option near us. So, it sits collecting dust. Same as the 4-5 guitars that I ow...
by protagonist
Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?
Replies: 133
Views: 16767

Re: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?

Thank you for your thorough response, celia. I do have one obvious issue here: 3) The account value will continue to grow until distributions become greater than the growth. RMDs start at 3.65% of the account value and stock market returns are more often than not, greater than that. Most of us have ...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?
Replies: 133
Views: 16767

Re: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?

Advisers say you generally need to hold the Roth IRA for 15 to 20 years to make it pay off. So they generally don't recommend conversion for anyone over age 60. "If you're going to hold the IRA for less than 10 years, you definitely don't want to do it," says Tom Wiggins, a Certified Fina...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?
Replies: 133
Views: 16767

Re: $400,000 Roth Conversions Between Ages 66-69?

I'm struggling with the same issue . Age 64, retired at 55....most of my savings (80% or so) are in taxable. The remainder is in an IRA, Until I am eligible for Medicare I have resisted IRA conversion to avoid high health insurance costs. This article (from bankrate.com) seems to suggest that conver...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warm winter jacket for tall folks who are cheap?
Replies: 32
Views: 2354

Re: Warm winter jacket for tall folks who are cheap?

I need to buy a winter jacket after moving to upstate NY and having toddlers who want to go sledding. My winter dress trenchcoat and dress leather gloves aren't cutting it :( Thoughts from a tall, slender (brrrr) New Englander (who lived in Montreal and Alaska at various times in his life).... Stay...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 15, 2016 6:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I thought Swedroe was a fan of REITs?
Replies: 127
Views: 9546

Re: I thought Swedroe was a fan of REITs?

The big question which you must decide for yourself is what about REITs, which (unlike, say, the TIAA Real Estate "account") are not direct investments in real estate. They are, rather, stocks in companies that invest in real estate. It's rather like the distinction between gold itself (p...
by protagonist
Wed Dec 14, 2016 10:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About taxes, loss harvesting and capital gains
Replies: 2
Views: 280

About taxes, loss harvesting and capital gains

Please tell me if my understanding is correct: I have a mutual fund (FFNOX) in taxable with large capital gains. I am retired and 64 y o., not collecting SS. I also have a fairly large amount of carryover losses (but considerably less than would be needed to cover all my capital gains). If I sold ju...
by protagonist
Wed Dec 14, 2016 10:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Dow 36,000's" stock picks
Replies: 47
Views: 5798

Re: "Dow 36,000's" stock picks

..It is dangerous to think that it is trivially easy to pick a few obviously great companies that are icons of American business and certain to thrive and survive for the next fifty years... Right. And I wonder, after seeing how poorly these three picks did, as well as all but one of the tech picks...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 11:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: TIPS - Did you give up?
Replies: 476
Views: 60012

Re: TIPS - Did you give up?

I'm no expert on bonds. But would it not make sense that, if one believed that TIPS of a given maturity were a bad investment at this time, it would follow that corporate bonds of similar duration would also likely be a bad investment (the assumption being rising interest rates)? If anything the TI...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 6:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: TIPS - Did you give up?
Replies: 476
Views: 60012

Re: TIPS - Did you give up?

I'm no expert on bonds. But would it not make sense that, if one believed that TIPS of a given maturity were a bad investment at this time, it would follow that corporate bonds of similar duration would also likely be a bad investment (the assumption being rising interest rates)? If anything the TIP...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning an instrument as an adult?
Replies: 123
Views: 9819

Re: Learning an instrument as an adult?

I'm wondering if the violin may bee a good choice. I love classical music. So...please, either talk me into it or out of it. I don't want to dissuade you, if violin is something you have your heart set on, but beware - it is a very difficult instrument to play well. The lack of frets and pulling a ...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 11:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Age to Take Social Security: The Ideal and the Reality
Replies: 86
Views: 12021

Re: Age to Take Social Security: The Ideal and the Reality

If you wait until age 70, and the break even point is age 81 (as posted above), if you die between 70 and 81 you will die happy and none the wiser, thinking until the last minute that you made the right decision. On the other hand, if you live past 81 and you chose to start taking benefits at age 62...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2017 prediction "active managers will finally outperform as a group"
Replies: 12
Views: 1122

Re: nisiprius

Bogleheads: The Reply above shows why all of us are indebted to nisiprius and his many valuable contributions to this forum. Thank you and best wishes. Taylor +1. This article is a must-read for those who give credence to expert predictions. It is an (admittedly less technical) explanation of why o...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DOW 22000?!?!
Replies: 26
Views: 2931

Re: DOW 22000?!?!

We should be near dow 1,000,000 by 2100 To be accurate: Dow 59,179,774, on Dec.13,2116 (assuming a current Dow of 19870). I'm assuming 8% compounded annual returns in the stock market,. After all, that has been the case for the past 100 or so years, so in the long run we can count on that, right? &...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap alarm for a garage?
Replies: 11
Views: 1385

Re: Cheap alarm for a garage?

If you are concerned, just put up an official looking printed sign saying "This property protected by ________ Security Systems". Or one saying "Beware of Dog". I would guess that either would work just as well as an alarm. Maybe better (though admittedly uglier). As per other po...
by protagonist
Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Being a Private Banking Client Worth it?
Replies: 97
Views: 20940

Re: Is Being a Private Banking Client Worth it?

I asked a rep at Chase if I could open an account in order to make myself eligible for the Sapphire Reserve card and take advantage of a deposit promo offer, and he asked if I want to be a private client. I said sure. I am supposed to deposit $250K within a year. That was in August. I only have $180...

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