Search found 131 matches

by crew
Tue May 31, 2011 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First time trip to Europe
Replies: 48
Views: 4912

Don't know if it still happens, but first weekend in November, Amsterdam used to have a deal where from 8pm to 1:30am on a Saturday you could go into any museum or attraction in the city for a flat flee. As many as you can see in that timeframe. It was AWESOME. Then you go out at 2:00pm and party th...
by crew
Tue May 31, 2011 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First time trip to Europe
Replies: 48
Views: 4912

Three things: Tie a grosgrain ribbon to your luggage handle, in any eye-catching color except red, which is the color everyone else uses. Then you'll find your black luggage quickly among the welter of red-ribboned black luggage belonging to other people. Take hard copy Traveler's checks in case you...
by crew
Tue May 31, 2011 2:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Most complex, "anti-Boglehead" investments
Replies: 52
Views: 6865

How could we leave out "auction-rate securities?"

It will be some years before anyone believes that bank-hosted auctions have your best interests at heart, or are worth the extra yield.
by crew
Tue May 31, 2011 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 25% of retirees have no more savings
Replies: 79
Views: 9924

Arguably, the more important feature is that it pools risks to fund an annuity that a retiree can't outlive. The more marginal your financial situation, the more important that would be, but it's still VERY important for the vast majority. Not just can't outlive, but can't lose in other ways. My im...
by crew
Sun May 29, 2011 3:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Precious Metals in Your Portfolio
Replies: 42
Views: 3760

Treat gold as an insurance policy outside your investment portfolio - it will pay off in the event of financial catastrophe - that's why you hold it, it is NOT an investment. Do not include it in your formal rebalancing program. I'm not expert, but if you listen to the gold bugs that aren't trying t...
by crew
Sun May 29, 2011 3:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: undershirts
Replies: 40
Views: 5683

JC Penney Stafford heavy weight white Tshirts - round neck if I wear a tie, Vneck if I wear the shirt open collar. I always wear a Tshirt under a dress shirt, even in summer. It's just gross to have any sweat showing on your shirts. Stafford is wonderful, and wears, wears, wears until you throw them...
by crew
Sat May 28, 2011 3:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are You a Defensive or Enterprising Investor?
Replies: 20
Views: 2302

I think it was Warren Buffett commenting on this very same concept who said this: as an investor, you have two equally hard choices. To be a good Enterprising investor, you have to be smart and work hard, plus be very very good. To be a good Defensive investor, you must have the guts to be a contrar...
by crew
Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much allocation to Emerging Markets is too much?
Replies: 80
Views: 11958

In 2005, in David Swensen's Unconventional Success, he recommended that long-term portfolios (30+ year time horizon) should have 5% emerging markets. A few years later he raised that from 5% to 10%. He reduced the allocation to US Real Estate by 5%. In 2005 US Equity - 30% Foreign Developed Equity (...
by crew
Wed Mar 16, 2011 10:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 5 sec.quest:would you consider this a small cap value tilt??
Replies: 8
Views: 776

that is DEFINITELY a small value tilt. Remember that value and small factors are mostly uncorrelated, so you can have the value tilt along any size (large, medium, small) and receive the full value premium. If you concentrate it in small value, then you can evaluate reducing your total equity alloca...
by crew
Wed Mar 16, 2011 9:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 5 sec.quest:would you consider this a small cap value tilt??
Replies: 8
Views: 776

It's a value tilt for sure.

70% of the Wilshire 5000 is the large cap S&P 500, so you would need to have at least 35% to 40% of the boxes in the mid- and small-cap boxes to constitute a med/small cap tilt.
by crew
Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ways to lower Adjusted Gross Income (AGI)
Replies: 22
Views: 6123

Timing your recognized income from a business, farm, or fishery to make sure you don't cross tax bracket boundaries.
by crew
Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: EBRI Retirement Confidence Survey 2011
Replies: 6
Views: 1131

Many people have a real block about dealing with finances, even when they intellectually know they would be better off. Sort of like why I'm not working out in the gym tonight... One guy I know (my partner, actually) is a total saver, but he never does anything with his savings, keeps it in bank acc...
by crew
Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Plan B" retirement stategy, do you have one?
Replies: 42
Views: 4619

I once spent 24 hours on an island in Lake Titicaca. My total cost of lodging (in a dorm) and three (vegetarian) meals was about $3. I then realized that for $1,000 I could live there for a year, and that I had plenty of assets never to have to work again. That was a very liberating thought. Victor...
by crew
Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Plan B" retirement stategy, do you have one?
Replies: 42
Views: 4619

Plan B? you talk about that as if it's optional.

I'm already on Plan B. I'm working on Plan C...
by crew
Tue Mar 15, 2011 12:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to treat land in retirement planning
Replies: 3
Views: 884

In Larry Swedroe's book Alternative Investments, he recommends excluding your primary residence from your asset allocation, since it is lumpy, concentrated, hard to deal with, and generates zero income. Other books have suggested the same, and go further to say that your primary residence should be ...
by crew
Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What percentage of your networth is investable capital?
Replies: 39
Views: 4849

Age 39
% investable: 96%
by crew
Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do Treasurys have credit risk? Has this changed your IPS?
Replies: 5
Views: 894

Do Treasurys have credit risk? Has this changed your IPS?

