Search found 33100 matches

by nisiprius
Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Invest in CDs rather than bonds
Replies: 4
Views: 259

Re: Invest in CDs rather than bonds

P. P. S. You say "no fees" for the bank CD. Are you sure? I once had a bank try to charge me a $20 fee for cashing in a CD at maturity rather than rolling it over. I charged into the bank waving the thing they'd mailed me and made a fuss about it and they waived the fee in order to get rid of me, bu...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Invest in CDs rather than bonds
Replies: 4
Views: 259

Re: Invest in CDs rather than bonds

P.S. You are right, though. An awful lot of what's written about "investments" is limited to "things you can buy from a brokerage." A false distinction is often made between "savings" at a bank and "investments" in stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. In reality, "savings" is the term for money you've e...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Invest in CDs rather than bonds
Replies: 4
Views: 259

Re: Invest in CDs rather than bonds

So I was thinking of investing in an Intermediate Treasury Bond Index Fund because of it's non-correlation and to counter the Total Stock Market Index Fund in times of market loss. It's about a 1.5% forecast return in 5-years. A 5-year CD can be had at 2.4%. If rates rise, I can get out of the bank...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why is TransUnion pushing True Identity vs credit freeze?
Replies: 10
Views: 1566

Re: Why is TransUnion pushing True Identity vs credit freeze?

Because the credit reporting agencies hate credit freezes, fought against them, and we only have them because of state legislation. What credit reporting agencies have to sell is your information. Not all of it relates to creditworthiness, and not all of their clients buying that data want it for th...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Making my own Total US stock market fund.
Replies: 18
Views: 1202

Re: Making my own Total US stock market fund.

Since the plan is offering Fidelity funds, it's likely managed by Fidelity. The good new for you is that Fidelity, the company, has two low-cost, perfectly good index funds--IMHO virtual clones of their Vanguard counterparts: FSEVX, Fidelity Extended Market Index Fund (premium class) FSTVX, Fidelity...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hello and a Question ["The Little Book That (Still) Beats the Market"]
Replies: 8
Views: 745

Re: Hello and a Question ["The Little Book That (Still) Beats the Market"]

To begin with, if the strategy described in 2005 in The Little Book that Beats the Market still beats the market, why is there a need for another edition saying so? Why not keep using the 2005 edition? I have no doubt at all that this is explained and plausible reasons are given, but nevertheless it...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Making my own Total US stock market fund.
Replies: 18
Views: 1202

Re: Making my own Total US stock market fund.

paulso21, it would help if you would give the exact ticker symbol for the mid-cap and small-cap funds. I wouldn't fuss too much about false precision, but equal parts S&P 500, mid-cap, and small-cap is a large tilt and it would probably only be favored by people with strong convictions about mid-cap...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin Return and Investing Ideas
Replies: 16
Views: 895

Re: Bitcoin Return and Investing Ideas

This is an interesting thread on Mt. Gox... The guy in the linked video says that for almost its entire existence Mt. Gox was insolvent. And that's a big problem with bitcoin. We are constantly being exhorted about the importance of dealing only with "reputable" entities. But, until it crashed, Mt....
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ccleaner (32-bit) had malware payload with legit signed version
Replies: 22
Views: 1526

Re: Ccleaner (32-bit) had malware payload with legit signed version

Ccleaner's 32 bit version had a malware payload and was distributed to anyone who downloaded version 5.33 from the piriform website. It's kind of rare to see it in a signed version of software big enough to reach 5 million people a week. Ironically, Ccleaner is currently owned by the anti-virus com...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Good books for bond investing?
Replies: 16
Views: 1026

Re: Good books for bond investing?

I honestly don't know of any good books on bond investing. I'd like to read one myself. Annette Thau's The Bond Book is often recommended, but a couple of times when I had specific questions I've borrowed it from the library and it never had answers. The Handbook of Fixed Income Securities, by Frank...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin Return and Investing Ideas
Replies: 16
Views: 895

Re: Bitcoin Return and Investing Ideas

A late acquaintance of mine played the lottery regularly. Her daughter described this acquaintance as having a "gambling addiction" and said that she spent so much on lottery tickets that it affected her household budget. About four years before she died, she hit a high-six-figure jackpot. I'm not p...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:08 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty
Replies: 28
Views: 1434

