Search found 43 matches

by stimulacra
Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What is the portfolio role of a leveraged bond fund like PONDX?
Replies: 42
Views: 1307

Re: What is the portfolio role of a leveraged bond fund like PONDX?

Seems like you could use it to try to emulate Ray Dalio's Risk Parity (or All Weather) portfolio. If I understand correctly, all weather portfolios try to equalize risk by underweighting equities (Say 30 or 35% allocation). Bonds are somewhere in the neighborhood of 40-50%. To help juice up returns ...
by stimulacra
Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2018 Subaru Outback with 3 car seats vs. other car/suv options
Replies: 62
Views: 2927

Re: 2018 Subaru Outback with 3 car seats vs. other car/suv options

I've never understood why people are reluctant to buy Subarus. The company has a pretty admirable business model, they always rank highly in auto reviews, and for 4wd cars they are incredibly efficient. CVT is a totally reliable transmission that basically just exists to get more mpg's. I own a Sub...
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 25, 2017 4:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emerging market funds
Replies: 30
Views: 1846

Re: Emerging market funds

I use VEMAX (Vanguard Emerging Markets Admiral Shares) to tilt (10%). It's done well for me this past year. Emerging Markets is part of my overall allocation strategy so if it does well, great. If it does poorly I just buy more of it with new money. I think the overall trend is that EM will do reall...
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 25, 2017 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2018 Subaru Outback with 3 car seats vs. other car/suv options
Replies: 62
Views: 2927

Re: 2018 Subaru Outback with 3 car seats vs. other car/suv options

Didn't realize this would be in NYC…  With that in mind my top three choices would be: 1) 2017 Mazda CX-5: They just had a nice mid-cycle refresh so you get a sharper newer visual design but all of the major platform bugs have been shaken out. 2) 4th or 5th gen Honda CR-V: I'm still on the fence abo...
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 25, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2018 Subaru Outback with 3 car seats vs. other car/suv options
Replies: 62
Views: 2927

Re: 2018 Subaru Outback with 3 car seats vs. other car/suv options

With three kids I would reconsider adding a minivan to your consideration list. Rent one for the weekend. School age kids LOVE them, especially great for transporting their friends and cousins around… their value becomes apparent when doing multi-stop errands around town with multiple kids in tow; l...
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 25, 2017 10:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?
Replies: 48
Views: 1885

Re: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?

“--->$7k remains on one car loan @ 5.95% (2004 suv - trade-in would be $7k)” I would ditch this car and get a $1-2k beater ride for whoever doesn't need to transport kids around… a year from now you'll be in a better spot I think. If possible, maybe consider being a 1-car family for a short time… in...
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 25, 2017 9:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?
Replies: 48
Views: 1885

Re: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?

What's your car situation?

If driving a $40k 3-row SUV, I would consider downsizing to get rid of the car note.

There's a nice glut of reliable late model vehicles to consider.
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 25, 2017 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?
Replies: 48
Views: 1885

Re: Pausing 401k to Pay Debts?

If servicing your debt takes up (at minimum) a third of your income I would hit pause on the 401k contributions/employer match until at least all of your consumer debt (cc and car) is paid off. Your situation would be a good candidate for Dave Ramsey's 7 Baby Steps. His snowball approach (paying the...
by stimulacra
Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investing Education and Mansplaining
Replies: 115
Views: 5644

Re: Investing Education and Mansplaining

Sounds like a market opportunity IMHO…  If someone can successfully package Jack Bogle's advice for millennials… (VICE, BuzzFeed) it would be a huge hit. I feel like Mr. Money Moustache (blog) or Rachel Cruze (Dave Ramsey's daughter) are tackling some of the lifestyle/thrift aspects of it but we hav...
by stimulacra
Fri Jul 21, 2017 2:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 1400
Views: 247248

Re: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]

http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article162679638.html I heard that CalSTRS was up 13% for the year and that prompted me to look. I was surprised to find out I'm up 11.16% YTD, which is right around where you are. I'm surprised many other folks are only reporting mid ...
by stimulacra
Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 1400
Views: 247248

Re: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]

10.9% YTD

75% stocks
20% bonds
5% gold
by stimulacra
Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New compact hatchback or used small SUV?
Replies: 17
Views: 1853

Re: New compact hatchback or used small SUV?

