Search found 102 matches

by Ragnoth
Tue Feb 20, 2018 12:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonus contribution to 401k
Replies: 9
Views: 631

Re: Bonus contribution to 401k

Bonuses get taxed pretty hard more than a regular paycheck so I would opt for as much as I can since it's tax deferred. +1 on this. Under IRS rules , the employer can either (a) aggregate the bonus with your regular wage and use the calculation normally used to calculate withholding (which takes W-...
by Ragnoth
Mon Jan 22, 2018 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The regular investor can now trade the stock market 24 hours a day with TD Ameritrade
Replies: 48
Views: 3090

Re: The regular investor can now trade the stock market 24 hours a day with TD Ameritrade

TDA has allowed extended hours trading for years and years. In my personal experience, the volume after-hours drops substantially and you see a pretty noticeable spike in the bid-ask spreads (even on otherwise high-volume securities). I don't think allowing 24/7 trading will substantially increase t...
by Ragnoth
Fri Jan 19, 2018 8:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Legal to pay yourself to earn credit card bonuses?
Replies: 25
Views: 2569

Re: Legal to pay yourself to earn credit card bonuses?

I have some experience with accepting credit cards via PayPal (granted, this was a couple years ago). At the time, they required you to have a business account in order to receive credit card payments. Once you crossed a certain amount in revenue, they would sent out a 1099-Misc (or equivalent) and ...
by Ragnoth
Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Nice write up in the NY Times about the transformative powers of blockchain on societal interactions
Replies: 24
Views: 2656

Re: Nice write up in the NY Times about the transformative powers of blockchain on societal interactions

Blockchain has always been an interesting bit of technology, and some companies may find interesting ways of using it to produce value. I don’t think that’s the case for the vast majority of ICO’s and the newly founded companies being bandied about... but it doesn’t mean it can’t happen. It will be ...
by Ragnoth
Fri Jan 19, 2018 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do we need an emergency supplies kit (go bag)?
Replies: 65
Views: 5455

Re: Do we need an emergency supplies kit (go bag)?

I’m not a big proponent of the “go bag.” Largely for the reasons you laid out in your original post. Where I live there is quite a bit of warning before most disaster events (storms, floods, etc.). We always have toiletries/batteries/first aid/flashlights and more than enough shelf-stable food hangi...
by Ragnoth
Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Are ETFs Really That Safe?
Replies: 26
Views: 2189

Re: Are ETFs Really That Safe?

Although Bogle has said a lot of negative things about ETFs over the years, it's mostly a response to the proliferation of high-fee garbage funds trying to lure in speculators. For people tempted to day-trade a NASCAR themed "index fund" (or a Nicaraguan-Hedged-Value fund, or a Things-Mentioned-On-T...
by Ragnoth
Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: ROTH IRA question - Income > 186,000 and < $196,000
Replies: 8
Views: 667

Re: ROTH IRA question - Income > 186,000 and < $196,000

You could do it that way but it is cumbersome. Instead, You can just ignore the partial Roth contribution and do a 100% backdoor Roth. Contribute the 5500 each to the traditional Ira, then convert it to a Roth the next day, here is a tutorial. https://www.whitecoatinvestor.com/backdoor-roth-ira-tut...
by Ragnoth
Sun Jan 14, 2018 4:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Margin Accounts
Replies: 5
Views: 349

Re: Margin Accounts

You aren't likely to get much sympathy or actionable advice. This forum is dedicated to investing, not speculating. If you feel uncomfortable with your positions, I suggest you cease trading on margin and adopt a long-term asset allocation that lets you sleep at night. It's by far the cheapest way t...
by Ragnoth
Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Lower tax rates for 7 yrs.-Are you switching to Roth 401K
Replies: 65
Views: 5678

Re: Lower tax rates for 7 yrs.-Are you switching to Roth 401K

The future is unknown, both in terms of tax rates and future income needs. People usually frame the Roth vs. Traditional debate as "all-or-nothing," but a little tax diversification is a smart way to hedge your bets. For most people, this comes in the form of a traditional 401k + Roth IRA. For peopl...
by Ragnoth
Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth help - income limit
Replies: 13
Views: 914

