Search found 904 matches

by GAAP
Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How bad business travel is?
Replies: 61
Views: 4619

Re: How bad business travel is?

It's been my general observation that the bigger the company, the more likely the finance folks get involved and make travel less enjoyable. The more mature the industry and/or the tighter the margins, the more likely it is that travel "savings" are important. I would also note that many/most compan...
by GAAP
Fri Nov 08, 2019 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recommendation request for cell data service and device
Replies: 9
Views: 850

Re: recommendation request for cell data service and device

I used to work for a wireless carrier -- but my first recommendation would be to choose an unlocked phone. I would choose Android over Apple, and I would choose a google phone simply because it gets the latest software sooner and isn't loaded with a bunch of junk I don't need. As for carriers -- tha...
by GAAP
Fri Nov 08, 2019 7:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How bad business travel is?
Replies: 61
Views: 4619

Re: How bad business travel is?

Questions to help you decide: Is the 10% measured per week, per month, per year? How consistent is it (1 day every 2 weeks, or 20 days one time and a few other times)? Is it per diem or documented expenses with an allowance. How much freedom to choose flights/carriers/hotels would you have? Basicall...
by GAAP
Thu Nov 07, 2019 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does umbrella insurance premium change over time?
Replies: 13
Views: 871

Re: Does umbrella insurance premium change over time?

Rwsawbones wrote:
Wed Nov 06, 2019 7:25 pm
But much older people in late 60s and above see a very high increase in premium. Maybe old folks are riskier drivers similar to teenagers.
That is exactly the explanation provided by my insurance provider.
by GAAP
Fri Nov 01, 2019 11:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it normal for a contractor to require 50% payment up front?
Replies: 52
Views: 3692

Re: Is it normal for a contractor to require 50% payment up front?

"normal" can depend on where you are. Where I live now, it is quite common. California has a $1000 limit. There may be some value to checking with your state to see if any regulations apply. Be aware that the supplier of the material can put a lien on your house if the contractor doesn't pay them. T...
by GAAP
Fri Nov 01, 2019 11:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Optimal asset allocation strategies for retirement & saving
Replies: 28
Views: 4109

Re: Optimal asset allocation strategies for retirement & saving

I think this is an under-explored avenue for retirement planning because most people involved in retirement research don't really have the programming skills necessary to make it happen. If you look at retirement research overall, I mentally classify it into 3 "generations". The first generation, u...
by GAAP
Tue Oct 29, 2019 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: California Fires: Landlord/Tenant Question
Replies: 71
Views: 4117

Re: California Fires: Landlord/Tenant Question

If you sold your house, and then PG&E kept cutting power, would you give the buyer money back? If not, how is renting any different?
by GAAP
Fri Oct 25, 2019 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Option of Taking Inflation Adjusted Pension - Your Thoughts?
Replies: 6
Views: 551

Re: Option of Taking Inflaction Adjusted Pension - Your Thoughts?

Depends on your inflation assumptions for those 10 years, and how likely you will live to the breakeven. $1500 with today's inflation rate is worth about $1800 in 10 years.
by GAAP
Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When is S Corp better than sole proprietor?
Replies: 87
Views: 3565

Re: When is S Corp better than sole proprietor?

Every W-2 employer must deduct SS taxes up to the the full MTE. While you can get a credit for the employee share on your 1040 tax return. The employer share is never recoverable. I almost included an "ask Spirit Rider" addendum to my post, and I'm glad you chimed in. That's a huge implication. I w...
by GAAP
Mon Oct 21, 2019 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Odds of Illinois Teacher Pension Solvency to use for Planning Purposes
Replies: 27
Views: 3006

Re: Odds of Illinois Teacher Pension Solvency to use for Planning Purposes

I look at the current funding level of any future defined benefits to estimate for my planning purposes. For example, if the planned future source is funded at 75%, then I multiply that rate by the "expected" benefit and plan based upon that lower amount. I update that ratio as new information beco...
by GAAP
Sun Oct 20, 2019 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Odds of Illinois Teacher Pension Solvency to use for Planning Purposes
Replies: 27
Views: 3006

