Search found 480 matches

by ray.james
Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Plan on your Credit Card Getting Hacked once a year....Some Tips....
Replies: 51
Views: 1746

Re: Plan on your Credit Card Getting Hacked once a year....Some Tips....

Rob5TCP wrote:Security measures:
1. scratched out the 3 digit code on the back of the card - so it can not be used online.


You will remember the pin for this particular card or all? Interesting idea.
by ray.james
Fri Feb 05, 2016 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Payoff debt with Roth?
Replies: 19
Views: 686

Re: Payoff debt with Roth?

I did this few years ago to payoff a private note at 11% from Roth. But I regret it now looking back. Roth space is very valuable at least at young age. It would have been paid off anyway in 7 additional months(~1k interest.) I would do this analysis: What time does it take to payoff soonest and how...
by ray.james
Thu Feb 04, 2016 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Saving for down payment
Replies: 43
Views: 2364

Re: Saving for down payment

Every time I got a super power pellet, I would try to time the ghost transition to get as many as I could before they changed back. Trying to skim the edge of time at the end got me killed more often than anything else. I got greedy and screwed the whole thing up. Taking an extra 6 month lease soun...
by ray.james
Thu Feb 04, 2016 3:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Am I getting a bad deal from my financial planner?]
Replies: 58
Views: 3957

Re: Am I getting screwed?

Your adviser was nice enough to pad his pockets first. Do you realize all those funds have a 5.75% front load? Basically if you invested $10k on day one, later on day one 5.75% of that was pulled right out of your pockets and into the pockets of American Funds and your adviser. Ahh that makes sense...
by ray.james
Thu Feb 04, 2016 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Don’t Be Hacker Bait
Replies: 12
Views: 1955

Re: Don’t Be Hacker Bait

There isn't usually any significant financial information in emails you receive. My credit cards sometimes mention minimum dollar amounts due, or alerts if unusual transaction pattern starts. My credit union sends me alerts on my checking account balance per my setting it up; I could turn this off....
by ray.james
Thu Feb 04, 2016 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Don’t Be Hacker Bait
Replies: 12
Views: 1955

Re: Don’t Be Hacker Bait

Thank you. I have started using password manager since a week for financial and social media. I think it is a matter of "when" for online security to be broken at some point. Better be safe. I am interested in 1 more thing if members here have found solution. I have 1-3 emails but they are...
by ray.james
Tue Feb 02, 2016 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Saving for down payment
Replies: 43
Views: 2364

Re: Saving for down payment

Rent can be insanely expensive in HCOL areas. Last I checked, going rate for 2B/2B apartments in our area is $3,000+/mo. I haven't actually seen any single family houses for rent lately. Between spending $3K in rent or $3K in PITI for a similar condo/townhouse for $500K (possibly $2K effective beca...
by ray.james
Tue Feb 02, 2016 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Saving for down payment
Replies: 43
Views: 2364

Re: Saving for down payment

Op, if you need only few months to get to the 20% I would reduce current contributions. A partial year /1 year lower 401k contributions is not a big deal. This is better than on hook for 401k loan due to job changes. There are very few cases where 401k loans make sense. Eg.,One has money but to pool...
by ray.james
Tue Feb 02, 2016 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Saving for down payment
Replies: 43
Views: 2364

Re: Saving for down payment

Rent can be insanely expensive in HCOL areas. Last I checked, going rate for 2B/2B apartments in our area is $3,000+/mo. I haven't actually seen any single family houses for rent lately. Between spending $3K in rent or $3K in PITI for a similar condo/townhouse for $500K (possibly $2K effective beca...
by ray.james
Thu Jan 28, 2016 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which news source do you use?
Replies: 67
Views: 4226

Re: Which news source do you use?

I think it is really hard to find one that does not have bias. Even with bias, if they do a good job of separating news and opinion articles; I am all up for it. Most of the time I find either news are biased. The better ones have unbiased news but "forget" to mention history or relative f...
by ray.james
Wed Jan 27, 2016 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How are we doing - Please advice
Replies: 6
Views: 658

Re: How are we doing - Please advice

Annafin, You current 401k plan seems good. You could use a lifestrategy funds - Conservative growth (60/40) for you roth ira.(Fidelity has similar funds.) Savings ahead: Max out your 401k since this is the best tax deduction you can take now. Between tax savings, match and compounding it will grow s...
by ray.james
Wed Jan 27, 2016 2:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How are we doing - Please advice
Replies: 6
Views: 658

Re: How are we doing - Please advice

FiveK wrote:Just checking to see the basis for choosing an 11% contribution rate.


