Search found 249 matches

by understandingJH
Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What advice to give 21 year old?
Replies: 100
Views: 5264

Re: What advice to give 21 year old?

A new software engineer at a technology company will easily make in excess of $150K per year, not counting benefits and retirement plan contributions and matching, which will, add another $20 k or more. Only for HCOL areas I suppose. In fact, in my LCOL area, $130k seems to be attainable only for t...
by understandingJH
Sat Jul 15, 2017 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time replace washer and dryer [back of dryer so hot it burnt me]?
Replies: 21
Views: 1465

Re: When to replace washer and dryer?

If it were me I would look inside to see what is going on. I wouldn't be surprised if the back was hot but I don't know what is normal. Discolored paint doesn't look normal. As to when to replace- I would replace after it breaks and I can't easily fix it. Appliance parts and repair ideas are very e...
by understandingJH
Sat Jul 15, 2017 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time replace washer and dryer [back of dryer so hot it burnt me]?
Replies: 21
Views: 1465

Time replace washer and dryer [back of dryer so hot it burnt me]?

My Frigidaire washer and dryer set is about 12 years old. This was just a very basic set purchased for something like $500 for the set new (equiv. to about $700 today after inflation). I haven't had any known issues with them. However, today I'm beginning to be concerned the dyer poses a safety risk...
by understandingJH
Tue Jun 27, 2017 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Taxes on I Series Bonds negate purchasing power protection?
Replies: 12
Views: 1662

Taxes on I Series Bonds negate purchasing power protection?

Considering the stated goal of I Series Bonds is to "protect you from inflation" (see link at the bottom of this post), then how exactly do they do this after tax? At least state and local taxes are avoided. Were they originally assumed to have a high enough positive interest rate such tha...
by understandingJH
Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travelling to Jasper, Banff, Lake Louise....few questions
Replies: 4
Views: 420

Re: What avg. temp/weather can we expect in Jasper, Lake Louise area?

Jasper will likely be warmer than Lake Louise. I was there In August and it was in the 70s in Jasper, but snowed overnight in Lake Louise and was in the 40s (but that's probably not the norm). The Lake Louise area is at a higher elevation, so in general it should be cooler. June will likely be colde...
by understandingJH
Thu May 18, 2017 10:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do stocks always go up long term?
Replies: 56
Views: 4758

Re: Do stocks always go up long term?

Piketty goes over such data (mostly from Europe but also from North America) in excruciating detail and his conclusion is that absent wars/ revolutions , capital returns have basically exceeded rate of growth. It is intuitively obvious to me that this result should be true. I think revolution is th...
by understandingJH
Wed May 17, 2017 3:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do stocks always go up long term?
Replies: 56
Views: 4758

Re: Do stocks always go up long term?

Assume we live in a stable world where there is no growth (population or economy), no increase in profits, no new companies and no new technologies. Even in such a world (which would be pretty bad) if you hold passive mutual funds for the long term, you gain the earnings each year (~5% for US and ~...
by understandingJH
Mon May 01, 2017 3:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: R and Data Sets
Replies: 18
Views: 1856

Re: R and Data Sets

Maybe try Data Camp?
by understandingJH
Fri Apr 14, 2017 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lack of rigor in EdX (and other?) MOOCs?
Replies: 23
Views: 1621

Re: Lack of rigor in EdX (and other?) MOOCs?

It is billed as a "six week course" requiring an effort of "three hours per week," or 18 hours total. Back in 2013 and early 2014 I completed about 10 MOOCs (1 from edX and 9 form Coursera). I think I enrolled in a few more from eDX that I didn't complete. Anyway, of these ten t...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 1:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

I understand how volatile the market is both in the short and long term so I fully accept that this could happen (or worse) after investing a chunk into the market. Still, I find this behavior odd and irrational. Do you only find it "odd and irrational" when the markets go down? Or does i...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

fantasytensai wrote:Silly, the market obviously went down because you made your annual IRA contributions :P


The pessimist in me always assumes this will happen :)
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

