Search found 206 matches

by talzara
Sat Dec 10, 2016 12:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 403b choices - TIAA/Fidelity
Replies: 8
Views: 508

Re: 403b choices - TIAA/Fidelity

At the moment the crucial decision is between the NYSERS and ORP (also called a 401a). The first is the pension and so is a Defined Benefit Plan (DB) and the second is the Defined Contribution Plan (DC). NYSERS is 98% funded. The employer has to contribute 16% into NYSERS, but only 8-10% for ORP. T...
by talzara
Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where To Shop For Used Cars?
Replies: 20
Views: 1388

Re: Where To Shop For Used Cars?

Would avoid Craigslist. I just looked at CarMax's site, there are no CarMax's in NJ. Sure there are. The two Carmax stores in New Jersey are: ⋅  Maple Shade: https://www.carmax.com/stores/6011 ⋅  Sickerville: https://www.carmax.com/stores/7234 Both stores are in suburbs of Phila...
by talzara
Fri Dec 02, 2016 2:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?
Replies: 37
Views: 2497

Re: Vanguard ETFs Less Tax Efficient Than Other ETFs?

Vanguard is also allowed to redeem mutual funds in kind. It's not as good as an ETF's creation/redemption mechanism, but it does eliminate the realized gains from large, disruptive trades. Vanguard reserves the right to pay all or part of a redemption in kind—that is, in the form of securities—if we...
by talzara
Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term insurance without exam
Replies: 24
Views: 2193

Re: Term insurance without exam

That sounds alarming, but I don't think it's accurate. I have never come across a pharmacy selling a dataset of individualized prescription data. Conceivably, a pharmacy could ask a patient to sign a HIPAA-compliant release authorizing such information to be disclosed for this specific commercial p...
by talzara
Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term insurance without exam
Replies: 24
Views: 2193

Re: Term insurance without exam

I'm very interested in hearing more about this product. How do premiums compare? How young and healthy does a client have to be and how does one prove that without a medical exam? Haven Life uses the same premiums as Mass Mutual. The only difference is that the risk score is determined by the algor...
by talzara
Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term insurance without exam
Replies: 24
Views: 2193

Re: Term insurance without exam

Our daughter, who is a life actuary in NYC, knows an actuary who works for them and we have talked about them a little. They are trying to be a disruptor in the life business- if you poke around their website you definitely get that idea. The FAQs say they are an agency owned by MassMutual. Their d...
by talzara
Thu Nov 03, 2016 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Repair: Which Pipe for Water Service Replacement and Insurance Question
Replies: 12
Views: 1037

Re: Home Repair: Which Pipe for Water Service Replacement and Insurance Question

If I call my agent (I bought through an independent agent), would he/she also be able to estimate how much my premium would go up were I to make a claim? To take a stab at your last question, IME they will not even hazard a guess. In the past few years I have tried to get two different agents with ...
by talzara
Fri Oct 28, 2016 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2017 ACA plan previews
Replies: 172
Views: 11047

Re: 2017 ACA plan previews

lol, what a spin piece. Just looked up rates for a 30-year-old single person in Phoenix. Cheapest plan $395/month with $6800 deductible. Before ACA a 30-year-old could buy a similar plan for $50/month. Does anyone know any healthy 30-year-olds that are willing to pay $400/mo for a health insurance ...
by talzara
Wed Oct 26, 2016 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2017 ACA plan previews
Replies: 172
Views: 11047

Re: 2017 ACA plan previews

Health insurance is now a bigger payment than my mortgage payment. Yup.... same here - I'm looking to stop been self-employed mostly due to health "care"... talk about the tail wagging the dog :oops: The United States currently spends 17.5% of its GDP on healthcare. Historically, it has s...
by talzara
Wed Oct 26, 2016 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2017 ACA plan previews
Replies: 172
Views: 11047

