Search found 852 matches

by Austintatious
Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone recommend a cheap cell phone service for text and calls?
Replies: 24
Views: 2014

Re: Anyone recommend a cheap cell phone service for text and calls?

DW and I have used Consumer Cellular for several years and we have been satisfied with the service they provide.

https://www.consumercellular.com/Plans
by Austintatious
Tue May 21, 2019 9:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best time to go to Europe
Replies: 8
Views: 845

Re: Best time to go to Europe

My personal favorite time in Europe is after (our) Labor Day. Vacation crowds start to go down (both local and international tourists) and the weather can be glorious. This year I will again be going to France for September. Can't quit the habit. What parts of France are you most fond of, pray tell...
by Austintatious
Tue May 21, 2019 8:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best time to go to Europe
Replies: 8
Views: 845

Re: Best time to go to Europe

My personal favorite time in Europe is after (our) Labor Day. Vacation crowds start to go down (both local and international tourists) and the weather can be glorious. This year I will again be going to France for September. Can't quit the habit. What parts of France are you most fond of, pray tell...
by Austintatious
Tue May 21, 2019 7:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best time to go to Europe
Replies: 8
Views: 845

Re: Best time to go to Europe

My personal favorite time in Europe is after (our) Labor Day. Vacation crowds start to go down (both local and international tourists) and the weather can be glorious. This year I will again be going to France for September. Can't quit the habit. What parts of France are you most fond of, pray tell?
by Austintatious
Sat Apr 27, 2019 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why do most people hate/dread learning about money and is there a good book for helping them?
Replies: 78
Views: 4970

Re: Why do most people hate/dread learning about money and is there a good book for helping them?

I think Jonathan Clements has written just such a book. It's easy to understand, covers a wide range of money/financial matters and discusses much of the psychology that we're all affected by as we make (or fail to make) those important decisions about our money. https://humbledollar.com/book/how-to...
by Austintatious
Tue Feb 26, 2019 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Call from SSA office
Replies: 22
Views: 2506

Re: Call from SSA office

My wife received a call from SSA last year when she filed for her own age-70 benefit, after she filed on-line. It was legit, asking her the question if she wanted her "bonus" of six months backdated benefits. Of course she knew about the situation of receiving a lump sum but also giving up benefits...
by Austintatious
Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Friday Harbor to SeaTac Airport
Replies: 19
Views: 1003

Re: Friday Harbor to SeaTac Airport

DW and I spent a week exploring the San Juans (stayed on Orcas Island) in late September/early October of 2014. We made the return trip to SEATAC on Sunday, October 4. Our departure time was scheduled for later in the day - 3:45p - just because I was worried about experiencing some kind of hiccup en...
by Austintatious
Sun Feb 24, 2019 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Apply for Social Security's restricted application
Replies: 12
Views: 774

Re: Apply for Social Security's restricted application

Soon after reaching FRA, my spouse began collecting his SS benefit and I filed a restricted application to collect on his record. I am still working and plan to file for benefits on my record when I reach 70, at which time he will switch to collecting the spousal benefit. How can I obtain a stateme...
by Austintatious
Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Apply for Social Security's restricted application
Replies: 12
Views: 774

Re: Apply for Social Security's restricted application

Please keep in mind that, unlike sscritic or Mike Piper, I am not an expert on Social Security benefits, though I know a little about the restricted filing for spousal benefits only, since DW and I have recently done just that for her. I offer no opinion as to whether the proposed plan is the best ...
by Austintatious
Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Apply for Social Security's restricted application
Replies: 12
Views: 774

Re: Apply for Social Security's restricted application

Please keep in mind that, unlike sscritic or Mike Piper, I am not an expert on Social Security benefits, though I know a little about the restricted filing for spousal benefits only, since DW and I have recently done just that for her. I offer no opinion as to whether the proposed plan is the best o...
by Austintatious
Sun Feb 03, 2019 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Convincing Spouse
Replies: 60
Views: 4563

Re: Help Convincing Spouse

slam, someone up there recommended Bill Bernstein's short, simple and right to the point piece "If You Can". I agree with the recommendation. But there's another option that I think could be even better for your situation. It's Dan Solin's "The Smartest Investment Book You'll Ever Read". Though it's...
by Austintatious
Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: SS Benefits estimate seems too high?
Replies: 20
Views: 1543

Re: SS Benefits estimate seems too high?

I think it's still the case that those having contributed to Social Security should receive a statement from SSA every 5 years until age 60 and each year thereafter, explaining their projected benefits for ages 62, full retirement age and 70. You might look for your last-received statement to see wh...
by Austintatious
Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: local CU_3.25% - 24 mo. CD opinion
Replies: 6
Views: 629

Re: local CU_3.25% - 24 mo. CD opinion

If I was reasonably confident that I could do without the money for two years, I'd take the 3.25 percent deal at your local cu and never look back. I do, however, think you should know what the early withdrawal penalty would be.
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 25, 2019 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Too early to start on my taxes?
Replies: 45
Views: 3475

Re: Too early to start on my taxes?

