Search found 165 matches

by petercooperjr
Mon Dec 09, 2019 4:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Understanding bond fund purchase fees vs. how ETFs avoid them
Replies: 3
Views: 306

Re: Understanding bond fund purchase fees vs. how ETFs avoid them

You could arbitrage this fee yourself. Since you are buying the mutual fund version, convert it to the etf before selling to recoup the fee. Before buying the fund, check on NAV premium and if low, buy it as an etf. And if I as a random small-time investor could do so, could the big players? If the...
by petercooperjr
Mon Dec 09, 2019 3:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Echo Dot
Replies: 77
Views: 3572

Re: Amazon Echo Dot

Many don't seem to understand that some of the functions of the Echo devices are also on your phone with an app, and that app isn't always listening as the Dot is. I can tell Alexa, on my phone app, to do any of the functions cited in this thread and it will. And I control it's input, i.e. it's not...
by petercooperjr
Mon Dec 09, 2019 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Echo Dot
Replies: 77
Views: 3572

Re: Amazon Echo Dot

There's a lot of fun/toy parts to it, but for "usefulness" I'm sure some households find it useless while others find it indispensable. Our household is pretty close to the indispensable side of the spectrum. We hardly use it for music at all (I'm annoyed that it only knows how to play music from "t...
by petercooperjr
Mon Dec 09, 2019 9:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Understanding bond fund purchase fees vs. how ETFs avoid them
Replies: 3
Views: 306

Understanding bond fund purchase fees vs. how ETFs avoid them

I'm trying to wrap my head around how exactly purchase fees work, and what exactly it is that makes the ETF version work without a fee. To make this concrete, I'm specifically looking at Vanguard's Intermediate-Term Corporate Bond Index fund, which comes in a traditional mutual fund version ( VICSX ...
by petercooperjr
Mon Nov 18, 2019 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Romantic northeast winter weekend getaway?
Replies: 28
Views: 3148

Re: Romantic northeast winter weekend getaway?

If you're looking for rustic, I'd recommend Old Sturbridge Village . It's a living history museum of New England life in the 1830's with costumed interpreters and a full village of buildings and activities. They're not open as much in the winter as they are in the summer, but they have an evening ca...
by petercooperjr
Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Ultra Short Term Treasury ETFs
Replies: 40
Views: 3529

Re: Ultra Short Term Treasury ETFs

While I understand that some people would find using ETFs simpler, for my money that's short-term-but-I-don't-want-to-keep-in-a-sweep I just buy treasury bills directly at auction. At most brokerages there's no commissions for treasury auction purchases. If you want the exposure and interest of a th...
by petercooperjr
Fri Oct 25, 2019 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where and how to report excess 401k contribution on tax Return?
Replies: 5
Views: 412

Re: Where and how to report excess 401k contribution on tax Return?

Well, I haven't been involved in anything like this, but I found some stuff on the IRS site that may be helpful: In Publication 525, under Excess deferrals : If your deferrals exceed the limit, you must notify your plan by the date required by the plan. If the plan permits, the excess amount will be...
by petercooperjr
Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Treasury Index CD
Replies: 9
Views: 874

Re: Treasury Index CD

Similar to Treasury Floating Rate Notes. Two year term, and last month's auction ended up at 0.29% + 3-month-Tbill-rate which is in the same ballpark. Plus, FRNs can in theory be sold on the secondary market if you need the money early (though it's not a particularly liquid market, and certainly isn...
by petercooperjr
Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spike in Repo Rates [Fed Overnight Repurchase agreement]
Replies: 153
Views: 14373

Re: Spike in Repo Rates

I read Matt Levine's "Money Stuff" each day, as it's a wonderful and humorous summary of what's going on in the world of finance. He had this to say yesterday, under "Repo" : (I'm hoping that quoting the whole thing here is okay.) The way the U.S. financial system works is, companies set aside a lit...
by petercooperjr
Fri Sep 13, 2019 12:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hospital/Doctor Release Form
Replies: 27
Views: 2087

Re: Hospital/Doctor Release Form

I have on occasion crossed sentences out of contracts and forms. Generally the person I've handed it back to doesn't notice.

