Search found 5385 matches

by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What convenience fees does your city charge for credit card use?
Replies: 34
Views: 1334

Re: What convenience fees does your city charge for credit card use?

FlyAF wrote:
Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:41 pm
My city water utility charges $2.00 per transaction. I pay by check now that they've implemented it. :annoyed
$2 per credit card transaction regardless of the amount due?
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why don't I read about this strategy more? [12-month moving average, momentum]
Replies: 84
Views: 11155

Re: Why don't I read about this strategy more? It seems reasonable and pretty straight forward.

Think about the amount of time and energy you will spend timing the market, and what more fun things you could be doing with your time. Then ask yourself: "Do I really think I will make more money this way without assuming more risk? And if I do assume more risk, is it worth it to me?" If you are co...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accuracy of Zillow/Trulia/Redfin Estimates
Replies: 51
Views: 4214

Re: Accuracy of Zillow/Trulia/Redfin Estimates

Zillow etc. will give you a vague idea. Meet with three of the best realtors in your area and interview them. You are under no obligation- when interviewing realtors most will do a comparative analysis free of charge in hopes of getting your business. They will also probably walk through your home ...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What convenience fees does your city charge for credit card use?
Replies: 34
Views: 1334

What convenience fees does your city charge for credit card use?

My city uses a third party (Unipay) to process credit card transactions for real estate tax, utility bills, parking tickets, etc. Unipay charges usurious "convenience fees"- often 10-25% of the total bill and sometimes even more. I imagine the city sees none of that, on top of which Unipay gets to m...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accuracy of Zillow/Trulia/Redfin Estimates
Replies: 51
Views: 4214

Re: Accuracy of Zillow/Trulia/Redfin Estimates

Zillow etc. will give you a vague idea. Meet with three of the best realtors in your area and interview them. You are under no obligation- when interviewing realtors most will do a comparative analysis free of charge in hopes of getting your business. They will also probably walk through your home w...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: As a new grad, should I consider buying or renting?
Replies: 48
Views: 1819

Re: As a new grad, should I consider buying or renting?

Don't buy. Pay more in rent. Reasons: 1) New job. You may hate it. 2) New city. You may hate it. 3) New city. You have no idea where it's best to buy a house. 4) You likely have no/limited credit history, and no/limited earning history. Who's going to give you a mortgage? I agree with the above. I ...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does Early Retirement Make You Live Longer?
Replies: 70
Views: 4212

Re: Does Early Retirement Make You Live Longer?

I am waiting for a study correlating having a TV and mortality. My hypothesis is that TV shortens life. Victoria Probably...chronic TV watchers are probably more sedentary. Also people with chronic debilitating (and potentially life-threatening) illness that forces them to be inactive probably watc...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does Early Retirement Make You Live Longer?
Replies: 70
Views: 4212

Re: Does Early Retirement Make You Live Longer?

There is nothing fascinating about this, since correlation does not imply causation. There are many coexisting factors that could easily explain the trend if real (see my comment below about this). One simple one.... Wealthier people live much longer than poorer people, and wealthier people are able...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 13, 2018 7:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Selling I Bonds/Buying New I Bonds?
Replies: 9
Views: 1241

Re: Sell old I-bonds to buy new ones?

Does it make sense to sell I-bonds purchased in April 2012 (0%) to buy new I-bonds at 0.5%, rather than just buying more I bonds this year? And if I do would I have to pay tax on the sale, or can I just "flip" them? Thanks in advance. It sounds like you have the money to buy more, so that's what I'...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Free half price mass transit card NYC for seniors
Replies: 2
Views: 520

Free half price mass transit card NYC for seniors

Those of you who live in NYC, I am sure, know about this.
But those who go there often (as I do) may not.....
Another advantage is you can have the fare automatically charged to a credit card so you don't have to reload your Metrocard
http://web.mta.info/nyct/fare/rfindex.htm
by protagonist
Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finances in NYC
Replies: 89
Views: 6822

Re: Finances in NYC

A bigger question to ask yourself is do you want to live in Manhattan (people love it or hate it), and how much will you like your job compared to what you are doing now?

Make money, but don't let money make you. Be happy.
by protagonist
Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Selling I Bonds/Buying New I Bonds?
Replies: 9
Views: 1241

Sell old I-bonds to buy new ones?

[Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek]

Does it make sense to sell I-bonds purchased in April 2012 (0%) to buy new I-bonds at 0.5%, rather than just buying more I bonds this year?
And if I do would I have to pay tax on the sale, or can I just "flip" them?
Thanks in advance.
by protagonist
Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I-bonds vs TIPS
Replies: 3
Views: 617

Re: I-bonds vs TIPS

I-bonds in taxable (susceptible to purchase limit)
TIPS in tax-deferred, but only if you are sure you can hold them to maturity.
by protagonist
Tue Nov 06, 2018 3:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: This man can predict when bubbles burst: time to time the market?
Replies: 145
Views: 10521

Re: This man can predict when bubbles burst: time to time the market?

In The Book of Predictions by David Wallechinsky et al, published in 1981 (one of my favorite books...), Andrew Greeley, Professor of Sociology at the Univ. of Arizona, predicted that by 1990: "The Communist government of the Soviet Union will be overthrown...likely by a social democratic faction wi...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 06, 2018 3:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: This man can predict when bubbles burst: time to time the market?
Replies: 145
Views: 10521

Re: This man can predict when bubbles burst: time to time the market?

I haven't had time to fully study his methodology, but I see from his Wikipedia page that he also is into earthquake forecasting etc. If I wasn't initially skeptical, I sure am now. Given the difference between what causes a financial bubble to pop and what causes an earthquake, such claims raise t...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 06, 2018 11:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thoughts on 5 year TIPS bonds?
Replies: 42
Views: 3597

Re: Thoughts on 5 year TIPS bonds?

Protagonist I agree that 5 year money TIPS are a great choice in retirement. Even though historical real rates have been better then 1% these rates are a decent certainty. But a retiree needs to think about their spending requirements for each year going forward. In my case I have to take RMD's eac...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 06, 2018 11:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thoughts on 5 year TIPS bonds?
Replies: 42
Views: 3597

Re: Thoughts on 5 year TIPS bonds?

For those in retirement, who treat fixed income as a means of wealth preservation (rather than seeking maximum growth which comes with associated risk), and who can comfortably afford to tie up savings for 5 years, why would a guarantee of beating inflation by 1% over 5 years in a tax-deferred acco...
by protagonist
Mon Nov 05, 2018 9:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thoughts on 5 year TIPS bonds?
Replies: 42
Views: 3597

Re: Thoughts on 5 year TIPS bonds?

For those in retirement, who treat fixed income as a means of wealth preservation (rather than seeking maximum growth which comes with associated risk), and who can comfortably afford to tie up savings for 5 years, why would a guarantee of beating inflation by 1% over 5 years in a tax-deferred accou...
by protagonist
Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95
Replies: 94
Views: 7811

Re: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95

If I might be so bold as to suggest....

I don't think a 5 or 10 or 15 dollar difference is going to make much of a difference to most of us in the long run.

I would opt for downloading the software whenever you feel like it.
by protagonist
Mon Nov 05, 2018 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95
Replies: 94
Views: 7811

Re: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95

LadyGeek wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:58 pm
Since I purchased the 2017 version of H&R Block tax software, I just received an email with a link to pre-order the 2018 version for $29.95.
Wow, LG, what makes you so special?
I got an email around the same day but they want to charge me $34.95! *jealous*
giggle.....
by protagonist
Sun Nov 04, 2018 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Xfinity Mobile
Replies: 134
Views: 18993

Re: Xfinity Mobile

I assume this is just for new subscribers?

I have been an Xfinity Mobile customer for over a year. It would be nice to get more phones.
by protagonist
Sun Nov 04, 2018 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95
Replies: 94
Views: 7811

Re: H+R Block Deluxe Fed and State $35. Questions.

Thanks, Kevin! I expect I may take a capital loss on the sale....then again it may be offset by depreciation. It is a FL property that I inherited from my mom in 2005 and that was badly hit by the 2008 crash. Would that make a difference re: the adequacy of the Deluxe software? Yep, if the deprecia...
by protagonist
Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95
Replies: 94
Views: 7811

Re: H+R Block Deluxe Fed and State $35. Questions.

The deluxe version is fine for handling rental property and mutual fund sales. I've been using it or the TurboTax deluxe version to do both for years. I tried the TT Premium version one year, and it wasn't worth it to me, but it does provide more hand holding. It didn't help me with the one complex...
by protagonist
Fri Nov 02, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITS have beaten other stocks for 50 years
Replies: 31
Views: 2963

Re: REITS have beaten other stocks for 50 years

https://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/14/realestate/commercial/14sqft.html For the decade from 2000-2009 Vanguard's REIT fund returned 10.4%. Vanguard's TSM returned -0.27%. Even taking that 2008 article into account, an investment in REITs at the start of the decade would have left you with 3x the portf...
by protagonist
Fri Nov 02, 2018 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe Federal + State $29.95
Replies: 94
Views: 7811

H+R Block Deluxe Fed and State $35. Questions.

[Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek] Just received an email that H+R Block is offering their 2018 Fed and State Deluxe for $34.95. ($20 off, so they claim) . I presume this comes with free federal fliling (as it has in the past), but there was no mention on the email. Good until N...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Think I have found my new commuter car - 2019 Honda Insight
Replies: 44
Views: 4661

Re: Think I have found my new commuter car - 2019 Honda Insight

It's a great time to buy a car. November is supposedly the cheapest month. I was hell-bent on buying a Honda or a Toyota last November....I have driven Hondas since 1983.....but I finally settled on a 2017 Hyundai Elantra Limited just after the 2018s came out. Reason? I got a lot more bang for my bu...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 3000
Views: 589034

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

but if there is no good reason to cancel (eg: being denied a new card because you have too much credit already), there is no point in canceling. This is my concern. I have approximately $75K in total credit line spread across the four cards I have now with $30K of it on the Southwest card alone. I ...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 3000
Views: 589034

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

After thinking about this I'm leaning towards canceling the Citi DoubleCash more because there's no situation where it can earn as much as the BofA Premium Rewards cards. You should think twice about canceling cards that don't charge an annual fee. A longer credit history contributes to a higher cr...
by protagonist
Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I'm 100% stocks
Replies: 149
Views: 17207

Re: Why I'm 100% stocks

Risk is proportional to potential reward. There are very few absolute truths in the universe, but that one comes about as close as any. And not just for investing either. If you stay 100% I would guess that there is a better chance that you will be much richer than me in 30 or 50 years. There is al...
by protagonist
Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why I'm 100% stocks
Replies: 149
Views: 17207

Re: Why I'm 100% stocks

Risk is proportional to potential reward. There are very few absolute truths in the universe, but that one comes about as close as any. And not just for investing either. If you stay 100% I would guess that there is a better chance that you will be much richer than me in 10 or 30 or 50 years. There ...
by protagonist
Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much does a car need to be driven?
Replies: 43
Views: 3605

Re: How much does a car need to be driven?

inbox788 wrote:
Mon Oct 29, 2018 4:24 pm
Just to keep the battery going, a battery tender is the best option.
I never used one, Is there one you would recommend (2017 Hyundai Elantra)?
by protagonist
Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Body by Science Workout
Replies: 241
Views: 40975

Re: Body by Science Workout

Revisiting this thread from 2010-2014. Question for those who started the Body by Science (superslow HIIT) workout years ago: 1. Are you still doing it? 2. If so, for how many years? 3. If you have been doing it for years, are you still seeing the benefits? 4 Do you consider the BBS workout once a w...
by protagonist
Mon Oct 29, 2018 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to sell CDs and accept EWP
Replies: 10
Views: 1316

Re: When to sell CDs and accept EWP

Thanks.

I figure I will wait until I see ~2 year CDs with yields approaching 4% before I sell any of my 2.57%/6 mo EWP CDs maturing in 2020 or my 3%/6 mo EWP CDs maturing in 2023 to buy new issues. Maybe a little less than 4%.
by protagonist
Mon Oct 29, 2018 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gutters and gutter guards
Replies: 60
Views: 8996

Re: Gutters and gutter guards

I researched gutter guards as well as gutter cleaning robots and other modern solutions after suffering an ice dam a few years ago. I live in New England with a 130 year old slate roof....much of which is quite pitched....and a lot of trees. I don't recall the details of my research, but it was fair...
by protagonist
Mon Oct 29, 2018 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much does a car need to be driven?
Replies: 43
Views: 3605

Re: How much does a car need to be driven?

IMO - once a week to keep things lubricated. If you're going to let things sit for any length of time, you need to properly prepare them for storage. Lookup how boats are stored - a lot of this carries over to automotive storage as well. Adding some fuel stabilizer and parking a car for months at a...
by protagonist
Thu Oct 25, 2018 6:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to sell CDs and accept EWP
Replies: 10
Views: 1316

Re: When to sell CDs and accept EWP

Protagonist, Just guessing, but I think if you right click on the cell with the odd number, select format, then select date, it might make more sense. My excel program randomly gets the formatting of the date messed up as well...never have figured out why EDIT Just saw cruncher's note : "Format the...
by protagonist
Thu Oct 25, 2018 12:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to sell CDs and accept EWP
Replies: 10
Views: 1316

Re: When to sell CDs and accept EWP

(For the ones maturing in 11/2020, rounding to 2 years to maturity, I assume the answer would be 2.57%/.75= 3.43%, since I would be losing about 1/4 of the remaining interest cf. holding to maturity, correct?) No, the breakeven rate on the new CD is about 3.22%, not 3.43%. After the 6 month penalty...
by protagonist
Wed Oct 24, 2018 9:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to sell CDs and accept EWP
Replies: 10
Views: 1316

