Search found 996 matches

by bberris
Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $500k Term Life- get new policy?
Replies: 14
Views: 728

Re: $500k Term Life- get new policy?

Level premium term (is it?) is a better deal as you get older. In the last few years it is a very good deal. If you decide you need or want more insurance, you can always add another policy without cancelling this one.
by bberris
Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:03 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: need strategy to sell stocks without increasing AGI
Replies: 2
Views: 263

Re: need strategy to sell stocks without increasing AGI

Another option: borrow. Some student loans have good terms. You have an asset to pay it off later. The main problem I see is that your only financial asset seems to be stock in a single company, which is a large, uncompensated risk. By uncompensated, I mean that there is not a higher probability of ...
by bberris
Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Tax Hump vs. Tax Torpedo
Replies: 21
Views: 2274

Re: Social Security Tax Hump vs. Tax Torpedo

I wonder if people would prefer if SS payments were taxed 100% like any other taxable income to begin with! If that were the case, there would be no tax hump or no tax torpedo. It is a case of looking if the glass is half full or half empty. ACA also introduces some very high marginal rates. Going ...
by bberris
Mon Jul 16, 2018 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Tax Hump vs. Tax Torpedo
Replies: 21
Views: 2274

Re: Social Security Tax Hump vs. Tax Torpedo

I just came across this article from the Journal of Financial Planning on Tax Torpedo: https://www.onefpa.org/journal/Pages/JUL18-Understanding-the-Tax-Torpedo-and-Its-Implications-for-Various-Retirees.aspx The authors of that article developed this software to optimize issues related to torpedo: h...
by bberris
Tue Jul 10, 2018 6:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car totaled by uninsured driver
Replies: 37
Views: 3392

Re: Car totaled by uninsured driver

would an insurance company push this to collections in an effort to get any $$ back from the guy? garnish a wage or something? to at least recoup some of the loss. Seems unfair for the guy to walk away 'scott free' after totaling someones car. That makes no sense. Edited: I see now that insurance c...
by bberris
Tue Jul 10, 2018 6:10 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3.01% 1-year CD
Replies: 7
Views: 2176

Re: 3.01% 1-year CD

I've seen some of these over-market deals in the past. They are always limited (largest was 10k) and they require you to make x number of debit card transactions per month, or something else to make them money on the side that they use to pay the extra interest. You can probably find the threads here.
by bberris
Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whole Life - We're doing it. What to look for?
Replies: 128
Views: 7488

Re: Whole Life - We're doing it. What to look for?

There seems to be some confusion about what "non-profit" means. It does NOT mean that they sell products at cost. Non profits are allowed to retain earnings. This would be called a profit, except that the company is non-profit. They can also charge whatever the market will bear for product, and pay ...
by bberris
Sun Jul 08, 2018 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k loan to pay off debt?
Replies: 37
Views: 1623

Re: 401k loan to pay off debt?

Up or down in the near term would be an issue though, correct? Advise to not borrow from a 401k usually stems from the thought that the money in your 401k during the life of the loan will be profitable and you now lose out on all the compound interest over the years. But if my loan is a relatively ...
by bberris
Fri Jul 06, 2018 1:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity- Lincoln Level Advantage Indexed variable annuity
Replies: 14
Views: 835

Re: Annuity- Lincoln Level Advantage Indexed variable annuity

rgs92 wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 11:59 am
I would put half into an SPIA and the other half into a total stock market index fund. The SPIA is your safe foundation for life. The index fund is for growth.
Make sure you know the difference between a SPIA and the crap you (OP) are considering.
by bberris
Fri Jul 06, 2018 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cheapest quality online tax preparation software?
Replies: 8
Views: 366

Re: Cheapest quality online tax preparation software?

H and R Block is free, quality software offering importing features, suitable for investors and ACA reconciliation. Go through United Way:

https://www.myfreetaxes.com/
by bberris
Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I finance a new home abroad (Carribean)???
Replies: 53
Views: 4244

Re: Can I finance a new home abroad (Carribean)???

