Search found 126 matches

by clown
Fri May 31, 2019 10:05 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio advice for a military member
Replies: 15
Views: 928

Re: Portfolio advice for a military member

First and foremost, thank you for loving America enough to wear her uniform. You are privileged to do so. My input is to call USAA and ask them for guidance. I understand they have Certified Financial Planners available for free for all account sizes. As you may know, USAA caters to the military. No...
by clown
Fri May 10, 2019 7:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Crypto bulls are back. Are you getting in?
Replies: 147
Views: 11685

Re: Crypto bulls are back. Are you getting in?

As I see it, the issue is not about whether crypto is an investment. Article I Section 8 clause 5 of the US Constitution gives congress the sole power to create money. Crypto was not created by congress and is not money. In my opinion, crypto is illegal and should be outlawed.
by clown
Fri May 10, 2019 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recycling Different Plastics
Replies: 63
Views: 3332

Re: Recycling Different Plastics

Recycling is a BUSINESS, not an environmental feel-good exercise. In order to have a business, there must be a seller and a buyer. If there is no buyer, there is no market. That is what is happening to recycling, in my opinion. Some of the items many feel should be recyclable, are not recyclable bec...
by clown
Fri May 10, 2019 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearing getting bad, which Hearing Aids would you recommend ??
Replies: 36
Views: 2467

Re: Hearing getting bad, which Hearing Aids would you recommend ??

The VA provides FREE top-of-the-line hearing aids to all veterans who need them. No need for a service-connected disability. I served 50 years ago and recently received a pair of Oticon aids. Retail about $6K. Absolutely free. Quoting from the VA webpage at https://www.prosthetics.va.gov/psas/Hearin...
by clown
Sat Apr 27, 2019 7:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is ACH Billpay risky?
Replies: 41
Views: 3132

Re: Is ACH Billpay risky?

I spent 30+ years in the banking industry. When ACH transactions became commonplace many years ago, there were new Federal regulations put in place to protect consumers from the extremely rare problems. Talk to your banker and ask for an explanation about Regulation E. Alternatively, go to https://e...
by clown
Sat Apr 27, 2019 7:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Metal roof- anyone switch from asphalt to metal?
Replies: 12
Views: 1455

Re: Metal roof- anyone switch from asphalt to metal?

We have a cabin about 40 years old. Replaced the original asphalt shingle roof with a metal roof about 10 years ago. The local fire regulations (California foothills) require metal roofs nowadays. We have been very pleased. In addition to being fire resistant, it is much quieter inside. If you want ...
by clown
Fri Apr 26, 2019 11:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 60/40 allocation criticism
Replies: 33
Views: 6641

Re: 60/40 allocation criticism

If an article appears in Forbes, that means absolutely nothing in and of itself. The author has his opinion, and his purpose seems to be developing new clients for his investment advisory business. His projection for a 60-40 portfolio's return is, in my opinion, in the ball park. To get a better ret...
by clown
Tue Apr 23, 2019 10:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Re-Examining an assumption: 45% bonds in retirement?
Replies: 95
Views: 11284

Re: Re-Examining an assumption: 45% bonds in retirement?

I offer a contrary view for your consideration. In the bear markets since 12-31-1945 (defined as declines of 20% to 39.9%), the S&P500 recovered in an average of 14 months . That is historical fact as reported in the October 2017 Journal of the American Association of Individual Investors by industr...
by clown
Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: AA Question: How to represent cash in allocation
Replies: 13
Views: 777

Re: AA Question: How to represent cash in allocation

There is another alternative - - - buckets. It bucket #1, put the cash for 20x expenses. I think a more typical number might be 3-5x expenses, and maybe that will be reasonable after you begin taking SS. The concept here is to figure out your annual expenses, deduct your SS and pension, and then put...
by clown
Mon Apr 08, 2019 12:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRS 2% bounced check fee!!
Replies: 42
Views: 5487

Re: IRS 2% bounched check fee!!

