Search found 209 matches

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: 616

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: 616

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: 616

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: 616

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: 616

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: 616

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: 616

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: 411

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: 411

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: 411

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...
by understandingJH
Fri Jan 08, 2016 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How has your Salary performed against inflation?
Replies: 59
Views: 5370

Re: How has your Salary performed against inflation?

blackjack4808 wrote:Here is our hourly wage schedule; Im not good at numbers, does this keep up with inflation?

8/1/15: 34.40
8/1/16: 34.80
2/1/17: 35.20
8/1/17: 35.70
2/1/18: 36.20


(36.2/34.4)^(1/2.5)-1 = 2.06% CAGR. I'd say this is keeping up since inflation it's averaged 2% the past 10 years.
by understandingJH
Thu Nov 05, 2015 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: easy G fund access in your Roth IRA
Replies: 18
Views: 2028

Re: easy G fund access in your Roth IRA

Would this be the best way to use the account? E.g.: Jan 1, 2016 : Put in $5500, 1 year later ~110 in interest ,$5650 total Jan 1, 2017: Put in $5500, 1 year later ~223 in interest, $11,333 total Jan 1, 2018: Put in $3000, 1 year later ~287 in interest, $14,619.66 (stop contributing, only withdrawal...
by understandingJH
Thu Nov 05, 2015 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's been up with TIP funds?
Replies: 26
Views: 3060

Re: What's been up with TIP funds?

Note that perhaps surprisingly TIPS have acted more like corporate bonds---likely liquidity issues and TIPS may not benefit from flights to quality like nominals do. So the diversification benefit with stocks may not be as great Larry Hi Larry, thanks for you response. I can see how in 2008/9 they ...
by understandingJH
Thu Nov 05, 2015 12:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's been up with TIP funds?
Replies: 26
Views: 3060

Re: What's been up with TIP funds?

[Duplicate]
by understandingJH
Thu Nov 05, 2015 11:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's been up with TIP funds?
Replies: 26
Views: 3060

What's been up with TIP funds?

Below are all the bonds I'm invested in (except Ibonds). All of them have been trending upwards the past 4 years, but the TIPs fund has been flat, even losing money after 4 years. What's going on with TIPS in general. I am not surprised it has more volatility as it has longer duration (~7 years), bu...
by understandingJH
Thu Nov 05, 2015 10:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fun game to show how difficult it is to time the market
Replies: 7
Views: 1110

Re: Fun game to show how difficult it is to time the market

I won 5/6 times (failed the 5th time), and the last I had 88,000+. Subsequent plays are much easier if you recognize the time span from previous play ;)
by understandingJH
Tue Sep 29, 2015 7:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 2901
Views: 612234

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

Look familiar?

Image


How about this?


Image
by understandingJH
Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund
Replies: 1078
Views: 126247

Re: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund

The above casual observation is not using critical thinking. That's a bit of a hasty assumption isn't it? Previously I posted some questions about this fund with regards to it's ability to minimize fat tails. Clearly I find this fund interesting. However, I couldn't help but feel the "value&qu...
by understandingJH
Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund
Replies: 1078
Views: 126247

Re: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund

Looks like this fund is even more expensive with only QSPNX, QSLIX, and QSLNX available in IRA accounts (fidelity filtered by AQR and alternative funds). So the negatives against this fund grows (price is even worse).

Image
by understandingJH
Tue Sep 22, 2015 8:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund
Replies: 1078
Views: 126247

Re: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund

With a passive 80/20 allocation to stocks/bonds, what effect would be achieved by putting 10% of the portfolio into this fund? If adding this fund would the 10% come from stocks? bonds? even or proportional split between them? Would adding this be expected to minimize fat tails? If so how does one q...
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 1:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Re: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

I decided on tilts to small-cap and value several years ago, so am sticking with it, but am less enthusiastic in recommending it to others than I was several years ago. I think this is especially true for young accumulators who don't want to spend hundreds of hours learning about this stuff, and fo...
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 1:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Re: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

What really makes these approaches work is what's known as "barbelling" A 60:40 portfolio has 90% of its 'risk' concentrated in equities - as we know a 50% decline takes a 100% gain to recover ... So minimising loss to capital in the first place is a good place to start With a more conser...
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 12:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Re: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

I have not read his books, but based on his comments here, I don't think LS uses long term bonds for the Larry portfolio. At least in his posts, he takes his risk with small value (or maybe something else now), and uses relatively short duration bonds for stability. He doesn't unless you consider T...
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:45 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Re: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