In April you told us you had $700k sitting in a bank account. No need to borrow money, then. I am not comfortable purchasing a home cash and much less in another country. Got too little ones at home a large amount of my liquidity to that amount of risk I don’t think is a smart decision. You seem to...
by bberris
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Treasury Auction - Nobody Came: "Great T-Bill Massacre"
Replies: 145
Views: 11859

Re: Treasury Auction - Nobody Came: "Great T-Bill Massacre"

Doc, remember that nations like China with excess dollars have to do something with them. They can buy US Treasuries, invest here in the United ... Pretty much the Chinese trade surpluses with the US are invested in the United States one way or the other. Either by buying Treasuries or investing in...
by bberris
Wed Jul 04, 2018 6:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this the least bad way to get out of my lease?
Replies: 5
Views: 960

Re: Is this the least bad way to get out of my lease?

I agree sell the car to a dealer to avoid the sales tax. You will get a lower price than a private sale, but much less risk and work. Some of the higher price from a private sale would be eaten up by sales tax that you would owe (on the residual buy out value, which you saved originally by leasing),...
by bberris
Tue Jul 03, 2018 12:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Treasury Auction - Nobody Came: "Great T-Bill Massacre"
Replies: 145
Views: 11859

Re: Treasury Auction - Nobody Came: "Great T-Bill Massacre"

So if I am the guy selling those "better choices", now I have those dollars that the prudent guy (who doesn't like US govt debt) gave me in payment. I guess I now have to look for even better choices.
by bberris
Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How does this ebay scam work?
Replies: 13
Views: 2239

Re: How does this ebay scam work?

My guess is honest mistake; mixed up orders. There was no invoice?
by bberris
Sun Jul 01, 2018 5:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax? Capital Gains on Funds sold from Broker then purchased w/Fidelity
Replies: 3
Views: 392

Re: Tax? Capital Gains on Funds sold from Broker then purchased w/Fidelity

No, selling and rebuying the same fund does not eliminate or delay capital gains. But your capital gains should be minimal since the basis was set to the value on mom's death. If those capital gains would push you over the cliff, you would need to keep the funds where they are, if they won't transfe...
by bberris
Fri Jun 29, 2018 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: glass cancer?( watermark etching)
Replies: 24
Views: 2691

Re: glass cancer?( watermark etching)

Use about 5 % citric acid. Without seeing it, I could not say for sure that it's etched. Much more likely are calcium and magnesium deposits from hard water. Even with a water softener, you will have hard water at times if it is present in the water source. It is particularly bad to use hot water du...
by bberris
Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dave Ramsey against index funds?
Replies: 57
Views: 5703

Re: Dave Ramsey against index funds?

Of course you can find funds that beat the market... after they've done it. There are thousands of funds, some will beat the average, and some will not. But the extra expense of management fees for active funds drags their performance down on average. All of these active funds trade against each oth...
by bberris
Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Income Annuities
Replies: 20
Views: 1150

Re: Income Annuities

If you die tomorrow, are you ok with losing out on your lump annuity payment and not leaving it to somebody? Please correct me if I am wrong, but isn't that how these things work? You can get a 5 year minimum payout, but that is not free. These are commonly offered. If you want the maximum annuity,...
by bberris
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: State tax on 401k contributions - what happens if you move?
Replies: 15
Views: 833

Re: State tax on 401k contributions - what happens if you move?

As long as you separate all ties with NJ before you start withdrawing, you're good; no state income tax. Sell all your property, register to vote and driver's license in FL, cars licensed in FL, receive your mail and change your account address. In short, do everything you normally do when you move,...
by bberris
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get cheap flights?
Replies: 18
Views: 1049

Re: How to get cheap flights?

