Search found 32930 matches

by nisiprius
Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:15 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can a TIPS ladder 'fail' ?
Replies: 14
Views: 839

Re: Can a TIPS ladder 'fail' ?

There is always "reinvestment risk." It could fail if new TIPS are not being issued by the Treasury at the time when you need to roll over one that matured. During the brief period when the U.S. had a budget surplus there actually were times when I wanted to buy one and the Treasury was no...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 22, 2017 1:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How leveraged should your US market investments have been?
Replies: 11
Views: 991

Re: How leveraged should your US market investments have been?

Ask markettimer! ;-) Who got his idea from a couple of Yale professors who made a similar analysis around 2005 and concluded that all young investors should be using 2X leverage. Forum regulars will remember the weeks when Market Timer changed his avatar from Don Quixote to Raskolnikov, and seemed ...
by nisiprius
Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: REITs Aren't Special
Replies: 81
Views: 5058

Re: Larry Swedroe: REITs Aren't Special

This reflects a change of heart. REITs were once a "must have" asset class by the advocates of factor tilting. What happened is that all of the yield chasing put REIT valuations out of sight, that is, they no longer represent value. There was also rethinking about commodities, once recomm...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: REITs Aren't Special
Replies: 81
Views: 5058

Re: Larry Swedroe: REITs Aren't Special

The evidence from academic studies demonstrates that equity REITs, both domestic and international, offer an attractive risk/return trade-off and provide meaningful diversification benefits to portfolios. Thus, investors with the ability to hold equity REITs in a tax-advantaged account should consi...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Continue stock picking or invest in index funds
Replies: 25
Views: 2063

Re: Continue stock picking or invest in index funds

youngin87 wrote:...My style is to buy established companies that are undervalued...
I think you mean "My style is to buy established companies that I judge to be undervalued."
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 12:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?
Replies: 155
Views: 6203

Re: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?

As long as I continue to live in the United States, should I worry about the strength of the dollar relative to other currencies ? Why? When the dollar gets weaker, any imports you buy will be more expensive for you. Since the U.S. is a net importer, I think there is very good reason to be concerne...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is there any reason not to? [4% Checking]
Replies: 28
Views: 2556

Re: Is there any reason not to? [4% Checking]

P.S. My life experience to date is that I've scored $150 once in "free money," $200 once in "free money" (account-opening bonuses), maybe $600 grand total once and $600 grand total another time in bank deals that started out really good and slowly faded out over 2-3 years. They w...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is there any reason not to? [4% Checking]
Replies: 28
Views: 2556

Re: Is there any reason not to? [4% Checking]

I used an account like that for about three years. I had strategies for jumping through the hoops without disorganizing my life too much. They all worked, the bank did what it said it would do, I really got the high interest. Mine was called "Rewards Checking." Here are the two big gotchas...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:36 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?
Replies: 155
Views: 6203

Re: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?

...to offset the risk of a falling dollar... That's one of those plausible-sounding statements that I don't think holds up very well. Admittedly, I'm going on the assumption and plan that I am going to continue to live in the United States. Yes, that is home bias. As long as I continue to live in t...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Cryptocurrencies
Replies: 45
Views: 2819

Re: Cryptocurrencies

...A sidebar is that the kids nowadays don't spell, or use, the word segue (to change rapidly to another tack or angle)-- they use the word segway, to mean the same thing. Unaware of the antecedents... Tangentially: to me, "segue" means "to manipulate turntables and faders so as to c...
by nisiprius
Fri Jul 21, 2017 6:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Cryptocurrencies
Replies: 45
Views: 2819

Re: Cryptocurrencies

Anyone here invest in Crypto? I don't think it's an investment. Opinions can and do differ. I have been watching https://coinmarketcap.com/ since reading that one guy made over 200M in one month in crypto. (http://www.investopedia.com/news/ether-trader-made-more-200-million-one-month-ethereum-crypt...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?
Replies: 155
Views: 6203

Re: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?

It looks like the only two significant time periods where ex-US stock outperformed US stock were in 1986-90 and 2003-08. Maybe we're about due for another one, or maybe not. By coincidence ( not! ) these are two periods of time of significant dollar weakening. https://s11.postimg.org/jq2qboo2b/Capt...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?
Replies: 155
Views: 6203

Re: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?

