Search found 1004 matches

by DonCamillo
Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?
Replies: 62
Views: 15655

Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

TIAA-CREF lost their non-profit status for tax purposes some years ago (2010?) due to high executive compensation levels. They lost their tax status because they compete directly with other investment companies and insurance companies. Representative Bill Archer, Republican of Texas and chairman of...
by DonCamillo
Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?
Replies: 62
Views: 15655

Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

I have about one-third of my retirement invested with TIAA-CREF. That company has caused me ten times as much grief as all the other places I invest combined. Normally, a transfer of money from TIAA-CREF takes 10 days to 3 weeks, far longer than anyone else. They convert you money to cash the day yo...
by DonCamillo
Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Save all this money, what do you splurge on?
Replies: 193
Views: 19645

Re: Save all this money, what do you splurge on?

I retired on January 1st. Spent 130 days traveling this year--25 states, 18 countries. Best decision was to spend a week in a city in Poland that my great-grandfather came from in 1882. Only saw one other English speaking tourist that week. Also took 3 cruises, a bus tour, and a few self tours. Afte...
by DonCamillo
Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dividend Misunderstandings & Only Spend Return
Replies: 282
Views: 21223

Re: Dividend Misunderstandings & Only Spend Return

I know...never say never... Last night I went through the stock holding of VHDYX. These big blue chip stocks have been around for years & are going to be around for years to come. They employ millions of people. Now they might have their up & downs but I don't see them going anywhere. VHDYX is a pr...
by DonCamillo
Wed Jul 12, 2017 6:53 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dividend Misunderstandings & Only Spend Return
Replies: 282
Views: 21223

Re: Dividend Misunderstandings & Only Spend Return

I like dividends on a (relatively small) portion of my investments. I used to collect dividend paying stocks. It's likely you bought those equities when they were considered small or midcaps, not the large caps they are now. Also likely you purchased them at much lower prices than today. Anyone pur...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jul 11, 2017 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this the right way to measure investment performance
Replies: 9
Views: 833

Re: Is this the right way to measure investment performance

Why are you worried about it? What will you do with the information? I agree with this sentiment. Here are my three ways to measure your investment performance. 1) (Before retirement) Are you saving enough and getting market returns with low expenses? 2) (At retirement) Do you have enough income to...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jul 11, 2017 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is This Always True Regarding Umbrella Policies?
Replies: 15
Views: 2366

Re: Is This Always True Regarding Umbrella Policies?

I had to combine my home, auto and umbrella policies with one company to get the best deal. It was difficult to find a reasonably priced umbrella from a separate company in my area.
by DonCamillo
Mon Jul 10, 2017 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What do you do when you run the numbers and don't like the answer that you get?
Replies: 29
Views: 4046

Re: What do you do when you run the numbers and don't like the answer that you get?

What I did was work longer. It is amazing how much you can save after you start collecting SS at age 70 and you are still working. But it is also true that most of us do not really get to choose when we retire. Hearing difficulties, loss of energy and cognitive decline contributed to my decision to ...
by DonCamillo
Mon Jul 10, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Self insuring LTC
Replies: 15
Views: 1783

Re: Self insuring LTC

Long Term Care and potential medical expenses is a key reason that I try to spend only income and keep my capital increasing in retirement. If I don't need it, my children and grandchildren will inherit it.
by DonCamillo
Mon Jul 10, 2017 5:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dividend Misunderstandings & Only Spend Return
Replies: 282
Views: 21223

Re: Dividend Misunderstandings & Only Spend Return

I like dividends on a (relatively small) portion of my investments. I used to collect dividend paying stocks. I saw that as an alternative to collecting beer cans, corvettes, impressionist paintings, stamps, Matchbox cars or vacation homes. My preference was to buy stocks that I would see often in m...
by DonCamillo
Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe's Update on Guru's Predictions
Replies: 21
Views: 3271

Re: Larry Swedroe's Update on Guru's Predictions

The table shows that only about 25% of sure things actually came to pass.
That is a pretty secure forecast--maybe Larry has found something pretty close to a "sure thing!" :sharebeer
by DonCamillo
Fri May 05, 2017 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fairness in College Savings
Replies: 47
Views: 4068

Re: Fairness in College Savings

I told my children; "If your GPA is 3.5 or higher, I pay all the costs for the next semester. If it is 2.0 or lower, you pay all the costs. In between, we pro-rate it." Both of them had scholarships that paid full tuition and fees. So it was only room and board. The youngest child did not like my pr...
by DonCamillo
Fri May 05, 2017 2:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why save so much for when you're old?
Replies: 163
Views: 23007

Re: Why save so much for when you're old?