Re: When to sell CDs and accept EWP

You might try this site https://www.depositaccounts.com/tools/break-cd-calculator.aspx Thanks, but that is only helpful in assessing when to break a CD, not when to break one and buy another of differing maturity, EWP, etc This one works, but I think I have gotten some spurious results when trading...
by protagonist
Wed Oct 24, 2018 9:04 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to sell CDs and accept EWP
Replies: 10
Views: 1316

When to sell CDs and accept EWP

I have CDs yielding 2.57% maturing in 11/2020, and others yielding 3% maturing in 2/2021, 7/2023 and 12/2023. All have 6 month EWPs. Approximately how high would the yield on a 2 year CD have to be to make it worthwhile for me to cash any of these in, accept the EWP, and buy new 2 year CDs at the ne...
by protagonist
Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bonds saved the bacon in the "lost decade" for stocks, but will they do it again?
Replies: 21
Views: 3064

Re: Bonds saved the bacon in the "lost decade" for stocks, but will they do it again?

I wouldn't count on bonds saving the day. As was pointed out, bonds were at 6-7% in 2000 -yields had plenty of room to fall. They don't have very far to fall today but have unlimited room to rise. Plus, rising yields on Treasuries are the plan, and corporate bonds typically follow suit. I believe CD...
by protagonist
Tue Oct 23, 2018 3:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: So...what’s Plan B [for your retirement security]?
Replies: 32
Views: 3517

Re: So...what’s Plan B [for your retirement security]?

Not too concerned. I keep enough in CDs , I-bonds etc. that if the market drops by 99% and does not recover within my lifetime I should be able to maintain my current lifestyle via SS and CDs. Having much more money doesn't seem like it would make me much (if at all) happier anyway, so I don't inves...
by protagonist
Tue Oct 23, 2018 3:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Six stocks make up 98% of S&P 500 gains in 2018
Replies: 100
Views: 15788

Re: Six stocks make up 98% of S&P 500 gains in 2018

I'm very happy with that! My trend following strategy has had me primarily in large cap growth this year. My portfolio has returned 8.2% this year, compared to SPY's 2.5%. Isn’t it true that a handful of stocks have explained most of the growth in the market for most of history? Yes. Around 90% of ...
by protagonist
Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "6 Reasons The Rich Should Pay-Off Their Mortgage"
Replies: 196
Views: 36535

Re: "6 Reasons The Rich Should Pay-Off Their Mortgage"

Reason 7, and IMHO the most important: If you pay it off, you may come out ahead financially or you may not. Only time (15 years? 30 years?) will tell. That's a crap shoot. But it feels so good to be debt-free. And no matter what, you have a roof over your head. Your home is really yours. Funny how ...
by protagonist
Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Six Pillars of Self-Esteem: Nathaniel Branden
Replies: 16
Views: 2663

Re: Six Pillars of Self-Esteem: Nathaniel Branden

My personal opinion (for what it is worth): If self-esteem is a concern, and you can afford it, you would do better to seek professional therapy than expect to get it from a self-help book. Self-esteem is such an important factor in carving out a happy life. And it is a complex issue for which I dou...
by protagonist
Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2-year CDs at Vanguard and Fidelity Today
Replies: 480
Views: 72459

Re: 2-year CDs at Vanguard and Fidelity Today

Your calculation is correct. Be sure you are using marginal tax rates, and not tax brackets. My federal tax bracket will be 12%, but my federal marginal tax rate will be 27%, due to marginal ordinary income pushing an equal amount of qualified dividends from 0% to 15% tax rate. There many other fac...
by protagonist
Thu Oct 18, 2018 11:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good Modern Science Fiction
Replies: 323
Views: 45945

Re: Good Modern Science Fiction

I just finished Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood. Excellent book.
by protagonist
Mon Oct 15, 2018 4:41 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Tampa Bay Local Bogleheads Chapter
Replies: 82
Views: 16783

Re: Tampa Bay Local Bogleheads Chapter

The new email group now has two Polls (at our Groups.io website), asking where members reside, and also preferred day of week to meet, in order to better plan centralized meetings (or rotate, if need be). We're aiming to schedule our next meeting in early/mid Nov. I'll be in St Pete in January with...
by protagonist
Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 7836
Views: 1608139

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

Roughly skimming the last few pages of the 146 pages of this thread leads me to the assumption that Bogleheads are strong believers in market timing. They also believe that past performance is a reliable predictor of future returns, both in the short term and in the long term. No judgment here....wh...