Let's be adults here. OP admittedly initiated an payment when the money was not in the bank. Being slippery about rationalizing the reasons, which may be true, does not change the fact that the money was not in the account when OP initiated the payment. Grow up and be accountable for your decision t...
by clown
Sun Mar 24, 2019 11:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Role of Pensions and Social Security in Asset Allocation
Replies: 147
Views: 7049

Re: Role of Pensions and Social Security in Asset Allocation

Let's have a totally different look. The pension and social security income fund your lifestyle -- or a portion thereof. As I see it, the question becomes how much of your lifestyle needs to be funded from the portfolio and does the projected remainder of the portfolio last long enough that you will...
by clown
Sun Mar 24, 2019 11:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Price ETFs during the weekends or before the market opens?
Replies: 21
Views: 921

Re: Price ETFs during the weekends or before the market opens?

If you are indeed a truly long term investor, this whole topic is noise -- not worth your time. If you are going to hold the asset for 5 years, for example, a price difference of a few cents is insignificant. Use the time to do something fun.
by clown
Sun Mar 24, 2019 11:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Extensive Car Damage from Road Debris
Replies: 3
Views: 732

Re: Extensive Car Damage from Road Debris

I am a non-expert, never been in the insurance industry. But I do have some experience. I believe that the word "collision" is typically defined to mean impact with another vehicle , which this is not; you should find a definition of the term in the fine print of your policy (typically definitions a...
by clown
Sun Mar 24, 2019 11:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: any disadvantage to holding a Vanguard fund at Fidelity?
Replies: 8
Views: 1069

Re: any disadvantage to holding a Vanguard fund at Fidelity?

Not sure what Fido charges, I buy VG funds in a Schwab account for an insignificant $4.95 so Fido charge is likely nominal.
by clown
Fri Mar 22, 2019 1:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To Refinance OR NOT
Replies: 4
Views: 488

Re: To Refinance OR NOT

I will freely admit to being old school. A person who signs the loan documents has an obligation to repay the loan. Student debt is horrible, and I am sorry that the amount is so big. You are the victims of "negative amortization" where the interest accrued each month is greater than the payment mad...
by clown
Fri Mar 22, 2019 1:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinancing 4.125% 30-year fixed mortgage
Replies: 25
Views: 2332

Re: Refinancing 4.125% 30-year fixed mortgage

I think the OP made the best point of all, during the original post itself. There is a bigger picture here. Here's what happens In California (I don't know about other states): 1. If the loan is a purchase-money loan (i.e. loan proceeds are used to fund the original purchase of the home), the lender...
by clown
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Legal Contract for Loan from Parents
Replies: 18
Views: 1740

Re: Legal Contract for Loan from Parents

Agree on Virginia.

Some primary mortgage lenders object to having the paperwork drawn up / executed / recorded in the purchase escrow. They may having something buried in the fine print saying that the buyer expressly represents that there is no secondary financing. I have actually seen that.
by clown
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris - Is It Safe?
Replies: 143
Views: 8970

Re: Paris - Is It Safe?

If OP is worried about terrorist activities, then deciding not to go is giving in to the terrorists and letting them inimidate you. When the skies were opened after September 11th, we were on the first plane out of Oakland for a planned vacation. I refuse to let the terrorists win. After all, in the...
by clown
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:41 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Moving from Vanguard to Merrill Edge
Replies: 73
Views: 7795

Re: Moving from Vanguard to Merrill Edge

With respect, allow me to be a skeptic. Do you think ME is setting these up to benefit YOU? Or does it seem more likely that they are setting these up to benefit MERRILL? The answer should be pretty clear. In the long run, it benefits THEM or they wouldn't be doing it. It's just like buying the new ...
by clown
Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to get over a $25K stock market loss?
Replies: 125
Views: 10390

Re: How to get over a $25K stock market loss?