This is the first time I get what Larry Swedroe's style is all about and I see he does something similar to what I was attempting but probably a much sounder approach as I'm sure he knows much more than me. He has a lower allocation to stocks, but riskier ones, (also 30% in this case), but short te...
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Re: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

Hmm... the Monte Carlo with 0 withdraw is interesting, especially looking at the histogram (i.e. cumulative distribution with a 95% CI). This is the first time I get what Larry Swedroe's style is all about and I see he does something similar to what I was attempting but probably a much sounder appro...
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:51 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Re: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

That's the tool I'm using (well the backing-testing version anyway). :)

And, Kevin, it only goes back to 1985, or 1972 depending on how one uses it.
by understandingJH
Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?
Replies: 17
Views: 917

Why not use small-cap index and LT Treasury for the "us stock" component of a portfolio?

Blue = 30/70 (Small-Cap Index / LT Treasury) Yellow = 50/50 (Total Stock Index / LT Treasury) Red = 100 (Total Stock Index) I wanted to do a thought experiment trying to use low or negative correlation to decrease volatility while maintaining about the same amount of return. This chart starts when ...
by understandingJH
Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401K changing bond options. Not sure what to do.
Replies: 3
Views: 332

Re: 401K changing bond options. Not sure what to do.

Yeah no brokerage option. It really sucks.
by understandingJH
Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401K changing bond options. Not sure what to do.
Replies: 3
Views: 332

401K changing bond options. Not sure what to do.

My 401k (via John Hancock - yuck) is making the following change: Effective October 16th, 2015, subject to regulatory and other approvals, the sub account investing in the Total Return Fund, will be merged in to the sub account investing in the Fidelity Advisor Total Bond Fund. Based on information ...
by understandingJH
Thu May 28, 2015 5:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

However, the OP was benchmarking PhD to people with just BS. I don't know about BS-only careers, but statistically a good chunk of them never hit 6 figures, whereas for almost all professional degrees you will hit 6 figures, and it's only a matter of time whether you reach it early career or mid ca...
by understandingJH
Thu May 28, 2015 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

Thanks and that's a good point. I am aware of data science being a superset of fields that includes bioinformatics sharing similar skills. That indeed is an option. Did you take Andrew Ng's Coursera class on machine learning by the way?
by understandingJH
Thu May 28, 2015 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

What made you decide in your 30s that a PhD is what you want to do? Why didn't you go to college after high school? You are in a field (programming) where skills are valued on the job market more than academic qualifications. I think your best option is to continue as a programmer, but work on bioi...
by understandingJH
Thu May 28, 2015 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

Wow, many more comments than I expected on this thread. Thank you all for taking the time out of your busy schedules to respond. I think more details about my situation would be helpful. I agree that monetizing everything isn't a good idea, including a PhD, at least as the sole decision factor. Nisi...
by understandingJH
Wed May 27, 2015 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

The increase in income is serious oversight in certain fields, e.g. psychology, were the BS/BA is worthless to the larger job market. In my case, my income is already higher than the median income would be for a researcher in the field I am interested in. BTW, the duration to graduation is extereme...
by understandingJH
Wed May 27, 2015 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

Well, my daughter got her PhD last year. She had generous fellowship stipends (which is not too uncommon in STEM fields) and with her frugal habits (thanks to growing up in our house, I guess), she managed to save a pretty astonishing amount ($100K) during that time despite going to school in a HCO...
by understandingJH
Wed May 27, 2015 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

My wife went into a phd program right out of grad school when she was 21. She completed the program in 4 years, college was free and was paid a stipend of around $30k. Her degree was in biology and she is now a scientist for the FDA. Not sure how its costing her half a million in potential earnings...
by understandingJH
Wed May 27, 2015 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

... she managed to save a pretty astonishing amount ($100K) during that time despite going to school in a HCOL area with pretty expensive rents. (Roommates, home-cooking, thriftshop clothing, a CSA co-op share of fresh produce, biking everywhere--no car needed I can't imagine saving $100k on $30k a...
by understandingJH
Wed May 27, 2015 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 7401

Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

Many PhD programs can be free or at little cost (perhaps a thousand or two per year in fees, but free tuition) and with a stipend of around $20k to support yourself (though barely). Of course there are opportunity costs. For a person who already has a career the idea of grad school for a research jo...
by understandingJH
Mon Mar 30, 2015 1:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bond Interest - No Where to Go But Up?
Replies: 8
Views: 1343

Bond Interest - No Where to Go But Up?

http://www.vox.com/2015/2/5/7981461/negative-interest-rates-europe What prevents Bond rates from going negative in the US? Everyone expects interest rates to rise and are concerned about losing money in the process. Couldn't we also gain money if interest rates went to zero or below (from the rise i...
by understandingJH
Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:37 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Capitalism Distribution
Replies: 8
Views: 1447

The Capitalism Distribution

I found this really interesting and while some use this research to advocate trend-based active investing, I think it helps further make the case for index investing as you won't know going forward which 25% of stocks account for most of the market performance: The Capitalism Distribution
by understandingJH
Tue Oct 14, 2014 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looming Corporate Bond Crash?
Replies: 4
Views: 741

Re: Looming Corporate Bond Crash?

