Search found 33234 matches

by nisiprius
Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a doctor's practice one of the safest and most profitable businesses?
Replies: 58
Views: 3022

Re: Is a doctor's practice one of the safest and most profitable businesses?

Another point, which I can't speak to from personal experience, is that doctors, veterinarians, etc. can and do sell their practices. Indeed, the business model for a sole-proprietorship practice pretty much assumes that you can sell the practice at the end, otherwise it isn't a very good business ...
by nisiprius
Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many miles/years do you keep your car?
Replies: 92
Views: 5151

Re: How many miles/years do you keep your car?

We kept our last car from 2005 to 2016 at which point it had 140,000 miles... and no important problems. For whatever it's worth, we didn't want to wait for problems, and we wanted to get some of the new safety and driver-assist features--the 2005 didn't have vehicle stability control, for example. ...
by nisiprius
Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Using Jack Bogle's own words against him when it comes to international investing"
Replies: 11
Views: 1190

Re: "Using Jack Bogle's own words against him when it comes to international investing"

... Overseas investments - holdings in the corporations of other nations - are not essential, nor even necessary, to a well-diversified portfolio. For investors who disagree - and there are some valid reasons for global investing - I would recommend limiting international investments to a maximum o...
by nisiprius
Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a doctor's practice one of the safest and most profitable businesses?
Replies: 58
Views: 3022

Re: Is a doctor's practice one of the safest and most profitable businesses?

Goldenyou says I've got this completely wrong, see below . Another point, which I can't speak to from personal experience, is that doctors, veterinarians, etc. can and do sell their practices. Indeed, the business model for a sole-proprietorship practice pretty much assumes that you can sell the pra...
by nisiprius
Wed Oct 18, 2017 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a doctor's practice one of the safest and most profitable businesses?
Replies: 58
Views: 3022

Re: Is a doctor's practice one of the safest and most profitable businesses?

I'm not a doctor. But two examples from within my circle of medical acquaintances may show why I doubt that a doctor's career or income is particularly "safe." 1) A urologist who was a star in a community hospital who did prostatectomies. That form of surgery has been revolutionized by so-called "ro...
by nisiprius
Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why so many "reversed" pictures?
Replies: 14
Views: 2115

Re: Why so many "reversed" pictures?

It does seem to me that more and more "news" stories, even from legitimate real-news sources, especially on the Internet, are illustrating stories with rather generic stock photos or "file photos." I guess, in the minds of... someone, it is absolutely necessary for every story to have a picture to i...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 17, 2017 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Currency risk?
Replies: 28
Views: 1322

Re: Currency risk?

...Fourth, I question the motives of those believing in a 0% international allocation (or 5% or 10%). While many are simply ignorant, and others cite reasons such as currency risk for their home country bias, for a few, is their bias ultimately... bias, a behavioral error? Are some inherently biase...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 17, 2017 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there really a lithium battery in a USB-C-to-micro-USB adapter?
Replies: 8
Views: 581

Is there really a lithium battery in a USB-C-to-micro-USB adapter?

So I bought a Samsung Micro USB to USB-C adapter. It came in a box so big I couldn't even think what I'd ordered, and the box had a warning on the side, "CAUTION: Lithium Ion batteries. Do not load or transport package if damaged." Inside was this. The front and back sides of the adapter, a dime to ...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard expects "decent sized correction" soon, sometime, maybe later
Replies: 67
Views: 6220

Re: Vanguard expects "decent sized correction" soon

Oh, how I wish he had phrased it as "Sooner or later a correction is coming, and it may be a decent one."

(I.e. echoing Roger Babson's 1929 declaration that "Sooner or later a crash is coming, and it may be terrific.")
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WPA2 protocol used by vast majority of wifi connections has been broken
Replies: 54
Views: 4537

Re: WPA2 protocol used by vast majority of wifi connections has been broken

1) It does appear that the attacker needs to be within WiFi range of my router. You can interpret that as "attacker need only be within WiFi range of my router" or "attacker must be within WiFi range of my router," but either way it does mean that the degree of risk depends on who you are and where ...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Swedroe: ‘Sure Things’ Check-In
Replies: 5
Views: 1394

Re: Swedroe: ‘Sure Things’ Check-In

I love his "sure things" articles.

It is so difficult not to be sucked in when "everybody" is sure about something. It's really important to remember just how often these broad consensus, strong conviction predictions turn out to be completely wrong.
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Currency risk?
Replies: 28
Views: 1322

Re: Currency risk?