...Has there ever been a time that international out performed the us markets?... I can't tell if that's a rhetorical question, a Socratic question, or a straight question. I'll treat it as straight and answer it: sure. Blue, U.S. stocks as represented by Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund; ora...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: move US Savings Bonds to Vanguard
Replies: 8
Views: 634

Re: move US Savings Bonds to Vanguard

No. Although they are called "bonds," savings bonds are not marketable securities and can't be held in any account at any brokerage. You can hold them electronically in an account at Treasury Direct: https://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/indiv_open.htm Savings bonds have unique characterist...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 5:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: SAT scores - whats the point??
Replies: 37
Views: 1717

Re: SAT scores - whats the point??

Because if colleges admitted bad students, good professors wouldn't want to teach there. Professors want to strike a spark here or there. They don't want to earn a paycheck wasting their time working with students who hear their words only as a dull drone and don't ask any questions but "will w...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 5:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books not to read.
Replies: 120
Views: 8370

Re: Books not to read.

Paradise Lost? He said: “Oh, don’t talk about rewards. Look at Milton, who only got £5 for ‘Paradise Lost.’” “And a great deal too much,” I rejoined promptly. “I would have given him twice as much myself not to have written it at all.” Having said that... I can relate to it. I've tried to read Para...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:58 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?
Replies: 155
Views: 6203

Re: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?

...We seem to be "all over the map" on this... You bet. It's the most salient thing about the situation. The actual data provides very tenuous, very weak support for an small international benefit. Since it is tenuous, weak, and small, therefore the effect of our individual, flaky persona...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Continue stock picking or invest in index funds
Replies: 25
Views: 2063

Re: Continue stock picking or invest in index funds

It might help to know which Fidelity funds you are investing in... in fact, the individual stocks and funds and what percentage of your portfolio they are, if you don't mind sharing that with us. Question: did you play a few hunches recently that have made you think maybe you've just been lucky, not...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Keurig vs coffeemaker - and the Keurig won
Replies: 53
Views: 3382

Re: Keurig vs coffeemaker - and the Keurig won

The price per cup of Keurig can't be ignored. I won't even talk about disposal and landfills. You don't need to use the throw-away-pods. You can use your own coffee and use a re-usable filter (Here's one example: https://www.amazon.com/Ekobrew%C3%82-Reusable-Coffee-Filter-Keurig-Brewers/dp/B017BYZI...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?
Replies: 155
Views: 6203

Re: Can anyone convince me I need international stock in my portfolio?

In my personal opinion, Vanguard's paper, Considerations for investing in non-U.S. equities is very good and everybody thinking about the question should read it. Read it yourself and see if it convinces you that you "need" international. My own convictions are that the "conventional ...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Keurig vs coffeemaker - and the Keurig won
Replies: 53
Views: 3382

Re: Keurig vs coffeemaker - and the Keurig won

I like seeing Keurig machines at places like summer rentals, check-in desks at motels, banks that offer free coffee because to my taste they make "reliably OK" coffee. When I substitute teach I bring a refillable cup of my own filled with plain old Folger's Classic Roast because they have ...
by nisiprius
Thu Jul 20, 2017 7:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stone Ridge Elements Funds
Replies: 1
Views: 233

Re: Stone Ridge Elements Funds

They must be pretty new. I can't find the actual inception date on their website, but the prospectus talks about "inception in 2017." There isn't any annual or semiannual report, suggesting they've been out for less than six months. I can't find any performance data on the Stone Ridge site...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Most Americans don't trust financial advisers
Replies: 52
Views: 4420

Re: Most Americans don't trust financial advisers

"Whenever I read a story in the paper about someone losing their entire retirement savings, it's never someone who managed their own investments, it's always someone who had an advisor."--A friend of mine.
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books not to read.
Replies: 120
Views: 8370

Re: Books not to read.

The Bed of Procrustes, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. Here's my posting about it.
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Expense Ratios, how high is too high
Replies: 72
Views: 3905

Re: Expense Ratios, how high is too high

For the record, the highest expense-ratio I've ever paid was about 1%. The target-date funds in my employer's 401(k) ran about 0.75%. Right now I don't think I'm holding anything with an ER over 0.10%. For me, 0.25% is the level below which I don't feel I need to give any thought to it, it's low. Wh...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: COBRA vs. ACA plan - what to consider?
Replies: 48
Views: 2590

Re: COBRA vs. ACA plan - what to consider?

Something to consider is the "hassle-and-screw-up factor." I don't know how to weigh that against the ACA, and the hassle factor surely must vary by company. You say you can get three years out of COBRA; good, especially if it's a big employer with a big payroll-and-benefits deparment. I h...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why does VG offer almost identical international funds?
Replies: 7
Views: 952

Re: Why does VG offer almost identical international funds?