Re: Roth help - income limit

Thanks for the responses, much appreciated. So I can open a Traditional IRA with say Vanguard, fund it with post tax $ and then roll that money into my Roth at Vanguard? If so, can I transfer that money from Traditional to Roth a few different times during the year? And doing this avoids the Roth i...
by Ragnoth
Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth help - income limit
Replies: 13
Views: 914

Re: Roth help - income limit

You are correct that there is an limit to direct contribution to a Roth Account. However, you can contribute to a traditional IRA account (e.g., at Fidelity or Vanguard). Then, a day or two later, roll over that money into a Roth Account. That is, contribute to an IRA account, then follow-up with a...
by Ragnoth
Mon Jan 08, 2018 1:37 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Help me understand question-less financial status (e.g. "2 comma club") threads.
Replies: 175
Views: 8959

Re: Help me understand question-less financial status (e.g. "2 comma club") threads.

Most milestone threads I've seen amount to little more than humble-bragging. Some of them have value as "inspiring testimonials," although I find it more interesting to hear from people who turned their finances around (e.g., by managing a windfall or moving away from high-fee brokers), or people ea...
by Ragnoth
Fri Jan 05, 2018 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sling TV experiences
Replies: 33
Views: 2825

Re: Sling TV experiences

I've had experience with Sling and DirecTV Now. The selection of channels is pretty minimal on both, but it works for what we need. You don't get all of the local channels with Sling, but you can look at the packages and see the trade-offs. Both services are pretty mediocre when it comes to "live" c...
by Ragnoth
Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: when S&P sectors are recharacterized
Replies: 2
Views: 203

Re: when S&P sectors are recharacterized

Almost nothing of interest happens. You still hold $100 in each fund, and you are still diversified along similar sector lines. The underlying assets in funds change over time (it's not just a Google and Facebook issue). On the fringes, it might mean you have more/less allocation to a given company,...
by Ragnoth
Tue Dec 26, 2017 12:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are Bitcoins really limited?
Replies: 10
Views: 1590

Re: Are Bitcoins really limited?

The plan is for the number of bitcoins to be limited. It is programmed that way. However, there will always be an incentive to "mine" bitcoins since you can collect the transaction fees from people exchanging coins (even if no new ones are created). Also, the Bitcoin community as a whole could agree...
by Ragnoth
Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you see a meaningful change in your income with new Tax Bill?
Replies: 266
Views: 21370

Re: Do you see a meaningful change in your income with new Tax Bill?

Looking at an increase of $1.5-2k in take-home pay. Salary around $100k or so (but a W2 that shows 180-200k because of full-time graduate school tuition + tax liability being covered by employer). Very HCOL area. Will no longer be itemizing due to cap on SALT. It doesn't really move the needle for m...
by Ragnoth
Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Securing Law School Scholarships
Replies: 36
Views: 2556

Re: Securing Law School Scholarships

Your LSAT is a little too low to get scholarship money at the top-schools, but you could probably get something at the lower end of the T-20. I worked as a patent agent for a law firm that would pay for law-school as one of their "benefits," and I've seen dozens of colleagues go through the admissio...
by Ragnoth
Sun Dec 24, 2017 1:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating Items Questions
Replies: 15
Views: 1299

Re: Donations Question

I've never seen a Goodwill or similar receipt that clearly meets the requirements listed above. Consequently, a person may be wise to limit daily donations to less than $250 (not $500 as I've seen people reporting in numerous threads.) The major charities (including the DAFs) have, for the most par...
by Ragnoth
Sun Dec 24, 2017 1:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you donate less to Charity?
Replies: 109
Views: 7762

Re: Will you donate less to Charity?