...It's probably not a big error for a US investor to have zero weight in global equities... Now, that is the key point, I think. John C. Bogle has written that "Successful investing involves doing just a few things right and avoiding serious mistakes." Nobody has ever been able to convince me that...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand what happens with the new law and ACA subsidies
Replies: 80
Views: 5519

Re: Help me understand what happens with the new law and ACA subsidies

Not to get onto an actual medical topic, I think I can say that "refraction" means measuring your eyes to see if you need new glasses and determining the prescription for them. As you probably know Medicare does not pay for eyeglasses (or hearing aids!) and therefore, somewhat logically, doesn't pay...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fellow TDA bogleheads [TDA dropping Vanguard ETFs from commission-free list]
Replies: 275
Views: 12140

Re: TD Ameritrade Drops Vanguard From Revamped Commission-Free ETF Lineup TD Ameritrade will nearly triple its overall c

(Shrug) I don't know what goes on behind the scenes to make ETFs commission-free or mutual funds "no transaction fee" at a brokerage. For mutual funds, I think the fund company pays the brokerage a kickback fee of some kind. I doubt that Vanguard is willing to do this. Anyway, commission-free ETFs a...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand what happens with the new law and ACA subsidies
Replies: 80
Views: 5519

Re: Help me understand what happen with the new law and ACA subsidies

...The answer was they would cover something if it was necessary . The doctor's office told me that Medicare would not pay for some part of the procedure. So how am I to know if it is necessary? I had none of this bureaucracy with my employer-funded healthcare. They paid for everything that my prim...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Currency risk?
Replies: 28
Views: 1322

Re: Currency risk?

...I just don't see any evidence that currency risk is a one way street... Nobody ever said that it was. That is a straw man argument. The argument is that currency risk a) does not add return, and b) does add risk. Therefore, it reduces the risk-adjusted return of foreign investments. I, as a U.S....
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why not CDs instead of Short Term Bonds or TIPS
Replies: 24
Views: 2933

Re: Why not CDs instead of Short Term Bonds or TIPS

In my 401k, I maintain some of my "safe" portfolio. This typically consists of taxable bond funds, TIPS funds, etc. This is part of my LP. Larry would of course recommend TIPS or ST Treasuries as part of this allocation. I recognize that TIPS are to protect from "unexpected" inflation. Of course, t...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand what happens with the new law and ACA subsidies
Replies: 80
Views: 5519

Re: Help me understand what happens with the new law and ACA subsidies

Moneybags1 wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 12:57 pm
...I searched high and low and every media outlet is saying everyone in ACA is screwed...
This article in this media outlet is fairly heavy on information. The title summarizes the content.
Why [killing] Obamacare insurance subsidies might not matter much.
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 15, 2017 4:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Discipline Trumps Distraction
Replies: 3
Views: 986

Re: Larry Swedroe: Discipline Trumps Distraction

And while he is discussing value, that seems to me to be significant in itself. It seems to me that the "factors" crowd has been quietly and gradually claiming less and less and less importance for the size factor, the first of all factors to be discovered.
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?
Replies: 57
Views: 3129

Re: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?

So, serious question--I did some cursory searches once without success. Can anyone come up with an accepted definition of the word "diversification" along with an accepted numerical measure of it, so that we could apply it and find out what represents maximum diversification by that measure? A key q...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 14, 2017 6:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?
Replies: 57
Views: 3129

Re: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?

Which is more diversified: a basket of 200 stocks of small companies, all in the same line of business, or a massive conglomerate with 200 divisions, each in a different line of business? Definitely 200 small companies,one scandal in one corporation can bring down 200 divisions of one company Altho...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?
Replies: 57
Views: 3129

Re: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?

What if framed the question like this: If you could only hold Apple and the bottom 1000 stocks in TSM, would you hold them at market weight?... Wait, that's a different kind of question. I don't know how to answer that one. If the entire stock market consisted of nothing but AAPL and the bottom 1,0...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 14, 2017 1:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?
Replies: 57
Views: 3129

Re: Which would you rather own: AAPL or S&P 600 Small Cap Index?

The Vanguard Small Cap Index Fund, NAESX, goes back farther than VIOO, the Vanguard S&P Small-cap 600 index fund. Quick checking, the two have tracked together fairly closely over the life of VIOO and I want to go back far enough to include some of Apple's bad times as well as their good times. NAES...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 14, 2017 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Advantage vs. Supplemental
Replies: 40
Views: 2384

Re: Medicare Advantage vs. Supplemental

When I was looking around several years ago, I ended up with traditional Medicare + supplemental for these reasons. Everything depends on your area and your situation. 1) There was not a huge difference in total cost. Medicare Advantage had considerably lower premiums, but considerably higher out-of...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 14, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: All in with Balanced Index fund
Replies: 41
Views: 4888

Re: All in with Balanced Index fund

...why VBINX isn't more popular? Ask Jack said, VBINX is really all most investors need... There is a very broad range of balanced funds that could quite arguably be "all most investors really need." Here are a few, off the top of my head, and the amount of assets each holds. I note that you have 2...
by nisiprius
Sat Oct 14, 2017 7:36 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds v. bond funds
Replies: 36
Views: 1844

