Search found 190 matches

by BetaTracker
Sat Jul 27, 2019 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do You Slice & Dice in Distribution Stage?
Replies: 9
Views: 589

Do You Slice & Dice in Distribution Stage?

With all of the talk about factor investing, I'm just wondering if this type of asset allocation strategy is appropriate after you've reached retirement? For those who do slice and dice, are you planning to continue (or already are) in the distribution phase of your life? I ask because when reading ...
by BetaTracker
Sun Jun 02, 2019 1:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: EM Benchmark Flawed: WSJ
Replies: 1
Views: 500

EM Benchmark Flawed: WSJ

Did anyone see the WSJ article today that says JPMorgan’s emerging markets bond index (which is used by Vanguard in its EM bond index fund) uses an old rule to handle defaults, in particular with Venezeulan bonds? The article says these bonds make up a small part of the benchmark, but because of how...
by BetaTracker
Sat May 04, 2019 5:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PPO vs HMO
Replies: 18
Views: 1410

PPO vs HMO

Does anyone find that HMO health care plans place more limits on what procedures you can have done as compared to a good PPO type of plan? I ask because I'm comparing gold plans now from the same provider, one a PPO version and the other an HMO policy. Monthly premiums would be much less with the HM...
by BetaTracker
Sat Feb 02, 2019 6:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: A Tale Of 3 Small Value Funds
Replies: 39
Views: 3704

Re: Larry Swedroe: A Tale Of 3 Small Value Funds

I'm not sure either the Keim research or the Fama/French paper on luck vs. skill present the most appropriate sets of data to apply to DFA's factor-based investing process, particularly since it started to fully implement profitability screens into its asset class coverage. In research and independe...
by BetaTracker
Sun Dec 30, 2018 5:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hold Only Short-Term Bonds?
Replies: 27
Views: 4727

Re: Hold Only Short-Term Bonds?

jdb wrote: With short term bonds you may or may not come ahead of inflation.
Isn't the best tool to fight inflation equities?
by BetaTracker
Mon Dec 24, 2018 10:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing Part D Medicare Plan
Replies: 15
Views: 1403

Re: Choosing Part D Medicare Plan

Thanks, I see now how to use this site’s info!
by BetaTracker
Mon Dec 24, 2018 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing Part D Medicare Plan
Replies: 15
Views: 1403

Re: Choosing Part D Medicare Plan

Thanks, yes I've put in her two drugs she takes regularly. Still am getting many, many different plans!
by BetaTracker
Mon Dec 24, 2018 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing Part D Medicare Plan
Replies: 15
Views: 1403

Choosing Part D Medicare Plan

Trying to do research on a Medicare Part D drug plan to go along with my wife's planned Medigap Part F coverage she's going to sign up for after retiring in a few months. I'm confused at how to figure out which Part D plan is actually the cheapest and best. When I go to medicare.gov and search Part ...
by BetaTracker
Sun Dec 23, 2018 3:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Optimal Portfolios
Replies: 8
Views: 1514

Re: Vanguard Optimal Portfolios

Does bring up an interesting philosophical question: If you're investing for the long-term, do you allocate more to shorter-term bonds, as in the "optimal" growth portfolio? Or, do you lean to intermediate-term bonds? (In the status quo portfolio listed here, does it appear that the portfolio's dura...
by BetaTracker
Wed Dec 19, 2018 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I Continue to Delay SS One More Year
Replies: 29
Views: 4056

Re: Should I Continue to Delay SS One More Year

Thanks, Mr. Piper. I appreciate all of your work for those of us facing retirement!
by BetaTracker
Wed Dec 19, 2018 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I Continue to Delay SS One More Year
Replies: 29
Views: 4056

Re: Should I Continue to Delay SS One More Year

Is it true that your total family Social Security benefits cannot be more than $3,971 a month? If that's true, then why wait to claim until later if at full retirement age my benefit will be around $2,400 and my wife's will be around $2,700?
by BetaTracker
Sat Oct 13, 2018 8:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone Used Medigap from Health Net?
Replies: 0
Views: 200

Anyone Used Medigap from Health Net?