Re: Odds of Illinois Teacher Pension Solvency to use for Planning Purposes

I look at the current funding level of any future defined benefits to estimate for my planning purposes. For example, if the planned future source is funded at 75%, then I multiply that rate by the "expected" benefit and plan based upon that lower amount. I update that ratio as new information becom...
by GAAP
Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Unique withdrawal method
Replies: 65
Views: 6856

Re: Unique withdrawal method

I treat the portfolio like a perpetuity -- basically attempting to withdraw as much as possible while still allowing a small amount of real income growth over an indefinite/infinite period. It requires a some what unique variation of the TVM formulas with a minor twist here and there.
by GAAP
Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?
Replies: 24
Views: 1654

Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

I've always had good experiences with EasyJet. One thing to note: they actually enforce their luggage size/weight and carry=on requirements -- make sure you're within the limits.
by GAAP
Sun Oct 13, 2019 1:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How often do you look at your IRA or 401K Balances
Replies: 71
Views: 5681

Re: How often do you look at your IRA or 401K Balances

Once or twice a month to keep my accounting up to date and invest any dividends or distributions into whichever asset is farthest is below target allocation and/or to rebalance, schedule withdrawals, make RMDs, etc. I think that looking and not "doing something" is a learned skill for most people --...
by GAAP
Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Struggling to understand emergency fund math
Replies: 26
Views: 2319

Re: Struggling to understand emergency fund math

I remember seeing an estimate that it takes about 1 month per $10K of annual income to find an equivalent paying job. It may be higher now -- in particular if you work in a specialized industry. Many of my former coworkers have drastically underestimated how long the job search takes. You didn't say...
by GAAP
Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: On-Going Dishwasher Issues
Replies: 23
Views: 1690

Re: On-Going Dishwasher Issues

Remove the GFI outlet, going to back to a normal one. Replace the breaker with a GFI breaker -- assuming there's room in the panel.
by GAAP
Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:49 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is home bias really biased?
Replies: 12
Views: 1007

Re: Is home bias really biased?

If your home was anywhere else in the world, would you ask the same question? Regardless of the answer, how would you invest -- and why? It sounds like you have a core assumption that the US market's relative scale will never change and that the investing climate in the US will always be "better" (b...
by GAAP
Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth Conversions and Safe Withdrawal Rate
Replies: 8
Views: 1118

Re: Roth Conversions and Safe Withdrawal Rate

But for Roth Conversions, the withdrawal rate is extremely high at an average of 13.7%/year for the 1st 3 years when taxes are owed on the large amounts that are being converted to Roth. It then settles down over the remaining 27 years at an average annual rate not vastly different than not doing R...
by GAAP
Wed Oct 09, 2019 7:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Savings ideas - retired with large separation payment
Replies: 9
Views: 940

Re: Tax Savings ideas - retired with large separation payment

Additionally, I am under-withheld for Federal Taxes (and probably state too) and plan to make a payment to bring me up to 110% of my 2018 tax obligation. I file MFJ. Thanks in advance. Are you sure about the under-withholding? All of my separation pay in a similar situation was taxed at the 22% fed...
by GAAP
Wed Oct 09, 2019 1:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: highly compensated employee (HCE) Time bomb?
Replies: 91
Views: 8743

Re: highly compensated employee (HCE) Time bomb?

I was an HCE for years -- still managed to retire early. Yes, it limited my ability to save pretax. No, it didn't make retirement impossible.