Per this article, very large numbers of furloughed IRS workers ordered back to work are not showing up in advance of the annual tax return barrage. Taxpayers expecting timely processing and prompt refunds may be in for a longer wait than usual. https://www.marketwatch.com/story/over-14000-irs-worker...
by Austintatious
Thu Jan 24, 2019 1:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Too early to start on my taxes?
Replies: 45
Views: 3475

Re: Too early to start on my taxes?

Already submitted mine and they were accepted. Not really. IRS electronic filing does not open until January 28. Check back on the status after that. Right now, they are in the “waiting room” of Intuit or whoever you used. https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-confirms-tax-filing-season-to-begin-january...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 23, 2019 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wild Planet Sardines quality problem [Review of sardine brands]
Replies: 31
Views: 3432

Re: Wild Planet Sardines quality problem [Review of sardine brands]

While we're on the subject, what are the recommended practices for serving/eating them and, no, I'm not asking whether one uses a fork, spoon, knife or chopsticks? I typically eat them with crackers and freshly ground black pepper, same as I do with smoked salmon or herring. Delicious but not very c...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Phone Plans - Question Re Best Plan for Combining Husband & Wife
Replies: 65
Views: 2811

Re: Cell Phone Plans - Question Re Best Plan for Combining Husband & Wife

Consumer Cellular: - the current "plan" services smart phones for DW and me - unlimited text and talk -2 GB of data (typically much more than necessary for us since bulk of our online activity is via wifi) - no contract - can easily increase or decrease data, as frequently as month to month - occas...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax for 2018
Replies: 9
Views: 1377

Re: TurboTax for 2018

We've not used TurboTax before, though we're contemplating doing so for 2018. It seems that there are actually two ways to file for free via TurboTax. There's their option under the IRS Free Alliance (mentioned above) which I think comes with limitations on the incomes and ages of the taxpayer that ...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 23, 2019 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Phone Plans - Question Re Best Plan for Combining Husband & Wife
Replies: 65
Views: 2811

Re: Cell Phone Plans - Question Re Best Plan for Combining Husband & Wife

Consumer Cellular: - the current "plan" services smart phones for DW and me - unlimited text and talk -2 GB of data (typically much more than necessary for us since bulk of our online activity is via wifi) - no contract - can easily increase or decrease data, as frequently as month to month - occasi...
by Austintatious
Sun Jan 20, 2019 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Stay the course is hard
Replies: 74
Views: 8007

Re: Stay the course is hard

Last year has been very interesting. US equities did quite well in the beginning, and because of that, I put money into bond and international to keep my AA correct. In October, international YTD return was negative while I think US equities made money. Sometimes I was wondering if did the right th...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 18, 2019 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Capital One 360 MM for $500 bonus
Replies: 32
Views: 3562

Re: Capital One 360 MM for $500 bonus

Is there a minimum holding period? https://www.capitalone.com/celebrate200/ Bonus payout based on balance maintained for 90 days. Because of that language that it's based on the crucial balance being maintained for the first 90 days following the Initial Funding Period , which appears to be that ti...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 18, 2019 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Capital One 360 MM for $500 bonus
Replies: 32
Views: 3562

Re: Capital One 360 MM for $500 bonus

This seems to be a regularly offered bonus opportunity at Cap One. Deposit the minimum of 10k in your new Cap One deposit account, keep it there for 12 months, and you've essentially had a 1 year CD earning a bit less than 4% but without the early withdrawal penalty. What's not to like? Actually, i...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:43 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Capital One 360 MM for $500 bonus
Replies: 32
Views: 3562

Re: Capital One 360 MM for $500 bonus

This seems to be a regularly offered bonus opportunity at Cap One. Deposit the minimum of 10k in your new Cap One deposit account, keep it there for 12 months, and you've essentially had a 1 year CD earning a bit less than 4% but without the early withdrawal penalty. What's not to like?
by Austintatious
Thu Jan 17, 2019 5:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: John Bogle has died at age 89
Replies: 856
Views: 51502

Re: John Bogle has died at age 89

I learned the news yesterday while on the forum. Five minutes later, as I'm trying to absorb the loss that we've all been feeling, my son-in-law texted "RIP Jack Bogle". And shortly thereafter, my older daughter and spouse of SIL texted "Oh no! Mr. Bogle died? Well I appreciate him today. I hope he ...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 16, 2019 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth contribution with the HEART act
Replies: 8
Views: 822