I think the most fundamental question for you is "What do I want out of life?" That may be a good place to start planning how much to spend and how much to save. I grew up in a military family, and lived in Europe and Hawaii, among other places, when I was growing up. I developed a love of travel. I...
by DonCamillo
Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does Retirement Planning impact your job performance?
Replies: 68
Views: 8633

Re: Does Retirement Planning impact your job performance?

I think it is very sad to anticipate five more years in a job you hate. I can not imagine staying in a job I didn't like. When I got burned out in a job, I changed careers. I was a dishwasher, short order cook, factory worker, soldier, pastor, author, game developer, magazine editor, entrepreneur, s...
by DonCamillo
Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:36 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your overall portfolio weighted expense ratio
Replies: 206
Views: 21372

Re: What is your overall portfolio weighted expense ratio

Without blending in special cases (CDs, cash, employer paid fees), the lowest possible seems to be around 0.05%, so 99.95% of your money is YOUR money! 99.95% is not quite accurate, as we hold on average for many years, and the expenses are deducted every year. Over time, assuming growth, your mone...
by DonCamillo
Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investing with American Funds like betting on Tiger Woods
Replies: 23
Views: 4121

Re: Investing with American Funds like betting on Tiger Woods

Of course, the other problem with the illustration is that American Funds has different funds. Since you can not know in advance which will do best, it is hard to say that they outperformed. If I start 100 funds with different strategies, I will probably have one or more that outperforms the market ...
by DonCamillo
Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thinking in real vs. nominal
Replies: 46
Views: 4580

Re: Thinking in real vs. nominal

Tax issues make planning in real terms a bit of a challenge. For example, I just cashed two $10,000 EE bonds that reached final maturity after 30 years. The purchasing power of the bonds is roughly the same as the original cost, but about 75% of the money received is taxable as ordinary income. Befo...
by DonCamillo
Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the difference between downloaded and online tax software?
Replies: 16
Views: 1846

Re: What is the difference between downloaded and online tax software?

I use downloaded because I don't like the idea of having my returns stored on the Web where they might not be secure.
by DonCamillo
Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: You can never go "home" - retirement
Replies: 85
Views: 14974

Re: You can never go "home" - retirement

We are approaching our 50th wedding anniversary. We met when I was a soldier at Fort Hood and she was a school teacher in Killeen, Texas. Last week we were nearby, so we drove to Killeen. Nothing is like it was 50 years ago. The rather compact old town is now a city of 125,000 people that is very sp...
by DonCamillo
Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: National Parks in Northern CA
Replies: 34
Views: 3274

Re: National Parks in Northern CA

We are a retired couple in our 70s, so may not be able to speak for your younger crowd. How much you enjoy a park depends on what you like to do. Last July we visited Crater Lake NP, California Redwoods NP and SP, Lassen Volcanic NP, Yosemite, Kings Canyon NP and Sequoia NP. Crater Lake was by far t...
by DonCamillo
Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unreported Securities Income
Replies: 2
Views: 437

Re: Unreported Securities Income

You need documentation for your cost basis, but the thing to do is contact the state organization sending you the notice and telling them that the basis seems to be incorrect and you have documentation to support that, but that you are uncertain as to what account they are looking at. This is someth...
by DonCamillo
Mon Feb 27, 2017 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why not to do ROTH Conversion
Replies: 29
Views: 4011

Re: Why not to do ROTH Conversion

After waiting to age 71 1/2 to retire while saving at least 50% of my income for the past 25 years, I am now retired. The good thing is that my disposable income more than doubled on retirement. But this pushed me into higher taxes and increased premiums for Medicare. I am grateful that I converted ...
by DonCamillo
Mon Feb 27, 2017 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about a new job opportunity (401k & ESOP)
Replies: 26
Views: 1862

Re: Question about a new job opportunity (401k & ESOP)

Four Comments: 1) My son just took a new job where the company has no match, but by default puts 6% in a retirement account run by Mass Mutual and a local Edward Jones agent. The minimum expense ratio is 1.63% on all the options offered. I did a spreadsheet showing him how much better he would do if...
by DonCamillo
Mon Feb 27, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax New Jersey for 401(a) 403(b) and 457(b)
Replies: 0
Views: 2624

Turbo Tax New Jersey for 401(a) 403(b) and 457(b)

I just had a major effort to correctly pay taxes on my retirement accounts in NJ using Turbo Tax. It took research on the part of a senior analyst at Turbo Tax. This is posted to help anyone who has a 401(a), 403(b) or 457(b), but also will help those confused about an IRA or 401(k). The problem: NJ...
by DonCamillo
Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keep a Local Bank?
Replies: 76
Views: 6572

Re: Keep a Local Bank?

