Search found 166 matches

by Castanea_d.
Sat Nov 11, 2017 12:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Value Averaging with Bonds: an example
Replies: 2
Views: 381

Value Averaging with Bonds: an example

Since reading Michael Edelson’s book “Value Averaging” a few years ago, I have applied the VA method to parts of my portfolio. Here is the excellent Bogleheads Wiki page about the method: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Value_averaging There are also a few threads in the forum about it. Mostly, one ...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Oct 20, 2017 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Protein Bars and Smoothies
Replies: 82
Views: 6995

Re: Protein Bars and Smoothies

I keep some of the "Elevation" bars from Aldi's around (they are a knock-off of Clif bars). Eleven grams of protein, five grams of fiber, and too much sugar. But they are convenient and fairly cheap; I eat one every week as a quick snack between Sunday church services - I have a five minute window b...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Oct 20, 2017 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's Global Wellesley Income and Global Wellington Funds in registration [now available]
Replies: 112
Views: 25870

Re: Vanguard's Global Wellesley Income and Global Wellington Funds in registration [now available]

If one invests now, during the subscription period, what happens when the fund goes "active" in a few weeks? My presumption is that there wouldn't be any significant "bumps" at the beginning unrelated to changes in the underlying securities that they purchase. I would hope that it is not like an equ...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Oct 20, 2017 11:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation with Farm Land
Replies: 20
Views: 1522

Re: Asset Allocation with Farm Land

We have half of the "old home place" back in the southern Appalachians: 150-plus acres with about 20 acres of it under cultivation/pasturage and the rest in forest. No habitable structures. It produces no income (I "rent" it to the neighbor, a long time family friend and farmer, who keeps up the fen...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Aug 18, 2017 5:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cancer at 38. Going from high income to no income. Need help generating income from $5m portfolio
Replies: 45
Views: 9802

Re: Cancer at 38. Going from high income to no income. Need help generating income from $5m portfolio

Minor detail that you probably already have in place: has your husband designated you as beneficiary for his 401(k)? Ditto if he rolls it over to an IRA. As some others have said, it would be well to have this sort of thing looked at by an estate/tax lawyer to get everything set up in the best manne...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Organ (Music) Question
Replies: 6
Views: 629

Re: Organ (Music) Question

Sad to say, most of the old electronic organs have little value even when they are in good working condition and are more of a burden than anything else, for they are hard to move/get rid of and the home-organ market has been declining sharply for years so there are lots of used instruments availabl...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on buying a musical instrument
Replies: 24
Views: 1757

Re: Advice on buying a musical instrument

... I don't play the violin but I do play other instruments. When/if you do buy another violin it wouldn't be a bad idea to keep this one if you can afford it. It will be nice to have around to play while your "good" one is in the shop, to take it to local events where you might not want to take yo...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Vanguard fund shareholders encouraged to vote as proxy campaign gets under way."
Replies: 87
Views: 23765

Re: "Vanguard fund shareholders encouraged to vote as proxy campaign gets under way."

I voted yes on Proposition 7 for the couple of actively-managed funds that I hold, and no for the index funds. As others have noted, if you start omitting companies from an index fund for such reasons, the fund no longer is tracking the index. There is almost zero chance of Prop 7 passing, and that ...
by Castanea_d.
Sat Jul 15, 2017 11:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The CAPEable Portfolio!
Replies: 30
Views: 2630

Re: The CAPEable Portfolio!

Just commenting that I follow a CAPE-based tactical allocation somewhat along these lines, something I adopted after reading “The Intelligent Investor.” My version: Target equity allocation = 50 - ((CAPE-18)*2) With the current CAPE pretty much at 30, that gives 50 - (30-18)*2 = 50-24 = 26% If CAPE ...
by Castanea_d.
Tue May 09, 2017 9:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sale of investment advisor (Scout Investments) - should we worry?
Replies: 3
Views: 530

Re: Sale of investment advisor (Scout Investments) - should we worry?