I don't think I will be giving less, but then again, I don't think I will be giving more, either. As I will be taking the standard deduction, and not be able to deduct charitable contributions, I don't think I will be as motivated to "up my game". I think it was a big mistake to not allow charitabl...
by Ragnoth
Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you donate less to Charity?
Replies: 109
Views: 7762

Re: Will you donate less to Charity?

I'll probably give a little less. I don't have any charities that I'm particularly fond of, but I try to give some money to places like my alma mater or the Wikimedia foundation during their funding drives. It sounds kinda callous, but the deductibility is always part of how I rationalize/justify th...
by Ragnoth
Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why You Took an Adjustable Rate Mortgage?
Replies: 43
Views: 3395

Re: Why You Took an Adjustable Rate Mortgage?

What edge case are you referring to? Anytime some banks send me a 0 APR cash advance, there is always small writing stating I will be paying 3% cash advance. Not only that in the last few years, it’s very hard to get a 3% CD on a 5 year term. So I don’t see the advantage. Plus these 0 APR is only f...
by Ragnoth
Mon Dec 18, 2017 1:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why You Took an Adjustable Rate Mortgage?
Replies: 43
Views: 3395

Re: Why You Took an Adjustable Rate Mortgage?

If you have an ARM because it was the only way you could afford the house and the payments are a stretch anyway, that could be an indication. Understanding the terms of the ARM as well as your plans for paying it off and/or moving and understanding the risk of the ARM vs. fixed rate mortgage makes ...
by Ragnoth
Sat Dec 16, 2017 2:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: made a stupid investment - how to tax loss harvest
Replies: 5
Views: 731

Re: made a stupid investment - how to tax loss harvest

These funds are little more than a collection of rolling futures contracts. It's a speculative bet on the price of a non-productive commodity, wrapped in a slick looking (high fee) package: http://teucriumcornfund.com/holdings/holdings http://teucriumweatfund.com/holdings/holdings Nobody should try ...
by Ragnoth
Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Tax bill going to force First In First Out or not?
Replies: 5
Views: 826

Re: Is the Tax bill going to force First In First Out or not?

This topic doesn't seem actionable, and verges on being political in nature.

If and when this becomes actual law, people can plan accordingly.
by Ragnoth
Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Call the top! - Bitcoin
Replies: 182
Views: 18202

Re: Call the top! - Bitcoin

Guess #1) $31337 = 1 BTC
Guess #2) April 1th 2018

Thinking run-up after the holidays, and smart money starts to get out before the retail investors try to "sell in May."
by Ragnoth
Sat Dec 09, 2017 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paying contractors for incomplete work
Replies: 32
Views: 2588

Re: Paying contractors for incomplete work

I think that the "real" answer would probably require a contracts lawyer (or somebody with a formal legal training for the rules of your state), and a lot more information about exactly what was said and done. There are reams of texts written about what is normally supposed to happen if he promised ...
by Ragnoth
Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are Dividends Perceived as Moral; Capital Value Changes as Immoral?
Replies: 55
Views: 3240

Re: Are Dividends Perceived as Moral; Capital Value Changes as Immoral?

As people have said, I think there is a lot of powerful psychology at play, but I don't know if I would consider it moral or immoral. Often a person's first experience with investing is the interest they accrue on a savings account. It's something simple, tangible, and understandable. Heck, for some...
by Ragnoth
Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The "petro," a Venezuelan oil-backed cryptocurrency
Replies: 32
Views: 2408

Re: The "petro," a Venezuelan oil-backed cryptocurrency

The idea of backing a cryptocurrency isn't new. For example, I think there was one called "tether" that was intended to be pegged to the dollar. Stability of Venezuela and volitility in oil aside, the petro isn't a crazy proposal (from the perspective of the Venezuelan government at least). One of t...
by Ragnoth
Fri Dec 01, 2017 7:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: bitcoin - is there any real value here or is it a pure Ponzi scam?
Replies: 236
Views: 21146

Re: bitcoin - is there any real value here or is it a pure Ponzi scam?