Re: 2017 ACA plan previews

3) Young are being overcharged by a factor of 3X to make premiums more affordable for the old. Obviously if you are asked to pay 3 times the value for anything, you are going to resist buying it, to the degree that you can. Hence, a lot of young, healthy people are not signing up. Only in New York ...
by talzara
Wed Oct 26, 2016 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2017 ACA plan previews
Replies: 172
Views: 11047

Re: 2017 ACA plan previews

i am seriously considering starting a business with someone in the same boat as me, so that we could qualify for the better corporate policies. The purpose of the business would not be to make money, but to obtain quality insurance. Either that or my wife may need to get a job merely to get us dece...
by talzara
Sat Oct 08, 2016 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Matthew: Evacuation advice
Replies: 40
Views: 4224

Re: Hurricane Matthew: Evacuation advice

I'd think of moving out of FL after this is over. I'm not sure insurers will stick around and if so premiums will become exorbitant. It's so hot there. Move to New Jersey. Tomorrow the estate tax will be history and we have 4 seasons, have many professional and college sports teams, museums, etc a ...
by talzara
Thu Oct 06, 2016 10:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Matthew: Evacuation advice
Replies: 40
Views: 4224

Re: Hurricane Matthew: Evacuation advice

I'd think of moving out of FL after this is over. I'm not sure insurers will stick around and if so premiums will become exorbitant. It's so hot there. Move to New Jersey. Tomorrow the estate tax will be history and we have 4 seasons, have many professional and college sports teams, museums, etc a ...
by talzara
Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we switch to Amica & increase our Homeowners/Umbrella coverage?
Replies: 11
Views: 929

Re: Should we switch to Amica & increase our Homeowners/Umbrella coverage?

My primary concern concerning insurers would be how well they respond to claims if needed. Cost would be secondary, but also of concern. Had a neighbor with homeowners insurance through Auto-Owners Insurance with a six-digit claim that took more than a year to resolve and even then it was not to th...
by talzara
Fri Sep 16, 2016 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: An example of the value of a liability umbrella policy
Replies: 22
Views: 2546

Re: An example of the value of a liability umbrella policy

Here's a thought exercise. Let's say Umbrella is $250 year for $1m policy. For the same premium, one could buy a $400k Life policy. Which policy would provide "better" protection for yourself and your family, if you could only buy one policy? The only way to answer this is to have knowled...
by talzara
Fri Sep 09, 2016 2:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Use Stockbroker to Sell Foreign Stock?
Replies: 7
Views: 520

Re: How to Use Stockbroker to Sell Foreign Stock?

I suppose I would find out the trading symbols for the shares, then call or visit several brokers and ask. Most large brokers can probably do this but fees will vary and you'd want to get the best deal. At a minimum, ask about the account setup fees, share transfer fees, and fees or commissions for...
by talzara
Fri Sep 09, 2016 2:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Use Stockbroker to Sell Foreign Stock?
Replies: 7
Views: 520

Re: How to Use Stockbroker to Sell Foreign Stock?

I am helping my girlfriend's mom liquidate some of her late husband's holdings. Some of the shares are held by British companies (Equiniti and Capita), and they'll transfer the shares to mom's name. But they won't directly liquidate the assets - a stockbroker needs to do that. So, does that mean I'...
by talzara
Fri Sep 09, 2016 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attic Fan for Ventilation
Replies: 11
Views: 942

Re: Attic Fan for Ventilation

Attic ventilation fans rarely save energy:

Several studies show that even in a house with a tight ceiling, a powered attic ventilator uses more electricity than it saves.

http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/blo ... -they-hurt
by talzara
Fri Sep 09, 2016 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card After Death
Replies: 23
Views: 2450

Re: Credit Card After Death

Having said that, I'll bet credit cards can go on for years after the owner dies, if the secondary user continues making payments. They can, but it is not likely. 95% of deaths in the United States are recorded in the Social Security Death Master File. Banks subscribe to the Death Master File so th...
by talzara
Tue Sep 06, 2016 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bodily Injury Coverage
Replies: 9
Views: 949