EHEngineer and Mel, thank you both for your replies. After discussion with my wife over the weekend, we are making the move to Vanguard.
by Castanea_d.
Fri May 05, 2017 10:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sale of investment advisor (Scout Investments) - should we worry?
Replies: 3
Views: 530

Sale of investment advisor (Scout Investments) - should we worry?

My wife and I have had holdings in the Scout International Fund (UMBWX) http://scoutinv.com/individual_investors/mutual_funds/individual/f_3/sc_i_class/international_fund/overview.fs for about twenty years. It has done well for us, with an XIRR (internal rate of return) of about 8%, and roughly doub...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is this the right Fund for Metals?
Replies: 7
Views: 1145

Re: Is this the right Fund for Metals?

For part of your question: thinking strictly Vanguard funds/ETFs, the VGPMX is pretty much all there is for precious metals. As other have indicated, it is mostly the stocks of mining companies, not gold/silver directly. The mining shares often (not always) move in the same direction as gold/silver ...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: You can never go "home" - retirement
Replies: 85
Views: 13836

Re: You can never go "home" - retirement

This thread has been thought-provoking for me. My wife and I are still a few years from retirement, and have been talking about various forms of going "home." - We don't want to stay where we are, for a variety of reasons. - We own half of what was my grandfather's farm in the Appalachians. Stunning...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe says "Goodbye."
Replies: 336
Views: 43281

Re: Larry Swedroe says "Goodby."

Larry, all good wishes. As hundreds of others have said here, I have learned much from you, and I am grateful for the time and energy you have put into BH when there is no direct benefit from it. I hope that you can carry with you the knowledge that you have helped hundreds, probably thousands of pe...
by Castanea_d.
Sun Mar 26, 2017 11:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Negative price/earnings ratio
Replies: 3
Views: 627

Re: Negative price/earnings ratio

Alex and Valuethinker, thank you! You've both helped me understand these things better. :beer
by Castanea_d.
Sat Mar 25, 2017 1:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Negative price/earnings ratio
Replies: 3
Views: 627

Negative price/earnings ratio

The annual report for the Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining fund (VGPMX) is out: https://personal.vanguard.com/funds/reports/q530.pdf?2210125505 The fund profile (page 12) lists a price/earnings ratio of -42.4x What does that mean? I presume it means the VGPMX holdings in the aggregate posted loss...
by Castanea_d.
Wed Sep 21, 2016 10:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with VGPMX (Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining)?
Replies: 129
Views: 21908

Re: What to do with VGPMX (Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining)?

Ben Carlson recently posted some thoughts on natural resource equities: http://awealthofcommonsense.com/2016/09/an-allocation-only-a-mother-could-love/ He runs some backtests, using VGPMX as a proxy for the sector. Highly imperfect, as he admits, but it was the longest-running fund more or less in t...
by Castanea_d.
Wed Jul 06, 2016 7:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with VGPMX (Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining)?
Replies: 129
Views: 21908

Re: What to do with VGPMX (Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining)?

VGPMX at $12.11, up 41 cents today. Up 90% year to date (from $6.36), and more than that from its low in mid-January. Today's close is, the best I can tell, a three-year high (based on weekly closes), going back to May 2013. But it could double again and not be quite back to its 2011 levels. I have ...
by Castanea_d.
Fri May 27, 2016 1:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is it worth the additional Expense to try to replicate Total International?
Replies: 20
Views: 1867

Re: Is it worth the additional Expense to try to replicate Total International?

My two cents: you're fine either way. I would probably continue with what you have described and it sounds like a pretty good equivalent to total market funds. As Aptenodytes says above, you might consider adjusting your percentages if you want a more exact match to the total market weights. The exp...
by Castanea_d.
Fri May 27, 2016 12:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New to investment
Replies: 5
Views: 625

Re: New to investment

Welcome to Bogleheads! I think that you will find this a good place to get started as an investor and ask questions. My advice for a first step: do a little bit of reading in the Bogleheads Wiki, especially this: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Getting_started The links on that page are all good. He...
by Castanea_d.
Wed May 25, 2016 10:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Equity Income (VEIPX)
Replies: 55
Views: 14242