Re: Roth contribution with the HEART act

Penfed and Navy Federal credit unions are among the institutions offering competitive rates for IRA CDs, as are a number of online banks. You can find many other options here:

https://www.depositaccounts.com/

https://www.bankrate.com/
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 16, 2019 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19
Replies: 30
Views: 3219

Re: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19

I finally pulled the trigger to renew my CDs on1/22 at Penfed to their 5 yr 3.4% IRA certificates. 5 and 10 yr treasuries are in low 2.70% range so this seems like a pretty good deal for fixed income money. Thanks to everyone who responded to my post. Thanks for the follow up. Based on all the cons...
by Austintatious
Tue Jan 15, 2019 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CIT savings builder account ?
Replies: 14
Views: 1098

Re: CIT savings builder account ?

There have been posts on the forum saying that CIT did not automatically adjust the rate on one's account when the rate being offered is increased. That's something one might want to look into before doing business with CIT.
by Austintatious
Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I'm the noobiest noob
Replies: 16
Views: 1726

Re: I'm the noobiest noob

Don't sell yourself short, Mike. Those 2017 investments were excellent choices, as far as stock funds go. What you two need to do is educate yourselves on the basics. There's an incredible amount of material available to you right here on the forum, both in the Wiki and in the various threads. I sug...
by Austintatious
Mon Jan 14, 2019 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: One book for my neice, a young mom.
Replies: 20
Views: 1302

Re: One book for my neice, a young mom.

https://www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf Very easy to digest and directs the reader on how / where to learn more should they choose to do so. +1 I've sent this to all of my employees and dozens and dozens of other people. For someone who knows nothing, it is an easily digestible start. Yep, it makes f...
by Austintatious
Mon Jan 14, 2019 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: One book for my neice, a young mom.
Replies: 20
Views: 1302

Re: One book for my neice, a young mom.

Investing Made Simple by Mike Piper https://www.amazon.com/Investing-Made-Simple-Index-Explained/dp/0997946539/ref=asc_df_0997946539/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312175933381&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=672205837700294254&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9027366&hvtar...
by Austintatious
Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Opinion: Half of investment-grade bonds are only one step away from junk status
Replies: 23
Views: 2572

Re: Opinion: Half of investment-grade bonds are only one step away from junk status

If you're afraid to own VCIT, then you shouldn't own BIV because the same bonds are in both. But BIV is greater than 50% U. S. government while VCIT is greater than 50% BBB, a meaningful difference, surely. Only a meaningful difference if VCIT is a person's only bond holding, and that's unlikely. I...
by Austintatious
Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Opinion: Half of investment-grade bonds are only one step away from junk status
Replies: 23
Views: 2572

Re: Opinion: Half of investment-grade bonds are only one step away from junk status

UpperNwGuy wrote:
Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:22 am
If you're afraid to own VCIT, then you shouldn't own BIV because the same bonds are in both.
But BIV is greater than 50% U. S. government while VCIT is greater than 50% BBB, a meaningful difference, surely.
by Austintatious
Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:08 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Opinion: Half of investment-grade bonds are only one step away from junk status
Replies: 23
Views: 2572

Re: Opinion: Half of investment-grade bonds are only one step away from junk status

OP, here's how S&P describes the quality of the bonds your'e concerned about: "An obligor rated 'BBB' has an ADEQUATE capacity to meet its financial commitments. However, adverse economic conditions or changing circumstances are more likely to lead to a weakened capacity of the obligor to meet its f...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 11, 2019 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now
Replies: 274
Views: 23719

Re: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now

geologist20, for the past 5 months, I've been working with an individual who had racked up debt much like yours and who had reached the point of being financially and emotionally overwhelmed by it all. With regularly and frequently scheduled sessions in which I've provided input (It ain't rocket sci...
by Austintatious
Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard explains the increase in ex-us allocation
Replies: 34
Views: 4743

Re: Vanguard explains the increase in ex-us allocation

Tim Buckley and Greg Davis just gave the rationale for increasing their recommended allocation in international stocks: it's cheaper now. That's all. It always made sense to them to diversify internationally to the current proportions, but it just wasn't worth the cost until recently. Source? The t...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 09, 2019 2:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Vanguard Page
Replies: 32
Views: 3165

Re: Your Vanguard Page

The idea of setting it and forgetting it, and peeking as infrequently as possible, makes good sense from a certain perspective but it directly conflicts with Vanguard's expectation, offered from the perspective of maintaining account security, that an account holder "monitor" his/her account on a re...
by Austintatious
Tue Jan 08, 2019 6:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD from Utah First credit union
Replies: 4
Views: 613

Re: CD from Utah First credit union

I'm interested in purchasing a 5 year bank CD. I have an Ally account but their 5 yr CD is at 3.1% with 5 month early withdrawal penalty. (I've been extremely happy with Ally). Just found Utah First Credit Union with a 5 year CD at 3.5% with a 6 month early withdrawal penalty. Seems the only caveat...
by Austintatious
Mon Jan 07, 2019 6:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why Total Bond Market over CDs?
Replies: 24
Views: 3905

Re: Why Total Bond Market over CDs?