Notice that I didn't state that macro-level or long-term changes have no effect: that would be silly of me to say! Instead I stated you do not need to go to that level to explain the stock price increase. Fair enough, especially since I asked about why stocks are down today (which is a short term t...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

I'm trying to understand better why markets behave the way they do, even if this is just noise. And why is what happened even considered "bad news?" Trying to understand the movement of a single stock is like understanding the behavior of a toddler. You can often spin a narrative that exp...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

I'll second what alfaspider said in general, but the logic today is that Trump and Congress's inability to pass health care reform puts the rest of their agenda in jeopardy, and that includes the massive tax cuts they've been talking about. Those (particularly corporate tax cuts) are a big part of ...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

Myopic Loss Aversion, to which we are all subject to one degree or another. Perhaps the following will prove instructive: https://faculty.chicagobooth.edu/Richard.Thaler/research/pdf/The%20Effect%20of%20Myopia%20and%20Loss%20Aversion%20on%20Risk%20Taking%20An%20Experimental%20Test.pdf Lev Thanks Le...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

I think it has to do the that escalator in Hong Kong that went the wrong way. Just like bird flu apparently it's contagious. Yep that's why to me this seems like a non sequitur (the stated "reason"). Or is some how international markets affects by US domestic politics on healthcare, infra...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:08 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Re: Why are international and US stocks down today?

I'll second what alfaspider said in general, but the logic today is that Trump and Congress's inability to pass health care reform puts the rest of their agenda in jeopardy, and that includes the massive tax cuts they've been talking about. Those (particularly corporate tax cuts) are a big part of ...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are international and US stocks down today?
Replies: 53
Views: 3889

Why are international and US stocks down today?

I just made my annual IRA contribution on Friday. I don't time contributions, I just make 1 annual order when I find the time before April 15. Anyway, this morning I see stocks are looking to be down around 1% so far because of what seems to me to me to be a non sequitur. The insinuated correlative ...
by understandingJH
Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Challenge: Oldest BOND FUND in Morningstar?
Replies: 45
Views: 16797

Re: Challenge: Oldest BOND FUND in Morningstar?

The fund does not behave as expected, which is one of the reasons I posted it. It shows almost no change in annual return between the periods before and after 1981. I don't know for sure what they were investing in or why we see this surprising result. However, comparing the fund's growth chart to ...
by understandingJH
Mon Dec 12, 2016 11:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA annual out-of-pocket, date of service or date paid?
Replies: 6
Views: 821

Re: HSA annual out-of-pocket, date of service or date paid?

Reimbursement is based on when paid not when service/product provided. I found this IRS notice to be helpful. Look at Q&A 39 to see if that helps. https://www.irs.gov/irb/2004-33_IRB/ar08.html That's about reimbursement, I'm curious about what calendar year insurance companies count the payment...
by understandingJH
Mon Dec 12, 2016 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA annual out-of-pocket, date of service or date paid?
Replies: 6
Views: 821

HSA annual out-of-pocket, date of service or date paid?

After searching via google I can't find the answer to my question so I thought I'd ask here. If you have medical services performed in the last couple months of the year and the bill for the services doesn't come until the following year (and thus you don't pay for it until the following year). Whic...
by understandingJH
Wed Jul 27, 2016 8:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

Why must my concern be interpreted that I am a doomsday preparer? I think you are missing the point of some of the above responses. To be clear on how I read things: I don't assume you are a doomsday prepper, but wonder why, given your list of concerns, you apparently are not. Investing in (or maki...
by understandingJH
Wed Jul 27, 2016 8:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

Here's what I suggest after reading the additional posts. 1) Separate the question of what to do about the future of the world from your AA. 2) For the AA, I think you should put everything in a target date fund, in each account. You are too erratic and prone to over thinking to manage your AA dire...
by understandingJH
Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

This might help give an idea of my background: Emergency funds: ~12 months (8% iBonds, 92% Cash @ 1% and 1.5%) Debt: $0 Tax Filing Status: Single Tax Rate: 25% Federal, 4% State Age: 33 Current Asset allocation: 58% stocks / 42% bonds Original Target Asset allocation: 80% stocks / 20% bonds Original...
by understandingJH
Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