Re: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty

One final observation. If the words "risk" and "uncertainty" were generally understood to have the meanings Knight gave them, there would be no need for Nassim Nicholas Taleb to have coined the phrase "black swans." His "black swans" would just be "uncertainty." I understand that Uncertainty might n...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty
Replies: 28
Views: 1434

Re: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty

It's a zoo. Consider, for example, an actual textbook: Investments , 7th edition, Bodie, Kane, and Marcus. I go to the glossary. I look up the word "risk." It's not there. I do, however, find definitions for ten or so terms: risk arbitrage, risk-averse, risk-neutral, risk lover, risk-neutral, risk p...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty
Replies: 28
Views: 1434

Re: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty

...1. Risk is the (often roughly) known probability of a known outcome. 2. Uncertainty is when the probability is unknown and/or the outcome is unknown. Those are pretty much Knight's definitions. Unfortunately, I've discovered that his definitions are not by any means widely accepted. The funny th...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Manufacturers rebate for Chevy Cruze
Replies: 6
Views: 587

Re: Manufacturers rebate for Chevy Cruz

I think you mean Chevy Cruze. (Now corrected).
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 17, 2017 6:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty
Replies: 28
Views: 1434

Re: The Difference Between Risk and Uncertainty

There is a huge lit on this, but the simplest version is this... 1. Risk is the (often roughly) known probability of a known outcome. So a 50% chance of losing $100 is a risk of a negative outcome. Sometimes this is put it terms of expected utility or decision theory. 2. Uncertainty is when the pro...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 17, 2017 4:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Goldman's Bear Market Indicator Shows Crash Dead Ahead"
Replies: 32
Views: 4081

Re: "Goldman's Bear Market Indicator Shows Crash Dead Ahead"

Ned, I decided that quoting and describing Wikipedia's supporting reference for the pro-Russian claim wasn't appropriate in the forum, so if you wouldn't mind... could you remove them from the place where you quoted me?
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Goldman's Bear Market Indicator Shows Crash Dead Ahead"
Replies: 32
Views: 4081

Re: "Goldman's Bear Market Indicator Shows Crash Dead Ahead"

Keep in mind that Zero Hedge is a dubious source. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero_Hedge Zero Hedge is an English-language financial blog that aggregates news and presents editorial opinions from original and outside sources. The news portion of the site is written by a group of editors who collec...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?
Replies: 35
Views: 1940

Re: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?

M* does more than ratings which are useless. Morningstar ratings are not useless if used appropriately. Avoid funds with 1 and 2 star ratings. Indeed. You are right, I remember a study that showed that low star ratings did show persistence. However, frequently the reason why funds have 1 and 2-star...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?
Replies: 35
Views: 1940

Re: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?

JimmyJammy, what would be really worthwhile for you to do--but the value only comes if you do it for yourself--is this. The Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund, VGTSX, goes back to 1996, more than twenty years. Do your best, Googling for yourself and choosing a source you trust yourself, a...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?
Replies: 35
Views: 1940

Re: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?

So is Morningstar just a useless company making money on people's ignorance, in the opinion of the Bogleheads? I love Morningstar. I use their site the time. I think they're champs. It's the best single source of investment information on mutual funds that I know about. I even worry about whether t...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?
Replies: 75
Views: 6226

Re: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?

@nisiprius No argument. These are the kinds of ideas that I wanted to elicit with the original post. Whether one agrees or disagrees depends a lot on our own risk/reward viewpoint. Oh, good. Glad to hear it. I'd add that moving from Total Bond to pure Treasuries, win, lose, or draw, seems unlikely ...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?
Replies: 35
Views: 1940

Re: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?

So, three specific managed international equity funds have, in hindsight, outperformed index funds. But your subject line doesn't ask "Is it possible to find three managed funds that have outperformed index funds." It asks "Are managed funds better than index funds?" I take that to mean "across the ...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?
Replies: 35
Views: 1940

Re: International Equity: Are managed funds better than Index funds?

I don't believe in international index funds "so strongly." I just don't see any compelling evidence for anything else being better. At any given instant in time there are always actively managed funds that have beaten index funds, often by quite a lot. The amazing thing is that it is so much less t...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 5:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?
Replies: 75
Views: 6226

Re: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?

...The Treasury price went up over the period by a little over 3% and TBM price went down by almost 3% in the same period. A difference of 6%.... think that given the the world and domestic politics is at a high state of uncertainty currently makes the likelihood of a stock market crash more likely...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?
Replies: 75
Views: 6226

Re: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?