There is no need to mark to market a CD bought directly as you know exactly what the early withdrawal penalty is and can easily find out what the rate would be if you broke it early. https://www.depositaccounts.com/tools/ewp-calculator.aspx There is also a helpful calculator that tells you if you w...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19
Replies: 30
Views: 3219

Re: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19

carolinaman, in my opinion, the quoted language clearly does not limit penalty free, partial withdrawals to RMDs. I think it's pretty clear in its intent that the only conditions for effecting a withdrawal without penalty is that it be "partial" in nature and that the member be over the age of 59.5...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 04, 2019 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CDs vs I Bonds - Five and Ten Year Horizons
Replies: 12
Views: 1216

Re: CDs vs I Bonds - Five and Ten Year Horizons

Considering that predicting which would outperform is not possible, what about $500 in each? Just watching how the two evolve over time would offer twice the educational benefit to your DS, sort of a conservative fixed income lab course for a youngster. And one could look at it as sort of hedging th...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 04, 2019 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19
Replies: 30
Views: 3219

Re: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19

Yes, we did multiple CDs, as well, hoping to mitigate the pain in case an early withdrawal became necessary and a penalty might be incurred. But, as with you, we felt pretty confident that an early withdrawal was unlikely. And, as you probably know, that very same language touting penalty-free parti...
by Austintatious
Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19
Replies: 30
Views: 3219

Re: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19

OP, the Penfed rate for 5 year tira CDs is 3.4%. See the link I've provided for tira CD rates. We've also been considering the many options available, some of which you've mentioned, and have decided to simply rollover at Penfed, despite the early redemption penalty you also mention. The many thing...
by Austintatious
Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19
Replies: 30
Views: 3219

Re: 5 year CDs @Penfed mature 1/22/19

OP, the Penfed rate for 5 year tira CDs is 3.4%. See the link I've provided for tira CD rates. We've also been considering the many options available, some of which you've mentioned, and have decided to simply rollover at Penfed, despite the early redemption penalty you also mention. The many things...
by Austintatious
Sat Dec 29, 2018 12:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Vanguard Founder Jack Bogle Says It’s Time to Play It Safe]
Replies: 153
Views: 14160

Re: [Vanguard Founder Jack Bogle Says It’s Time to Play It Safe]

There are two phenomena occurring here, the common practice of market timing and the probably just as common practice of self-delusion regarding one's market timing. I strongly suspect that, despite our "stay the course" mantra, we all engage in market timing in one way or another, and more often th...
by Austintatious
Fri Dec 28, 2018 9:10 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: My favorite Boglehead posters
Replies: 142
Views: 8880

Re: My favorite Boglehead posters

sscritic!
by Austintatious
Fri Dec 28, 2018 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with 1k check for 9 month old son?
Replies: 44
Views: 3049

Re: What to do with 1k check for 9 month old son?

I know little about these types of accounts but I've been considering something similar as a possible suggestion to the parents of my young grandchild. I came across this article that briefly describes the two types of accounts and suggests that the major difference is in the categories of assets al...
by Austintatious
Wed Dec 26, 2018 9:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard says international will beat US stocks in next decade
Replies: 155
Views: 15918

Re: Vanguard says international will beat US stocks in next decade

I would not be surprised if Vanguard moves the needle to 50% US and 50% International. Right or wrong, it's been my impression that Vanguard has been gradually increasing their recommation on international holdings. They're at 40 percent, now. I recently read an article having world market cap for ...
by Austintatious
Sun Dec 23, 2018 4:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard says international will beat US stocks in next decade
Replies: 155
Views: 15918

Re: Vanguard says international will beat US stocks in next decade

I've been trying to figure out how Vanguard (or anyone else) figures out the valuations of securities in countries where the local government actively manipulates their market in differing amounts year to year? One could look at the hubbub over the last couple of years with Wells Fargo (asset level...
by Austintatious
Sun Dec 23, 2018 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best starter fund for new investor
Replies: 21
Views: 1282

Re: Best starter fund for new investor

My newly employed college graduate is ready to start an IRA. It appears Vanguard's best offering has a $1K minimum or am I mistaken? Any suggestions for a starter fund from other fund companies? He has $600 to get started. Thanks. I do think $1,000 is the minimum start-up amount at Vanguard, either...