Search found 1568 matches

by Caduceus
Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anonymous financial gift to student / best gift card option
Replies: 40
Views: 1459

Re: anonymous financial gift to student / best gift card option

The Visa gift card has fees, but if you load a huge amount on it (like $500 or more), it costs like maybe 1% of the loaded amount since the fee itself is fixed. I would say paying $7 for your privacy is a reasonable amount.
by Caduceus
Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What books changed your outlook on how you should invest?
Replies: 38
Views: 2267

Re: What books changed your outlook on how you should invest?

I've gone through several stages. When I first started, I changed my life by reading personal finance books. Books by Jonathan Clements, Jane Bryant Quinn, even David Bach and Dave Ramsey. Then when I became more interested in the mechanics of how to invest, I found John Bogle, the Bogleheads, Burto...
by Caduceus
Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Staying Motivated: How do you ward off hopelessness?
Replies: 59
Views: 6919

Re: Staying Motivated: How do you ward off hopelessness?

Wake Up . Take Charge. Manage Or Be Managed. Live Beneath Your Means Budget. Save . Invest. Discipline day in day out. Focus on your financial goals and let nothing derail your. There will be bumps in the road, Get Exercise and keep the Body and MIND Sharp Life is supposed to be Tough. Embrace it ....
by Caduceus
Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett's Shareholder Letter [2017]
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Buffett - Stock to Bond ratio

Buffett isn't saying to go 100% stock. He's saying to go to cash or very short-term bonds/treasuries instead of intermediate-term/long-term bonds.

Buffett at various points in history has kept a larger portion of Berkshire's liquid assets in bonds, but not now, because there's no point.
by Caduceus
Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What UN-frugal thing do you do?
Replies: 165
Views: 8050

Re: What UN-frugal thing do you do?

I buy organic, fresh vegetables and fruits, and wild caught fish, which adds maybe $150 - $200 to my grocery bill than I would otherwise pay. I also intentionally eat a wider variety of things than I would if I didn't try, using food to balance out my nutritional needs. If I'm feeling under the weat...
by Caduceus
Sat Feb 17, 2018 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best plants to grow to save money for food costs
Replies: 93
Views: 4898

Re: Best plants to grow to save money for food costs

Thanks for the suggestions! Most plants grow in nature without any extra care, right? They get water if it rains, and none if it doesn't. No human ever touches the majority of plants and yet they survive. I guess I had a fantasy of just planting things and leaving them alone, for the most part, apar...
by Caduceus
Sat Feb 17, 2018 5:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best plants to grow to save money for food costs
Replies: 93
Views: 4898

Best plants to grow to save money for food costs

I would like to start a modest food growing project. I only want to grow things that are relatively expensive to buy at stores but which yet are easy to care for at home. The primary goal is to save on costs. What type of plants would you recommend? Off the top of my mind, I think herbs would probab...
by Caduceus
Wed Feb 14, 2018 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you think it is worth the money to travel to warm weather destinations during the winter?
Replies: 77
Views: 6424

Re: Do you think it is worth the money to travel to warm weather destinations during the winter?

If you're feeling down because of the cold/lack of sun, I would say it is absolutely worth it. I don't mind having winter weather for two weeks, but that's about the max that I can tolerate.
by Caduceus
Wed Feb 14, 2018 6:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warren Buffett Books
Replies: 35
Views: 3834

Re: Warren Buffett Books

I have read The Snowball more than 10 times 8-) and Lowenstein's Buffett probably more than 7 times. That is absolutely incredible!!! You read The Snowball 10 times? Even Lowenstein's more than 7 times? The Snowball is one of my favorite books in the world. I rarely re-read books (let alone that ma...
by Caduceus
Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warren Buffett Books
Replies: 35
Views: 3834

Re: Warren Buffett Books

I have read The Snowball more than 10 times 8-) and Lowenstein's Buffett probably more than 7 times. Here's my quick review: Schroeder's The Snowball is the definitive biography at this point because it is the only book that is based on actual extensive interviews with the people in Buffett's life, ...
by Caduceus
Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are the structure problems with whole life insurance?
Replies: 15
Views: 1300

Re: What are the structure problems with whole life insurance?