The healthcare benefits specialist at my office has told me that Medigap (plan F) plans all cover the same and he’s recommending Health Net as the cheapest provider. We live in California (Bay Area), and I want to ask if anyone has experience with Health Net?
by BetaTracker
Thu Sep 20, 2018 2:32 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Requesting portfolio review
Replies: 17
Views: 1992

Re: Requesting portfolio review

Not to add more complexity, but do you have a backup plan if something happens to you? Is your wife willing and able to assume responsibilities for any eventual portfolio you devise? I ask because we're a little bit older and further along in our retirement planning. But after going through all of t...
by BetaTracker
Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard factor funds slow to catch on
Replies: 86
Views: 11996

Re: Vanguard factor funds slow to catch on

The ETF.com article and data referenced to kickoff this post -- and to catch our attention -- is almost three months old! When talking about fund flows, that can be a little offsetting. Much was written at the time when Vanguard first introduced these funds about how little info they were offering i...
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does It Make Sense to Wait to Claim SocSec?
Replies: 62
Views: 7457

Re: Does It Make Sense to Wait to Claim SocSec?

Yes, thanks for asking! We can comfortably dip into our savings (investment portfolio) right now at around 3% a year, but I think we can get by without it for awhile. (Thanks again Bogleheads.)
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does It Make Sense to Wait to Claim SocSec?
Replies: 62
Views: 7457

Re: Does It Make Sense to Wait to Claim SocSec?

Thanks! I tried to search and didn’t find a post about delaying with no earned income, but I probably missed something that would be obvious to most. This SS and retirement planning really seems confusing to me. I take it that waiting a few years won’t harm things much. (Her health issues are more a...
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best portable air conditioner
Replies: 8
Views: 892

Re: Best portable air conditioner

Is it fairly quiet?
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does It Make Sense to Wait to Claim SocSec?
Replies: 62
Views: 7457

Does It Make Sense to Wait to Claim SocSec?

Hi, my wife plans to retire soon when she reaches age 65 due to health and job stress issues. My question is: If she doesn’t work and we can figure out a way to live without claiming her Social Security benefits for a year or two (her full benefits don’t kick in until after age 66), does that sort o...
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best portable air conditioner
Replies: 8
Views: 892

Re: Best portable air conditioner

Looks easy to hook up, but if your friend found it didn’t do a very good job then $400 might be a lot to spend!
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best portable air conditioner
Replies: 8
Views: 892

Re: Best portable air conditioner

Ah, thanks — that makes sense. I’ll just look for a big fan!
by BetaTracker
Wed Jun 27, 2018 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best portable air conditioner
Replies: 8
Views: 892

Best portable air conditioner

It’s starting to heat up and I’m wondering if anyone has any suggestions on a good portable air conditioner that doesn’t need to be connected through a window? We’d like to be able to place it in our small living room as well as our small bedroom upstairs. Home Depot seems to have a big selection on...
by BetaTracker
Mon Jun 11, 2018 4:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Handle Medicare
Replies: 5
Views: 812

Re: How to Handle Medicare

Yes, her employer has several thousand workers. After she retires, it also has some sort of continuing coverage where it'll pitch in and pick up a certain percentage of her health insurance costs, if that makes any sense ... not sure how that might effect Medicare, either!
by BetaTracker
Mon Jun 11, 2018 4:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Handle Medicare
Replies: 5
Views: 812

How to Handle Medicare

My wife is turning 65 in early 2019, but her health insurance is currently being handled through her employer. The company's open enrollment is in October for the coming year, so she's wondering if she just has to file with Medicare and tell them she's going to stay on her employer's plan, or does s...
by BetaTracker
Thu May 31, 2018 10:07 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: M1 Finance: What’s the Catch?
Replies: 10
Views: 3242

M1 Finance: What’s the Catch?

I’ve been trying to find a low cost robo to manage our portfolio for my wife in case something happens to me. She has no interest in handling this task herself, so up to now I’ve been thinking it might be best to send her to Vanguard’s PAS robo. But I’ve been reading lately how some Bogleheads like ...
by BetaTracker
Thu Mar 08, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard New Factor Funds Portfolio Statistics
Replies: 250
Views: 41760

Re: Vanguard New Factor Funds Portfolio Statistics

Wait, aren't these ETFs still building their portfolios? I read somewhere that most of these funds are nowhere near where their portfolio managers expect them to be at a more mature stage? If you're trying to measure degrees of tilts on actively managed funds, aren't things like trade execution and ...
by BetaTracker
Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is Now the Time to Reduce Bond Duration?
Replies: 41
Views: 5238

Re: Is Now the Time to Reduce Bond Duration?