Florida covers a lot of ground. Be flexible about dates, use google flights to search alternate dates, maybe go to another city. You need to check Southwest separately; they don't share fare and flight information with search engines. Keep checking; prices change by the minute. If you have to fly on...
by bberris
Thu Jun 21, 2018 6:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Avoiding Capital Gains Tax
Replies: 16
Views: 1751

Re: Avoiding Capital Gains Tax

You can borrow the money, tax-free.
by bberris
Thu Jun 21, 2018 4:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: is Ed Jones always bad news?
Replies: 29
Views: 3408

Re: is Ed Jones always bad news?

You could do worse, and a lot of people have. But really, why scrape the bottom of the barrel?
by bberris
Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: successful chase sapphire paid auto claim with rental abroad
Replies: 12
Views: 1084

Re: successful chase sapphire paid auto claim with rental abroad

Trip cancellation insurance with Chase sapphire was only partly successful for me. I claimed the full price of my plane tickets (bargain $550 each for MSP to FCO). But they only paid the change fee ($300). Rebooking after we felt good enough to travel would have cost over 1000 each. We did not reboo...
by bberris
Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rule of 55 is it official?
Replies: 50
Views: 9579

Re: Rule of 55 is it official?

Update: The following could be incorrect. Sorry but the age-55-rule is not available in all 401(k) plans. The IRS allows it, but many plans do not implement it. So it turns out that one cannot really get advice about this rule of 55 from an internet forum. One has to check with their own plan admin...
by bberris
Sat Jun 16, 2018 6:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: MD&P just purchased X / sold Y [md&pharmacist]
Replies: 198
Views: 12250

Re: MD&P just purchased X / sold Y [md&pharmacist]

As far as I can gather, he screens for funds with recent outperformance (the power of the internet!). There is sort of a method to this madness. He seems to be following a momentum strategy that is wildly inefficient but somewhat effective. Much easier and cheaper to just buy MTUM. And MTUM is also ...
by bberris
Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: MD&P just purchased X / sold Y [md&pharmacist]
Replies: 198
Views: 12250

Re: MD&P just purchased X / sold Y [md&pharmacist]

HomerJ wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:23 am
...

Again, to be clear, you have $1.5 million invested, and $1.5 million sitting in cash because you believe a crash is coming correct?

I wish you the best of luck.
Maybe the cash is there to offset the risk of the leveraged ETF. Genius!
by bberris
Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are you including SS in your planning model? Are the benefits really that high?
Replies: 148
Views: 11663

Re: Are you including SS in your planning model? Are the benefits really that high?

Plan for no SS, no pension, 0% real growth, elimination of Roth and HSA tax advantages, inability to work past 65, death of a spouse, a 100-year lifespan with the last 20 years in assisted living, and a zombie apocalypse, and you'll be fine. If things turn out rosier, that's just extra gravy. I emb...
by bberris
Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are you including SS in your planning model? Are the benefits really that high?
Replies: 148
Views: 11663

Re: Are you including SS in your planning model? Are the benefits really that high?

It's a little weird that people here think their stock market investments are ironclad guarantees but social security is hopelessly lost.
by bberris
Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What does "tap into" the Social Security trust fund mean?
Replies: 29
Views: 2384

Re: What does "tap into" the Social Security trust fund mean?

But bonds are IOUs. "They" pay interest but isn't the "They" us? Where do the dollars come from to pay this interest? From us? So do we borrow more money to pay this interest? You're right. The trust fund is a debt and an asset of the US govt. The obligation and the asset cancel. So it is a non ent...
by bberris
Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best HEPA air purifier for cat allergy sufferer?
Replies: 13
Views: 841

Re: Best HEPA air purifier for cat allergy sufferer?

At risk of giving medical advice, you need drugs. There are lots of good ones OTC. I don't see how a filter could be efficient enough to prevent allergy symptoms.
by bberris
Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:24 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: MD&P just purchased X / sold Y [md&pharmacist]
Replies: 198
Views: 12250

Re: MD&P just purchased X / sold Y [md&pharmacist]

mortfree wrote:
Sun Jun 10, 2018 10:20 am
What is on your watch list, MDP?
You can screen for highly leveraged ETFs. You know, the ones that generate 40 % returns if the market goes up 10 %.
by bberris
Sat Jun 09, 2018 5:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why Edward Jones?
Replies: 76
Views: 12546

Re: Why Edward Jones?