As for being better off not getting any raises, it depends on the scale of the raises you miss...
by GAAP
Wed Sep 25, 2019 2:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Zeno's Paradox of investing: the buy-and-hold arrow that flies without moving
Replies: 31
Views: 2954

Re: The Zeno's Paradox of investing: the buy-and-hold arrow that flies without moving

But you do have to come to grips, somehow, with the question of how often and how much you should change, and how you should balance the constant discovery of "better" approaches against the claim that none of these approaches can be expected to work if you can't commit to it over "an extremely lon...
by GAAP
Wed Sep 25, 2019 2:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fine Art Investments
Replies: 77
Views: 4313

Re: Fine Art Investments

It can be lucrative -- but it can also return nothing. Tastes change over time, and selling it is a royal pain. I have inherited artwork that is theoretically valuable, but the best places to sell it are 800 miles from where I live -- not much of a market around here... If you live in San Francisco ...
by GAAP
Thu Sep 19, 2019 11:10 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: What to Recommend to Interested Friends
Replies: 20
Views: 1235

Re: What to Recommend to Interested Friends

I generally tell people that free advice is worth what you paid for it -- rarely hear much after that...
by GAAP
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Newly widowed need investment advice
Replies: 35
Views: 2154

Re: Newly widowed need investment advice

I think the most critical input is that you don't have to rush. You will be far better off taking some time and developing a rational plan. Also, don't be afraid to adjust over time as you learn more and better refine your needs. The Fidelity "advice" sounds a lot like what my both my wife and my mo...
by GAAP
Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can an 18 x 18 tile be cut to a smaller size?
Replies: 11
Views: 950

Re: Can an 18 x 18 tile be cut to a smaller size?

You could also try using a clearly contrasting tile as an inserted artistic effect.
by GAAP
Wed Sep 18, 2019 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Major home renovations and Recessions... Good or bad?
Replies: 11
Views: 1200

Re: Major home renovations and Recessions... Good or bad?

I wouldn't bet either way on inflation levels during a recession. See, for example: https://inflationdata.com/articles/char ... tion-1914/.

I also have a feeling that many of the answers to your questions are exceptionally local and variable.
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "End of Life" Issues
Replies: 30
Views: 3249

Re: "End of Life" Issues

My mother immediately created a living will when they first became an available option. She updated it every few years as requirements changed. She made a point of reminding me and my brother of her wishes. She also annually hand wrote, signed and dated a statement describing her wishes -- keeping a...
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the 60/40 portfolio allocation strategy being killed?
Replies: 142
Views: 15473

Re: Is the 60/40 portfolio allocation strategy being killed?

This opinion article sort of meanders all over the place. He talks about Trump economic policy, iPhones, growth stocks, interest rates, index investing, and "black hole investing" (he's being slangy-- it makes sense in context.) However, his primary point isn't about the 60/40 portfolio allocation....
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Potential usefulness of TIPS to conservative retirees: How to beat a 3% SWR
Replies: 46
Views: 2576

Re: Potential usefulness of TIPS to conservative retirees: How to beat a 3% SWR

I continue to wonder why matching inflation is considered sufficient for retirees. 30 years is enough time for daily needs to be affected by changes in the overall consumer environment -- changes partly paid for by real wage growth. TIPS are currently offering a return slightly higher than inflatio...
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are TIPS really a good inflation hedge? Pros and Cons
Replies: 147
Views: 10739

Re: Are TIPS really a good inflation hedge? Pros and Cons

I think of TIPS as short term, ~1-5 year protection against unexpected inflation -- inflation that is not priced into nominal bonds and stocks by the market. Any period longer that is more of an equity type play for me, for which I have a small allocation to REITs. REITs aren't perfect, but they ar...
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Potential usefulness of TIPS to conservative retirees: How to beat a 3% SWR
Replies: 46
Views: 2576

Re: Potential usefulness of TIPS to conservative retirees: How to beat a 3% SWR

I continue to wonder why matching inflation is considered sufficient for retirees. 30 years is enough time for daily needs to be affected by changes in the overall consumer environment -- changes partly paid for by real wage growth. TIPS are currently offering a return slightly higher than inflatio...
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The best portfolios when the going gets rough
Replies: 72
Views: 6556