If you are in or nearing retirement, you are fine having a large % of your fixed income portfolio with investment grade corporates. If you are young or under 45, you would probably want to be more in treasuries and increase your equities for more return. My retirement AA is 80% stocks. I'm not real...
by understandingJH
Tue Oct 14, 2014 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looming Corporate Bond Crash?
Replies: 4
Views: 741

Looming Corporate Bond Crash?

NOTE: the reason for the title is the link at the end of this post About 2/5 of my emergency fund is in ST and IT investment grade bond funds. I use a tiered approach to my EF taking on increased risk and liquidity concerns to try to keep up with the CPI-U. Here are the yields for the various savin...
by understandingJH
Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: GDP, CPI - What to do if they aren't accurate?
Replies: 8
Views: 690

Re: GDP, CPI - Rigged?

If you have a passive, low cost portfolio and re-balance appropriately you don't really need to know these data as it relates to investing. All of these data are estimates based on sampling and are, therefore, subject to error.[/quote] I am taking a passive, low cost approach. I think the boglehead ...
by understandingJH
Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: GDP, CPI - What to do if they aren't accurate?
Replies: 8
Views: 690

Re: GDP, CPI - Rigged?

I don't get why this is labeled a conspiracy theory, which is often a derogatory word and is dismissive. The methods in which CPI and GDP are calculated many feel aren't accurate, same goes for unemployment. My use of the term rigged is imprecise, so I've fixed that with a word that is a better fit.
by understandingJH
Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: GDP, CPI - What to do if they aren't accurate?
Replies: 8
Views: 690

Re: GDP, CPI - Rigged?

I think discussing the by whom and for what falls off topic on these forums. I don't wish to turn this thread political. I was just mentioning that if one feels that these numbers are rigged, what is the best course of action?
by understandingJH
Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: GDP, CPI - What to do if they aren't accurate?
Replies: 8
Views: 690

GDP, CPI - What to do if they aren't accurate?

Suppose one doesn't trust the GDP and CPI figures seeing them as inaccurate, which economists like Paul Craig Roberts assert, or even Bill Gross with respects to the CPI. What does this mean with regards to our investment decisions? Are TIPs, nominal bonds, CDs, and savings accounts problematic if i...
by understandingJH
Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard: "529 accounts, not just for kids"
Replies: 4
Views: 846

Re: Vanguard: "529 accounts, not just for kids"

Considering that adults wouldn't have much of a time horizon to save for college for themselves (and thus probably would not want to invest in stocks), wouldn't the use of US Savings I-Bonds be better as the interest won't be taxed if used for education? Of course Vanguard wouldn't include that opti...
by understandingJH
Sat Sep 06, 2014 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Implications working additional job on Pension, SS, 401k
Replies: 6
Views: 621

Re: Implications working additional job on Pension, SS, 401k

I double checked, and in my state public employees do not pay into social security. Related to the 5-zeros in SS (if working 30 years), I would assume if I had 5-very low years (5-hour weeks with student pay at that!) in a pension plan, that also would hurt. I wonder if the added years of service, w...
by understandingJH
Sat Sep 06, 2014 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Implications working additional job on Pension, SS, 401k
Replies: 6
Views: 621

Implications working additional job on Pension, SS, 401k

A bit about my background before I get to my question: ⋅ I contribute up to the company match in my 401k ⋅ At the end of this year I'll have 49 social security credits (12 years of work @ 4 credits, plus 1 year of work @ 1 credit) ⋅ I have at least 30 more years to work...
by understandingJH
Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Short-term Bond Index Fund
Replies: 14
Views: 2885

Re: Short-term Bond Index Fund

In a taxable account, Limited-Term Tax-Exempt, has a SEC yield of 0.78 (25% tax bracket puts it on par with 1.04% savings account, but with the principal at risk of course). Short Term Bond Index is taxable with a slightly lower yield (0.76). Additionally, distribution yields of short term funds cur...

Go to advanced search