Re: Bodily Injury Coverage

If I do raise my auto coverage, the only question I'm left with is whether it would make sense to lower my umbrella policy coverage by $1M? I had just recently raised it by $1M, but with $1M of auto coverage that might be excessive, absent any large non-auto risks. I'm trying to think of our possib...
by talzara
Tue Sep 06, 2016 3:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: My take on the passive investing is worse than Marxism
Replies: 25
Views: 4539

Re: My take on the passive investing is worse than Marxism

In fact, I don't mutual funds in the 1950s did stress beating the market, though, I wasn't financially conscious at the time and have no idea how mutual presented themselves. The mutual fund industry was very different in 1949, when Jack Bogle first heard of them. Here's what he had to say about th...
by talzara
Mon Sep 05, 2016 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella insurance?
Replies: 26
Views: 2717

Re: Umbrella insurance?

Bogle_Feet wrote:I wonder what the average total expense is when there is a payout, lawyers, etc.


Litigation expenses are included in the loss ratio.

The average severity for umbrella insurance claims is about $500,000.
by talzara
Mon Sep 05, 2016 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella insurance?
Replies: 26
Views: 2717

Re: Umbrella insurance?

We recently upped ours to 2M. Cost was just over $500. Coverage for 2 homes, 2 vehicles. I think cost is high. I'm told FL residents, which we are, pay more than most. My question is :does anyone actually use their umbrella? We know of no one. I keep thinking we're throwing $ away. :annoyed Umbrell...
by talzara
Sun Sep 04, 2016 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard mutual fund to ETF conversion: dividend considerations
Replies: 4
Views: 657

Re: Vanguard mutual fund to ETF conversion: dividend considerations

The record date for the mutual fund is always 4 business days before the record date for the ETF. This is very interesting because of how ETF shares work. ETF shares do not exist until they have been created. When they are created, the Authorized Participant becomes the holder of record. Someone who...
by talzara
Fri Sep 02, 2016 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Trying to open Vanguard, Stationed Overseas
Replies: 11
Views: 940

Re: Trying to open Vanguard, Stationed Overseas

You need a verifiable stateside address to use Vanguard (and most other US brokerage firms). Can you use a relative's address? When is your next stateside leave? No stateside address is required. Page 6 of the Brokerage Account Application says: Street address. Address can be military APO or FPO. I...
by talzara
Fri Sep 02, 2016 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Trying to open Vanguard, Stationed Overseas
Replies: 11
Views: 940

Re: Trying to open Vanguard, Stationed Overseas

You're stationed in Japan, so you should have decent Internet service. You can use Skype to make the phone call. U.S. toll-free numbers are free, and other U.S. numbers are 2.3 cents a minute. I can't send the mail in package because it requires a certified banking signature and USAA doesn't have an...
by talzara
Thu Sep 01, 2016 5:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Windows 10 Update error
Replies: 16
Views: 1124

Re: Windows 10 Update error

How do you know that Deltek GCS Premier 5.0 is incompatible with Windows 10 Anniversary? Deltek GCS Premier 5.0 was released in 2008 and required Windows 2000 Pro. You say you were running it before and after upgrading to Windows 10. That means the software runs on Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1...
by talzara
Sun Aug 28, 2016 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners should consider flood insurance
Replies: 78
Views: 6932

Re: Homeowners should consider flood insurance

I don't understand why everyone who has chosen not to buy flood insurance seems to be getting shouted down/reprimanded on this thread. There are certainly cases where flood insurance is a good value proposition...and cases where it's grossly over-priced, especially for someone who can self-insure. ...
by talzara
Sun Aug 28, 2016 5:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity competing harder w/Vanguard
Replies: 92
Views: 9184