Now my questions: 1) Any experience with replacing a minivan with a small SUV such as RAV4 or Honda CR-V? It will take over the role of Corolla and a minivan because I want to keep Accord as nice and long as possible. In other words, it should be small and occasionally handy for trips to Home Depot...
by stimulacra
Mon Jun 26, 2017 4:50 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Houston Chapter
Replies: 41
Views: 8793

Re: Houston Chapter

Hi, interested in meeting up with likeminded folks in Houston. Live in Montrose, work in Spring Branch.

Feel free to inbox. :)
by stimulacra
Sun Jun 25, 2017 11:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Favorite Vanguard Fund
Replies: 56
Views: 6620

Re: Your Favorite Vanguard Fund

“A warrior should not have a favorite sword” ~ Miyamoto Musashi If you read Musashi's “A Book of Five Rings” there's numerous stories of swordsmen who make the deadly mistake of relying on a favorite weapon or trying to replicate a previous success during a sword fight. I don't think investing is as...
by stimulacra
Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: is offering this [Vanguard] website feature feasible?
Replies: 29
Views: 2081

Re: is offering this [Vanguard] website feature feasible?

My understanding is that Vanguard wants investor to buy the whole market, or broad sectors of it, and hold it over time. By providing an X-ray tool to let passive investors zoom in on individual tickers within each fund, or across multiple funds, and parse out the info, that seems like a distraction...
by stimulacra
Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: is offering this [Vanguard] website feature feasible?
Replies: 29
Views: 2081

Re: is offering this [Vanguard] website feature feasible?

I use a similar free service from T.Rowe Price (Portfolio X-Ray) that does an individual security breakdown as a % of investments as well as market value of each security whether held individually or within an active or passive mutual fund, so I think it is feasible and possible. Does it make sense ...
by stimulacra
Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good camera - new baby coming
Replies: 61
Views: 3750

Re: Good camera - new baby coming

I was in a similar boat to you when our daughter was born. Ended up getting a Canon 60D with some lenses to help capture all of her first milestones. That was back in 2010 so I think the current model to get would be the Canon EOS 80D dSLR (it should be around $1100 - 1200 for a decent kit), Canon 7...
by stimulacra
Thu Jun 15, 2017 11:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?
Replies: 127
Views: 13380

Re: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?

Yes, I was in the same boat for a bit. My solution was to allocate 20% of my equities to individual stocks, to the extent possible I try to minimize overlap with my core holdings but I'm sure there is some. Others might disagree but it keeps me entertained and engaged in investing. It's not like I'm...
by stimulacra
Wed Jun 14, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trust Fund Hell
Replies: 66
Views: 8056

Re: Trust Fund Hell

No I didn't bake in AUM, I figured a trust fund is a trust fund and the AUM fees would be similar regardless of the asset allocation or fund makeup.

The Boglehead 3-fund model I used:

VTSMX: 50%
VGTSX: 30%
VBMFX: 20%
by stimulacra
Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trust Fund Hell
Replies: 66
Views: 8056

Re: Trust Fund Hell

Trust Fund Hell in blue.

Boglehead 3-fund in red.

The trust fund outperformed the S&P 500 during the time frame that matches your adopted daughter's time window… It could have been worse.

Image
by stimulacra
Mon Jun 12, 2017 9:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which IPAD?
Replies: 48
Views: 3593

Re: which IPAD?

If coming from a first or second gen iPad I would strongly consider looking at the refurbished inventory sold directly by Apple: http://apple.co/2sff2I8 I've shopped them in the past and other than more generic cardboard packaging they are indistinguishable from new Apple products and come with the ...
by stimulacra
Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worth it to buy expensive clothes?
Replies: 92
Views: 8957

Re: Worth it to buy expensive clothes?