Well, if the fees for WL were low and transparent, insurance companies would stop offering them because there would be no profit advantage to offering something like term life insurance instead.
by Caduceus
Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Going Paperless Issues
Replies: 68
Views: 3952

Re: Going Paperless Issues

I have gone completely paperless, but I don't use auto-pay, because I need to keep track of the bills as they are due anyway, to check for errors and other things, so the point of time when I make the payment is also when I verify the amount and other details. I think my life is simpler than most of...
by Caduceus
Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Removing personal info on internet
Replies: 10
Views: 1672

Re: Removing personal info on internet

It requires a lot of effort, but you can minimize your internet presence and information leak. The first step is to limit the information sharing at the source. Credit agencies are under more stringent rules now, but there's not much you can do about how much they decide they can share depending on ...
by Caduceus
Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sent a letter without country
Replies: 6
Views: 708

Sent a letter without country

I was in a huge hurry today and I sent two letters to Australia without putting the country on the address. The rest of the address, including the street, city, postal code, etc. are all fine. Just the country that is missing. The postage amount is also correct, so no issues there. Do you think my l...
by Caduceus
Wed Jan 31, 2018 11:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?
Replies: 43
Views: 3445

Re: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?

Yes, there is mango puree in it. According to the chef, about 6 oz of mango puree for every 2 lbs of butter, or something like that. I would have assumed butter would go rancid pretty quickly even without the mango. (although perhaps that's because I dont eat butter and have no experience with it.) ...
by Caduceus
Wed Jan 31, 2018 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?
Replies: 43
Views: 3445

Re: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?

Wow, three day shipping for a 1 kg package of butter via Fedex is $130. :(
by Caduceus
Wed Jan 31, 2018 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?
Replies: 43
Views: 3445

Re: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?

Ok, I love my uncle, but I'm not paying $1200 to ship two tubs of butter that only cost $40. Dry ice is complicated for shipping reasons - once you declare it, it's hazardous or something like that and shipping is much more expensive, at least based on what I've read. Are we agreed that Livesoft's s...
by Caduceus
Wed Jan 31, 2018 3:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?
Replies: 43
Views: 3445

How to ship two big tubs of butter internationally?

My uncle, who lives in Australia, has requested two big tubs of gourmet mango butter from a restaurant he loves for his birthday. How do I ship it so that the butter survives in the mail? I would rather not use dry ice as it seems rather complicated. Anyone tried shipping butter/perishables internat...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to get a broker to compensate for a mistake?
Replies: 7
Views: 650

Re: Best way to get a broker to compensate for a mistake?

Aren't forms that require a notary signature marked as such, and leave room for such? The only time I ever got a notary on something that did not have a predefined space for it was when a friend and I wrote out a contract for her to borrow my car while I was abroad for a year. It was marked as such...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 2 Basic Questions from a newbie
Replies: 13
Views: 1119

Re: 2 Basic Questions from a newbie

Hello everybody Thank you all for the warm welcome and your responses. My main question of focus was Question #1, and perhaps I may not have worded the question in such a manner where it was clear, so let me try once more. Why would I put that money (4,501st dollar+) into the [Roth] 401(k) fund whe...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on this beginner strategy?
Replies: 16
Views: 1132

Re: Thoughts on this beginner strategy?

Welcome to the board and good luck starting on your investment journey! Yes, your plan is sound. The most important thing as you are starting out is to save as much as you can and to invest in your own skills and education. Please keep asking questions! :D
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Forget Bitcoin! Bananacoin is here!
Replies: 12
Views: 1982

Re: Forget Bitcoin! Bananacoin is here!

A coin that's backed by fruit isn't really a cryptocurrency anymore. It's just a collateralized futures contract with a flexible settlement date.
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I join my local Freemasons?
Replies: 31
Views: 4883

Re: Should I join my local Freemasons?

Freemasons have a long and sordid history of prejudice and racism against certain groups, ... Historically including, and perhaps especially, Catholics. (Disclosure: I am a practicing Catholic.) Hmm, then again, the Catholics weren't so hot on the Freemasons either... Samsoes, your comment is genui...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to think about your house from a financial perspective
Replies: 89
Views: 6771

Re: How to think about your house from a financial perspective

The OP posted the question after a dinner conversation. I wonder how the conversation went. You can view your house anyway you'd actually like. You can think of it as an investment or an expense. You can factor it into your net worth calculation, or evidently not. However, I do know that no matter ...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buy a house? But there's a student loan elephant in the room
Replies: 65
Views: 5890

Re: Buy a house? But there's a student loan elephant in the room

Congrats on taking such a rational path to your financial freedom. It seems like you both do have this figured out. High-earning jobs, maxing out retirement plans to save on taxes, consuming less housing in order to accelerate debt payments. It will all pay off in the end. Good luck!
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to get a broker to compensate for a mistake?
Replies: 7
Views: 650

Re: Best way to get a broker to compensate for a mistake?