But what about selling some of that total bond market fund and buying say five year Treasuries.... Well, Total Bond has an average maturity of 8.3 years; Vanguard Intermediate-Term Treasury fund, VFITX, 5.7 years. So "five-year Treasuries" are close to VFITX. Let's see just much of a benefit we'd h...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 12:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily chart going back to 1925
Replies: 29
Views: 1378

Re: Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily chart going back to 1925

Well, I was wrong about what I was "pretty sure" about. But I was sort of right. The S&P 500 itself was calculated hourly. Before it, there had been 420-stock industrial and 480-stock composite indexes, but they had been available only weekly. This of course instantly prompts the question: why do al...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 11:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily chart going back to 1925
Replies: 29
Views: 1378

Re: Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily chart going back to 1925

This is very, very fallible memory but I think I remember TV news commentators, when I was a kid in the fifties, talking about "S&P's five-hundred-stock average." You can test my memory if you can find any clips from back then, because my memory is that they used the word "average" rather than "inde...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:53 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily chart going back to 1925
Replies: 29
Views: 1378

Re: Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily chart going back to 1925

Stockcharts.com has an S&P 500 Daily data chart that goes back to 1925 (see link below for their 1925-57 S&P 500 chart, before the actual S&P 500 started in March 1957). From what I can tell, DFA uses very similar S&P 500 data for their online calculator that also extends the S&P 500 back to 1928. ...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investing in a Low-Return World: Howard Marks' 6 options
Replies: 44
Views: 3628

Re: Investing in a Low-Return World: Howard Marks' 6 options

james22 wrote:
Sat Sep 16, 2017 1:35 am
nisiprius wrote:
Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:50 pm
Did Marks suggest an option?
[Long quote...]https://www.oaktreecapital.com/insights ... arks-memos
Thanks!
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax Credit Freeze 100% online
Replies: 24
Views: 2933

Re: Equifax Credit Freeze 100% online

I was finally able to get the Equifax freeze to go through online this evening for myself and my wife. (Mine went through. Hers errored out a couple of times, but finally went through.) We also froze Experian and Innovis online. We "locked" Transunion using their free service (which has a couple of...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investing in a Low-Return World: Howard Marks' 6 options
Replies: 44
Views: 3628

Re: Investing in a Low-Return World: Howard Marks' 6 options

Option 2 for me. 1) If I were willing to take more risk to get more reward, I would already be taking more risk to get more reward. I'm taking as much risk as I care to. So, no option 5. 2) User "lobster" pointed us to 36 Obvious Investment Truths , a good article by Ben Carlson, and his truth #35 i...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which Bond Fund Will Perform Best With Rising Rates?
Replies: 27
Views: 2972

Re: Which Bond Fund Will Perform Best With Rising Rates?

Whoops, I said "here's an illustration" and forgot to put it in. Apparently nobody has noticed so I guess it wasn't important. Anyway, it's now in there, in this post.
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 5:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which Bond Fund Will Perform Best With Rising Rates?
Replies: 27
Views: 2972

Re: Which Bond Fund Will Perform Best With Rising Rates?

(... In a fund, of course, you have to wait for the older, lower-interest-rate bonds to be replaced by newer, higher-interest-rate bonds.) This is a common misconception. Once yields rise, existing bonds will immediately be yielding the higher rate. It's not necessary to wait for them to be replace...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Verify credit freeze is active?
Replies: 18
Views: 1716

Re: Verify credit freeze is active?

The info has been on the free credit reports for many years now. Which are "temporarily unavailable." Also, of course, if you got a free credit report recently, before you froze your credit, you can't get another one right now just to verify that the freeze took. All the credit agencies' websites h...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: US removing Kaspersky Antivirus from government computers
Replies: 38
Views: 3290

Re: US removing Kaspersky Antivirus from government computers

Just to try to be clear-headed about this, considerations that might disqualify a foreign-made product from being used on government computers might not disqualify it from being used on my personal computer. It might be appropriate for the U.S. government to ban a foreign-made software product out o...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Get Ready! Medicare Will Mail New Cards to 60 Million People"
Replies: 5
Views: 871

Re: "Get Ready! Medicare Will Mail New Cards to 60 Million People"

It's a good idea. It's long overdue. Now, when will they do something about Social Security numbers themselves? a) They've got to at least add check digits, so that a transcription error in an SSN is an invalid SSN, not somebody else's SSN. b) They've got to do something about SSN's from the pre-ran...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Have X times your salary saved by age Y.
Replies: 60
Views: 5612

Re: Have X times your salary saved by age Y.