If there were a sentence that modifications to the form wouldn't be effective, I'd suggest just crossing that sentence out too.
by petercooperjr
Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: EXTREMELY noob questions about T-Bills/bonds
Replies: 6
Views: 805

Re: EXTREMELY noob questions about T-Bills/bonds

And if you both (1) have money you want to invest for 2 years, and (2) expect interest rates on 3-month T-Bills to not go down, then the thing to invest in is the 2-year Floating Rate Note , which gives you the 3-month rate (resetting each week) plus a "spread" of around a quarter of a percent on to...
by petercooperjr
Fri Aug 30, 2019 8:13 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why does Vanguard call my 30-year treasury a "note"?
Replies: 5
Views: 841

Re: Why does Vanguard call my 30-year treasury a "note"?

My guess is that just somebody at Vanguard make a mistake when typing that CUSIP into their database.
by petercooperjr
Mon Aug 05, 2019 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency $: best in Bank CD or brokerage acct VMMXX?
Replies: 16
Views: 2146

Re: Emergency $: best in Bank CD or brokerage acct VMMXX?

A wire from Vanguard to your bank costs money. ACH doesn't.

Another option is to add checkwriting onto VMMXX. Depending on the nature of what you need the "emergency money" for, you might be able to just write a check for it directly from the money market.
by petercooperjr
Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating Bitcoin to Fidelity DAF
Replies: 16
Views: 1499

Re: Donating Bitcoin to Fidelity DAF

That's not the way charitable donations of appreciated investments works. You never sold it. You gave it away. So you don't owe any capital gains taxes and have no sale to report on Schedule D. It is simply reported on Schedule A. A DAF seems like a great way to get rid of this sort of thing with m...
by petercooperjr
Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating Bitcoin to Fidelity DAF
Replies: 16
Views: 1499

Re: Donating Bitcoin to Fidelity DAF

I don't have experience with Fidelity Charitable, but I do some some limited experience with Coinbase. While I'm all in favor of donating to charity, I'm not sure it'll actually simplify your taxes any. Wouldn't you need to still report the sale on Schedule D/Form 8949 even if you then take a deduct...
by petercooperjr
Thu Jul 25, 2019 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Received an HSA refund from Hospital - how do I deposit back into HSA?
Replies: 1
Views: 317

Re: Received an HSA refund from Hospital - how do I deposit back into HSA?

Yes, that's exactly it. You just need to fill out whatever paperwork the HSA administrator uses for "return of a prior distribution" to make sure it isn't a "contribution", and send them the money. It doesn't matter how many accounts the money went through on the way to them. This is a pretty typica...
by petercooperjr
Tue Jul 23, 2019 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Parking cash: Money market or 1 month CD's?
Replies: 15
Views: 1563

Re: Parking cash: Money market or 1 month CD's?

Just the cash component of a brokerage account. For many years it was automatically swept into an MMF. No actions were required to use the funds. It was possible to buy securities, or transfer to checking with no advance preparation. Now with no automatic sweep the funds are an extra day away. Does...
by petercooperjr
Tue Jul 23, 2019 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Parking cash: Money market or 1 month CD's?
Replies: 15
Views: 1563

Re: Parking cash: Money market or 1 month CD's?