My entire work wardrobe consists entirely of Allen Edmonds (shoes and belts), Brooks Brothers OCBD, J Crew slacks and blazers, and for more casual days, Clarks desert boots and Levis 501 denim. In my view, it's drastically simplified my life, it takes me 5 minutes to get ready in the morning. There'...
by stimulacra
Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Mid-Cap Value Index Fund Admiral
Replies: 12
Views: 1216

Re: Vanguard Mid-Cap Value Index Fund Admiral

I hold some at about 5% of my total portfolio. It's done well in the past, it might do well in the future.

I have it for tilt (ditto with Small-Cap Value and Emerging Market) but other than that I don't pay too much attention to it except during rebalancing.
by stimulacra
Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Owe $4k in taxes / Got $4k room left in IRA contribution limit
Replies: 6
Views: 984

Re: Owe $4k in taxes / Got $4k room left in IRA contribution limit

Just filed my taxes today. Was able to take more deductions than I initially thought.

Ended up maxing out my IRA for 2016 and owing the IRS $700 in taxes.

Definitely intend to max out all available tax-advantaged accounts for the remainder of 2017.

I appreciate everyone's feedback.
by stimulacra
Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Apple breaks its silence
Replies: 24
Views: 4538

Re: Apple breaks its silence

Yes, only. 10% is quite a small portion (though not insignificant) of their business. and if Mac pro is 10% of 10% (don't know where that number came from) well then... it is almost insignificant to them. :beer From the Daring Fireball website: “Even among pro users, notebooks are by far the most p...
by stimulacra
Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Apple breaks its silence
Replies: 24
Views: 4538

Re: Apple breaks its silence

Yeah I read that if Apple spun off its Mac division (aka Lenovo) it would be a Fortune 100 company in its own right. A big part of this is Apple's organizational structure, it's very functional in nature versus the typical conglomerate (divisional) structure for a company it's size. It allows it to ...
by stimulacra
Tue Apr 04, 2017 5:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Apple breaks its silence
Replies: 24
Views: 4538

Re: Apple breaks its silence

I think the halo effect of Apple's Mac desktop line has EVERYTHING to do with their little kimono lift with Mac bloggers and tech influencers. True, the Mac Pro might represent a less than 10% of all Macs sold, which themselves are only a small fraction of all Apple devices sold, but I think they're...
by stimulacra
Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is anyone decreasing % of bonds this year?
Replies: 91
Views: 7714

Re: Is anyone decreasing % of bonds this year?

Increasing. From 25% to 30%.

Split between Total bonds and corporate. Might do TIPs for 1/3.
by stimulacra
Mon Apr 03, 2017 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Low-earners- What is your profession?
Replies: 262
Views: 26003

Re: Low-earners- What is your profession?

Graphic designer, $80k/year, living near downtown Houston.
by stimulacra
Thu Mar 30, 2017 10:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Currently have $700,000 at 26 years old get $100,000 a year
Replies: 80
Views: 11802

Re: Currently have $700,000 at 26 years old get $100,000 a year

I'm not working toward a career right now. I'm just enjoying the things I enjoy doing, which isn't anything extravagant (Starbucks, browsing the web, making music playlists on YouTube, dating and trying to find a girlfriend, staying in shape, and so on) Financially it looks like you're set. I think...
by stimulacra
Thu Mar 09, 2017 2:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Owe $4k in taxes / Got $4k room left in IRA contribution limit
Replies: 6
Views: 984

Re: Owe $4k in taxes / Got $4k room left in IRA contribution limit

Can you just transfer the money from your (of course you have one...) emergency fund and then build that back up over the year, kind of repurposing it? I think that's my plan. I've already dipped into it twice already this year (auto repair / overseas remittance) and was replenishing it slowly. In ...
by stimulacra
Thu Mar 09, 2017 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Owe $4k in taxes / Got $4k room left in IRA contribution limit
Replies: 6
Views: 984

Owe $4k in taxes / Got $4k room left in IRA contribution limit

Hi everyone. That time of the year again. I didn't withhold enough from my taxes for 2016 so owe roughly $4k in taxes. Trying to maximize all my deductions and it looks like if I maximize my contributions to my traditional IRA (I've contributed $1,500 in 2016) it'll roughly cut my tax bill by a thir...
by stimulacra
Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did you buy SNAP?
Replies: 116
Views: 10590

Re: Did you buy SNAP?