Doesn't this whole discussion raise a more basic issue: Too much worry about risks in bonds? If you're thinking about this so early in an expected cycle of higher rates, why not just keep duration low (short-term bond index fund) on a permanent basis, and instead put more of your risk exposure into ...
by BetaTracker
Sat Feb 10, 2018 4:38 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: No DFA Forums?
Replies: 8
Views: 1191

No DFA Forums?

Didn't Morningstar used to have a discussion forum just for DFA funds? I can't find one now -- anyone know of any good discussion groups/forums about DFA funds?
by BetaTracker
Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Diversification Value of Int'l Bonds In Shaky Markets?
Replies: 2
Views: 238

Diversification Value of Int'l Bonds In Shaky Markets?

A friend who is invested heavily in a Vanguard LifeStrategy fund with both Total Bond Market and Total International Bond told me that over the past three months as fear in bond markets has spread, the international bond fund has held up better. He showed me a Morningstar tool where he tracks all of...
by BetaTracker
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Flat Rate Advisors
Replies: 1
Views: 295

Flat Rate Advisors

Last year when I was investigating flat rate advisors as opposed to listing Vanguard PAS as the place to go for my wife in case something happened to me, a firm quoted a price that equates to about 0.15% of our current portfolio. But his fee was stated as a set amount per quarter. I'm wondering if a...
by BetaTracker
Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Overall Portfolio Plan Critique
Replies: 5
Views: 576

Re: Overall Portfolio Plan Critique

Sorry to hear about your job loss. It looks like you've got a lot in cash. Does it fit into some sort of target range for emergency funds, or have you gotten that far yet? A few quick questions: How much are you paying on your mortgage? Also, does your rental property generate any income stream?
by BetaTracker
Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: San Diego for 3-4 Days for a Couple
Replies: 25
Views: 2307

Re: San Diego for 3-4 Days for a Couple

If you like jazz, Humphreys Backstage Live is a great music venue with good food.
http://www.humphreysbackstagelive.com/
by BetaTracker
Sun Jan 28, 2018 3:27 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Municipal Bonds - 100% When All You Need is the Income
Replies: 55
Views: 8013

Re: Municipal Bonds - 100% When All You Need is the Income

You say you're in the 37% tax bracket. Marginal rates might not be the best way to analyze how great of a need you have to hold so much in munis. When I had a similar discussion with my accountant, he told me to look at average tax rates. His reasoning was that rates are applied in a stacked manner ...
by BetaTracker
Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Municipal Bonds - 100% When All You Need is the Income
Replies: 55
Views: 8013

Re: Municipal Bonds - 100% When All You Need is the Income

How will the new cap on local and state tax deductions impact your holding of so many national munis?
by BetaTracker
Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Active Core Bond Beats Total Index in 2017
Replies: 12
Views: 3149

Re: Active Core Bond Beats Total Index in 2017

Checking Vanguard's site, the sector and credit quality figures seem to be fairly similar to Morningstar's numbers. But even with slightly more lower-rated bonds, the active fund still has almost the same SEC yield as Total Bond. Taking extra credit risks in bonds in exchange for just 0.28% more in ...
by BetaTracker
Mon Jan 01, 2018 7:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Active Core Bond Beats Total Index in 2017
Replies: 12
Views: 3149

Active Core Bond Beats Total Index in 2017

It looks like from Morningstar's performance page, the new actively managed Vanguard Core Bond Fund (admiral shares) beat Vanguard Total Bond Market (admiral shares) in 2017, 3.89% vs. 3.57%. If I'm reading it right, the numbers are through Friday, Dec. 29. So maybe these returns should be considere...
by BetaTracker
Thu Jun 22, 2017 2:12 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do Indexers Need 401(k) Plans?
Replies: 15
Views: 3280

Re: Do Indexers Need 401(k) Plans?

Thanks everyone -- sure saves me money asking ya'll rather than going to a CPA's office! Since everything's now at Vanguard, both our personal taxable accounts, IRAs and now the 401k), think it's best to max out the 401(k).
by BetaTracker
Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do Indexers Need 401(k) Plans?
Replies: 15
Views: 3280

Do Indexers Need 401(k) Plans?

After years of terrible 401(k) options, my employer finally switched to Vanguard. Now I can invest in the same index funds as in our brokerage account at Vanguard. My question is: Since we use a basic three-fund index portfolio, which is already very tax efficient, is there any real upside to contri...
by BetaTracker
Sat Jun 03, 2017 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?
Replies: 36
Views: 5612

Re: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?