Re: Vanguard Equity Income (VEIPX)

I went back and checked: since 2003 when they started separating short-term and long-term capital gains, our Vg Equity Income holding has returned $1543.27 of ST gains, as compared to a total of $21,285.71 in distributions (ST and LT cap gain plus dividends). There have been a handful of years where...
by Castanea_d.
Fri May 20, 2016 1:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Beginner Questions
Replies: 5
Views: 870

Re: Beginner Questions

I second the advice of others here: if possible, buy Vanguard funds in a Vanguard account. If you are for some reason stuck with Fidelity (e.g., a retirement account), look for equivalent Fidelity Spartan index funds. They are low-cost, and just as good as the Vanguard funds for their purpose. In my...
by Castanea_d.
Fri May 20, 2016 1:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Burton Malkiel: "I think [commodities] should be in every portfolio."
Replies: 35
Views: 3871

Re: Burton Malkiel: "I think [commodities] should be in every portfolio."

.... Since I own total market index funds, I already have access to energy and materials. However, they are a small percentage of the index. Does it make sense to overweight them as Malkiel is suggesting? Is this a dangerous move? It would be a shame for this slice of a portfolio to underperform th...
by Castanea_d.
Wed May 11, 2016 10:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: PRIMECAP -- Am I being sentimental?
Replies: 5
Views: 1081

Re: PRIMECAP -- Am I being sentimental?

Me too. They are good funds. I am glad to hear that Vg is going to let you transfer the Primecap.
by Castanea_d.
Wed May 11, 2016 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 30 minute commute?
Replies: 80
Views: 10618

Re: 30 minute commute?

... The one thing I REALLY miss about working closer to home is the chance to go home at 4 or so, then head back to school after dinner to drop in on a couple of innings or quarters of a softball or basketball game some students are in. Now if I want to attend just 30 minutes of a game to see a fav...
by Castanea_d.
Fri May 06, 2016 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retired/Low Income - Fund Recommendations
Replies: 5
Views: 925

Re: Retired/Low Income - Fund Recommendations

If you and she are all right with an actively managed fund, Vanguard's Wellesley is a good possibility (VWINX for regular shares, VWIAX for Admiral shares with $50K minimum investment). Wellesley aims for about one-third equities, two-thirds bonds and the expense ratio is low (0.16% for the Admiral ...
by Castanea_d.
Wed May 04, 2016 10:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: rebalancing at a loss out of CEF (gold/silver)
Replies: 2
Views: 443

Re: rebalancing at a loss out of CEF (gold/silver)

Tim, thanks very much. You cut right to the gist of the matter - yes, I do have an IPS. It says "rebalance when CEF or VGPMX are more than 20% over their target allocations." So that is what I should do. It is as simple as that. It is so easy to rationalize one's way into an action with th...
by Castanea_d.
Tue May 03, 2016 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: rebalancing at a loss out of CEF (gold/silver)
Replies: 2
Views: 443

rebalancing at a loss out of CEF (gold/silver)

I started a position in the precious metals at the Wrong Time (spring 2011). Through the following years, I gradually added to it, repeatedly bringing it back to my allocation of 10% of assets. It was at times a painful journey. But for now, things have turned around. I have already rebalanced VGPMX...
by Castanea_d.
Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dodge & Cox
Replies: 10
Views: 2177

Re: Dodge & Cox

My largest holding is in DODIX (Dodge and Cox Income), which is almost all of my bond allocation. If one is going to have an actively managed bond fund instead of a bond index fund, this is a good choice; fairly low expenses, low turnover, mostly just doing occasional slight adjustments to duration....
by Castanea_d.
Tue Apr 19, 2016 2:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If more and more people have similar portfolios as you, does it help, hurt, or have no change in making more money?
Replies: 4
Views: 592

Re: If more and more people have similar portfolios as you, does it help, hurt, or have no change in making more money?

