Search found 35423 matches

by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the best way to determine if one should buy something or save their money?
Replies: 28
Views: 1389

Re: What is the best way to determine if one should buy something or save their money?

The only rule I have is that it is not the one-time purchases or splurges that do the damage, it's anything with continuing monthly payments. Among other things, it is amazingly difficult to give up e.g. any magazine subscription, even if you are hardly reading and aren't enjoying the magazine. So I...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Inflation adjusted annuity
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Inflation adjusted annuity

Regardless of BobK's recommendation, I would avoid true inflation adjusted annuities. An insurance company takes a LOT of risk with a product like that and the price to the annuitant will be unreasonably high. Whenever I've checked, the price for a CPI-linked annuity has been a tad less than the pr...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: S&P Risk Parity Index Family
Replies: 9
Views: 457

Re: S&P Risk Parity Index Family

This seems on the face of it to pin down the meaning of "risk parity" to mean not only equalizing risk between asset classes, but also defining the specific set of asset classes that need to be in a portfolio for it to be called "risk parity." However, aren't they different from the asset classes u...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: S&P Risk Parity Index Family
Replies: 9
Views: 457

Re: S&P Risk Parity Index Family

Why does it use "futures contracts" for equities, which can easily be invested in directly and which wouldn't seem to need to be leveraged up to increase their risk?
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: S&P Risk Parity Index Family
Replies: 9
Views: 457

Re: S&P Risk Parity Index Family

This seems on the face of it to pin down the meaning of "risk parity" to mean not only equalizing risk between asset classes, but also defining the specific set of asset classes that need to be in a portfolio for it to be called "risk parity." However, aren't they different from the asset classes us...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Preferred stock as bond substitute: is there a thread?
Replies: 6
Views: 480

Re: Preferred stock as bond substitute: is there a thread?

Stocks are stocks. Bonds are bonds. They are fundamentally different. Neither can be a "substitute" for the other, any more than tea can be a substitute for coffee... not even the darkest, strongest, smokiest-tasting tea. "High-yield" (junk) bonds are somewhat stock-like bonds. Preferred stocks are ...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How can I use the Rising Equity Glide Path?
Replies: 44
Views: 2393

Re: How can I use the Rising Equity Glide Path?

"Rising equity glide path" is probably a misnomer, and Kitces has stopped calling it that . Recently he has been calling it a a bond tent . The point is not so much to increase your equity allocation during retirement. The point is to go to a higher bond allocation (and thus a lower equity allocatio...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Matter/Scatter part 8: Small-caps
Replies: 0
Views: 164

Matter/Scatter part 8: Small-caps

Matter/scatter, part 8: Small caps and micro-caps Part 1: Introduction , Part 2: Bond fund choices, , Part 3, International bonds, Part 4: Bond allocation . Part 5: International stocks Part 6: Expense ratios Part 7: Bonds during the financial crisis Brief notes: 1) In these Monte Carlo simulations,...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NYT: The Big, Dangerous Bubble in Corporate Debt
Replies: 18
Views: 3402

Re: NYT: The Big, Dangerous Bubble in Corporate Debt

For at least five years, e.g. 2013, when John C. Bogle said we have to fix the bond index , there has been a faction saying the ordinary investor should be holding more corporate bonds than in the Lehman/BarCap/Bloomberg aggregate index. And there has been another faction saying the ordinary investo...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paper checks yes or no?
Replies: 104
Views: 5119

Re: Paper checks yes or no?

"wire transfer," that may be by far the best method for businesses or other entities that have a direct electronic connection to the wire transfer process. As experienced by me, as a retail bank customer, it is an exquisitely manual process... As a "retail bank customer" at Bank of America, I have ...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paper checks yes or no?
Replies: 104
Views: 5119

Re: Paper checks yes or no?

Sadly, we don't have a robust alternative. I lived for four years in a country where checks didn't exist. I never missed them. The problem is that the US banking system is archaic so we still need to scribble on little pieces of paper and pass them around in some cases. What is laughable is that th...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paper checks yes or no?
Replies: 104
Views: 5119

Re: Paper checks yes or no?

I just realized there's a perfect real-life example sitting on our kitchen table. I didn't think of it because it's not our check. A couple of weeks from now, our granddaughter will be visiting us to go to a music day camp program that's close to our house and far from her parents'. Most of the fees...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paper checks yes or no?
Replies: 104
Views: 5119

Re: Paper checks yes or no?