SnapChat doesn't really offer anything that Facebook won't offer in the very near future but with larger network effects. My 14 year old loves snapchat, and has less than zero interest in facebook. Facebook is for 40 year olds. I don't see how snapchat will monetize their eyeballs, and in 8 years, ...
by stimulacra
Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did you buy SNAP?
Replies: 116
Views: 10590

Re: Did you buy SNAP?

No. Seems way overvalued for what you're getting. Zero voting rights. SnapChat doesn't really offer anything that Facebook won't offer in the very near future but with larger network effects. If I had play money to deploy I would probably be looking at some tech or retail tickers that's been having ...
by stimulacra
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emerging Market Bonds: Is there any reason to choose VGAVX over VWOB?
Replies: 1
Views: 221

Emerging Market Bonds: Is there any reason to choose VGAVX over VWOB?

Greetings, I'm interested in purchasing Vanguard Emerging Markets Government Bond Index Fund Admiral Shares (VGAVX) but it has a purchasing fee of 0.75% in addition to the 0.35% expense ratio. The ETF equivalent appears to not have that fee. Should I go with the ETF version instead? For index funds ...
by stimulacra
Wed Feb 22, 2017 11:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does anyone own gold?
Replies: 114
Views: 10273

Re: Does anyone own gold?

Yes, 3% in ETF form (GLD) 3% in bullion form 6% of total allocation. As the value goes up or down, I rebalance whenever I need to (easier to do with the ETF). I use it as a hedge in my portfolio… insurance policy against catastrophe. I have no emotional investment in it past that. It helps me stay t...
by stimulacra
Tue Jan 31, 2017 11:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: what do you do to avoid the advertising noise?
Replies: 45
Views: 2761

Re: what do you do to avoid the advertising noise?

I use multiple browsers. Each browser has a specific role and function that works for me: 1) Safari: Logged in to Facebook and other SM profiles. Also used for checking financial accounts and various Apple/iCloud services. Default search engine here is DuckDuckGo, will only use Google if I want to l...
by stimulacra
Fri Jan 27, 2017 4:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The market knows, except for mutual funds
Replies: 39
Views: 3668

Re: The market knows, except for mutual funds

The phrase “picking up nickels in front of steamrollers” comes to mind.

How would you know if a price decline on a security was just a momentary blip or something more intrinsic to the underlying business? How would you be able to act on it in time?
by stimulacra
Thu Jan 12, 2017 6:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: VW Diesel Buyback -- how fast?
Replies: 13
Views: 1410

Re: VW Diesel Buyback -- how fast?

Completed the paperwork earlier this week and uploaded it. Got a dealership date to turn my car in on February 16th. The car (2012 Passat TDI) is parked at my apartment till then. Ended up getting a 6 year old Audi station wagon to drive around. The whole process dragged on from my POV, a lot of it ...
by stimulacra
Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your age, asset allocation and total return year to date?
Replies: 15
Views: 1381

Re: What is your age, asset allocation and total return year to date?

kosomoto wrote:My return:
According to the Vanguard personal performance page my return was 10.6% but that seems too high. Does anybody know how to read it properly?


That's probably “Since Inception”

You can toggle the view underneath the graph to show 1 year or YTD.
by stimulacra
Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Good time for VGPMX? [Vanguard Precious Metals And Mining]
Replies: 18
Views: 2085

Re: Good time for VGPMX? [Vanguard Precious Metals And Mining]

I've owned it in the past (3% weighting), didn't seem to offer any value in my portfolio at the time (Employer 401k). Switched over to Gold ETF's (GLD, IAU) at 5% weighting and it does offer a reassuring counterbalance to stocks and bonds (enough for me to sleep well at night). Thinking about eventu...

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