Search found 184 matches

by jrbdmb
Wed Jul 26, 2017 1:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Time, not material goods, 'raises happiness'
Replies: 38
Views: 4259

Re: Time, not material goods, 'raises happiness'

flyingaway wrote:If you are retired and pay others to do everything, how do you spend your time?

Playing golf? Why don't you pay someone to play golf for you, so that you do not have to do it yourself?
Makes me wonder, what do pro golfers do when they retire? Join the rat race?
by jrbdmb
Fri Jul 21, 2017 5:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: simplicity vs chasing bonuses
Replies: 29
Views: 2541

Re: simplicity vs chasing bonuses

I've found that in this area, complexity pays. Life is about balance, though, and it sounds like you're overdoing it. I look for bonus offers too but only from time to time. I'm willing to accept that I won't be able to take advantage of every bonus offer out there and can live with that. To hunt t...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 28, 2017 2:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Computershare
Replies: 20
Views: 3998

Re: Computershare

Follow-on to the above post: my company has an Computershare ESPP with the below parameters: - Discount is 5% off the market price for the stock. - Contributions must be done via payroll deduction - 1% to 10%. Funds held in a non-interest bearing account until stock is purchased at the end of each q...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Computershare
Replies: 20
Views: 3998

Re: Computershare

In my new account with Computershare, selling stock either costs $20 + $0.05/share (market order) or $30 + $0.05/share (batch order). Stock must be held at Computershare for a minimum of 21 months before I can do a free transfer to a broker like Merrill Edge. At least for me DRIP is free (or to be m...
by jrbdmb
Tue Jun 27, 2017 1:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: co-worker wants to pull out pension
Replies: 40
Views: 3876

Re: co-worker wants to pull out pension

I suspect we need quite a bit more information such as ... - Age of the employee - Availability of other jobs in the area paying $50,000 or more - Tax bracket - other savings. But on the face of it quitting your job and cashing out your pension to pay down your mortgage is probably not a good idea. ...
by jrbdmb
Mon Jun 26, 2017 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ESPP Any Good?
Replies: 19
Views: 3093

Re: ESPP Any Good?

I am moving to a new company with a ESPP that is unfortunately not as generous as the ones noted above: - Discount is 5% off the market price for the stock. - Contributions must be done via payroll deduction of 1% to 10%. Funds held in a non-interest bearing account until stock is purchased at the e...
by jrbdmb
Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:02 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund too large
Replies: 31
Views: 5628

Re: Emergency Fund too large

In my head I have made my retirement funds (pension, SS, 401K, IRAs) separate from my taxable accounts. My taxable accounts are invested, but at a more conservative allocation (25% equity, 75% fixed income) than my retirement accounts (currently 65% equity, 35% fixed income). There is no reason tha...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 21, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund too large
Replies: 31
Views: 5628

Re: Emergency Fund too large

In my head I have made my retirement funds (pension, SS, 401K, IRAs) separate from my taxable accounts. My taxable accounts are invested, but at a more conservative allocation (25% equity, 75% fixed income) than my retirement accounts (currently 65% equity, 35% fixed income). There is no reason that...
by jrbdmb
Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:29 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where to put "leftover" money in an ETF portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1493

Re: Where to put "leftover" money in an ETF portfolio

I now believe I will go with a third option - set Dividend Reinvestment to "Cash" for one of the funds for a month, after which (for this example) I would be able to purchase a share of BIV at around $85 and have only a few dollars left over. Hopefully that $5 - $10 not earning me money wo...
by jrbdmb
Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where to put "leftover" money in an ETF portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1493

Where to put "leftover" money in an ETF portfolio

I currently have my Roth IRA at Merrill Edge, split between four Vanguard ETFs (BIV, VOO, VSS, VXF). After the original purchase of these ETFs and a subsequent rebalancing, I find I have money money left over - say $20 to $100, not enough to buy an additional share of most of the above ETFs. Should ...
by jrbdmb
Tue Jun 13, 2017 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employee theft - How best to proceed
Replies: 26
Views: 3016

Re: Employee theft - How best to proceed

Well, we did not want to damage the employee's reputation or future prospects so we felt that we should simply fire him and let him go. This is not a matter of an employee stealing some inexpensive medical supplies or picking up a $20 bill he found lying on the floor. This employee engaged in fraud...
by jrbdmb
Fri Jun 09, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Refrigerator Water Filters -- OEM or Generic?
Replies: 26
Views: 24993

Re: Refrigerator Water Filters -- OEM or Generic?