I need them at least a dozen times a year. I also ran into an interesting issue a couple of years ago when I wanted to send someone a large-for-me amount of money. The thing was that this person travels a lot and is often out of contact. I had three choices obvious possible choices: a) wire transfer...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [New Vanguard website layout starting Saturday, August 11]
Replies: 97
Views: 5714

Re: [New Vanguard website layout starting Saturday, August 11]

I mostly care about content , and despite all of the grumbling, I really like the content that Vanguard chooses to make available for its own mutual funds. I think it's at least as good as any other firm I know of (although since I spend 100X as much time on Vanguard that might just be knowing how t...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How often do you check your brokerage accounts
Replies: 66
Views: 3771

Re: How often do you check your brokerage accounts

I am probably on Vanguard.com several times a week checking out random stuff connected to forum discussions, but I am often not logged in. The last time I looked at my own account was yesterday, in order to see if it was true that their website design had changed and what it looked like. Naturally I...
by nisiprius
Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [New Vanguard website layout starting Saturday, August 11]
Replies: 97
Views: 5714

Re: [New Vanguard website layout starting Saturday, August 11]

darkhorse346 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 4:37 pm
The view is different depending on how you access you account balances.

My Accounts -> Balances and Holdings = the old view

of

My Accounts -> Holdings (2nd tab of 5 across top) = the alternate view
You're right. Hope "My Accounts -> Balances and Holdings = the old view" stays that way.
by nisiprius
Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [New Vanguard website layout starting Saturday, August 11]
Replies: 97
Views: 5714

Re: [New Vanguard website layout starting Saturday, August 11]

This is awful. Everything is now in gigantic 18-point type, and the layout is so huge that on my 1600x900 display--with the window as large as it will go, which is 825 pixels high--it takes eight scrolls to see everything . In other words the layout is designed for a screen that is over 6,400 pixels...
by nisiprius
Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

I don't see the mystery. Here's my hack explanation for what the fund is doing. It would be better if I were twelve. It owns 90% large cap stocks. It has 10% invested in cash. It has 60% notional exposure in a mix of 2, 5, 10, and 30-year Treasury futures contracts. This is the source of the levera...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

Non-Diversification Risk. The Fund is considered to be non-diversified. Don't know if that's the sector risk showing up another form, or what. Again, that's quite different from "traditional" 60/40 portfolios. Many common funds, maybe even some you own, are classified as "nondiversified". Vanguard ...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

the prospectus , if I got it right... I saw that too; I think you've noticed an example of Ctrl-X Ctrl-V Risk . I mean they used another fund's prospectus as the basis for this one. ;) The relevant additional risks over a 60/40 portfolio appear to be "Market Risk", "Derivatives Risk", "Futures Cont...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

From the prospectus : Information Technology Sector Risk. The Fund currently invests a significant portion of its assets in the information technology sector, and therefore the Fund’s performance could be negatively impacted by events affecting this sector. Was that obvious from the web page blurb? ...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

This is weird. I thought maybe the prospectus would help me. ... Their web page appears to have a bug, inserting a spurious and redundant port access for 443 (secure HTTP) into the middle of the URL. Sloppy! Not to worry; here is the EDGAR link And this one looks like the prospectus , right?
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

I seriously don't understand what this fund actually does... but then since I'm not going to invest in it I don't need to. They talk about 1.5x "Accounting leverage" while stating that "This strategy does not borrow to enhance investment returns." Although it says it does not borrow, it also says "...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

This is weird. I thought maybe the prospectus would help me. On this page , it says click here to view or download prospectus[/url] When I clicked on that link, this is what I saw. How about you? https://imgur.com/M81lpDt.png Reproduced with both Safari 11.1.2 (13605.3.8) and Firefox 61.0.1 (64-bit)...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 5818

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

I love seeing a five day chart with the customary disclaimer that "results are not indicative of future performance." Five days isn't indicative of future performance? Good to know. I certainly can't quarrel with that. https://imgur.com/50v9IYU.png I seriously don't understand what this fund actuall...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 5:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Long-Term Treasury (VUSUX) beta = 3.20?
Replies: 15
Views: 1195

Re: Vanguard Long-Term Treasury (VUSUX) beta = 3.20?