You're right it doesn't matter at that point (essentially extinction or collapse). I hope that can be avoided. Why must my concern be interpreted that I am a doomsday preparer? I am somewhat cynical and understand your feelings. I see income inequality growing and opportunities decreasing. I think ...
by understandingJH
Mon Jul 25, 2016 3:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

Even if you are right, I am not hearing how changing your AA will help. Growth is already low and has been for years. I don't think that foretells anything though. I agree, that the low growth of the past 15 years or so in the US does not foretell much. I was making a case for ecological sustainabi...
by understandingJH
Mon Jul 25, 2016 2:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

I still am not clear on what you plan to do. Invest in dehydrated foods and bomb shelters? If we can't breath the air and have no food or trees what does your AA matter anyway? You're right it doesn't matter at that point (essentially extinction or collapse). I hope that can be avoided. Why must my...
by understandingJH
Mon Jul 25, 2016 12:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

I've been increasingly, and deeply, concerned about the looming hidden costs pertaining to negative externalities produced by the growth provided from stocks I am still not clear what this means even after your explanation Are you saying that you foresee costs that will directly impact publicly tra...
by understandingJH
Mon Jul 25, 2016 8:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

Thanks for the feedback. I think there is a few points I need to make: I choose 80/20 originally based on all the financial advice found here and elsewhere. Everything pointed to this being a fairly good choice for someone in their late 20s, as I was at the time. It's not as aggressive as a target d...
by understandingJH
Fri Jul 22, 2016 3:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

I think it's good to honor and explore your feelings of discomfort. It's better to change your AA when markets are up, instead of when they are slumping. That said, you're early 30s and might regret going too conservative. Perhaps try 70/30 for a year or 2. I've found having a big slug of bonds and...
by understandingJH
Fri Jul 22, 2016 3:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Re: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

1) 2) This may be irrational. But if you believe that stocks are bad investments for the long term then your willingness to take equity risk is 0. I have not read that book, what are negative externalities? 3) If you can reach your financial goals with a combination of high savings rate and non-sto...
by understandingJH
Fri Jul 22, 2016 1:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?
Replies: 28
Views: 3120

Feelings changing about AA as annual savings amount increases?

So my ability (amount) I can now invest each year has roughly doubled. I'm going from a savings rate of 15% to new one of 30% of my income (dollars saved / gross income). My previous AA was 80/20 stocks/(bonds+cash) since about 2011. I'm in my early 30s. I've never experienced anything like 2008, bu...
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 29, 2016 2:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Retirement Planning for the 'Gig' Economy"
Replies: 11
Views: 1690

Re: "Retirement Planning for the 'Gig' Economy"

OP, 2) Year 2, no income. Withdraw some money from Solo 401K and pay 10% penalty. At 0% income tax rate, this is still less than 25% in year 1. Effectively, this person saves 15% in tax. KlangFool Wouldn't the withdrawal count as income? And there is no 0% tax bracket. So it would be 10% + 10%, but...
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 08, 2016 4:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?
Replies: 22
Views: 2003

Re: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implies over past 5 years?

Therefore, if yields did not change you would expect the NAV to drop gradually over time. The interesting thing is that you can find fairly long periods--a year or more--when the fund SEC yield was virtually unchanged, and yet NAV also was virtually unchanged. The relatively short duration of this ...
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 08, 2016 3:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?
Replies: 22
Views: 2003

Re: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?

My bad. That makes sense. I agree, VMLTX is not likely a good fit for money that will be spent in a year. I use it as part of a multi-tiered emergency fund that increases risk slightly each tier.
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 08, 2016 2:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?
Replies: 22
Views: 2003

Re: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?

I first bought in December 2015, added in January, then more in April 2016. Obviously this is a short period of time and timing is everything. The account currently holds about $22,000. Vanguard's basis numbers show an overall short term loss on the holdings of about $4. Ignoring taxes in both case...
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 08, 2016 12:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?
Replies: 22
Views: 2003

Re: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?