@ OP FACT - every single investor makes mistakes from time to time. So we have all been in your shoes. Most just don't admit it, sometimes not even to themselves. Decide on an asset allocation that makes YOU comfortable considering YOUR own unique situation. And then stick to it no matter what the "...
by clown
Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Massive Increase in Long Term Care Insurance for My Parents - Can They?
Replies: 65
Views: 4890

Re: Massive Increase in Long Term Care Insurance for My Parents - Can They?

Some posters have mentioned running down the assets and then letting Medicare take care of things. Have you actually SEEN a Medicare facility? They are nowhere near as nice as private pay facilities. Your parents deserve better than bare-bones. I recommend paying the new rate. $300 a month versus th...
by clown
Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard: "Your Account Needs to be Transitioned"
Replies: 27
Views: 4678

Re: Vanguard: "Your Account Needs to be Transitioned"

We transitioned a few months back with absolutely no problems, and were able to own MFs in the brokerage account. I have also bought some new MFs from within the brokerage account. My reading of the tea leaves -- having one system to maintain is cheaper than maintaining two platforms. Vanguard saves...
by clown
Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the maximum I can spend on a car?
Replies: 36
Views: 2911

Re: What is the maximum I can spend on a car?

"How much can I spend?" is the wrong question, in my view. The better question is --- how little can I spend to get what I absolutely need? Good suggestions above about buying used. I have bought from rental companies with good results, and was shown maintenance records without having to ask.
by clown
Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much Auto/home liability insurance do I really need?
Replies: 18
Views: 1481

Re: How much Auto/home liability insurance do I really need?

You can drop your home/auto premiums very significantly by getting the highest deductible you can afford. Ask your insurer for different quotes assuming different deductibles. In my experience, high deductibles make the premiums drop like a rock. Decades ago, $50 deductible was common because that w...
by clown
Fri Mar 08, 2019 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tire protection plans?
Replies: 18
Views: 775

Re: Tire protection plans?

I think a lot of this depends on the car you drive and the tires you demand -- normal or high performance. One of our cars is a Chevy Malibu and its OEM tires (purchased aftermarket, not at dealer) cost $221 each - plus installation, balancing, and taxes. The other car is an Audi and its OEM tires c...
by clown
Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did you get spooked by the December 2018 fall and gave up on passive?
Replies: 133
Views: 7753

Re: Did you get spooked by the December 2018 fall and gave up on passive?

With all due respect, I would recommend that OP needs to go back and learn a LOT more about market history. Also he would be well advised to learn about reversion to the mean. Finally, I would suggest hunting to find a chart that shows the top performing asset class for each of the last 50 or so yea...
by clown
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Worst investing year ever....
Replies: 103
Views: 17826

Re: Worst investing year ever....

Worst investing year EVER? I would respectfully suggest that OP doesn't know much history, or has a very short investing career, or both. While history may be boring and not sexy, it is instructive and thus worthwhile. Neglecting the notion of 70 asset classes, history tells us that correlations bec...
by clown
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bear Market - Mindset Expectations
Replies: 61
Views: 6348

Re: Bear Market - Mindset Expectations

As a retiree, I deal with this by maintaining 5 years of cash need - then 100% in index funds. Also, dividends go into the cash pot, so it's really more than 5 years need. It's like going to a tennis game. You watch the market go up and down with little concern because history says the market will c...
by clown
Sat Nov 24, 2018 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most secure bank
Replies: 23
Views: 1833

Re: Most secure bank

Out of the large banks: BOA, CITI, Chase, Wells Fargo which one is the most secure for holding your funds without getting hacked. Also which do you fee most comfortable holding money greater than FDIC amount. To the OP 1. No way anyone can tell. Whatever they are doing about cybersecurity is known ...
by clown
Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:18 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Are We In A Real Estate Bubble?
Replies: 114
Views: 14503

Re: Are We In A Real Estate Bubble?