I don't understand how the AUM business model came into existence, or why people put up with it. For what other service do you pay a portion of your life savings each and every year? Advice does not scale with the size of your portfolio. The older model is the brokerage model, where the adviser get...
by bberris
Sat Jun 09, 2018 2:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is investing in Peer-to-Peer Lending good ?
Replies: 16
Views: 1339

Re: Is investing in Peer-to-Peer Lending good ?

At the risk of hijacking the thread, the posters reporting their experiences with LC remind me of my experience with online poker. At first, I was winning hand over fist when the poker craze hit. Later, I achieved diminished returns and then started losing. So what happened? The marks who thought th...
by bberris
Thu Jun 07, 2018 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Found an FSBO home for sale. How to avoid Realtor?
Replies: 42
Views: 3534

Re: Found an FSBO home for sale. How to avoid Realtor?

You can, but as a buyer you aren't paying for the realtor's services so it doesn't make a lot of sense. The seller will be paying your realtor fee. And yet the money must come from somewhere. The seller is a charitable person. The seller could sell without paying the buyer's commish, but he would r...
by bberris
Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Driving through Venice - Stay in Venice or Mestre??
Replies: 9
Views: 907

Re: Driving through Venice - Stay in Venice or Mestre??

Mestre has all the charm of St. Louis. Stay in Venice, and make sure you travel light. You might not need to take the expensive boat to your hotel; you can walk across Venice in 30 min, but crossing lots of bridges and steps that could be difficult with heavy luggage. I visited St. Marks Cathedral a...
by bberris
Tue May 29, 2018 9:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: German Bonds: a virtually riskless bet for an Italian investor, with no downside and a big upside possible?
Replies: 92
Views: 5522

Re: German Bonds: a virtually riskless bet for an Italian investor, with no downside and a big upside possible?

A currency union is very different than a currency peg. The concept of devaluation doesn't really apply. It would take many years to leave the euro in an orderly, sane way - just as it took many years to enter it. Entry and exit are not symmetrical problems in any way. In both cases, you're transit...
by bberris
Wed May 23, 2018 6:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: US T bills - first time user
Replies: 115
Views: 9251

Re: US T bills - first time user

Here's a quote from Treasury: "At the close of an auction, Treasury awards all noncompetitive bids that comply with the auction rules and then accepts competitive bids in ascending order of their rate, yield, or discount margin (lowest to highest) until the quantity of awarded bids reaches the offer...
by bberris
Tue May 22, 2018 9:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: US T bills - first time user
Replies: 115
Views: 9251

Re: US T bills - first time user

I thought that all buyers (competitive and non) pay the same price at treasury auctions; the lowest price that clears the offer. I pay TDAmeritrade the same price for new issue tbills as reported on the treasury website to 4 decimals. Maybe they rake a penny here and there, like they did on "Office ...
by bberris
Tue May 22, 2018 4:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: US T bills - first time user
Replies: 115
Views: 9251

Re: US T bills - first time user

Buy new issues if you can to avoid the spread. Some brokers charge some customers a fee, so check first. Or you can use treasury direct.
by bberris
Mon May 21, 2018 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Texas - [Request for clothes, car window tint] recommendations
Replies: 42
Views: 3192

Re: Moving to Texas - [Request for clothes, car window tint] recommendations

And I guess get used to these stupid stereo types. I live in an area with over 7 million people, can't remember the last time I saw a cowboy hat or gun rack. x2 (though the Austin area is quite a bit smaller than 7 million). I've never seen a gun rack in ANY vehicle here, and I'm on the outskirts o...
by bberris
Mon May 21, 2018 8:49 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: HSA account using later
Replies: 6
Views: 610