Re: The best portfolios when the going gets rough

Recession does not equal market downturn -- they actually can be quite a bit out of sync with each other. Treating the terms as equivalent obscures the issues.
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are TIPS really a good inflation hedge? Pros and Cons
Replies: 147
Views: 10739

Re: Are TIPS really a good inflation hedge? Pros and Cons

I think of TIPS as short term, ~1-5 year protection against unexpected inflation -- inflation that is not priced into nominal bonds and stocks by the market. Any period longer that is more of an equity type play for me, for which I have a small allocation to REITs. REITs aren't perfect, but they are...
by GAAP
Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Potential usefulness of TIPS to conservative retirees: How to beat a 3% SWR
Replies: 46
Views: 2576

Re: Potential usefulness of TIPS to conservative retirees: How to beat a 3% SWR

I continue to wonder why matching inflation is considered sufficient for retirees. 30 years is enough time for daily needs to be affected by changes in the overall consumer environment -- changes partly paid for by real wage growth. 30 years ago (1989), very few people had cellphones, the World Wide...
by GAAP
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Inflation Protected Securities: When to Get in, not How
Replies: 64
Views: 3915

Re: Inflation Protected Securities: When to Get in, not How

TIPS provide protection against inflation "surprises" -- inflation that isn't already baked into the market. All you need to do is properly predict when a surprise will occur. That is effectively market timing. FWIW, I'm biting the bullet and putting a small, fixed allocation to short-term TIPS in m...
by GAAP
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Has the bond bubble finally arrived? If so, is anyone doing anything about it?
Replies: 97
Views: 11323

Re: Has the bond bubble finally arrived? If so, is anyone doing anything about it?

If I were the type to invest only in Treasuries (I'm not) and inclined to act on a fear of a bond bubble (also not me), then I would consider other bonds such as total bond market, global bonds, or perhaps some mix of TIPS. Other than that, I would look for bond alternatives such as annuities (prob...
by GAAP
Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Inflation likelihood and inflation protection
Replies: 29
Views: 2008

Re: Inflation likelihood and inflation protection

Taking this context, I would like to ask 1) what do you of the likelihood of scenarios like these unfolding and leading to inflation surprises in the future and 2) do you currently have/plan to have any deliberate inflation protection holdings in your portfolio and under what form? 1: If the scenar...
by GAAP
Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:35 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Has the bond bubble finally arrived? If so, is anyone doing anything about it?
Replies: 97
Views: 11323

Re: Has the bond bubble finally arrived? If so, is anyone doing anything about it?

If I were the type to invest only in Treasuries (I'm not) and inclined to act on a fear of a bond bubble (also not me), then I would consider other bonds such as total bond market, global bonds, or perhaps some mix of TIPS. Other than that, I would look for bond alternatives such as annuities (proba...
by GAAP
Fri Aug 30, 2019 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Banks requiring fingerprint on a check for non-customers to receive cash
Replies: 87
Views: 5909

Re: Banks requiring fingerprint on a check for non-customers to receive cash

HueyLD wrote:
Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:51 pm
At least the BofA cashed a check submitted by a non-customer. My bank will not cash anything for a non-customer.
So, if you write me a check, drawn on the funds in your bank, they won't cash it for me unless I'm a customer? That's on the ragged edge of legal...
by GAAP
Fri Aug 30, 2019 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Later in life ROTH conversions - does it make sense???
Replies: 13
Views: 2058

Re: Later in life ROTH conversions - does it make sense???

Another reason: some states have an estate tax threshold that is fairly low -- paying estate taxes on money that is owed to the IRS is a double hit.
by GAAP
Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What, besides dishes, do you run through your dishwasher?
Replies: 85
Views: 6517

Re: What, besides dishes, do you run through your dishwasher?