Re: Fidelity competing harder w/Vanguard

I've noticed that the Fidelity funds underperform the Vanguard ones by around 2 basis points a year. I wonder if this is (in part) because Vanguard reinvests 100% of the net securities lending income into the fund and Fidelity does not. I do not think there is much transparency on the Fidelity side...
by talzara
Sun Aug 28, 2016 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners should consider flood insurance
Replies: 78
Views: 6932

Re: Homeowners should consider flood insurance

And all that paving is why the area of U.S. flood insurance zones jumped so much in the last three decades. :x In the U.S., it's a flood if three homes are impacted by one event. Pretty easy threshold to reach with all the asphalt. Even easier than that. The NFIP policy considers a flood to be two ...
by talzara
Sat Aug 27, 2016 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Farmer's insurance
Replies: 14
Views: 1010

Re: Farmer's insurance

Most large companies (and Farmers is one) have several "pricing tracks". The best risks get the cheapest rates - the worst get the highest. There are of course guidelines for where you wind up but it is not inconceivable that another agent could get you a better deal. This is usually done...
by talzara
Thu Aug 25, 2016 5:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowner's insurance question
Replies: 23
Views: 1849

Re: Homeowner's insurance question

Ah, I see said the blind man. Now, how do you go about finding out which method your insurer for H.O. uses? Can you just ask the agent, and believe what he says? :confused You can try the agent, but I don't know if you can believe what he says. The only way to know for sure is to look at the rate m...
by talzara
Thu Aug 25, 2016 5:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners should consider flood insurance
Replies: 78
Views: 6932

Re: Homeowners should consider flood insurance

An anecdote: I live in Colorado and was affected by the historic 1000 year flood in 2013. I'm not in a flood zone and don't have flood insurance. I made a claim to FEMA and my insurance, Allstate. FEMA gave me $800 if I recall, basically money for a tarp over my roof and some inconvenience. Allstat...
by talzara
Thu Aug 25, 2016 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowner's insurance question
Replies: 23
Views: 1849

Re: Homeowner's insurance question

But, what I never understood, you could have a hundred hydrants all around the property but service from a volunteer fire dept in the event a fire breaks out. Especially in the middle of the night. These unpaid volunteers have the same training and are just as dedicated to what they do as professio...
by talzara
Tue Aug 23, 2016 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA
Replies: 29
Views: 1760

Re: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA

Thanks for this additional info. As luck would have it - one of the lower quotes I just received is from a National (Preferred Mutual) although it only has a "A" rating on financial versus some others that have an "A+" or "A++". Since you seem so knowledgeable - can yo...
by talzara
Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA
Replies: 29
Views: 1760

Re: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA

That's my understanding as well. I'm not about to pay out an additional 30% just to go with a national provider. To some extent, the national insurers price themselves high because they want to protect their nationwide reserves. The regional can price lower because it can just go bankrupt. If it we...
by talzara
Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA
Replies: 29
Views: 1760

Re: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA

Is this true? I thought regional insurers (among others) used reinsurance to protect themselves against concentrated risks (regional or otherwise) so that in practice the risk described was substantially mitigated. I already mentioned reinsurance: Regional companies are riskier than national compan...
by talzara
Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners should consider flood insurance
Replies: 78
Views: 6932

Re: Homeowners should consider flood insurance

I not sure how the details of the program work but it sure seems that some insurance companies are working hard to keep the price tag down even though costs is ultimately paid by the federal government. Does anyone know if there is some incentive/kickback to the insurance companies for lowering cla...
by talzara
Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners should consider flood insurance
Replies: 78
Views: 6932

Re: Homeowners should consider flood insurance

I will never buy insurance from State Farm again, because I had to fight them tooth and nail for every dollar. Apparently that was their normal method of operation. I think the state even sued them. Mouses, was your flood insurance through State Farm or was it the National Flood Insurance Program t...
by talzara
Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA
Replies: 29
Views: 1760

Re: Homeowners insurance recommendations - MA

Massachusetts is unusual because it is dominated by regional insurance companies. 3 of the 5 largest homeowners insurers in Massachusetts are regional companies: ⋅  Mapfre (Commerce): New England ⋅  Liberty Mutual: national ⋅  Arbella: Massachusetts and Connecticut &sdo...
by talzara
Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt

It's not about choosing "one 403(b) provider ". The problem posed by these lawsuits involves "more than one administrator ". It is possible to have more than on provider, but have only one of them be the administrator. Our 403b plan started, as with most others, way back with on...
by talzara
Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt

I wish PhD students had retirement plans! Postdocs not even, sometimes (especially the NSF/NIH ones, which don't even count for Roth-eligible income). I wouldn't assume MIT offers much of anything to PhD students; I am at a comparable institution and there is nothing. You got me. I was just trying ...
by talzara
Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt

One aspect of cases not mentioned, that universities used several administrators. I never heard of such a thing, always thought a plan had one administrator. It obviously drives up costs to participants. Question is why they used several? For the most part, "several administrators" means ...
by talzara
Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: State imposes fine for underwitholding after a Roth conversion
Replies: 11
Views: 1080

Re: State imposes fine for underwitholding after a Roth conversion

I'd like to avoid this as I plan to convert small amounts over the next few years. Maybe I'll try converting in December next year if you think this will help. State taxes are coming out of my pay at the highest rate. That's not enough to avoid an underpayment penalty. If your state follows the fed...
by talzara
Fri Aug 19, 2016 9:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt

Schlichter has filed suit against Columbia, Cornell, Northwestern, and USC. The law firm of Schlichter, Bogard & Denton has filed four more lawsuits against major universities for excessive fees in its 403(b) plans. Cornell University, Columbia University, Northwestern University and the Univers...
by talzara
Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: Update: & Columbia - Re: New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt

And now... Columbia: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sanford-heisler-files-one-hundred-million-dollar-erisa-class-action-against-columbia-university-on-behalf-of-27000-retirement-plan-beneficiaries-300314358.html This one is a Jane Doe, and the funds are at TIAA, and interestingly, it speci...
by talzara
Sun Aug 14, 2016 5:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CREF variable annuity in 403(b) -- any reason to pay the high expense ratio?
Replies: 34
Views: 1598

Re: CREF variable annuity in 403(b) -- any reason to pay the high expense ratio?

Another thing to keep in mind is that the OP is talking about his sister , and TIAA annuities are gender-neutral, whereas most (all?) retail annuities available on the open market would decrease her annuity payouts for being female due to actuarial likelihood of greater longevity. So the option val...
by talzara
Sun Aug 14, 2016 3:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: New Fiduciary cases, about 403b's at MIT, Yale, & NYU

Additional cases filed against Duke, University of Pennsylvania, Vanderbilt, and Johns Hopkins. http://www.investmentnews.com/article/20160811/FREE/160819980/duke-johns-hopkins-upenn-and-vanderbilt-latest-schools-under-fire All of these 403(b) plans offer index funds at reasonable expense ratios, a...
by talzara
Thu Aug 11, 2016 12:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Auto Callable Contingent Interest Notes linked to Indexes
Replies: 16
Views: 782

Re: Auto Callable Contingent Interest Notes linked to Indexes

I have already decided not to invest in this but from a learning standpoint I am curious as to what the caveats are ("many reasons to avoid"). Can you as someone who worked in this area or someone knowledgeable with this concept explain or deconstruct it. Are there hidden fees? undisclose...
by talzara
Wed Aug 10, 2016 10:51 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Update: Emory & Columbia; New Fiduciary cases: 403b's at MIT Yale NYU & Duke Hopkins Penn Vanderbilt
Replies: 61
Views: 5379

Re: "M.I.T., N.Y.U. and Yale Are Sued Over Retirement Plan Fees."

This is good news for 403b plan participants who have long suffered from their high retirement plan fees. That's not what these lawsuits are about. The typical 403(b) plan is run by an insurance company, and the cheapest options have expense ratios of 1.5% to 2.0%. These plans are run by Fidelity, ...

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