What I didn't realize, though, is how time dependent that correlation actually is. It might not be time dependence. It might be sampling error. Sampling error in correlations is brutal. In legitimate situations where you have reason to believe a priori that you are looking at independent random sam...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Long-Term Treasury (VUSUX) beta = 3.20?
Replies: 15
Views: 1195

Re: Vanguard Long-Term Treasury (VUSUX) beta = 3.20?

Very seriously, I would appreciate your finding where it was that you read that bonds and stocks move in "opposite" directions. People keep saying this and I honestly do not know where they are getting it. You can see it for yourself by putting in the yearly returns for the S&P and for long-term tr...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If it were March, 2000, would you still allocate 50% to Stocks?
Replies: 94
Views: 4143

Re: If it were March, 2000, would you still allocate 50% to Stocks?

...That's ZERO real growth in almost 20 years. The haystack didn't budge... That's 100% stocks. Yes, that happens. Another example was 1966-1982. The question is: what to do about it? My belief is that if you want the risk premium, you must take the risk. Right now we are getting lots of "why not 1...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Deciphering fake reviews online
Replies: 6
Views: 775

Re: Deciphering fake reviews online

I heard that podcast, too, and I then actually tried out reviewmeta.com on the Amazon reviews for a couple of things I was buying. It reported that they were clean. I plan to use it in the future. I think I can spot fake reviews--and when I read Amazon reader reviews, I mostly ignore 5-star reviews,...
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone
Replies: 217
Views: 12516

Re: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone

Vineviz, would you consider changing the title of this thread to something like this?
"Age in bonds" is far more conservative than the average target-date-fund glide path.
by nisiprius
Wed Aug 08, 2018 5:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity announced 10-for-1 fund splits in certain mutual funds
Replies: 18
Views: 3549

Re: Fidelity announced 10-for-1 fund splits in certain mutual funds

Ah, news I definitely don't need to worry about. I am sure that the only reason this drew any attention at all is because it is a "split," and stock splits are almost, but not entirely unlike news. Stock splits are not entirely meaningless for two reasons. First, if you hear that a stock "has split ...
by nisiprius
Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Long-Term Treasury (VUSUX) beta = 3.20?
Replies: 15
Views: 1195

Re: Vanguard Long-Term Treasury (VUSUX) beta = 3.20?

ppl say bond and stock market move in the opposite direction (historically) hence bond funds can hedge market risk. What people say this? Because it is not true . Historically, bonds and the stock market have not moved in opposite directions Historically, they have moved independently (near-zero co...
by nisiprius
Tue Aug 07, 2018 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: True Risk-Adjuted Returns
Replies: 17
Views: 1087

Re: True Risk-Adjuted Returns

gmaynardkrebs, the basic problem is that you (and I) are interested in rare, severe events. However, even if we had, somehow, an accurate statistical model of the "true" statistics of a financial asset, the rarer an event is, the more difficult it is to estimate its probability. And thus, the less r...
by nisiprius
Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone
Replies: 217
Views: 12516

Re: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone

Jeremy Siegel has stated, don't have the reference but he has, that the claimed stability of US stock market returns is a completely pragmatic observation and that there is no theory to explain why it should be true. If Siegel needs an explanation for WHY stocks outperform bonds over the long run, ...
by nisiprius
Tue Aug 07, 2018 5:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Medicare cards. Get yours?
Replies: 25
Views: 2273

Re: New SS cards. Get yours?

...Points to the feds for making these paper instead of adding millions of plastic cards to the planet... It's interesting: my old Medicare card has always looked like a rather cheesy piece of cardboard, but it has actually held up and stayed legible in my wallet just as well as many plastic cards....
by nisiprius
Tue Aug 07, 2018 5:45 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone
Replies: 217
Views: 12516

Re: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone

Over the long term stocks will outperform bonds. Why don't we look at what period of time the risk of stocks underperforming bonds becomes negligible and use that to help set asset allocation rather than something that has no mathematical relationship to the problem we are using it to solve. Becaus...
by nisiprius
Tue Aug 07, 2018 5:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone
Replies: 217
Views: 12516

Re: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone

I think threads like this have their greatest value in illustrating exactly how far into this bull cycle we really are. The point in having bonds is not because they improve returns, rather, the reduced volatility they provide prevent people from making very expensive behavioral mistakes when thing...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone
Replies: 217
Views: 12516

Re: "Age in Bonds" fails almost everyone

Yes, I once posted something like this--sorry, this is percent stocks and not percent bonds. These are the curves that Morningstar generaed for the purpose of benchmarking commercial target-date funds. https://imgur.com/1JOJp6B.png However, I take exception to your thread title. You did not show "Ag...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 06, 2018 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your opinion on online courses?
Replies: 26
Views: 1976

Re: Your opinion on online courses?