I disagree with the notion that changes in interest rates are a significant problem. Many act as if it's a crisis when rates rise by 1/4%. Hah! A 1/4% rise on a $500,000 loan is about $75 per monthly payment. On a nationwide basis, I doubt the average real estate loan is $500,000. So the impact is r...
by clown
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying life insurance for parents
Replies: 13
Views: 1354

Re: Paying life insurance for parents

I agree that it makes sense to stop paying. Before you do that, however, there MAY be another approach worth exploring. Nowadays, insurance policies get sold just like other assets. You may be able to sell the policy to a company that buys them with the idea of cashing in on the policy when the insu...
by clown
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Move savings to Prime Money Market Fund (VMMXX)
Replies: 55
Views: 9455

Re: Move savings to Prime Money Market Fund (VMMXX)

Anyone know if there's a way to direct deposit payroll to Prime MM? If you hold Prime in a VG "Mutual Fund Account," it is the settlement account by definition -- into which you can deposit and from which you can withdraw. However, if you hold Prime in a VG "Brokeract Account" it is not the steelem...
by clown
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which Credit Cards Will I Get Approved for with no Credit Score?
Replies: 7
Views: 732

Re: Which Credit Cards Will I Get Approved for with no Credit Score?

Secured card makes the most sense to me. From the bank's point of view, how can they justify extending credit to someone who has no credit background? After a few months (especially if you can pay the secured card off in full every month) you can ask to have the cash security returned to you. At tha...
by clown
Sun Nov 04, 2018 1:11 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Get out of Morgan Stanley!
Replies: 22
Views: 2870

Re: Get out of Morgan Stanley!

Two things that have been mentioned obliquely, and I would like to add clarity. First, there are basically two ways to move the money. Sell securities at MS and move the cash elsewhere. Or instruct MS to move the securities "in kind" to the investment firm of your choice. In that second case, they t...
by clown
Sun Oct 28, 2018 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard thinks I have a wash sale. Do I?
Replies: 41
Views: 4911

Re: Vanguard thinks I have a wash sale. Do I?

I think there is a bigger question here. Let's step back and get some perspective. Why so much hopping around in the first place? Market timing? Trying to tease out differences in various indexes? At first look, it seems like OP is making life needlessly complex.
by clown
Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Becoming frugal
Replies: 81
Views: 11322

Re: Becoming frugal

I realize that OP is in the UK, so this may not apply. But - - - I put 15% of paycheck into the 401K plan (with employer partial match) for many years. With prudent investment, it grew very nicely. After retirement, when I was in a lower tax bracket, I converted into a Roth IRA and groaned when I pa...
by clown
Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:51 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to exit out of the Stock Market?
Replies: 58
Views: 6390

Re: How to exit out of the Stock Market?

Sophia - You're asking a lot of good questions. Congratulations on retiring soon, epecially considering all the resources you will have. Most folks don't have a pension PLUS social security PLUS the TSP plus I believe you mentioned a Roth. Good for you. I would like to address your question of "wher...
by clown
Sun Oct 14, 2018 1:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need new email address. Gmail or ???
Replies: 70
Views: 5551

Re: Need new email address. Gmail or ???

We moved 5 yrs ago and the old provider has no service here. Got email address on Yahoo. Free and works well.
by clown
Sun Oct 14, 2018 1:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard does not recognize my restricted computer
Replies: 10
Views: 1480

Re: Vanguard does not recognize my restricted computer

Lots of companies (financial and others) do their computer system maintenance and upgrades in the middle of the night. I have seen VG notices announcing such events. Maybe tonight’s the night. Try again in the morning.
by clown
Sun Sep 30, 2018 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions about portfoilo: VBIAX and VTSAX
Replies: 15
Views: 1880

Re: Questions about portfoilo: VBIAX and VTSAX

IMO, VTSAX is an excellent choice. VBIAX is a balanced index fund containing 60% stocks and 40% bonds. IMO, 40% in bonds is way too much for a 37 year old person -- even more so for one with a stable job and a stable employer and a stable pension. If you intend to retire at age 67, then you have 30 ...
by clown
Sat Sep 22, 2018 12:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Zero-ER Fidelity Funds [Closed to new investors?]
Replies: 38
Views: 3526

Re: Fidelity zero ER funds closed?