I usually get a 3/4 pack every 2-3 years for OEM for Maytag UKF8001 from ebay at discount that fits my Whirlpool fridge. If any better solutions, I'm all ears. Can get OEM at less than $20 per if you buy in bulk. Looking on eBay, i see "Genuine" or "OEM" replacements for my Sams...
by jrbdmb
Thu Jun 08, 2017 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2129
Views: 373082

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Related question about spending some of the $6000 grocery spend for my Amex Blue Cash Preferred ... I have about $1500 in grocery spend (6% cash back) remaining on my BCP that I'd like to use ASAP. A recent Amex BCP Terms and Conditions update taking effect July 01 2017 states specifically that Gif...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 07, 2017 6:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GEICO auto rates vs. USAA: too good to be true?
Replies: 131
Views: 14421

Re: GEICO auto rates vs. USAA: too good to be true?

It's gotten a little better with the discount for owning Berkshire Hathaway. That's a no brainer. If you're going to use GEICO, buy a share. How much is the discount? That sounds great. Do you have $249,000 sitting around you can lend me so I can buy a share? BTW, I currently have an NJM policy tha...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 07, 2017 6:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Have GEICO auto, asked for quote online, $150 less
Replies: 30
Views: 3970

Re: Have GEICO auto, asked for quote online, $150 less

I think the issue is they can offer you a lower price (discount) for a new customer as they know most people don't change companies every 6 months, then slowly raise it back up...I have had USAA for 17 years...could I get cheaper somewhere else, maybe, but this product I'm just going to pay the USA...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 07, 2017 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car insurance in NJ
Replies: 23
Views: 6103

Re: Car insurance in NJ

I had cheap policies from both Liberty Mutual and Travelers when I lived in NJ. Liberty Mutual gave decent discounts for alumni of my school and Travelers had an affinity program with my credit union. These types of discounts can help, so see if any are available to you. And be prepared to change c...
by jrbdmb
Wed Jun 07, 2017 6:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: EZPass not read, rental car, high fee
Replies: 18
Views: 2582

Re: EZPass not read, rental car, high fee

As long as the line isn't brutal we go through the manual toll line if it is an option. That way we know we are in the clear. As of last Halloween, our wonderful MassPike has no more toll booths, all electronic now. As for registering plates, I have one EZPass account with two transponders, one for...
by jrbdmb
Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car insurance in NJ
Replies: 23
Views: 6103

Re: Car insurance in NJ

I've been with NJM for over a decade, even since Allstate dropped me after an accident that was not my fault. Anyhow, with one of my boys just added to the policy, I decided to check around. I'm literally shocked that GEICO is quoting me about $1000 less a year, since I had always been under the ass...
by jrbdmb
Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2129
Views: 373082

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Related question about spending some of the $6000 grocery spend for my Amex Blue Cash Preferred ... I have about $1500 in grocery spend (6% cash back) remaining on my BCP that I'd like to use ASAP. A recent Amex BCP Terms and Conditions update taking effect July 01 2017 states specifically that Gift...
by jrbdmb
Fri Jun 02, 2017 3:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Ultra-Short-Term Bond Fund now available
Replies: 74
Views: 17199

Re: Vanguard Ultra-Short-Term Bond Fund now available

I don't see how the interest rate can turn out to be high enough to care much about. It will still be true that almost any bank account will beat it -- and without even the smallest of fluctuations. In fact, the vast majority of bank accounts are currently paying far less than what this fund will p...
by jrbdmb
Thu May 25, 2017 11:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I drink or sell my Pappy 12 year?
Replies: 65
Views: 7789

Re: Should I drink or sell my Pappy 12 year?