By the way, a safe deposit box at the credit unit is only $20 per month. I assume that you mean per year, not per month. $240 a year is very expensive. I originally opened my local bank account in order to cash paper EE bonds. Cashed 2 matured $10,000 EE bonds issued in February 1987 last week. But...
by DonCamillo
Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Efficent Frontier Stock / Bond curve for foriegn markets?
Replies: 20
Views: 2035

Re: Efficent Frontier Stock / Bond curve for foriegn markets?

I am assuming that you are a U. S. investor. If that is so, it is probably irrelevant for you if the efficient frontier in another market would encourage a greater investment in bonds in that market. The reason it would be meaningless is that you would be speculating in foreign currencies by investi...
by DonCamillo
Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 96 percent of stocks are no better then TBills
Replies: 29
Views: 7162

Re: Do Stocks Outperform Treasury Bills?

According to my reading of the article, a few companies account for most of the wealth created in the stock market, and the majority of stocks underperform TBills over their life times. But the growth of the winners is greater than the losses for the losers, which is an argument for investing in the...
by DonCamillo
Sun Oct 16, 2016 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Least expensive iPhone
Replies: 65
Views: 6858

Re: Least expensive iPhone

I bought a reconditioned iPhone 6s from Best Buy online delivered to my local store. Went in and they set it up for my account. Saved money and got full warranty. Also got significant amount of points on my Best Buy Rewards account. Be careful at Best Buy--they save you money on the most visible App...
by DonCamillo
Mon Feb 22, 2016 9:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mr Money Mustache Article (New Yorker)
Replies: 94
Views: 16652

Re: Mr Money Mustache Article (New Yorker)

His regular usage of crude language is distasteful to me. What is the purpose? I agree. Seems very sophomoric. Dropping expletives on a public forum or on the written page reeks of immaturity. Hmm, I dont get it....Most people curse. How is this immature? I always thought people cursed because they...
by DonCamillo
Wed Feb 17, 2016 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What video games are you currently playing?
Replies: 220
Views: 24145

Re: What video games are you currently playing?

Game of War (side by side on three iPads with three different players at the same time.)
by DonCamillo
Mon Feb 15, 2016 5:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Decision! was: Can I retire in 2017?
Replies: 53
Views: 9518

Re: Can I retire in 2017?

Don't count on those medical benefits for the long term. I retired from Bell Labs in 2000 with medical benefits. At first they were decent. The company then locked the amount that they would pay. They switched plans several times, and currently my benefit is a heath care reimbursement accounts which...
by DonCamillo
Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Wall Street Strategists Are Cutting Their 2016 Estimates"
Replies: 14
Views: 2181

Re: "Wall Street Strategists Are Cutting Their 2016 Estimates"

quantAndHold wrote:I'm still sticking with my original 2135.98. Especially the .98 part.
The .98 part has a 1% probability if you round to two decimal points. The rest of your forecast has a much lower probability.
by DonCamillo
Sun Jan 31, 2016 7:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Public school or private school (with school data)
Replies: 102
Views: 10372

Re: Public school or private school (with school data)

I graduated from high school less than 10 years ago (so i'm not that old!), with a ACT score in the 97th%tile and am currently in medical school. I was homeschooled--a more rigorous curriculum than the local high school, for sure, but probably not more rigorous than the private school you are refer...
by DonCamillo
Sat Jan 30, 2016 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Withdrawal strategy for tax exempt muni fund
Replies: 22
Views: 2273

Re: Retirement Withdrawal strategy for tax exempt muni fund

I am close to retirement and have 5% of my portfolio in tax free municipals, most of it in the Vanguard NJ LT Muni Bond Fund. The rest is in two closed end funds I inherited. I am leery of rising interest rates, and especially of the declining credit quality of NJ with its unfunded liabilities. But ...
by DonCamillo
Sat Jan 30, 2016 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Public school or private school (with school data)
Replies: 102
Views: 10372

Re: Public school or private school (with school data)

I think the most important consideration is the quality of the student. That makes it somewhat difficult to compare public and private schools, as the students are not the same. I served on an advisory board to the private school from which Jack Bogle graduated, Blair Academy. At the time, Jack was ...
by DonCamillo
Fri Jan 29, 2016 8:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your favorite Financial Quote or Metaphor??
Replies: 179
Views: 17294

Re: What is your favorite Financial Quote or Metaphor??