I'm skeptical that we know all we should about the Zero ER funds. Unless Fido is content to have a product with zero income and some level of expense, an extremely doubtful scenario, then they are making money somewhere that is not apparent.
by clown
Sat Sep 22, 2018 12:22 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Medallion Gold Signature
Replies: 16
Views: 2607

Re: Medallion Gold Signature

My limited experience is that banks are very reluctant to provide Medallion signature guarantees to non-customers. The Medallion signature is not just a meaningless piede of bureaucratic BS. When affixing the Medallion, the Bank actually guarantees the genuine-ness of the individual's signature. If ...
by clown
Sat Sep 22, 2018 12:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For those who use a 2 year cash(like) buffer, how do you know when to use it?
Replies: 67
Views: 5769

Re: For those who use a 2 year cash(like) buffer, how do you know when to use it?

My gut says a 2 year buffer is not enough. I have kept a 5 year cushion for a while now. KlangFool asks the question what if equities decline very sharply and stay down for 5 years, which is a fair point. Recovery typically (but not always) starts sooner but may not catch up fully for an extended pe...
by clown
Wed Jul 04, 2018 2:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market cap-weighted Index - not diversified?
Replies: 14
Views: 1123

Re: Market cap-weighted Index - not diversified?

I think it's worthwhile to look at equally-weighted funds. If you look at our stock-picker brethren across the aisle, the strategy is often to pick x-number of stocks and invest an equal dollar amount in each. There is a lesson we can learn from this. I subscribe to the idea that a market-cap index ...
by clown
Mon Jun 18, 2018 2:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Benefits of using CPA for taxes
Replies: 31
Views: 4592

Re: Benefits of using CPA for taxes

I have used Turbo Tax since the mid-1980's, and the program just gets simpler and better every year. Full disclosure - our returns are straightforward. I used to have a very high opinion of Enrolled Agents until I found that my in-laws EA had missed a deduction every year for several years. Because ...
by clown
Thu Jun 07, 2018 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Adding my name to deed (parents house)
Replies: 22
Views: 1823

Re: Adding my name to deed (parents house)

I suggest stepping back and looking at the bigger picture. The likely reason for the HOA's restrictions on renters is to enhance property values by keeping them owner-occupied rather than occupied by outside renters. Stated another way, the neighborhood's owners (HOA's members) don't want values to ...
by clown
Tue Jun 05, 2018 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best insurer? Allstate vs chubb vs AAA or others
Replies: 42
Views: 4692

Re: Best insurer? Allstate vs chubb vs AAA or others

If you were in the military (or if you dad was), you are eligible for USAA insurance. They are Aaa rated by Moody's and AA+ rated by Standard & Poor's -- the highest ratings possible. USAA offers all the coverages you have mentioned. Their customer service is top notch. Several frequent posters on t...
by clown
Thu May 10, 2018 12:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vehicle Tires and Dry Rot
Replies: 20
Views: 2630

Re: Vehicle Tires and Dry Rot

There may be some false economy at work here. If we assume that a set of tires is good for 40,000 miles, then 6 years could involve less than 7,000 miles per year. So a driver who goes 10-15,00 miles annually will wear out the tires long before a 6-year replacement threshold. And then there is the m...
by clown
Thu May 10, 2018 12:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I ran out of credit card signups bonus...
Replies: 106
Views: 17234

Re: I ran out of credit card signups bonus...

Why would a person do this? It seems like just another way of gaming the system -- which drives up costs for all customers. I think it says something about the applicant wanting something for nothing. And I would guess it LOWERS the applicant's credit score.
by clown
Tue May 01, 2018 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to babymoon?
Replies: 38
Views: 4430

Re: Where to babymoon?

How about the beaches on the east coast of Texas. Can't remember many names, but they would be closer to home. The only name that comes to mind is South Padre Island https://www.sopadre.com/things-to-do/