Anyway, from 2007 to 2011, VEU was Vanguard's only international stock index ETF. VEA was pretty close though. I used that in 2008-09 for multiple TLH round trips with VEU. You're right, I should have said (and will now edit my posting to say) "total" international stock index ETF, using ...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why does VG offer almost identical international funds?
Replies: 7
Views: 952

Re: Why does VG offer almost identical international funds?

This is a personal interpretation, including inferences from things think I've heard Vanguard spokespeople say. As you probably know, most of Vanguard's index funds exist in two forms, mutual fund and ETF; the ability to create both of these as share classes of a single fund is a (patented) Vanguard...
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why Not REIT's?
Replies: 47
Views: 4287

Re: Why Not REIT's?

...It's not a given that Commercial Real Estate recovers in the short to medium term-- I have seen busts that lasted 10-15 years... This is residential, not commercial real estate, but it's an example of a real estate bust that lasted almost a century. https://s23.postimg.org/n24kn6zy3/25tkq2p.jpg....
by nisiprius
Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why Not REIT's?
Replies: 47
Views: 4287

Re: Why Not REIT's?

...That was a great opportunity to rebalance and stay the course!... Perhaps it was--certainly it was in hindsight--but I was addressing the question of "volatile and risky." They were "volatile and risky." The fact that people who, for whatever reasons, bought it near the botto...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why Not REIT's?
Replies: 47
Views: 4287

Re: Why Not REIT's?

...Could somebody advise me on why REIT's have the preconception that they are volatile and risky?... Because they were volatile and risky in 2008-2009, when the value of stocks in general was cut in half (VTSMX, Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund, blue) while the value of REITS (VGSIX, Vanguar...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What Major Companies are Not Included in Standard Vanguard Index Funds?
Replies: 14
Views: 1526

Re: What Major Companies are Not Included in Standard Vanguard Index Funds?

I believe both Alibaba and Samsung fall into this category and are not included in TSM, Total International or Emerging Markets, correct? No, not correct. Mostly echoing points others have made above: https://s10.postimg.org/kmbc6jkrd/Captura_de_pantalla_2017-07-18_a_las_8.52.15_PM.png Both have $2...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Need help to review alternative investment portfolio]
Replies: 18
Views: 1010

Re: [Need help to review alternative investment portfolio]

Help me decode this... gobbledegook. From the LENDX Annual Report, 2/28/2017 The second line on the table below provides information about hypothetical account values and hypothetical expenses based on the actual expense ratios of the Fund and an assumed rate of return of 5% per year before expenses...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 4:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Need help to review alternative investment portfolio]
Replies: 18
Views: 1010

Re: [Need help to review alternative investment portfolio]

It seems faddish to me. Furthermore, all the Stone Ridge funds I've peeked at come packed with what I'll call "kids, don't do this at home" warnings. Notice that these are not the open-ended funds ordinary Bogleheads are familiar with, and don't promise daily liquidity and easy redemption ...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 2:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The Worst ETFs You Can Own"
Replies: 38
Views: 3031

Re: "The Worst ETFs You Can Own"

"It is weasel-worded, but the clear message is: do not use leveraged ETFs as part of any buy-and-hold strategy." Are we absolutely sure about this? If we tracked a 2x total stock ETF over 100 years, would that still be worse than a 1x total stock? I'm guessing yes. But what about a 1.1x? ...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The Worst ETFs You Can Own"
Replies: 38
Views: 3031

Re: "The Worst ETFs You Can Own"

There was a great discussion buried in a long thread here a while back discussing buy and hold leveraged ETFs. Basically it pointed out that the problem with them was that they amplified market swings by relevering/delevering daily in the opposite direction of rebalancing, affectively buying high, ...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Good Service for Flagship Investors
Replies: 27
Views: 2751

Re: Good Service for Flagship Investors

I'm not Flagship. I haven't had any issues with Vanguard in the twenty-odd years I've had an account with them... or with Fidelity during the seven years I had an account with them... or with Schwab during the three years I had an account with them. There were times, last year I think, when there we...
by nisiprius
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: california homeowners - do you have earthquake insurance?
Replies: 41
Views: 2615

Re: california homeowners - do you have earthquake insurance?

1) Low-probability, high-consequences events are exactly where insurance is appropriate. 2) Earthquakes are unpredictable, not only in terms of when they will hit, but also in terms of where they hit. Four of the largest earthquakes in U.S. history occurred in the general area of Missouri. It's nowh...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 17, 2017 8:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 90:10 AA - what don't you believe about it?
Replies: 101
Views: 6611

Re: 90:10 AA - what don't you believe about it?