I think rules of thumb are very useful if you realize that they really are just rules of thumb. And I think it is foolish to try to refine the precision of any rule of thumb. The amount you will actually be able to save by age 65--taking into account the stock market, career, possible wife, possible...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 6:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin is dropping right now after a big Chinese exchange announces closure
Replies: 81
Views: 5451

Re: Bitcoin is dropping right now after a big Chinese exchange announces closure

Bitcoin is just the first iteration of a currency based on the blockchain. I think it's been a grand experiment, but it will eventually end. However, I think the idea of a currency based on the blockchain is timeless and will continue to gain traction, as evidenced by the plethora of other cryptocu...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 602
Views: 33323

Re: Equifax customer information leak

I thought I'd posted about this in the forum but... as you know, the URL for the security breach is not at equifax.com, as it should be IMHO, but at equifaxsecurity2017.com which is uncomfortably reminiscent of various scams that rely on URLs that include a company's name but don't really belong to ...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin is dropping right now after a big Chinese exchange announces closure
Replies: 81
Views: 5451

Re: Bitcoin is dropping right now after a big Chinese exchange announces closure

Speaking as a strong bitcoin skeptic , if I were into bitcoin I don't think I would see what's happened recently as a big deal. Anyone who bought bitcoin around the start of 2017 or before, if they sell today, has more than quadrupled their money, so fussing because "I coulda quintupled it!" seems a...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax is a mess
Replies: 19
Views: 2391

Re: Equifax is a mess

livesoft wrote:
Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:36 pm
Life is just one long loose end.
"No straight lines make up my life, all my roads have bends;
No clear-cut beginnings--so far, no dead ends."--Harry Chapin
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can't Register With TransUnion
Replies: 16
Views: 1397

Re: Can't Register With TransUnion

how to get the free annual credit report? Wait a while! Then try http://www.annualcreditreport.com As of a few minutes ago, after you get through entering all of your information, that website reports that "the system at the credit reporting company you are requesting is temporarily unavailable." I...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Verify credit freeze is active?
Replies: 18
Views: 1716

Re: Verify credit freeze is active?

Yeah. Right. https://s26.postimg.org/6le88lnop/Captura_de_pantalla_2017-09-14_a_las_12.45.19_PM.png Notice that it gave me the error message circled in red before I had even selected any credit reporting company . I don't know if that means all three of them are unavailable... or if it just means an...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The true cost of Luxury
Replies: 32
Views: 3537

Re: The true cost of Luxury

The problem is that it is hard to judge quality before a purchase. Consumer Reports once was fairly helpful about this, but not any more. And they started to be less and less useful because of model proliferation, and because many brands simply are no longer very consistent.
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ted Seides "Why I lost My Bet With Warren Buffett" - Bloomberg
Replies: 94
Views: 11625

Re: Ted Seides "Why I lost My Bet With Warren Buffett" - Bloomberg

A lot of very smug passive investors are going to learn when they look back at the beach that since the crash the one set of footprints they see are those of the central bankers that have carried them. Nice rhetoric, but would you flesh it out to the point where we can make a judgement on it? I und...
by nisiprius
Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which Bond Fund Will Perform Best With Rising Rates?
Replies: 27
Views: 2972

Re: Which Bond Fund Will Perform Best With Rising Rates?

It depends on exactly how you define "performance," because the general characteristic of what bonds and bond funds do when interest rates rise is a short-term loss (which is what people tend to fixate on), followed by recovery, followed by long-term gains. Since the yield curve is usually rising, u...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What is the largest percentage of your total portfolio value that you have exchanged to rebalance?
Replies: 58
Views: 3108

Re: What is the largest percentage of your total portfolio value that you have exchanged to rebalance?

I'm sorry to say that I haven't kept good records. Since I don't do "slice-and-dice," have a simple portfolio, and don't believe in a rebalancing bonus, I'm sorry to say that I do it in a sloppy, casual way. When something prompts me to check, I check, and if it seems far away from the target percen...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 13, 2017 12:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What special investments, if any, do CFPs have access to?
Replies: 11
Views: 794

Re: What special investments, if any, do CFPs have access to?

Another category of "advisor only" products are non-traded REITs. These are famously problematical investments that are attractive to advisors because they pay high commissions.