Money market funds are fine. If trying to get slightly more yield, you're really not going to go wrong with either 1-month CDs or US Treasury Bills. If the CD pays more than the 4-week T-bills (taking into account that T-bills are state income tax free if applicable to your state), then go ahead wit...
by petercooperjr
Tue Jul 23, 2019 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYT Article: Safe Deposit Boxes Aren't Safe
Replies: 96
Views: 9212

Re: NYT Article: Safe Deposit Boxes Aren't Safe

I'm amused by Matt Levine's take on the irony that keeping your valuables actually separate ends up being less protected than a regular bank deposit: It is strange. If you put money in the bank in the traditional way—you deposit it with a teller or an ATM—your money is, in a sense, gone immediately....
by petercooperjr
Thu Jul 18, 2019 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Exceeding FDIC insurance
Replies: 4
Views: 440

Re: Exceeding FDIC insurance

You can also play around with scenarios in the FDIC Electronic Deposit Insurance Estimator. Put in the banks, the ownerships, and the amounts and it tells you if you're within the insured limits.
by petercooperjr
Thu Jul 18, 2019 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Transferring HSABank to Fidelity HSA
Replies: 11
Views: 1523

Re: Transferring HSABank to Fidelity HSA

I'm not sure what you're expecting anyone here to be able to do to help. If you want to see if you can open another TDA account, call them up and ask. And then in the future, if you leave a nominal amount in the account when you transfer out, it shouldn't get closed. The other option is to do transf...
by petercooperjr
Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity as a one stop shop
Replies: 1229
Views: 158647

Re: Fidelity as a one stop shop

Is the yield on the Vanguard MM fund actually 0.3% higher? That's really what you need to be looking at, not the ER. You made me curious, so I looked it up. As of this moment: Vanguard Prime Money Market ( VMMXX ): ER 0.16%, SEC 7-day yield 2.29% Fidelity Money Market ( SPRXX ): ER 0.42%, SEC 7-day...
by petercooperjr
Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Prime Money Market yield over 2.5%
Replies: 232
Views: 52445

Re: Vanguard Prime Money Market yield over 2.5%

How do the IRS and state know not to charge tax on VUSXX at tax time? The IRS does tax VUSXX. Income comes on a normal 1099-DIV like other mutual fund dividends. For the state, you go to the Tax information for Vanguard funds and look the fund up in the "U.S. government obligations information", wh...
by petercooperjr
Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it possible to open a Roth for my wife under my account?
Replies: 8
Views: 752

Re: Is it possible to open a Roth for my wife under my account?

Of course, it's her own account, but do you happen to know the mechanics of giving the ability to see her account from mine specifically? What brokerage? For Vanguard, she fills out the "Agent Authorization Form". Click on "Forms" in the top right, and choose the "Start" button under "Account acces...
by petercooperjr
Mon Jul 01, 2019 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toll was not charged to my EZ pass, anything I should do?
Replies: 10
Views: 1288

Re: Toll was not charged to my EZ pass, anything I should do?

I'd wait another week or two before panicking. I don't find it unusual for it to take quite a bit before all the tolls actually post on my MA E-ZPass account. It's not quite as instant as a payment card is. As I think I remember somebody here saying a while back: people expect financial transactions...
by petercooperjr
Mon Jun 10, 2019 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Checks without my account number
Replies: 39
Views: 4339

Re: Checks without my account number

The AmEx/Walmart "Bluebird" almost-but-not-quite-a-checking account has an interesting feature where checks need to be "pre-authorized" , with a unique code written on them, in order for them to be paid. And the account number that's printed on it isn't the one that's used for direct deposit/debit. ...
by petercooperjr
Fri Jun 07, 2019 9:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: brokered CDs from fidelity/vanguard, bank reputation?
Replies: 28
Views: 2534

Re: brokered CDs from fidelity/vanguard, bank reputation?

Federal income tax free in my taxable accounts I assume you mean to say that T-Bill interest is state income tax free. You still pay Federal taxes. yobyot, are you saying that if your intent is to buy a new issue' T-bill, and you aren't careful, you could mistakenly buy a T-Bill on the secondary ma...
by petercooperjr
Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: brokered CDs from fidelity/vanguard, bank reputation?
Replies: 28
Views: 2534

Re: brokered CDs from fidelity/vanguard, bank reputation?

One thing to keep in mind about FDIC insurance and CDs, particularly longer-term CDs, whether via a brokerage or directly through the bank, is that if a bank failure occurs, your interest rate is no longer locked-in. From the FDIC site on " When a bank fails ", under "How does a bank closing affect ...
by petercooperjr
Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How do you keep track of individual bonds' present value?
Replies: 6
Views: 577

Re: How do you keep track of individual bonds' present value?