Range grates, range and oven knobs, exhaust screens for the oven hood, microwave platter, whatever other small items can be a pain to clean otherwise.
by GAAP
Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Passive investing now controls nearly half the US stock market
Replies: 39
Views: 3585

Re: Passive investing now controls nearly half the US stock market

It's 45% now -- but what happens after the next market crash? My guess is it goes down as Joe Average Investor bails out...

In any case, it's one of those interesting but useless statistics.
by GAAP
Thu Aug 29, 2019 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security age 70 or bust?
Replies: 81
Views: 4968

Re: Social Security age 70 or bust?

ppro wrote:
Thu Aug 29, 2019 9:34 am
Sandtrap, I'll have to ponder that nugget, as counterintuitive it is to me. Thanks.
If spending down is potentially an issue, that means that you have a greater need to rely upon SS and need the safety of the extra SS income.
by GAAP
Thu Aug 29, 2019 4:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Reasonable and Rational Information on Precious Metals
Replies: 30
Views: 1618

Re: Reasonable and Rational Information on Precious Metals

I found that this part of Deflating Inflation: Redefining the Inflation-Resistant Portfolio from AllianceBernstein summarizes my concerns with precious metals in general: Further, investors should be skeptical of the reliability of gold as the ultimate disaster hedge on two counts. First, in the end...
by GAAP
Thu Aug 29, 2019 4:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Three flexible spending rules for loner retirements (Kitces)
Replies: 9
Views: 1014

Re: Three flexible spending rules for loner retirements (Kitces)

I found the most important part of that article to be: In other words, the longer the retirement time horizon, the more conducive it is to rules-based spending strategies that change and adapt over time, rather than simply a fixed “anchor” spending level that can become extremely de-coupled from the...
by GAAP
Thu Aug 29, 2019 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer printer suggestions.
Replies: 25
Views: 1266

Re: Computer printer suggestions.

If you're going with direct-connection (probably USB these days), then most of the companies are fine. If you're going to use a wifi connection, I would avoid Canon. Their department/business printers work fine, their personal printers, not so much. I've found HP is best for that sort of thing. I wo...
by GAAP
Thu Aug 29, 2019 10:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The One-Fund Portfolio as a default suggestion
Replies: 126
Views: 17331

Re: The One-Fund Portfolio as a default suggestion

With a single-ETF portfolio*, she finds portfolio management simple. Luckily, she now has years of experience making limit trades to buy (and sometimes sell) ETFs. I'm now confident that she'll be able to manage her portfolio without my help and without a spreadsheet. This has a lot of value to me....
by GAAP
Wed Aug 28, 2019 4:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is medium/long term planning (>5 yrs) useless?
Replies: 20
Views: 1181

Re: Is medium/long term planning (>5 yrs) useless?

I see planning as a continuum -- you take your best shot at a period of time, and revise it as you go along. Five years from now should look different. It's not the Soviet Union -- you don't need a "Five Year Plan" that you march to in lockstep (and probably lie to yourself along the way).
by GAAP
Tue Aug 27, 2019 6:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: At what point would Bonds be considered a bubble or 'speculative asset'?
Replies: 51
Views: 4863

Re: At what point would Bonds be considered a bubble or 'speculative asset'?

...Crisp $100 bills under the mattress... We are used to the idea of being able to buy physical currency in unlimited quantities on demand, and expecting it to remain legal tender indefinitely. In a sense we should already know that this isn't an automatic or permanent state of things because of su...
by GAAP
Tue Aug 27, 2019 6:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Supply, Demand, and Asset Allocation
Replies: 7
Views: 526

Re: Supply, Demand, and Asset Allocation

Short answers first: I'm sure I don't follow. Can you explain better please? Take the aggregate allocation to equities, subtract from 1 and that's the recommended allocation. Did I understand that right OP? Yes, where "aggregate" means what the entire market is doing. I don't understand the "dynami...