How much did this cost? Doesn't your bank sign things like this for free? It is easy for your TDAm rep to give you free trades, but they always expire within 90 days, so you have to ask for free trades 4 times a year in perpetuity. Just don't ask for more than you will use. I think it is best to si...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to get a broker to compensate for a mistake?
Replies: 7
Views: 650

Best way to get a broker to compensate for a mistake?

About three months ago, I completed a transaction with TdAmeritrade that the rep told me required the services of a notary, so I went ahead and paid for it. There were several documents of this nature so the costs added up. I found out by chance yesterday from another representative, in the same dep...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Neighbor recently burglarized- Suggestions for home security
Replies: 83
Views: 6657

Re: Neighbor recently burgalerized - Suggestions for home security

You can't really burglar-proof a house. What's the point of having a solid bolted front and back door if they can just break the glass of any one of the hundred windows to get in? This is one reason I prefer living in apartments or condos, preferably on a high floor. :D
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [EU] choosing optimal brokerage domicile(s) (EU vs. US)
Replies: 8
Views: 559

Re: [EU] choosing optimal brokerage domicile(s) (EU vs. US)

I think you are looking at the wrong question. The domicile of your brokerage, and even the domicile of the markets that you trade in, is not that important compared to the domicile of the investments that you buy. For instance, you could have a U.S. brokerage and yet the U.S. brokerage contains a F...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The housing nowadays
Replies: 64
Views: 5894

Re: The housing nowadays

This is not just anecdotal: the evidence says mortgages are getting riskier by every measure (DTI, LTV, average credit score). Median down payments for ALL borrowers are only 5%. Median for first time buyers is 3%. Let that sink in: 3% is not a minimum: half of first time buyers put down LESS than ...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to think about your house from a financial perspective
Replies: 89
Views: 6771

Re: How to think about your house from a financial perspective

Folks keep deluding themselves into thinking that their owner-occupied homes are good investments. If they were actually good investments, they would be even better investments if you were the landlord instead of consuming all the imputed rent being thrown off by an owner-occupied house. Think about...
by Caduceus
Fri Jan 26, 2018 2:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is dry cleaning worth it?
Replies: 23
Views: 2260

Re: Is dry cleaning worth it?

I took the plunge and tried it with curtains. Even splurged on the express option. Yes, it was worth it. I think I will switch to dry cleaning curtains from now, maybe once every 6 months?
by Caduceus
Fri Jan 26, 2018 1:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Strategies to combat the urge to spend?
Replies: 68
Views: 3679

Re: Strategies to combat the urge to spend?

Some strategies that have worked for me ... Always wait at least 2 weeks before you buy something. I find that I end up not purchasing about 80% of the things I thought I needed or wanted. If you tell yourself - "I will seriously consider buying if I still really want it in 2 weeks" - you might be s...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is dry cleaning worth it?
Replies: 23
Views: 2260

Is dry cleaning worth it?

I have some curtains and a few (very) expensive dress shirts. Is dry cleaning really better than laundering? The cost isn't prohibitive. I think I will be charged $20 for dry cleaning the curtains, and $5 per shirt. What kind of items do you use dry cleaning for? I suspect the curtains will be worth...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 6:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dear wife quits job and now we are down to 1 income
Replies: 190
Views: 16269

Re: Dear wife quits job and now we are down to 1 income

You're not really losing the entirety of her income because you won't be paying for childcare costs, if she is able to cook you will save money compared to eating out, and some of her income would be lost to taxes. Lots of families do well on one income and a stay home parent, so you have to put som...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 6:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I pay for an accountant or do it myself online Turbotax?
Replies: 21
Views: 2072

Re: Should I pay for an accountant or do it myself online Turbotax?

Unless your tax affairs are truly complicated (like, corporate-level complex), I think you should just learn the tax code and do them yourself. Tax returns are only as good as the data and information that's given as inputs. I've come across many situations with friends where their tax returns were ...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there some kind of fraud?
Replies: 14
Views: 2840

Re: Is there some kind of fraud?