I just started buying individual 4-week T-Bills a couple months ago via Treasury Direct, so I wrestled with this same question. What I do for my own "books" (using Gnucash to track my finances) is just that it's a bank account with the amount I bought it for (so I'm not updating the value during the...
by petercooperjr
Tue Jun 04, 2019 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Credit Card - Binding arbitration opt-out?
Replies: 43
Views: 4162

Re: Chase Credit Card - Binding arbitration opt-out?

I generally dislike mandatory binding arbitration, and opt-out where possible. It's a pretty anti-consumer practice, and specifically prohibits class-action lawsuits. There were no ill effects when I opted out with American Express when they added an arbitration clause (I think around 2012 or 2013)....
by petercooperjr
Wed May 29, 2019 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: FDIC Insurance Limits
Replies: 12
Views: 774

Re: FDIC Insurance Limits

You can also use the Electronic Deposit Insurance Estimator on the FDIC web site to try out various scenarios and see how they're covered.
by petercooperjr
Thu May 23, 2019 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why do treasury bills yielding more than notes in secondary market?
Replies: 7
Views: 594

Re: Why do treasury bills yielding more than notes in secondary market?

My wild guess is that since notes have coupon interest payments, there's something not showing up in that view about the "accrued interest".
by petercooperjr
Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Interest on ibonds
Replies: 23
Views: 1787

Re: Interest on ibonds

TD allows for the interest to be paid each year as opposed to all of it on maturity date Not quite. They allow for the interest to be taxed each year, but in fact the interest isn't paid out. You're just paying taxes on the increase in redemption value but don't actually have the money "in hand" ye...
by petercooperjr
Thu Apr 18, 2019 12:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Consensus on I Bonds for 2019?
Replies: 67
Views: 13463

Re: Consensus on I Bonds for 2019?

Is it still thought to be a good idea to buy iBonds before the new rate announcement on May 1st? Seems like a good plan to me. Current fixed rate for this month is 0.5%. While nobody knows for certain what Treasury will decide the new May 1 rate will be, it sure seems likely to be lower . Now that ...
by petercooperjr
Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:35 am
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Nisiprius at 35,000 posts
Replies: 60
Views: 7791

Re: Nisiprius at 35,000 posts

I'd love to see an updated graph of the 10 year return of the Nisiprius Federal Reserve Note Index Fund.
by petercooperjr
Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard funds with purchase fees question
Replies: 4
Views: 707

Re: Vanguard funds with purchase fees question

Correct, there are no fees for dividend reinvestment. I own VICSX (Vanguard Intermediate-Term Corporate Bond Index Fund) which has a monthly dividend, and there are no purchase fees for the dividend reinvestment.
by petercooperjr
Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why is everything done with a mouse?
Replies: 49
Views: 6707

Re: Why is everything done with a mouse?

...I still much prefer a traditional computer myself... What does this mean to you? I remember writing PDP-8 assembler on a teletype ASR-33 (with DECtapes ), and really have no desire to return to those days. OTOH I much prefer a desktop machine with a 24"+ monitor (FreeBSD and XFCE4 on the box I'm...
by petercooperjr
Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why is everything done with a mouse?
Replies: 49
Views: 6707

Re: Why is everything done with a mouse?

By and large, there just isn't the demand for it. Keyboard shortcuts are tougher than you might expect to implement on web sites, as people are using your site across different platforms and devices (which have different conventions), and you have to make sure you're not conflicting with something t...
by petercooperjr
Thu Oct 20, 2016 12:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 30 yr TIPS Auction: Announced 10/13: yield 0.6%?
Replies: 66
Views: 11203

Re: 30 yr TIPS Auction: Announced 10/13: yield 0.6%?