What am I supposed to "believe" about it? I believe that it's probably a sensible portfolio for Warren Buffett's bequest to his wife. I also believe that it's not right for me. You can talk until you're blue in the face and I'll still fall back on "not right for me." As for "...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Are stock market returns doomed by the Baby Boomers?
Replies: 27
Views: 2882

Re: Are stock market returns doomed by the Baby Boomers?

It's been a perennial topic of debate. The case for demographic doom was well stated in a 2001 book by one Thornton Parker, entitled What If Boomers Can't Retire?: How to Build Real Security, Not Phantom Wealth , ISBN 1576751120. I found it moderately convincing, but lots of people think not. One po...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 17, 2017 5:57 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: [Wiki] Posting images in the Bogleheads forum
Replies: 5
Views: 546

Re: [Wiki] Posting images in the Bogleheads forum

I use postimages.org but some things about it make me uncomfortable. It works quite well, it's quicker and less fussy than others... but I worry about its chameleon-like characteristics. It began at postimage.org . Then it moved, and postimage.org began redirecting to postimage.io , which means it i...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 17, 2017 5:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (SCHZ)
Replies: 31
Views: 5801

Re: New Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (SCHZ)

Investment Objective The fund seeks to provide investment results that correspond to the aggregate price and interest performance of the debt securities in the Barclays® U.S. Aggregate Bond Index. Principal Investment Strategies --Normally investing at least 80% of the fund's assets in bonds includ...
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (SCHZ)
Replies: 31
Views: 5801

Re: New Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (SCHZ)

2008 was a while ago. I agree with in_reality's comments.
by nisiprius
Mon Jul 17, 2017 10:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The Worst ETFs You Can Own"
Replies: 38
Views: 3031

Re: "The Worst ETFs You Can Own"

See also Inverse and leveraged ETFs which includes an illustration of how a 2X leveraged ETF not only failed to earn double the returns of a plain S&P 500 fund, it actually earned less than the unleveraged fund. https://www.bogleheads.org/w/images/5/55/Vfinx-beats-sso.png I believe the Carlson s...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 16, 2017 9:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DImensions of investment risk.
Replies: 15
Views: 538

Re: DImensions of investment risk.

Yes, I share something like your point of view. I'd like to see some kind of model of the "power spectrum" of the stock market. I'm not clear on why we don't see frequency-domain plots of the stock market "signal" in addition to time-domain plots. I can caricature the "stock...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 16, 2017 8:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do Index Funds Distort Market Valuations?
Replies: 83
Views: 4608

Re: Do Index Funds Distort Market Valuations?

"Indexing is a fad and all fads distort the market. If everyone runs to one side of the boat, the boat lists, founders, and sinks." "But indexing means that everyone runs to the center of the boat." "Uh... well... if too many people climb in the boat and go to the center, th...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 16, 2017 1:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When to reduce risk?
Replies: 18
Views: 1466

Re: When to reduce risk?

Generally speaking, what the people who calculate glide paths come up with is something like this: http://i39.tinypic.com/33vdb9f.jpg A fairly common pattern is that most of the de-risking is done during a somewhat narrow time period . They don't start de-risking in earnest until age 35-40, and they...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 16, 2017 1:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When to reduce risk?
Replies: 18
Views: 1466

Re: When to reduce risk?

You need to soak yourself into the actual behavior of various portfolios--one way to do it is to go into PortfolioVisualizer, slide the cursor along the curve, and watch the numbers jump up and down. Then you need to do your very best to assess how you feel about various levels of volatility and/or ...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 16, 2017 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scan negatives or the photos?
Replies: 16
Views: 1466

Re: Scan negatives or the photos?

I do want to enlarge some of these photos to be framed, eventually. What I don't understand is that the negatives scans produce files that have a size of 18 MB per frame, whereas the scan of the photo produces a file with a size of 300 MB (at 1200 dpi TIFF). Even at 600 dpi, the file size of the sc...
by nisiprius
Sun Jul 16, 2017 12:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Total US Stock Market too concentrated?
Replies: 51
Views: 3701

Re: Is the Total US Stock Market too concentrated?

...I would agree with you that TSM is a special portfolio. Deviations from TSM do need to be justified. The burden of proof is on the people doing the justifying. I think they have easily met that burden, what they argued 20 years ago proved true (though a bit mistimed)... Good. We are in agreement...

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