According to wine-searcher the 12 year old Pappy goes for $490 and up. I like bourbon on occasion (primarily a Scotch drinker), but I'd rather have 10 bottles of Blanton's than one bottle of Pappy. On a related note, I bought two bottles of Black Maple Hill bourbon for around $45 each a few years ag...
by jrbdmb
Mon May 22, 2017 2:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why Invest in Average?
Replies: 34
Views: 3473

Why Invest in Average?

Interesting take on anti-Boglehead investing from Invesco:

https://www.ispot.tv/ad/ACpl/invesco-un ... in-average

(Note that I saw this ad this morning on CNBC. That's what i get for tuning away from Kelly and Ryan. :happy )
by jrbdmb
Thu May 18, 2017 6:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Case for Dividend Stocks in Retirement (article)
Replies: 92
Views: 10804

Re: The Case for Dividend Stocks in Retirement (article)

I don't know, but I find this thread very discouraging. The belief in dividends as a magic sauce is a belief that markets are inefficient. Even in the face of all the yelling and shouting about dividends as a superior strategy. And now, from someone like Mr. Clements. It's sad. L. Can't find a link...
by jrbdmb
Thu May 18, 2017 5:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is it better to stay at 19 or 24 paychecks per year?
Replies: 18
Views: 1902

Re: Is it better to stay at 19 or 24 paychecks per year?

The OP is a teacher and doesn't work in the summer. (But likely does and doesn't get paid for it.) Most school employees get their salary spread out over the whole year for cash flow reasons. I think it is more prudent to get your money when you earn it, versus lending it back to your employer for ...
by jrbdmb
Mon May 08, 2017 8:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Geico Homeowners Ins went up 11%
Replies: 25
Views: 2990

Re: Geico Homeowners Ins went up 11%

HO insurance is based on replacement costs, not market values. Why is that? If I have a total loss i don't want it rebuilt. I am walking away. Case in point, I purchased my 4500 sq/ft home for $160k in 2007. Within 5 years the insurance premium went from $2000 year to $4500 a year. I now self- insu...
by jrbdmb
Mon May 08, 2017 2:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: No losses to offset capital gains!
Replies: 14
Views: 1245

Re: No losses to offset capital gains!

Don't let the tax tail way your dog. I assume you sold long term capital gains and the rate is not that bad. I would not do anything fancy and just keep investing based on your plan. If a tax loss shows up because the market goes down use it but if not then its not the end of the world either. You ...
by jrbdmb
Sat May 06, 2017 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2129
Views: 373082

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Question - is it worth canceling a Capital One Quicksilver card (1.5% cash back) to open a new Capital One Premier Dining Rewards card (3% on restaurants)? My understanding is that Cap One is not allowing a PC to the Dining card at this time. Or should I just wait a while until Cap One allows a PC? ...
by jrbdmb
Sat May 06, 2017 11:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Yikes! Thought about these 401k fees?
Replies: 11
Views: 1775

Re: Yikes! Thought about these 401k fees?

The main reason I rolled my old employer's 401K into my new employer's 401k and not into a Vanguard IRA is I was concerned that IRAs are not as well protected from legal actions (lawsuits) as 401Ks, depending on your state of residence. In many states some or all of your IRA can be seized to satisfy...
by jrbdmb
Wed May 03, 2017 1:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Puerto Rico Bonds Bankrupcy
Replies: 37
Views: 4286

Re: Puerto Rico Bonds Bankrupcy

Standard muni funds like Vanguard's VTEAX / VTEB would currently only have a minuscule investment (if any) in low rated bonds like those of Puerto Rico. If these funds did lose money on Puerto Rican bonds it was in 2014 and 2015 when these bonds were being downgraded from investment grade to specula...
by jrbdmb
Mon May 01, 2017 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards
Replies: 378
Views: 68885

Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

For me the largest benefit of Preferred Rewards (Platinum or above) is the free stock / ETF trades. To get that now I have $25,000 parked in a BoA savings account earning basically nothing. Did you ask about some free trades? Probably if you had deposited the 25k to ME they would have given you som...
by jrbdmb
Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards
Replies: 378
Views: 68885

Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

^ Okay, just reporting my personal datapoint. It is certainly true that BoA IT systems are pretty bad. That said, although the Preferred Rewards are nice, there's not that much financially at stake in getting them a month or two later, i.e. slightly higher credit card cash back for that time. For m...
by jrbdmb
Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New job and offer - recruiter sent a wrong $$
Replies: 43
Views: 5453

Re: New job and offer - recruiter sent a wrong $$

Decline. Don't play recruiter's games. Let them know why (the initial misrepresentation of compensation) and CC the hiring manager on it. Be polite, firm, and honest. Integrity and the ability to say no are the two muscles you can flex here. Agreed. Let the hiring manager know that you're declining...
by jrbdmb
Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards
Replies: 378
Views: 68885

Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

In a phone call with BoA today, I was told that the accounts do need to be open for three months in order to calculate the 3 month average daily balance. So either the rules have been changed or my rep was misinformed. It is also possible that my ME funds do not count yet towards my balance because...
by jrbdmb
Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any regrets living a frugal life for high income/high networth individuals?
Replies: 170
Views: 21971

Re: Any regrets living a frugal life for high income/high networth individuals?

Spending all my money by death is not a goal. Accumulating more money throughout life is a goal. I would argue that spending all of your money on "stuff" before you die is an empty goal, but saving as much as possible just for the sake of saving as much as possible can also be an empty go...
by jrbdmb
Tue Apr 18, 2017 10:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My Story so far. Totally confused! Vanguard, Charles Schwab, Merrill Edge. Managing own portfolio... or NOT?
Replies: 86
Views: 7317

Re: My Story so far. Totally confused! Vanguard, Charles Schwab, Merrill Edge. Managing own portfolio... or NOT?

You said you were still working. Are you maxing out all available retirement plan options? If not, your first priority quite likely should be to move as much of this money into tax advantaged plans as possible. The easiest move to understand would be make an IRA contribution. The second step is to ...
by jrbdmb
Wed Apr 12, 2017 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards
Replies: 378
Views: 68885

Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Datapoints: We got Preferred status about two days after opening checking accounts, and it was about 1.5 months after opening/funding brokerage accounts. In other words, neither account needs to be open for 3 months. The checking accounts instantly fills one of the necessary conditions. And for the...
by jrbdmb
Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NBC News: First Pot-Focused Fund Lets Americans Legally Invest In Hot Biz
Replies: 13
Views: 1987

Re: NBC News: First Pot-Focused Fund Lets Americans Legally Invest In Hot Biz

There is also a US-based mutual fund (AMREX) that supposedly is based on the marijuana industry. I'll leave it to the reader to decide whether the 5.75% front end load and 8.94% expense ratio (no, that is not a misprint) is appropriate for their portfolio.
by jrbdmb
Tue Apr 11, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SEC yield vs. distribution yield - Vanguard muni funds / ETFs
Replies: 3
Views: 494

Re: SEC yield vs. distribution yield - Vanguard muni funds / ETFs

Thanks. i also learned a bit from this thread: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=40750 The current yields seem to imply that VTEB has more below par bonds, which are paying less dividends right now but will increase in value as the bonds mature. In contrast, VWIUX has more above par b...
by jrbdmb
Tue Apr 11, 2017 11:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SEC yield vs. distribution yield - Vanguard muni funds / ETFs
Replies: 3
Views: 494

SEC yield vs. distribution yield - Vanguard muni funds / ETFs

I am hoping for an explanation about how the quoted SEC Yield can be much different from the distribution yields for Vanguard bond funds. Specifically I am looking at VTEB (Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond ETF) and VWIUX (Vanguard Interm-Term Tx-Ex Adm). VTEB: SEC Yield 2.24%. Actual distribution of $0.0770...
by jrbdmb
Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?
Replies: 51
Views: 5411

Re: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?