The auction's yield ended up as the ominous 0.666%.
Treasury announcement: https://treasurydirect.gov/instit/annce ... 1020_1.pdf
by petercooperjr
Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hedge Funds blame Index funds: Bogleheads referenced
Replies: 80
Views: 12045

Re: Hedge Funds blame Index funds: Bogleheads reference

One of my favorite finance writers, Matt Levine, has a good take on this subject, talking about how index funds and active funds like Ackman's kind of feed off of each other:
http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2 ... index-fund
by petercooperjr
Thu Jan 21, 2016 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Form 1040 - occupation?
Replies: 18
Views: 7610

Re: Form 1040 - occupation?

My wife has a much tougher job than I do, as she's the stay-at-home mom. Each year as we're doing the taxes (or when there's a survey or census of some sort) I ask her what she'd like her occupation to be, and she's often a "Domestic Engineer" or "Household Manager" or something similarly creative. ...
by petercooperjr
Thu Jun 18, 2015 12:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 30 year tips auction: 6/11; yield 1.125%?
Replies: 36
Views: 11396

Re: 30 year tips auction: 6/11; yield 1.125%?

Surprised I'm the first to post the results:

Yield of 1.142%. Not spectacular by any means, but better rates than we've had at auction for a while at least.

Treasury Results PDF
by petercooperjr
Fri Apr 03, 2015 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: intra-day TIPS prices
Replies: 4
Views: 848

Re: intra-day TIPS prices

When I've wanted to take a look at the market, I've looked at Fidelity's TIPS quotes page , which shows their current Bid and Ask that Fidelity's offering. The page used to be accessible to everybody, though now it looks like you may need a Fidelity.com account (not necessarily a brokerage account o...
by petercooperjr
Wed Nov 26, 2014 1:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Valuation of EE Savings Bonds
Replies: 88
Views: 16700

Re: Valuation of EE Savings Bonds

I wonder how this discussion would be different if the government called them "EE Savings Accounts" or the like rather than using the word "bond". They really have a lot more in common with savings accounts than with the bond market. I think if you're going to be trying to make comparisons with othe...
by petercooperjr
Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?
Replies: 93
Views: 10103

Re: 30 yr TIPs auction announced 16 oct: yield=1.10%?

When are TIPS attractive? Well let me share a little personal research- which everyone should do. In the last year my car insurance has gone up 4% (same car, a year older). My health insurance has gone up 12% and the utility company is lobbying for a 5% increase (which they’ll get). Just a checkup ...
by petercooperjr
Thu Sep 25, 2014 11:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Pimco ETF Draws Probe by SEC - ETF Returns Inflated?
Replies: 22
Views: 2585

Re: Pimco ETF Draws Probe by SEC - ETF Returns Inflated?

I like Matt Levine's explanation, particularly how this reflects how Bond ETFs are quite different from Stock ETFs:
http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2 ... ttle-bonds
by petercooperjr
Tue Dec 10, 2013 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Password Management Programs
Replies: 45
Views: 5829

Re: Password Management Programs

Also, is it possible to sync keepass over wifi instead of the cloud? The KeePass and KeePassX database files are just files, so you could share them on your local network like any other kind of files, back them onto an external drive or to the cloud just like any other files. It does mean that you'...
by petercooperjr
Tue Dec 10, 2013 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Password Management Programs
Replies: 45
Views: 5829

Re: Password Management Programs

I use KeePassX 0.4.3 , on both Windows and Mac, with the encrypted database stored on Dropbox. (Though I'm thinking of switching from Dropbox to Mozy Sync, mainly because I use Mozy for home backup, but it really shouldn't matter.) I love it. It really is life-changing, as others have said, to only ...
by petercooperjr
Mon Dec 09, 2013 3:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin as "programmable money"
Replies: 21
Views: 6717

Re: Bitcoin as "programmable money"

Yes, definitely the entire scripting system is often overlooked among people who are just looking at "current value of a coin" and wondering what the use is. The simple case is something like a 2-out-of-3 transaction for something like an online auction sale, with 2 out of the three parties of a sel...