I've seen some articles wondering about who is going to buy all the Treasury debt that will be issued in the next few years. Also, some US corporations have recently issued debt for lower rates than the US government (J&J for one, I believe). I know if the government defaults on its debt, I prob...
by crew
Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Recommend me some intermediate/advanced books?
Replies: 34
Views: 5326

J. K. Lasser’s Your Winning Retirement Plan The author's real name is Henry Hebeler - his website is www.analyzenow.com He was the corporate strategist at Boeing as well as an operating manager. He is very quantitative and has a different spin on things, along with LOTS of math and spreadsheets. To ...
by crew
Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Turbotax and HSA deductions
Replies: 8
Views: 2728

My return is exactly like yours - and my outcome was the same as yours. What you are saying is correct.
by crew
Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I don't trust my SVF
Replies: 14
Views: 2819

Re: I don't trust my SVF

The fund is managed by Babson Capital, which was the largest manager of collateralized debt obligations at the end of 2009. So they were at the forefront of the credit market collapse. Babson's attorney is taking issue with this statement. He is saying that Babson was big into CLO's, which were a s...
by crew
Sun Mar 13, 2011 9:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I don't trust my SVF
Replies: 14
Views: 2819

Bottom line notwithstanding CDOs, CLOs, investment grade, non-investment grade, corporate heavyweights fearful of something getting out of hand on a bulletin board - If you aren't sure what this GIC invests in, and their attorney dials in with "concern" about what you say in your post, per...
by crew
Sun Mar 13, 2011 7:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll: Let's talk wristwatches
Replies: 158
Views: 28871

I want a Breguet Classique 5140BA/29/9W6.

It is $14,000.

Until I feel like letting go of that kind of money for something I will misplace somewhere, I'll wear nothing at all.
by crew
Mon Mar 07, 2011 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Emergency cash (physical currency)
Replies: 80
Views: 8056

I often wonder what I need ready to grab if I must disappear, immediately and thoroughly. If it were something where the authorities or some other organization were after you, I'm told it is next to impossible to elude capture (or worse). There's a book out there that talks about this - fascinating ...
by crew
Sun Mar 06, 2011 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Emergency cash (physical currency)
Replies: 80
Views: 8056

I keep $1000 in American Express traveler's checks, 1000 euro and $1000 within reach at all times.

I also keep two cases of soap in my basement - it is nonperishable and probably more valuable than gold in times of disaster.
by crew
Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Microsoft Excel test part of job interview
Replies: 18
Views: 7489

Unless the job requires an expert Excel knowledge, your command of Excel commands and terms in your question statement tells me you're ready now. I might also brush up on Solver, Scenarios, Conditional Formatting, and the various Data Package add-ons, especially histogram and statistics, but only if...
by crew
Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are some actively managed funds that you like?
Replies: 33
Views: 3824

A friend of mine swears by Fidelity Contrafund.
Also Vanguard Wellington and Wellesley
by crew
Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which financial institution stores most of your net worth?
Replies: 79
Views: 8675

Vanguard
BlackRock
Fidelity
Credit Union
by crew
Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Young investor needs help with unified portfolio theory
Replies: 8
Views: 1187

I take my goals and put them into four buckets less than 2 years 2 to 5 5 to 15 or so more than 15 I then manage four "portfolios" of investible assets (excluding emergency funds and contingency, which aren't assets - they are safe money). less than 2 - cash 2 to 5 - short term bonds 5 to ...
by crew
Tue Feb 22, 2011 11:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Swedroe and VBMFX/BND
Replies: 38
Views: 7428

I've been wrestling with this precise issue (diversified bond vs. treasury) and these arguments give me the conviction to stay the course - I'm sticking with my Treasury notes - for good!
by crew
Tue Feb 22, 2011 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When did you first join a credit union?
Replies: 47
Views: 5831

I passionately believe in credit unions over banks for my savings. I joined my first credit union right out of college, sponsored by my first employer. I've used them exclusively for my routine savings and loans ever since. I use a large bank only for those things credit unions don't provide. My cur...
by crew
Tue Feb 22, 2011 11:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: HR Block software and Roth conversion?
Replies: 8
Views: 2250

I too was frustrated by this. I have a fully nondeductible traditional IRA that converted to Roth in 2010 (no recharacterization, just simple conversion). I had no end of trouble with HR Block for the following reasons: 1. I missed the statement in parenthesis where they asked "did you convert ...
by crew
Mon Feb 21, 2011 1:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k Plan- Employer Setup Recommendation- URGENT
Replies: 41
Views: 5294

If the media reports about 401k balances can be believed, your task is to save your employees from themselves - not to give them options. Options scare them and immobilize them, and are a barrier against them investing at all. For 90% of your employees, put them in a low-cost target fund pointed at ...
by crew
Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What expenditures improved your happiness/quality of life?
Replies: 155
Views: 30033

I gym membership at the "best" gym in the area, it cost $40 a month more than the next acceptable option. It caused me to look forward to the social component, go to the gym more often, and manage my diabetes too - a hat trick! I budget for this and happily cut in other areas, like packing...
by crew
Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: What is your investment philosophy?
Replies: 74
Views: 9169

Lynch found it more and more difficult in later years to stay ahead of the market as Magellan grew. You can see it in his investment performance - I read somewhere that he left in part because the job was becoming more and more exhausting to deliver a slimmer and slimmer premium. He couldn't put in ...
by crew
Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: What is your investment philosophy?
Replies: 74
Views: 9169

Modern Portfolio Theory plus the four factor extension (small, value, credit, term).