Why is this wrong? Capital preservation seems like the conservative play given macro uncertainty. When isn't there macro uncertainty? It seems like both options you present (lower downpayment + PMI, higher downplayment + drained EF) are sub-optimal. Is there some reason that the home purchase has t...
by jrbdmb
Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards
Replies: 378
Views: 68885

Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Datapoints: We got Preferred status about two days after opening checking accounts, and it was about 1.5 months after opening/funding brokerage accounts. In other words, neither account needs to be open for 3 months. The checking accounts instantly fills one of the necessary conditions. And for the...
by jrbdmb
Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Apple breaks its silence
Replies: 24
Views: 4609

Re: Apple breaks its silence

They might even acknowledge the existence of customers who are more interested in getting some work done than in having a beautiful work of art to put on their--but hey, who am I kidding? The Chomsky thing will happen first. Do you make this type of remark to car enthusiasts? Most car enthusiasts a...
by jrbdmb
Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to buy new iPhone
Replies: 41
Views: 4305

Re: Where to buy new iPhone

You can get really good deals on ebay. We save a lot of money by going prepaid with verizon and buying our phones on ebay. I recently bought two iPhone 5s, one of them brand new and the other one used but in perfect condition. Be very careful with eBay - I've been sold fake goods on there before......
by jrbdmb
Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to buy new iPhone
Replies: 41
Views: 4305

Re: Where to buy new iPhone

Apple store. It's unlocked and if there's any type of recall or improvements they'll fix it (think iPhone 6s battery). If you get it from a carrier they won't. The warranty is not at all dependent on where you purchase your iPhone and any replacement program will be valid as well. The only issue is...
by jrbdmb
Sat Mar 18, 2017 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Guidelines for when to get a new credit card?
Replies: 16
Views: 1588

Re: Guidelines for when to get a new credit card?

II don't play in the credit card game--I just say "No". ---A little bit of free money is a lot of work, and not worth all the clutter and distraction in my financial life, which I try to keep simple! ---The credit card incentives are basically giving a subliminal message that spending mon...
by jrbdmb
Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Norman Rockwell Plates.....who to go to
Replies: 33
Views: 3122

Re: Norman Rockwell Plates.....who to go to

I think that inherited "real" china / stemware / crystal is fine - it can be used on occasion and does look nice. But there must be a special place in Heck for those companies trying to pawn off these mass-produced "limited edition collectors items" - the same schlock you see paw...
by jrbdmb
Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $464.12 dinner bill last night. No regrets.
Replies: 78
Views: 11071

Re: $464.12 dinner bill last night. No regrets.

Adding to the "great story" responses.

My wife and I have occasionally been around the $100/person restaurant tab, and most times we would agree it was worth every penny. Then we''ll spend $5 each for takeout from McDonald's and wonder what the heck we were thinking. :-?
by jrbdmb
Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:02 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Alternatives to VTEB (Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond ETF)
Replies: 7
Views: 1212

Re: Alternatives to VTEB (Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond ETF)

TFI seems like a reasonable muni ETF choice, just that in my case I'm looking for intermediate or shorter duration, while TFI is pushing into long term (7.1 years duration).
by jrbdmb
Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Alternatives to VTEB (Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond ETF)
Replies: 7
Views: 1212

Re: Alternatives to VTEB (Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond ETF)

BTW, anything bad about PIMCO MUNI other than it's higher expenses? I thought this might be an possible fund to use for TLH (if needed). Good news is that it does not appeared to be like the closed end / leveraged PIMCO muni funds that had issues in 2008. Bad news it is actively managed (not tied to...
by jrbdmb
Sun Mar 12, 2017 9:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: BND vs BIV [Vanguard Intermediate-Term vs. Total Bond]
Replies: 18
Views: 6196

Re: BND vs BIV

One other thing not mentioned so far (in this very old thread ) - Intermediate Bond has significantly more BBB rated bonds than Total Bond (25.3% vs. 15.1% as I write this). Sure, they're all still investment grade, but should having a quarter of BIV in what I might call "medium" quality c...