If it sounds too good to be true, assume it isn't true. (several variations on this quote)
by DonCamillo
Fri Jan 29, 2016 7:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stock trading automation software
Replies: 22
Views: 2975

Re: Stock trading automation software

It is a very rare programmer that never makes a mistake. Are you sure that you want to take that risk? IF you want to gamble (not a Boglehead trait) search for Robotic Trading Systems and AlgoTrades. Before my index fund days, I used to place limit orders, and monitor them daily. I cannot imagine le...
by DonCamillo
Fri Jan 29, 2016 10:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxes for estate, trust
Replies: 6
Views: 810

Re: Taxes for estate, trust

I was a CMA (Certified Management Accountant) with an MBA and I used to sell tax software to CPAs. I did all the tax returns and most of the legal work for one of my parents estate and trust. I used H&R Block for the 1041s (two years) and 1040. I was able to get some help from the trust company (Wel...
by DonCamillo
Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dinner Ideas
Replies: 57
Views: 7843

Re: Dinner Ideas

I found inexpensive, individually wrapped, flounder filets at Aldi, $5 for 5 individually wrapped servings. But I don't like fish smells in the house, so I poach the fish. I like to use Emeril's recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/poached-flounder-recipe.html#! Tonight I had it...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jan 26, 2016 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Premier (for tax year 2015): Will it run on XP?
Replies: 14
Views: 1169

Re: TurboTax Premier (for tax year 2015): Will it run on XP?

It sounds like TurboTax is being run by the Microsoft Software Sales Office. There are still millions of XP users out here, many of us who have used TT for years. If TT wants to echo the well publicized risks of XP that's fine but if they are expecting me to contiune to buy their product after forc...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jan 26, 2016 5:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Co-owner of safe deposit box?
Replies: 13
Views: 2424

Re: Co-owner of safe deposit box?

My father died in Florida. I was listed as a co-owner on his safe deposit box. I went to the bank and emptied the box on the day he entered hospice care. When I went back after his death to cancel the box, I was told that I could not access it or cancel it without the appropriate paperwork, which in...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jan 26, 2016 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Properly Assessing Public Schools
Replies: 55
Views: 7191

Re: Properly Assessing Public Schools

The U.S. Education Department has data on schools: http://nces.ed.gov/globallocator/ You can look at individual schools and districts. Some states we lived in required districts to publish scores annually, and some states publish scores for schools. I looked at schools near where I have lived for 3...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jan 26, 2016 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cutting Cable Cord Only to Strengthen Internet Cord
Replies: 64
Views: 7080

Re: Cutting Cable Cord Only to Strengthen Internet Cord

I think you'd be surprised at how little speed you actually need for streaming video. For the last couple years we've been streaming SD Netflix and Amazon video with just 3 to 5 mbps download speed. And that's while browsing the web simultaneously on a couple other devices. Then again, our TV is on...
by DonCamillo
Tue Jan 26, 2016 10:29 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Baby Boomers
Replies: 22
Views: 2869

Re: Baby Boomers

When I was born, near the end of WWII and a few months before the baby boom started, the population of the United States was just under 140 million. Now it is over 320 million. While we have a low birth rate, we have immigration to make up for it, and we are drawing in some of the best and brightest...
by DonCamillo
Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Properly Assessing Public Schools
Replies: 55
Views: 7191

Re: Properly Assessing Public Schools

This is reasonably good; http://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools I disagree. The US News "Best High Schools" rankings are based solely on the number of students taking an AP test each year compared to the number of students who graduate . I know of school districts around us who pay for t...
by DonCamillo
Sun Jan 24, 2016 9:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Jeff Gundlach: How to Get a 12% Yield
Replies: 5
Views: 2767

Re: Jeff Gundlach: How to Get a 12% Yield

I used to be a sucker for a high yield. I learned the hard way that very high yield usually means even higher risk. For example, Wachovia was supposedly yielding 10% when I bought it and the value went down 85% when it was bought by Wells Fargo not much later. That is one of the experiences that mad...
by DonCamillo
Sun Jan 24, 2016 2:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What was the 2000 crash like in real time?
Replies: 65
Views: 7238

Re: What was the 2000 crash like in real time?

Three years of watching the value of my retirement funds shrink by $10,000 a month, while my new job paid half as much in gross pay. It was very painful. I was mostly in equities and had a lot of stock in AT&T, from which I had just retired. Index funds and a strong allocation to bonds are much less...
by DonCamillo
Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Most anticipated retirement purchase
Replies: 107
Views: 10249

Re: Most anticipated retirement purchase

After the twenty-fifth wedding anniversary, the only appropriate gift is a dumpster. We are approaching our fiftieth anniversary, so maybe we could subscribe to the Dumpster A Month Club!
:sharebeer
by DonCamillo
Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Boglehead Way of Employment
Replies: 82
Views: 10249

Re: The Boglehead Way of Employment

I would also follow your passion. Have done that most of my life in several different careers. A couple of things to keep in mind; 1) Most people will have more than one career in a lifetime. This is especially true as people live longer and stay healthy longer. I have seen figures claiming an avera...