I selected "other"
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much should a locksmith charge for emergency service?
Replies: 27
Views: 10214

Last year I was locked out at 7pm on a weeknight - it was $150 for them to do the work, and they didn't have to replace anything or cut keys. Just get the door open.

They told me that number upfront and were courteous and professional.
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 11:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Has anyone bet on deflation?
Replies: 58
Views: 5543

I have not tried this myself, but if you were very concerned about deflation, could you invest in the Vanguard ultra-long zero coupon Treasury STRP fund? Or buy some yourself? These have super long durations, and you wouldn't have to commit a large amount of money to get a very large amount of defla...
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 10:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does your spouse share your views on spending?
Replies: 41
Views: 5059

You can bet your bottom dollar that this one does.

See my OP post called "Pre-Nup" to find out why. My first time around, I bet my bottom dollar and lost! :D
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 10:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Articles that make me angry
Replies: 16
Views: 2600

How could I rebalance my huge index holdings if there weren't all these self-serving, foolish actives constantly buying and selling?
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 9:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excellent Article re Stable Value Funds
Replies: 45
Views: 9448

It took me hours to find any information about the stable value fund in my Fidelity 401K. The breakdown of holdings as of June 2007 was: Credit- 23.5% ABS- 24.4% CMBS- 20.6% MBS- 19.5% Treasury- 7.2% Agency- 3.4% Cash/Other- 1.4% My spine is tingling with fear. I'm just put in an order to transfer ...
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 9:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard recommends international bonds!
Replies: 72
Views: 12550

The thing that keeps coming up for me is WHY I invest in bonds - specifically Treasury notes and bonds. It is for protection during deflation and market panics. International government bonds do not respond in the same way as Treasury. The other reason I invest in bonds is for TIPS - inflation prote...
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Will boomers retirement fuel their own bear market?
Replies: 47
Views: 6355

Personal opinion: Boomers should worry more about selling their homes than their stock. Homes will be sold into a more limited market (US only) and are not as fungible. In addition, more and more evidence mounts that younger generations have different housing tastes and will acquire Boomer-style hom...
by crew
Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Shaving Cream
Replies: 69
Views: 11124

Neutrogena

I have very sensitive skin even after two blade shaves and must use the electric razor on my face. Occasionally I need to use a blade - Neutrogena is the best at preventing irritation. It also works well on the body.
by crew
Tue Jan 18, 2011 8:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Timber REITs do not correlate with timber indices
Replies: 2
Views: 665

It's my understanding that the TIMOs and other institutional investors buy timber because of timber's portfolio characteristics. Hence these institutional investments tend to focus largely on the sale of timber, without concern for other sectors. The TIMOs do a lot of real estate transactions, like ...
by crew
Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Timber REITs do not correlate with timber indices
Replies: 2
Views: 665

Timber REITs do not correlate with timber indices

There was a post entitled "Timber REITs are Tax Efficient." I wanted to have a conversation about timber REIT correlations to a timber index for the purposes of portfolio diversification, rather than the tax angle. Hence the separate post. I've found two good discussions on this topic, bot...
by crew
Thu Jan 13, 2011 5:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Farmland lease rates, Missouri
Replies: 7
Views: 2446

Here is a link to a 2010 survey of Missouri land values, 62% lenders and 16% appraisers. m It divides Missouri by county and by land type (arable, pasture, timber/recreation). While this doesn't directly answer your question about leases, it might get you a step closer. You could also contact a rura...
by crew
Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pre-nups
Replies: 116
Views: 13529

We did it. Both in our 50's with children and assets. Look, you are going to have to discuss issues of complexity in your marriage (or at least you should if it is a true partnership). If you feel strongly about doing this, you should discuss it. A word of advise...each should have their own counse...
by crew
Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pre-nups
Replies: 116
Views: 13529

Pre-nups

While a prenuptial agreement makes 100% rational sense, and my past, bitter, agony-filled marital experience from 15 years ago cries out for a prenup the second time around, I am finding it difficult to broach the subject. My intended is young(er), an idealist, and never-married. Which of course, is...
by crew
Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: An uncomfortable day at work. . .
Replies: 49
Views: 8491

At most small and medium companies, if an administrator ever got into a debate over active/passive options, it would be an improvement over what really they think about and deal with. Can't remember where (was it BrightScope?) that talked about the incentives 401(k) administrators have when making s...
by crew
Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best Money Market for Emergency Fund?
Replies: 45
Views: 7106

Local credit union should be worth a look. And you're not selling yourself out to The Man.