Probably, they are close to contribution limits at that income level.
by ray.james
Wed Jan 27, 2016 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: perfectly happy with cable
Replies: 123
Views: 6065

Re: perfectly happy with cable

Purpose of thread, I suppose, was to see if there are indeed other options for sports. There are ways to watch the rest through various devices and services, though it sounds complicated. We only have one TV so some of the problems described with multiple devices would not be a barrier. Have though...
by ray.james
Thu Jan 21, 2016 1:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy a house with pool & What to look for?
Replies: 20
Views: 1606

Re: Buy a house with pool & What to look for?

Thank you all for the responses. I have to read up quite a bit to understand more on this. The pool is gunite/15 years old. Seems to be very well maintained on physical inspection. The pool is non heated, so pretty much summer use. The winters are too cold to have a water dip.(but no snow). I always...
by ray.james
Wed Jan 20, 2016 4:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 2690
Views: 533735

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

dbCooperAir wrote:Its the biggest sale of the year and everyone is running out of the building :twisted:


lol! what a see-saw day.
by ray.james
Tue Jan 19, 2016 11:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: It sure looks like a good time to invest in oil
Replies: 80
Views: 7759

Re: It sure looks like a good time to invest in oil

The last time this happened large caps swallowed mid and small players in the segment at a bargain price. At 20$ there will be some defaults. Bank of America reported their results today. They increased loss provision by 32% to account for falling energy prices. Same with Wells Fargo. I read in an a...
by ray.james
Tue Jan 19, 2016 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy a house with pool & What to look for?
Replies: 20
Views: 1606

Buy a house with pool & What to look for?

we were looking for starting home, mainly 3bed/2bath condos/townhouses. While exploring few open houses, we came across a SFH house that is on market for 4 months. It has a full backyard pool, which I think is the big reason for the slow sale/discount. This house is built in 1970's. I have no experi...
by ray.james
Tue Jan 19, 2016 4:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Investing] Things that would/will never happen in your lifetime
Replies: 43
Views: 5175

Re: [Investing] Things that would/will never happen in your lifetime

I thought that supply and demand scale will help maintain education expenses. My alma mater raised tuition rates but I thought it might be close to end; since there are states that were cheaper but similarly ranked/reputation schools. 7 years later now, tuition is 50% more than what I paid. Inflatio...
by ray.james
Fri Jan 15, 2016 4:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: here it came "capitulation day" ...today
Replies: 3
Views: 1047

Re: HERE IT CAME "CAPITULATION DAY" ...TODAY

livesoft wrote:I will state without proof that Fridays are rarely a capitulation day. What happens is that folks look at their portfolios over the weekend and say "OMG!", then on Monday something happens.


^Indeed. And a whole week to make the less nervous people turning up more nervous.
by ray.james
Fri Jan 15, 2016 2:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm Calling an Emerging Markets Bottom
Replies: 127
Views: 12388

Re: I'm Calling an Emerging Markets Bottom

Grap, where are you seeing these numbers? On morning star I see FP/E of 11.71. The only way to get trailing PEs in Morningstar to my knowledge is to set up a free portfolio and look under the "My view" tab and add the trailing 1 year PE as a metric you'd like to include. I see the followi...
by ray.james
Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm Calling an Emerging Markets Bottom
Replies: 127
Views: 12388

Re: I'm Calling an Emerging Markets Bottom

Yeah, looks like the crowds are certainly heading for the exits, though I am not seeing total chaos yet. But it's attractive enough for me to start buying at this point and if it moves further down, consistent with topping off my allocation targets a little early. Good luck ladies and gentlemen. Ri...
by ray.james
Fri Jan 15, 2016 12:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 2690
Views: 533735

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

Regarding Roth conversions in a down market, is it possible to designate specific lot IDs to do this to take advantage of lowest cost-basis at conversion? I am not sure this question makes any sense. If it does, the answer is surely "No". No one keeps track of tax lots in any accounts you...
by ray.james
Thu Jan 14, 2016 4:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets: Yes or No?
Replies: 75
Views: 8162

Re: Emerging Markets: Yes or No?

But isn't this young population just as likely to want to buy western goods? What western goods? The only things that I am aware of that are made in the USA are cruise missiles, bombs, and fighter planes. What a ridiculous statement. The U.S. is the world's second largest exporting nation, after Ch...
by ray.james
Thu Jan 14, 2016 2:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets: Yes or No?
Replies: 75
Views: 8162

Re: Emerging Markets: Yes or No?

Internationals and most EM's(except china/brazil) have had a flat year. We see losses due to dollar index changes. Ignoring currency changes will alter the returns entirely. The dollar strength also moves in cycles(due to resources pricing by business cycles, inflation differences, QE) and I think w...
by ray.james
Tue Jan 12, 2016 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Sigh. IlliniDave = Market Timer (VGENX) [Vanguard Energy Fund]
Replies: 29
Views: 3281

Re: Sigh. IlliniDave = Market Timer (VGENX)

I am looking at oil too. It slightly surprises me that so far no companies have shown signs of crushing under debt load. I will wait for little more blood before loading up on oil.
by ray.james
Tue Jan 12, 2016 2:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm curious if over-weighting equity investors still ok?
Replies: 92
Views: 6559

Re: I'm curious if over-weighting equity investors still ok?