Today, I received a call from Discover card. I called them back using the phone# at the back of my card. I was transferred to their fraud department, where the person attending the call informed me that an unauthorized user called them. Fortunately, they could not recognize the caller's number, and...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:49 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Persistence Remains Elusive
Replies: 5
Views: 1000

Re: Larry Swedroe: Persistence Remains Elusive

That level of generalization doesn't seem to make sense. Not all active managers invest using the same methods and philosophy. Some are macro investors, some absolute-return, some are heavily hedged, others are not, etc. I'm most interested in whether there's persistence of outperformance by investo...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: In what ways could BogleHeads be badly wrong ?
Replies: 237
Views: 20636

Re: In what ways could BogleHeads be badly wrong ?

I don't think the Bogleheads philosophy can be "badly" wrong, simply because the performance of index funds will closely match the average of the relevant investable universe. What's also become apparent to me, but which is not often stated, is that index investing benefits from both value and momen...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Have you ever found an error on your amazon bill?
Replies: 20
Views: 1633

Re: Have you ever found an error on your amazon bill?

Why exactly is it difficult to match your purchases with the charges on your credit card statement? You can go into your Amazon account, see all of your past orders listed chronologically, then click on "Invoice" to see all of the order details, including a breakdown of prices, the various payment ...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how to choose mangoes?
Replies: 23
Views: 1317

Re: how to choose mangoes?

A lot of it has to do with the type of mango you are choosing. Try to get the pale yellow mangoes that are shaped like a hook or an apostrophe. I don't know what they are called. Don't buy the green mangoes - I've had many years of bad experiences with those. The firmness of the flesh for green mang...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces
Replies: 48
Views: 3069

Re: Using disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces

Alright, after reading all these replies, I feel that I am now much more empathetic to my partner's desire to disinfect surfaces. Today I expressed my gratitude that he always kept everything so nice. But now some of you are making me paranoid (or health-conscious?) Today I went into two public rest...
by Caduceus
Thu Jan 25, 2018 5:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Still using a 5 year old iphone 5. Who's with me? No new phones!!!
Replies: 151
Views: 8541

Re: Still using a 5 year old iphone 5. Who's with me? No new phones!!!

Well, I was pretty proud of owning an Iphone 5. I didn't realize it was considered old. I have never bought an Iphone. I keep getting free ones from people who upgrade. My first Iphone 3 and then Iphone 4 was from an in-law who upgraded, and then my Iphone 5 was given to me by another in-law who fou...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 23, 2018 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces
Replies: 48
Views: 3069

Re: Using disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces

I am not nearly as obsessive about it but I do disinfect surfaces regularly. I use commercial disinfecting wipes on computer equipment but a bleach solution and a reusable cloth rag for other hard surfaces. Even buying commercial quaternary disinfectants and making solution would be less expensive ...
by Caduceus
Tue Jan 23, 2018 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces
Replies: 48
Views: 3069

Using disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces

My partner regularly uses disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces and contact objects (like doorknobs, cabinet handles). He does this maybe once or twice a week, and he says that contact objects have more bacteria than the seat of a toilet. I just looked at the price of a packet, and the brand he uses ...
by Caduceus
Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much $ worth of things have you discarded without using?
Replies: 25
Views: 2389

How much $ worth of things have you discarded without using?

As an experiment, I kept track of the things I bought but never used to see how wasteful I was. There were quite a few things, unfortunately. I'm not including the things I managed to sell off Ebay. In total, I think about $300 worth of things! There were the two books I thought I wanted to read but...
by Caduceus
Sun Jan 21, 2018 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's a good file sync software?
Replies: 14
Views: 966

Re: What's a good file sync software?

Check It Out :happy https://www.goodsync.com/how-it-works thanks, i will! I don't want it to be "bi-directional" though - is that possible? I want everything on my computer to be on the external drive, but not everything on the external drive to be on my computer, since my computer drive space is v...
by Caduceus
Sun Jan 21, 2018 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most inexpensive shipping option from US to Taiwan?
Replies: 5
Views: 395

Re: Most inexpensive shipping option from US to Taiwan?

Haven't shipped to Taiwan, but in my experience, with small and light packages, you won't get a better price than USPS. With First Class International, though, you have to expect that your package times can be much delayed. It might take two weeks, sometimes three, occasionally even a month, etc. Th...
by Caduceus
Sun Jan 21, 2018 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rent (free at library) or buy books?
Replies: 50
Views: 2966

Re: Rent (free at library) or buy books?

I don't buy physical books, unless the paper layout is superior - books with lots of photos or charts and financial statements. The Kindle is superior to any print-book - you can read it with one hand, it's crazy lightweight, you can adjust the font so there's no eye-strain, it automatically remembe...