Re: HSA account using later

I’m fortunate to not need the HSA to cover annual expenses now, so I max out and invest in VTI. Probably a lot of BHs do he same, although it seems a lot of people I know in RL do not. It’s best investment account available; tax free in and tax free out. I like how you can withdrawal at any point i...
by bberris
Sun May 20, 2018 7:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Texas - [Request for clothes, car window tint] recommendations
Replies: 42
Views: 3192

Re: Moving to Texas - [Request for clothes, car window tint] recommendations

... Look out for the guns. The murder rate in Texas is lower than almost all the southern states, about half the rate in Louisiana, lower than Alaska, Maryland, Illinois, Ohio, New Mexico, and Virgina. You don't need a passport to go to Texas if you are a US citizen. But if you are traveling US 90 ...
by bberris
Sun May 20, 2018 6:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Texas - [Request for clothes, car window tint] recommendations
Replies: 42
Views: 3192

Re: Moving to Texas - [Request for clothes, car window tint] recommendations

FlyAF wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 11:19 am
And I guess get used to these stupid stereo types. I live in an area with over 7 million people, can't remember the last time I saw a cowboy hat or gun rack.
Pointy boots and spurs. Forgot those.
by bberris
Sat May 19, 2018 1:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett says Bonds are a terrible investment now. What should we invest in besides stocks?
Replies: 150
Views: 22550

Re: Buffett says Bonds are a terrible investment now. What should we invest in besides stocks?

Buffet wants everyone to drive up Apple's stock price for obvious reasons. He is a little less slimy than Icahn. I'm a Buffett skeptic, but that's really unfair. There's more about Saint Warren. I won't discuss it here but you can look up Haiti, the Clinton Foundation, and his Clayton Homes. He was...
by bberris
Fri May 18, 2018 9:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How can I clear $40-60,000/yr with $1,000,000 cash... Low Risk?
Replies: 71
Views: 10876

Re: How can I clear $40-60,000/yr with $1,000,000 cash... Low Risk?

Excellent troll, OP. I don't think so. He seems earnest. There are lots of threads where people believe that they can achieve the unlikely or the impossible if only they find the right advisor or newsletter, or mutual fund, and that is on Bogleheads! You know, the ones who have a strategy: buy low,...
by bberris
Fri May 18, 2018 5:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New 2018 Nissan Leaf (with 150 mi range)
Replies: 52
Views: 5294

Re: New 2018 Nissan Leaf (with 150 mi range)

harrychan wrote:
Thu May 17, 2018 10:34 pm
I looked deep into the Leaf's depreciation and it depreciates 50% by year 2 and 55% by year 3. Go figure...
I figure it's due to having no subsidy as a used car.
by bberris
Wed May 16, 2018 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Better to be in debt to yourself or others?
Replies: 25
Views: 1710

Re: Better to be in debt to yourself or others?

The 401k loan is not a loan, it is a withdrawal, followed by increased contributions. So you are essentially withdrawing from your 401k to pay off debt; you are deleveraging. That's fine if that is your intention, but always keep in mind what is really going on, not just the words being used.
by bberris
Wed May 16, 2018 9:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best options for cash in Schwab brokerage accounts?
Replies: 46
Views: 6972

Re: Best options for cash in Schwab brokerage accounts?

4-week, or 13 week tbills are my choice (at TDA, but I assume you get them at auction for free at Schwab too).
TDA recently disclosed $1 markup for buys and same markdown for sells per 1,000 bond. No transaction cost if you hold to maturity.
by bberris
Sat May 12, 2018 6:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Bloomberg to Launch Cryptocurrency Index]
Replies: 8
Views: 903

Re: The Cryptocurrency IYndex ETF is here

..... They are ETNs not ETFs, so I guess they are a promise to pay the investor rather than a genuine asset ownership. All investments and bank accounts are a promise to pay. Even cash money is just a promise to pay. I guess the exception is a physical commodity, but you still need a buyer somewhere.