It seems many Bogleheads have recently dismissed age-in-bonds as overly conservative. Some have, arguably, found inventive ways to justify over-weighting stocks, such as counting pension/social security/house/potential inheritance as part of the bond allocation. As an age-in-bonds guy who has passe...
by ray.james
Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct 2015
Replies: 34
Views: 3506

Re: TaxAct 2015

This thread is now in the Personal Finance (Not Investing) forum (tax software). I also retitled the thread - the company name is "TaxAct". Somehow, I missed the early promotional pricing. Moving forward, the Download pricing shows that the product I need ("Plus" = 1040 + state)...
by ray.james
Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Real Estate vs. The Stock Market
Replies: 38
Views: 2449

Re: NY Real Estate vs. The Stock Market

Abe wrote:
I used 27.33 years.

Ah! my bad. Back to excel. Thanks.
I did the second one with mortgage correctly at 15 + 12.3.
by ray.james
Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Real Estate vs. The Stock Market
Replies: 38
Views: 2449

Re: NY Real Estate vs. The Stock Market

Well, from Aug 1988 to Dec 2015 the S&P 500 returned 10.095% with dividends reinvested according to an online calculator. During the same time period (27.33 years) your parents house appreciated from $180k to 1.2 million for a return of 7.19%, assuming they paid all cash for the house. 7.19% : ...
by ray.james
Fri Jan 08, 2016 5:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just made IRA contribution, then converted to Roth... for my wife
Replies: 27
Views: 1905

Re: Just made IRA contribution, then converted to Roth... for my wife

Yeah same in our case. My wife did not even have a credit card when we married. Not a big deal. Over time I am getting her accustomed to small things. She handles at least 1 bill (cable) on her own credit card with auto pay from our account. I plan to get her upto date with basics slowly. We do have...
by ray.james
Wed Jan 06, 2016 4:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth vs Traditional + Taxable vs ...
Replies: 47
Views: 2560

Re: Roth vs Traditional + Taxable vs ...

To throw in the mix, it also matters how far you are from retirement, especially for those who might be in 15-25 bracket ranges. 1) A dollar in Roth when one is 30 years from retirement vs a year before retirement is not the same. The compounding effect is somewhat interesting. side note: while math...
by ray.james
Wed Jan 06, 2016 2:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 2690
Views: 533735

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

It is disheartening, if I have to TLH emerging markets again :?
Between dividends and EPS growth, international small cap was at least doing OK.
by ray.james
Tue Jan 05, 2016 11:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CA HSA Investing for Dummies
Replies: 3
Views: 360

Re: CA HSA Investing for Dummies

I would love to see an answer for this. On personal level I was thinking of using treasury bond fund. It still needs to be reported for taxes - just the interest but tax exempt. A CA bond fund might also work. I figured bond funds won't have that much gains/losses to be worried too much about tax ga...
by ray.james
Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: At what age did you stop reinvesting dividends?
Replies: 45
Views: 4403

Re: At what age did you stop reinvesting dividends?

Early 30s ... when I realized it simplified tax tracking and tax loss harvesting, and made it easier to rebalance, treating any money temporarily dumped into a money market account as a 'cash' (zero-duration bond) portion of my fixed-income allocation. I know that's not your question exactly, but i...
by ray.james
Mon Jan 04, 2016 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 2690
Views: 533735

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

I go back and read this awesome post by Nisi on days like this. Tell myself international is going to come back :D :( :D :(

http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=79939
by ray.james
Wed Dec 23, 2015 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is your savings rate?
Replies: 146
Views: 15098

Re: What is your savings rate?

I find it ironic that Jack Bogle, who has given away a lot of his money (about 50% after expenses) throughout his life, and who wrote a book called "Enough", has a website named after him which is full of high-income earners who primarily talk about and think about money saved for themsel...
by ray.james
Wed Dec 23, 2015 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is your savings rate?
Replies: 146
Views: 15098

Re: What is your savings rate?

We try to peg our lifestyle inflation/target savings to this formula and have been happy:
33% saving
33% expenditure(incl rent 100% or 60% PITI)
33% taxes
by ray.james
Tue Dec 22, 2015 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest lucky break in your personal finances?
Replies: 160
Views: 12128

Re: Biggest lucky break in your personal finances?