I hear everyone about going with Balanced Fund or something similar with taxable bonds in a taxable account as opposed to paying up for Vanguard's PAS service. The problem is that I really don't feel like gambling on tax rates over the next 30-40 years, which is what we're ultimately looking at for ...
by BetaTracker
Fri Jun 02, 2017 11:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?
Replies: 36
Views: 5612

Re: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?

Thanks for all of the great input. We've sat down and talked about our options and decided to stick with our three fund portfolio. My wife brought up a lot of things that could go wrong and didn't express a lot of confidence in managing everything on her own. We went over costs of hiring another adv...
by BetaTracker
Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?
Replies: 36
Views: 5612

Re: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?

Oh, thanks. The problem comes from the fact that we've both got traditional IRAs and Roths. So in total there are five different accounts with varying mixes of Total Stock, Total International and in the IRAs, Total Bond. My wife just gets dizzy looking at it all! It's easy for me to juggle but she'...
by BetaTracker
Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?
Replies: 36
Views: 5612

Time to Move Away from 3-Fund Portfolio?

Taylor recommends the three-fund portfolio for those without taxable accounts. We've been following that advice since about 20% of our portfolio is in a taxable account. I'm just trying to plan ahead for a time when my wife, who has no interest in handling our portfolio, might have to take over. Our...
by BetaTracker
Wed May 31, 2017 12:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names
Replies: 31
Views: 5575

Re: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names

Since it has been around (iShares only offered EEM at 0.7% for years -- nice!), the new IEMG and VWO so far have nearly identical three year price returns, according to Morningstar.
by BetaTracker
Tue May 30, 2017 6:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names
Replies: 31
Views: 5575

Re: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names

Wow, pretty self-serving. Thanks for the education nisiprius, Dominic and lazyday! Even more reason to stay away from individual stocks.
by BetaTracker
Tue May 30, 2017 6:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names
Replies: 31
Views: 5575

Re: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names

So again Vanguard is watching out for us. Just goes to show ...
by BetaTracker
Tue May 30, 2017 4:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names
Replies: 31
Views: 5575

Emerging Markets Index Missing Big Names

What does anyone think of this story on MarketWatch? It points out that Vanguard's emerging markets index fund and ETF doesn't include two of the biggest companies, Alibaba and Baidu. Although those are just two companies, the article points out that both have big market caps and are prominent membe...
by BetaTracker
Sat May 27, 2017 10:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: California municipal / VCLAX
Replies: 15
Views: 2491

Re: California municipal / VCLAX

Closed-end bond funds often are fairly leveraged. The ones you're looking at don't seem to be trading right now at great discounts, either. If you're looking at these CEFs, maybe a first question should be: Do you want an open-end fund (like Vanguard's), or do you want a closed-end fund? An even bet...
by BetaTracker
Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Tax Liabilities
Replies: 8
Views: 1233

Re: Estate Tax Liabilities

Thanks for your comments! The lawyer in question does advertise as an estate expert. My hope is that my father simply doesn't understand and what is going on is that he's being set up with an irrevocable trust. I will ask the lawyer myself.
by BetaTracker
Fri Mar 24, 2017 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Tax Liabilities
Replies: 8
Views: 1233

Estate Tax Liabilities

Does this sound right: A lawyer is telling my dad that he should split up his assets and create new accounts in order to cut any possible future inheritance tax bills. His taxable account is wrapped under a living trust. But this trust account has just two index funds, adding up to less than $500k. ...
by BetaTracker
Mon Mar 20, 2017 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Short Vs. Intermediate Corp. Bonds
Replies: 6
Views: 1085

Re: Short Vs. Intermediate Corp. Bonds

Thanks -- supports my inclination to stick with TBM and not add a small overweight to corporates. I'm less concerned about trying to play yields than total return over the long turn, in any case. (For explanation about the "bigger bang"comment, I read somewhere that the risk-reward tradeoff betwen g...
by BetaTracker
Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Short Vs. Intermediate Corp. Bonds
Replies: 6
Views: 1085

Short Vs. Intermediate Corp. Bonds

I've read that short-term corporate bond funds like the Vanguard Short-Term Bond Index provide more bang for your buck than something like the Intermediate-Term Corporate fund. I'm considering adding one to fill a 25% slot in our bond portfolio that recently opened due to a new one-time source of mo...