What is roll yield? I tried lookup up the term but see stuff about futures contracts and spot prices. I assume you mean something else by the term? As to getting the about same volatility and better return by the barbell approach with interim term tax exempt and 1% savings... hmm that looks promisin...
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:40 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?
Replies: 22
Views: 2003

Re: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implies over past 5 years?

It could have something to do with the fact that rates have dropped about 80-90bps on similar duration bonds over the past 5 years. As in, if rates went back up to the point they were 5 years ago, you would see the actual returns become more in line with the SEC yield? Does that make sense? I could...
by understandingJH
Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?
Replies: 22
Views: 2003

Vanguard Limited-Term Tax Exempt (VMLTX) doing better than SEC yield implied over past 5 years?

I have a tiny portion in VMLTX. I started 5 years ago. Today I compared it's performance with a 1% savings account, since I hoped to do better with VMLTX considering it's distribution yield was considerably higher than SEC yield (even though SEC yield is future looking and in theory what I should fo...
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Re: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

1) Side income -> You can create Solo 401K and contribute approximately 20% of the profit as an employer. Or perhaps most all of it as an employee. And you can open the Solo 401(k) now and decide on contribution after you see what your W-2 employer does for you by year end. Unfortunately, by side-i...
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Re: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

JGoneRiding wrote: about the only thing to do is a) marry a lower earner b)


Until one gets divorced and loses 50% of anything saved while married, but more detrimental has to pay alimony because of the income disparity (sorry if this sounds cynical).
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Re: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

If you have the means the pay for your own education but you don't think it's worth your own money to do so then perhaps you shouldn't do it. Some things that are "free" or reduced cost can sound attractive but the test of whether something is worth doing is whether you would pay for it o...
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Re: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

Transfer all your money from savings accounts into equity funds. How else can you generate losses? Ha, interesting joke. :) Hmm.. I think international equity needs some re-balancing. I suppose I could invest some taxable funds there and if the knife keeps falling I get to harvest taxes, but if it ...
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Re: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

Your taxable investments should have about -3,000 from the capital losses possibly for the rest of your life. :) Not when currently those earnings are from 1% and 2.5% saving/checking accounts. The 401k isn't set up yet at the new company, so before that is available I'll probably be saving some mo...
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Re: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

So any ways to reduce MAGI? Did you contribute $18,000 to a retirement account? How about a traditional IRA, would that be deductible? HSA? FSA? Maxing 401k and HSA contributions might get me to the phase-out range for the AOTC, but that depends on how much money I earn in taxable investments and s...
by understandingJH
Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 821

Make too much for tuition tax credits/duductions - alternatives?

Turns out my expected MAGI for 2016 will be above the cutoff for the American Opportunities Tax Credit (which is higher than the lifetime learning or tax deduction options). I'm returning to university part-time while working full time to complete my undergraduate degree. I expect to spend around $2...
by understandingJH
Sat Jan 16, 2016 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Job: Health Insurance PPO vs HSA?
Replies: 4
Views: 512

Re: New Job: Health Insurance PPO vs HSA?

I probably go to the doctor outside of a physical 3-4 times a year, with one of those usually being a specialist. So those visits likely would cost me about $1000 a year on the HSA (opposed to $100 on the PPO). The $1k number seems high for 4 visits. You should only be charged a negotiated rate. Ma...
by understandingJH
Sat Jan 16, 2016 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Job: Health Insurance PPO vs HSA?
Replies: 4
Views: 512

Re: New Job: Health Insurance PPO vs HSA?

furwut wrote:Under the PPO do you first have to exhaust the deductible before the co-pays kick in? If so then, numbers wise, the HSA looks much better.


For the PPO, the co-pays for doctor's visits and medications are effective immediately, the deductible/oop apply to inpatient/outpatient, MRIs, xrays, etc.
by understandingJH
Fri Jan 15, 2016 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Job: Health Insurance PPO vs HSA?
Replies: 4
Views: 512

New Job: Health Insurance PPO vs HSA?

I'm starting a new job soon that offers both PPO or HSA. My previous job did as well but the out of pocket (OOP) max (6k vs 5k) and premiums were similar enough that I kept the PPO (~$400 more in premiums). At my previous job I used an FSA to help save in taxes. I still have money rolling over on th...

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