Barry Ritholtz posted an article the other day that touches on this: http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2016-04-18/if-you-re-a-contrarian-you-re-like-everyone-else Remember, most of the time, the contrarian investor is wrong . The vast majority of the time, the market is the crowd. Hence, making ...
by Castanea_d.
Tue Apr 19, 2016 2:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I hold only US Bonds. Is this risky?
Replies: 22
Views: 2211

Re: I hold only US Bonds. Is this risky?

I am all for international diversity with equities. But not bonds; for a U.S. investor, all-domestic is fine. Cheaper, simpler, no worries about exchange rate hedging.
by Castanea_d.
Fri Apr 15, 2016 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When was the most stressful financial time in your life?
Replies: 94
Views: 13505

Re: When was the most stressful financial time in your life?

For me, definitely the 2008 financial crisis.... I've since built back from that experience, live in a modest paid off house with my family, and have over a million dollars in financial assets allocated conservatively. Despite earning a high income, I treat the future as very uncertain, and live on...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Apr 15, 2016 10:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where to park $$$ while DCA/VCA
Replies: 31
Views: 1479

Re: Where to park $$$ while DCA/VCA

Livesoft's suggestion of the Vg short term bond fund is good. Having said that, I use the Vg Prime money market fund (VMMXX), and the lack of return doesn't bother me, though my "side fund" is somewhat smaller than what you are talking about. As for your overall idea, I think it is excelle...
by Castanea_d.
Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: e-Books/e-Magazines
Replies: 16
Views: 1375

Re: e-Books/e-Magazines

I do a lot of reading from Project Gutenberg, which is free. http://www.gutenberg.org Everything is old enough to be public domain. But there are lots of very interesting nonfiction books, as well as classic fiction. They have both the Kindle format and the EPUB format. Like others have said, I have...
by Castanea_d.
Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity 401k contributions not subject to short-term trading fees?
Replies: 1
Views: 496

Re: Fidelity 401k contributions not subject to short-term trading fees?

Perhaps not directly applicable, but I have a Fidelity 403(b). It is structured a little differently from what I gather your 401(k) is - they don't assess a fee for excessive trading, but instead they freeze the account for 85 days up to twelve months (I incurred the 85 day freeze once, and have bee...
by Castanea_d.
Sat Apr 02, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is VGPMX (Metals and Mining) diversified enough?
Replies: 1
Views: 439

Re: Is VGPMX diversified enough?

Well, it depends on how strictly you want to capture the precious metals/mining sector. VGPMX is actively managed, and part of what they have done at times is to increase or decrease their holdings in gold and silver miners according to their view of market conditions; recently they have considerabl...
by Castanea_d.
Wed Mar 30, 2016 6:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lower exp ratios for employer offerings vs typical Fidelity funds?
Replies: 6
Views: 687

Re: Lower exp ratios for employer offerings vs typical Fidelity funds?

Yes, I would suspect that the low expense ratios are Fidelity making a deal with your employer for lower expenses. You are not going to do any better than these ERs. An expense ratio of 0.0204 on the bond fund? That is amazing. As edge just said, do read the prospectuses. And you have a ready-made t...
by Castanea_d.
Sat Mar 19, 2016 3:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the point of a dividend?
Replies: 92
Views: 8011

Re: What is the point of a dividend?

In the old days, the regular payment of dividends over a period of years was an indicator of a "solid" company. I don't have "The Intelligent Investor" in front of me, but Benjamin Graham included dividends as one characteristic of the kind of stock that a "defensive" i...
by Castanea_d.
Tue Mar 01, 2016 10:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Three-Fund Portfolio
Replies: 1876
Views: 1158716

Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

Nice article from Ben Carlson: "Bogle vs. Goliath" http://awealthofcommonsense.com/2016/02/bogle-vs-golitath/ He compares the 5 and 10 year results of a Vanguard three-fund portfolio with the results achieved by college/university endowments. The short answer: the three-fund approach came ...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Feb 19, 2016 6:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: midlife investing help
Replies: 17
Views: 2367

Re: midlife investing help

Thanks Castanea. ... My only other question is regarding the Target 2045. It seems a bit over our risk preference. What do you think about picking the 2020 or 2010? Another thought is do employer matching programs allow you to put the matching funds into the Star? Yes - you can pick any of the targ...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Feb 19, 2016 3:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: midlife investing help
Replies: 17
Views: 2367