Re: Bonds v. bond funds

I'm curious as to why the standard advice/approach is to buy bond funds, rather than individual bonds? Aren't bond funds riskier, since there's no guarantee of making your investment back? Since I had a portfolio of about twenty-five individuals TIPS (inflation-protected Treasuries), I think I can ...
by nisiprius
Fri Oct 13, 2017 7:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: “Going Long Volatility”
Replies: 16
Views: 862

Re: “Going Long Volatility”

Clearly, this ETN doesn't track the VIX at all, and probably has the same terrible problems that leveraged and inverse ETFs have. It's a different and bigger problem than the usual daily rebalancing issues you reference with the leveraged and inverse ETFs: significant contango in short-term VIX fut...
by nisiprius
Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: “Going Long Volatility”
Replies: 16
Views: 862

Re: “Going Long Volatility”

DoctorB wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 2:26 pm
...curious what the Bogleheads perspective would be on this, and what Vanguard offers in this regard, if anything?...
Nothing from Vanguard itself.

I imagine you can buy VXX and other exchanged-related-whatzzisses through Vanguard Brokerage Services, of course.
by nisiprius
Fri Oct 13, 2017 3:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: “Going Long Volatility”
Replies: 16
Views: 862

Re: “Going Long Volatility”

I don't even know what it means. I don't claim to be sophisticated, but if I actually don't understand it, it's probably some kind of trendy thing or some meaningless slogan. On doing a Google search, I think it means "go long on the VIX index." For me to try to do this would be a really bad idea , ...
by nisiprius
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Have some savings doing nothing, how to invest?
Replies: 6
Views: 902

Re: Have some savings doing nothing, how to invest?

...We have roughly $100k sitting in a savings account doing nothing. We want to put into this our core four lazy portfolio now... Just a little mini-rant, because people who want to sell you stocks, bonds, and mutual funds like to portray savings accounts as "doing nothing" and "losing value to inf...
by nisiprius
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Earplugs that work on low frequency noise?
Replies: 35
Views: 1756

Re: Earplugs that work on low frequency noise?

I've used various kinds of earplugs and my experience is that anything that actually blocks the ear canal fully is very effective. It is well worth giving them a try, and trying lots of kinds for comfort and ability to stay in. Of course disposable earplugs need to be replaced. Rubber and other kind...
by nisiprius
Fri Oct 13, 2017 7:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 10 year anniversary of the beginning of the Great Recession
Replies: 45
Views: 4166

Re: 10 year anniversary of the beginning of the Great Recession

...What I would not say is that I've been tested by the Great Recession and now I am ready for anything. Far from it. I subscribe to Taleb's logic that just as in 2007 we thought of "the worst decline" as 25% and were unprepared for a 50% decline, today we think that 50% is the worst that could hap...
by nisiprius
Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Schwab now offering Index funds at lower ER than Vanguard
Replies: 9
Views: 1237

Re: Schwab now offering Index funds at lower ER than Vanguard

Just speaking personally, provided the indexes they are tracking are either identical or close enough, I have always assumed that the index funds from well-known providers (Vanguard, Schwab, Fidelity... as well as the big ETF providers) can be regarded as interchangeable. As to how much the cost mat...
by nisiprius
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Are we taking too much risk with Bonds in our AA?
Replies: 25
Views: 2019

Re: Are we taking too much risk with Bonds in our AA?

Hi everyone, I know that some can consider this as market timing.... However, we do know that the federal reserve started unwinding the recession stimulus. Additionally, we know that they are in the path of rising rates. Those are much more actionable today than in previous years. This stuff is alr...
by nisiprius
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: equifax security freeze error and no PIN?
Replies: 15
Views: 642

Re: equifax security freeze error and no PIN?

[Rant on] Even though I froze my accounts with the Big Three a couple of years ago, and even though my wife and I waited a few days before taking additional action, we both experienced many errors, crashes, mysterious messages, and so forth. There were more problems with Equifax than the others but ...
by nisiprius
Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:53 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy when there's blood in the streets!
Replies: 39
Views: 6225

Re: Buy when there's blood in the streets!

"Buy when there's blood in the streets" is one of a family of sayings, mutually contradictory, that mean nothing. People trot out whichever one matches the situation either to convince you to do something, or to feed their own confirmation bias by finding a rationalization for whatever they already ...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cheapest thing you ever heard of to save money
Replies: 34
Views: 2583

Re: Cheapest thing you ever heard of to save money

My grade school had a pay phone. Rather than spend a nickel to call mom/dad for a ride home (after some after-school or nighttime event), you would dial the number and let it ring once then hang up. Over the course of a school year, this saved about 25 cents. Guess this worked if your parents had c...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cheapest thing you ever heard of to save money
Replies: 34
Views: 2583

Re: Cheapest thing you ever heard of to save money

In the 1970s you allowed to use the actual dollar value of your state sales tax payments, as established by documentation, as a Federal income tax deduction. I knew a guy who kept his eye out for any cash register receipts that other shoppers dropped on the floor, picked them up, saved them, and ded...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please define "cash"
Replies: 31
Views: 1957

Re: Please define "cash"

...What is meant by the term "cash" as it relates to one's portfolio asset allocation?... Beware of false precision, and always keep in mind the reason why you're trying to do something. In an investment portfolio, particularly a retirement savings portfolio, you usually want to include fairly liqu...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anybody read the Medicare and You booklet?
Replies: 16
Views: 909

Re: Does anybody read the Medicare and You booklet?