A research funded opportunity to do my engineering degree at a great school. I thought I was shooting in the dark as I am/was just an OK kid. By graduation time, it changed the floor & roof of my thoughts, personal outlook, relationships, friends circle and starting career completely. Frugality ...
by ray.james
Tue Dec 22, 2015 3:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Developed Markets Index fund dividend down ~24%
Replies: 14
Views: 1839

Re: Developed Markets Index fund dividend down ~24%

US dollar index, went up 15%(standard USD index against 6 large currencies). So I would be extremely surprised, if dividend's did not go down. The surprise is the emerging markets which went down only 6%. I thought Russia RUB(lost 25%), Brazil BRL(lost 80%) had a huge currency devaluation this year....
by ray.james
Fri Dec 18, 2015 6:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Real-life, real-time wash sale & TLH documented
Replies: 86
Views: 6769

Re: Real-life, real-time wash sale & TLH documented

Livesoft,
thanks much for this thread. While over time I remember more rules/become familiar, a picture/demo adds a lot to the memory and understanding the underlying situation.
Thank you.
by ray.james
Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying $795,000 Home
Replies: 37
Views: 4787

Re: Buying $795,000 Home

For a mortgage that high, sometimes ARM pays off. However I would not do the 7/1 year arm. Either a 10-10-10 or 15-15 arm. These products are not available everywhere but mostly come with 15 year interest rate. You pay less monthly than 30 year fixed but can do an additional payment to paydown faste...
by ray.james
Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Accruing Credit Card Points & Miles on Autopilot?
Replies: 18
Views: 1666

Re: Accruing Credit Card Points & Miles on Autopilot?

I am slightly with similar mindset. Manufactures spending/credit card churning is too much work. I use citi 2% + BOFA preferred rewards(5.25% gas, 3.5 grocery, 2.625 on travel card for everything)(Merrill edge account with 100K will work :) ) The additional thing I do is once a fortnight, login to c...
by ray.james
Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can I afford a BMW i8 priced at ~150k?
Replies: 64
Views: 4926

Re: Can I afford a BMW i8 priced at ~150k?

130K lost at 32 years old with out compounding for 30 years is a lot of money. Perhaps there is a compromise vehicle a Tesla S or Used R8 spyder for 70K? Also the new BMW is very hot right now. Some dealers are charging 25K premium. >>You could get a lightly used Gallardo/Aston Martin V8 much cheape...
by ray.james
Mon Dec 14, 2015 1:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Check-In on Emerging Market Sentiment
Replies: 57
Views: 4751

Re: Check-In on Emerging Market Sentiment

Latest GMO quarterly update does talk about EM in specific and also the economist article. I guess I better get around to reading that, got the email notification a couple days ago. . Here is the link: https://www.gmo.com/docs/default-source/public-commentary/gmo-quarterly-letter.pdf No more procra...
by ray.james
Fri Dec 11, 2015 8:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do I have enough for financial independence?
Replies: 32
Views: 5181

Re: Do I have enough for financial independence?

Sad for your job loss, but I think you have a great cushion to start your retirement. I also feel given you handle, you love the boat and the activities it brings. Enjoy it while you physically can. May sell at a later stage but right now there is enough money. :) We also do not know your AA, but wo...
by ray.james
Fri Dec 11, 2015 8:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Check-In on Emerging Market Sentiment
Replies: 57
Views: 4751

Re: Check-In on Emerging Market Sentiment

Latest GMO quarterly update does talk about EM in specific and also the economist article. Personally after last TLH in Emerging markets 2 months ago, I am a bit overweight. VSS+ VEMAX(small cap international & emerging markets ) make up 35% of my total portfolio. I hold no large cap internation...
by ray.james
Tue Dec 08, 2015 2:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bogleheads Hall of Fame
Replies: 35
Views: 3520

Re: Bogleheads Hall of Fame

I would actually say, along with above, one of the KEY people to be there is our forum creators/moderators. While I agree books/blog is one medium, online resources like bogleheads forum/wiki have attracted many young people like me. At least I was born in a generation where google search is first s...
by ray.james
Mon Dec 07, 2015 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Restaurant Experience
Replies: 75
Views: 4747

Re: The Restaurant Experience

A few thoughts, When I was single, I spent $200-500 on eating out every month. Tried out a lot of new cuisines, but since I was with lot of single buddies, sharing appetizers etc. was fun way to try a lot of food. Now married, the costs do not scale so well :). we have come to realize over time some...
by ray.james
Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Childrens' Student Loans Delaying Retirement
Replies: 153
Views: 10056

Re: Childrens' Student Loans Delaying Retirement

However it is equally bad if parent doesn't encourage kid to go for better degree like science/engineering/technology ... I'm dying to know what makes those degrees "better." They would be terrible choices for people who aren't interested in those fields. Probabaly. I am not saying they a...

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