People have been taking "correspondence courses" by mail and getting college credit for them for at least a century... regardless of whether they are truly equivalent to in-person courses. A web page on the history of distance learning says that "in 1892, the University of Chicago began offering cor...
by nisiprius
Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much does it matter, considering scatter? Part 1 of many: Introduction
Replies: 38
Views: 4275

Re: How much does it matter, considering scatter? Part 1 of many: Introduction

I think I'll post this one now. It doesn't make a comparison. If you want to go back to 1871, all you have is stocks. (Actually that's not right because the Cowles data has, basically, all kinds of detailed sector breakdowns but that doesn't seem to have been exploited too much...) Anyway. It did th...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much does it matter, considering scatter? Part 1 of many: Introduction
Replies: 38
Views: 4275

Re: How much does it matter, considering scatter? Part 1 of many: Introduction

Those are neat, Siamond. I have a chart that is part of my "methodology" discussion that I'm working up to posting that has growth-of-$100/month-contributions over overlapping 26-year periods from 1871 to 2017 for one asset alone--stocks as represented by Shiller's data. The problem of course is tha...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

...We can assume there is no US mutual fund or ETF that can directly access US private equity funds. The SEC won't allow it. Private equity is sold to US accredited investors, in practice qualified purchasers. Normal investors can buy shares of private equity management firms but not invest directl...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

Why aren't the actual results, shown above, of four private equity mutual funds and ETFs--LPEIX, PSP, PEX, and LPEAX--germane?... The results are not germane. Investing in a private equity ETF (or an underlying private equity stock) is not at all the same as being an LP in an private equity fund. T...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

...If you want to do some extra legwork you could download the Cambridge Associates Private Equity Index and see how that has fared -- https://www.cambridgeassociates.com/private-investment-benchmarks/ ... How do you invest in this index? What is the name of the mutual fund or ETF that tracks it? A...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 12:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: AliBaba
Replies: 171
Views: 20663

Re: AliBaba

Whos's buying, at what price, and how many shares??? Write it in stone: BABA will outperform VTI over next decade. :moneybag Arguably likely if you choose to ignore risk . Since this was posted, BABA has displayed nearly four times the standard deviation--and has been much riskier by every other me...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

I file the whole "number of listed stocks decreasing" thing--first brought to my personal attention in 2011 in this forum by Rick Ferri--in the category of "I know something you don't know, and since you don't know it, I can claim it means anything I like." ☞ The number of foreign stocks in the S&P ...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

So it seems to me this is the key question w/r/t public vs private equity: Does the shrinking number of public equities mean that an investor only invested in public equities would be missing out on an important engine of future US economic growth? If the answer is yes, this implies that an investo...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

Bacchus01 wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:09 am
Raabe34 wrote:
Sat Aug 04, 2018 10:55 pm
gasman wrote:
Sat Aug 04, 2018 7:51 pm
1. Why is the number of publicly trade companies shrinking?...
Sarbanes Oxley - makes it expensive for a smaller company to be public and is incentive to stay private.
This is a huge driver for many companies
The cause came six years after the effect?

Image
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

P.S. I keep finding Google search hits on another mutual fund, "Vista Listed Private Equity Plus A (LPEAX)," but Morningstar isn't showing it and Yahoo! Finance is showing all zeroes, so I think it died. That means that the three funds I charted in my previous post are the beneficiaries of survivors...
by nisiprius
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:01 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The stock market is shrinking.
Replies: 68
Views: 7088

Re: The stock market is shrinking.

I don't think there is anything I can do about this phenomena so I don't worry too much about it... You could invest in private equity. No, thanks. LPEIX: Red Rocks Listed Private Equity Fund (blue)--expense ratio 1.68% :moneybag :moneybag :moneybag PSP: Invesco Global Listed Private Equity ETF (or...