I browsed it the first time I got it. Since then, I haven't read it, but, yes, I have consulted it a couple of time for specific things. Mine has big sections with tables describing all of the Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D plans available in my state. I think all of this information is avai...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anybody read the Medicare and You booklet?
Replies: 16
Views: 909

Re: Does anybody read the Medicare and You booklet?

jebmke wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:13 pm
dm200 wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:02 pm
yes - new cards with new number/id
Something other than SSN?
Yep.
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Factor investing: should financial firms be excluded when screening for value?
Replies: 31
Views: 1445

Re: Factor investing: should financial firms be excluded when screening for value?

...The traditional academic literature on the value factor does the book-to-market sort—or other metrics—over the market minus financials and utilities... I've just looked at Kenneth R. French's website, the page entitled Description of Fama/French Factors , and I do not see either of the words "fi...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 7:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett: U.S. Stocks have been safer than Cash or Treasuries over the last 50 Years.
Replies: 19
Views: 2893

Re: Buffett: U.S. Stocks have been safer than Cash or Treasuries over the last 50 Years.

...I doubt that many would recommend a true 100% equities portfolio (i.e. without emergency funds or similar tricks) to actual human beings who, even at a young age, and even if they have nerves of steel and make no behavioral mistakes, simply cannot rule out the possibility of unexpected emergenci...
by nisiprius
Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: McDonalds Rick and Morty Szechuan Sauce...$995 ?
Replies: 16
Views: 2377

Re: McDonalds Rick and Morty Szechuan Sauce...$995 ?

That sounds like a much better deal than the I Am Rich app for the iPhone. It cost $1,000, was bought by eight people in one day before Apple removed it from the app store. The app was honestly described. It did nothing at all but display a glowing gem-like icon on the screen which, when pressed, pr...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What specific changes have you made post-Equifax?
Replies: 51
Views: 3700

Re: What specific changes have you made post-Equifax?

I had already frozen my Equifax, Experian, and Transunion accounts a couple of years ago. Post-Equifax my wife froze her accounts, which she hadn't done, and I froze my accounts with Innovis and ChexSystems. I turned on two-factor authentication at Vanguard. I have started to worry more about it all...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 09, 2017 1:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why is inflation so low? Moore's law?
Replies: 23
Views: 2876

Re: Why is inflation so low? Moore's law?

...Technology certainly has helped keep price inflation down for some goods (like televisions for example) - of course I don't know anyone studying current inflation trends who has overlooked that... It's even taken into account in hedonic quality adjustment in the calculation of the CPI. https://w...
by nisiprius
Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help! How do I Choose an International Strategy?
Replies: 13
Views: 1282

Re: Help! How do I Choose an International Strategy?

Just to be clear, regardless of whether or not APDKX is a "good" fund or not, this is how it has actually performed over its lifetime, a respectable 15 years. Blue is APDKX, orange is Morningstar's chosen benchmark index, and green is Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund. Source https://s1....
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 08, 2017 6:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BitConnect [Cryptocurrency]
Replies: 10
Views: 740

Re: BitConnect [Cryptocurrency]

Has anyone here extensively researched BitConnect? Nope, and I'm not going to. Just as I don't investigate "overunity" (perpetual motion, free energy) machines, even though there are hundreds of them described on the Internet, many complete with YouTube videos showing them in action. If there are r...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 08, 2017 7:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is a “bond bubble”?
Replies: 35
Views: 3194

Re: What is a “bond bubble”?

Exercise for the reader. 1) 1993 was described after the fact as a "bond bubble" and 1994 was described as a "bond massacre." How bad were the bond bubble and bond massacre for an investor in Vanguard Total Bond (or any run-of-the-mill "core bond fund?") 2) In August 2010, Jeremy Schwartz and Jeremy...
by nisiprius
Sun Oct 08, 2017 7:36 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is a “bond bubble”?
Replies: 35
Views: 3194

Re: What is a “bond bubble”?

I've been trying to figure this one out myself. Normally, the name bubble is applied to situations in which some financial asset is bid up to several times its proper value as a result of market mania; it's a bubble because there's nothing real there, just air; and it is usually called a bubble when...