There is some hypothetical value, but not much. The best argument is that it *could* become a convenient currency for exchange, although price is too erratic (and the transaction costs have come to high) for it to be used for that purpose. You can image a scenario where people have no faith in their...
by Ragnoth
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who are heirs? No will.
Replies: 41
Views: 4641

Re: Who are heirs? No will.

ccieemeritus wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:21 am
I have not seen the OP come back and identify the state. I think we need that.
Original post states that the decedent lived in Indiana.
1. An uncle, Robert, recently deceased. He resided in Indiana. A will has not been found as of yet and is not expected to exist. It is a modest estate.
by Ragnoth
Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price of haircut?
Replies: 194
Views: 11268

Re: Price of haircut?

I pay $20 ($13 + $7 tip).

Old school non-trendy barber shop in VHCOL area.

I wouldn't trust the guy to "style" anything, but its fine if you are just looking for a generic men's cut.
by Ragnoth
Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who are heirs? No will.
Replies: 41
Views: 4641

Re: Who are heirs? No will.

You're right, what I described about would be by stirpes. I'm not as familiar with "by representation." Reading on it a little, I'm not sure if the number of brothers is important. Since they are all dead, wouldn't that moot the issue? The closest thing I can find to a good explanation of what happe...
by Ragnoth
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who are heirs? No will.
Replies: 41
Views: 4641

Re: Who are heirs? No will.

Based on the following information, who are the legal heirs and how is the estate to be legally spit among the heirs? Is this a state or federal based law? The family is in the process of hiring an estate lawyer but appreciates comments from the forum.</t> <t>1. An uncle, Robert, recently deceased....
by Ragnoth
Wed Nov 29, 2017 1:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Considering Building Gaming PC - Good Builds/Price Points?
Replies: 34
Views: 2498

Re: Considering Building Gaming PC - Good Builds/Price Points?

Here are the two best resources on the web for this: https://www.reddit.com/r/buildapc/ https://pcpartpicker.com/ Almost complete, add https://www.reddit.com/r/pcmasterrace I'm also bradclarkston on there as well (imagine that). The budget is the important part that determines what range of cpu/gpu...
by Ragnoth
Tue Nov 28, 2017 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best cordless drill??
Replies: 71
Views: 4866

Re: best cordless drill??

I think for typical homeowner use, its tough to beat the Ryobi package offers at Home Depot this weekend. +1 +2 Also recommended by Mr. Money Moustache and Steve " Wood Working for Mere Mortals " Ramsey +3 I got a cheap Ryobi package almost a decade ago. An old 18 volt with a whole slew of bells an...
by Ragnoth
Sun Nov 26, 2017 5:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone used myfreetaxes.com?
Replies: 11
Views: 956

Re: Anyone used myfreetaxes.com?

I used this when I was in grad school, and I remember having a good experience with it. It is essentially a special link to the H&R block website. There may have been a banner open at the top to let you know that you were using H&R as part of the "myfreetaxes" program, but there wasn't a discernible...
by Ragnoth
Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 549
Views: 57668

Re: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]

So what's the deal with (variously) the extension to Jan. 19, the elimination of the short-term trading fee, and the $4.95 commission schedule? Is there any definitive answer on whether retail taxable accounts get these or not? The general assumption is that it only applies to institutional account...
by Ragnoth
Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dave Ramsey says don't use credit cards, even if you pay them off
Replies: 221
Views: 15040

Re: Dave Ramsey says don't use credit cards, even if you pay them off

Regarding DR and credits cards its important to note who his audience is. 95% of it is broke people with consumer debt up to their eyeballs. Of course it’s much easier for him to say “yea never use credit cards” than to say “if you can’t handle credit cards you shouldn’t use them, but if you can it...
by Ragnoth
Sun Nov 19, 2017 3:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where did you first learn about investing?
Replies: 98
Views: 5770

Re: Where did you first learn about investing?