Re: midlife investing help

Welcome to the Bogleheads! It sounds to me like you all are on the right track. I will ask this: does your wife have disability insurance, and perhaps life insurance? I would worry about you all getting by on your ssdi if something happens to her. At least (for the life insurance) enough to pay off ...
by Castanea_d.
Tue Feb 16, 2016 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with simplifying a plan for an early retiree
Replies: 11
Views: 1534

Re: Help with simplifying a plan for an early retiree

Mostly, I am writing this to welcome you to Bogleheads and to bump this to a higher position on the list so that wiser people than I might offer advice, especially people who are more familiar with the ins and outs of a large portfolio. Your portfolio looks terrific to me - except for being so compl...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Feb 12, 2016 12:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any regrets by people 50+ for having a conservative portfolio in their 30's
Replies: 68
Views: 9487

Re: Any regrets by people 50+ for having a conservative portfolio in their 30's

... What I miss about my 30s and 40s are the huge real yields on savings and CDs, and I wish I'd gone longer on bonds. Sure, equity returns were even more amazing, but it's missing out on the safe stuff that I remember and regret. Nobody knows the future, but it looks relatively unprofitable to me....
by Castanea_d.
Fri Feb 12, 2016 11:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A Couple of Tips For Nervous Times
Replies: 2
Views: 972

Re: A Couple of Tips For Nervous Times

Thanks for posting this: good ideas! It took me a long time to get used to "losing" a month's salary in one or two days. It is better to consider that it may be a lot in terms of current wage income or monthly expenses, but not so much as a percentage of the portfolio, and losses in one ar...
by Castanea_d.
Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: William Bernstein's "If You Can" Portfolio
Replies: 42
Views: 9029

Re: William Bernstein's "If You Can" Portfolio

Going from memory of reading Bernstein's writings (which are terrific), I think that he somewhere notes that even though young adults have the long time horizon ahead to justify a high equity allocation, in his experience many of them are more risk-averse than one would expect. It is, after all, a p...
by Castanea_d.
Tue Feb 09, 2016 10:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Questions from a Novice Investor
Replies: 3
Views: 324

Re: Questions from a Novice Investor

Welcome to the Bogleheads Forum! You have come to a very good place for asking questions. And learning a lot; I learn something new pretty much every time I visit. You are off to a very good start. Having zero debts at your age is huge, and a chunk of cash in the bank on top of that. Yes, go ahead a...
by Castanea_d.
Sat Feb 06, 2016 1:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for Advice / Guidance Please
Replies: 8
Views: 678

Re: Looking for Advice / Guidance Please

Welcome to the forum! Like you said, the knowledge level of many of the "regulars" here is most impressive. I hope some of them will address other parts of your posting, but I will at least give my two cents on the precious metals, since I have a similar allocation (and, like you, I am wel...
by Castanea_d.
Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If SS covers expenses why invest?
Replies: 64
Views: 6038

Re: If SS covers expenses why invest?

For the OP and other people who are decades away from SocSec benefits, invest because of the uncertainty. As many have said in this thread, one never knows what might happen. Also, it is a great lifelong habit to live within your means and put some money aside every month. Even if you never need it,...
by Castanea_d.
Tue Feb 02, 2016 10:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where to put excess savings
Replies: 1
Views: 430

Re: Where to put excess savings

First, thank you for serving our country in the military.
That $43K inflation-indexed pension, plus Tricare for life, is hard to beat as a foundation for a retirement.

If it were me, I'd pay down the mortgage. Or split it 50/50 between mortgage and your taxable total market fund.
by Castanea_d.
Sat Jan 23, 2016 4:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What was the 2000 crash like in real time?
Replies: 65
Views: 6974

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

... So, getting back, bonds would have been the best diversifier (given that shorting stocks was not possible). Unfortunately, I was not educated sufficiently about bonds back then. I hoped that being "globally diversified" in stocks would help me out. It didn't really all that much becau...