My Grandfather gave me a copy of "winning the loser's game" when I was a young teen. He always stressed the importance on indexing, and recommended Vanguard funds to anybody who would listen. A bit tongue in cheek, my financier uncle gave me my first stock the next Christmas, a single share of "circ...
by Ragnoth
Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with Understanding How to Handle Bonus
Replies: 51
Views: 4510

Re: Help with Understanding How to Handle Bonus

I would just keep it simple and pay down the student loan with the post-tax proceeds. You already decided to forgo an *optimized* investment/repayment strategy. I don't see a reason to change now. For me, the satisfaction of wiping out over half my debt would be worth more than the tax savings. It s...
by Ragnoth
Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help
Replies: 65
Views: 5263

Re: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help

... For example, rather than saying "the money sits there until the kids hits 18," a more sophisticated estate might give small regular disbursements directly to the caregiver, distribute lump-sums to cover college tuition, and give out the remainder in two lump sums at ages 25 and 30. ... Since no...
by Ragnoth
Mon Nov 13, 2017 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping in living wage state. Redux.
Replies: 118
Views: 7432

Re: Tipping in living wage state. Redux.

I never worked in a restaurant myself, but several friends and family members have worked as servers. I tip around ~20% on the post-tax amount, (and round up to make the bill an even dollar amount). At fancy restaurants the tip winds up being more in terms of absolute dollars, but I think you normal...
by Ragnoth
Mon Nov 13, 2017 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: buying a tux - any experience with Indichino?
Replies: 7
Views: 631

Re: buying a tux - any experience with Indichino?

I bought a suit from their NYC store. They have a person that measures you up. Based on that, they prepare the suit. You come in a second time, and they will proceed to measure you up again and do the alterations. It's the same as the "at-home" process except you have somebody to measure you and the...
by Ragnoth
Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help
Replies: 65
Views: 5263

Re: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help

I would recommend working with a local lawyer to have a will prepared. Cookie cutter wills are only really suitable for simple situations where there isn't a ton of money at stake (e.g., unmarried man with $50k in the bank leaves it to his sister). Depending on what state you are in, you may have al...
by Ragnoth
Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 549
Views: 57668

Re: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]

No email about the deadline getting pushed back for me yet, either. I did receive the original "Enhancements..." email back on 10/17. Could receipt of this latest email be correlated to the those that filed complaints with TDA about the situation? Can anyone confirm receiving the email who did not ...
by Ragnoth
Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 549
Views: 57668

Re: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]

I have not received this email, do you think I can enjoy this commission-free transition period (I currently hold VEU ETF) ? Thanks a lot You *should* be fine. I received the first and second notices at the same email address. That said, TDAmeritrade customer service could give you a firm answer if...
by Ragnoth
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 549
Views: 57668

Re: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]

If you could help with a couple of questions (I have VTI in Ameritrade 401K): 1. If I have it set up as DRIP, there shouldn't be a fee as Ameritrade does not charge any fees when reinvesting VTI (or any other ETF/stock) dividends? 2. No reason to sell VTI now or any time until ready to sell as it w...
by Ragnoth
Thu Nov 02, 2017 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spam calls to cell phone...
Replies: 93
Views: 8070

Re: Spam calls to cell phone...

I used to get these calls a few times a week. If you pick up the phone, they simply mark your number as "active" and you will get more calls. There is never another person on the other end of the line. It's all automated (although if you respond to the offer for a free credit card or whatever they a...
by Ragnoth
Wed Nov 01, 2017 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Black Friday the Real Deal for computers?
Replies: 22
Views: 2022

Re: Is Black Friday the Real Deal for computors?

Most of the best deals on Black Friday are "door busters." They offer a very low price on certain electronics, but the number of units available is very limited. For example, a retailer like Amazon might have laptops for 30% off, but only the first 100 people are able to get the deal. They are hopin...
by Ragnoth
Wed Nov 01, 2017 12:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 549
Views: 57668

Re: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]

That said, I'm moving over taxable and IRA accounts to Merrill Edge to take advantage of the free trades. The new funds are fine, but I prefer Vanguard ETFs, and see no reason to eat unnecessary fees on my current/future holdings. Remember to sign up for a bonus too. I appreciate the reminder! I wa...