Search found 1836 matches

by dmcmahon
Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are stocks going up only because all the alternatives are lousy?
Replies: 45
Views: 5024

Re: Are stocks going up only because all the alternatives are lousy?

Standard Boglehead disclaimer, I realize I know nothing, so I keep investing according to my plan. However, if I was inclined to listen to my own suspicions, I would say we have expanded the money supply greatly, but the inflation monster is nowhere to be found. Perhaps increased wealth inequality ...
by dmcmahon
Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does anyone hold cash?
Replies: 58
Views: 6049

Re: Does anyone hold cash?

10% cash - I'd feel naked without it.
by dmcmahon
Mon Sep 11, 2017 11:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax fiasco - how can we protect ourselves from potential fraudulent tax returns filed on our behalf?
Replies: 31
Views: 3940

Re: Equifax fiasco - how can we protect ourselves from potential fraudulent tax returns filed on our behalf?

Given the Equifax fiasco: 1) Am I LESS at risk if I file via snail mail than electronically? I usually file via snail mail anyway. 2) Is it risky to have refund deposited to checking account via ACH Deposit? Or should I have refund sent via snail mail? Thanks. The Equifax breach shouldn't affect th...
by dmcmahon
Sun Sep 10, 2017 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 51999

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Credit freeze/unfreeze scam is the new credit monitoring scam to boost bottom line for credit reporting companies. No surprise the latest massive release of PII is from a credit reporting agency - setting off a panic that will result in perhaps millions of new paying customers for freeze/unfreeze a...
by dmcmahon
Sat Sep 09, 2017 6:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's new security key option
Replies: 117
Views: 27037

Re: Vanguard's new security key option

In looking at Yubico's web site, I'm a bit confused. Their sales blurbs state that "no drivers or software" are necessary to use the FIDO U2F key; however, also according to their site: You may experience a slight delay when registering a key for the first time, as your computer will need to instal...
by dmcmahon
Sat Sep 09, 2017 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity Security
Replies: 66
Views: 6980

Re: Fidelity Security

^^ Indeed, the human element is where these security measures usually fail. That said, thanks to the OP for alerting me to this option. I will be downloading it and hope that Fidelity is one of the companies making it harder to bypass security measures by calling in. It seems to work like an RSA to...
by dmcmahon
Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 51999

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Now let's abstract that to this breach. It includes SSNs, driver's license numbers, addresses, and so on. Now instead of a money mule with a replicated ATM card, they need money mules with fake driver's licenses (has your name, number, address, but the money mule's photo) and fake SS cards. They go...
by dmcmahon
Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 51999

Re: Equifax customer information leak

The real social engineering problem lately is cell phone numbers. It doesn't take much to walk into a cellular store, pretend to be you, and port your number to a new, "upgraded" phone. If you're lucky, they just want the phone itself and will instead add lines on your plan. If you're unlucky, they...
by dmcmahon
Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 51999

Re: Equifax says info stolen. What's my best course of action?

My worries go beyond credit though. Freezing credit reporting is straightforward. But if they have your name, address, data of birth, SSN, and DL#, I don't see how any of your bank and brokerage accounts are secure. This is exactly the information you have to give on the phone to transact business. ...
by dmcmahon
Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 51999

Re: Equifax customer information leak

I am starting a company to rate the credit raters. Equifax will not be getting a very good rating. But you have to give them high marks for waiting 9 weeks to release the news. Just in; Equifax executives sold stock after data breach, before informing public http://www.marketwatch.com/story/equifax...
by dmcmahon
Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 51999

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Isn't the bigger danger that the information will allow them to access your existing accounts? Forge documents in your name and use them to clean out an account at your bank in person? File fake tax returns? It's mind-boggling. Freezing your credit reports seems a completely inadequate response. BTW...
by dmcmahon
Wed Apr 05, 2017 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Income earners, whats your Tax Strategy?
Replies: 113
Views: 13259

Re: High Income earners, whats your Tax Strategy?

We keep it simple: - Max out pre-tax 401(k) - Max out mega backdoor Roth 401(k) - Backdoor Roth IRA - Donate appreciated stock, if there's a good opportunity - Keep taxable in ETFs instead of traditional mutual funds, where you can more effectively defer capital gains - Tax loss harvesting if/when ...
by dmcmahon
Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mistake on 2015 taxes - how to handle?
Replies: 1
Views: 242

Mistake on 2015 taxes - how to handle?

I made a mistake doing my sister's 2015 taxes, the net effect of which was to get a larger refund than she was entitled to. I'm now preparing an amended return to correct the mistake. The question is actually about her 2016 tax return. On that return I've reported the amount of the state refund as i...
by dmcmahon
Thu Feb 09, 2017 7:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Charles Schwab Experiences?
Replies: 84
Views: 10730

Re: Charles Schwab Experiences?

Update: I recently discovered that Schwab's password limitations have been fixed. You can now use passwords with special characters and that are longer than 8 characters. I still like having 2-factor, but now it's extra protection, not a work-around for limited password strength. Thanks, Schwab!
by dmcmahon
Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Charles Schwab Experiences?
Replies: 84
Views: 10730

Re: Charles Schwab Experiences?

My experience is positive. I find the web site easy to use, and there's a local branch office I can go to that's always staffed. When I've used the phone for help, it's always a good experience. I also view the company itself as financially sound, though I would encourage you to check that out for a...
by dmcmahon
Wed Jul 27, 2016 10:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Two-factor authentication via text messaging
Replies: 18
Views: 2475

Re: Two-factor authentication via text messaging

Seems pretty unlikely. But what is the alternative? The hackers will come up with a counter to anything that is created, just a matter of time. At the moment, 2 factor is a little better than one. At what point does the security feature inconvenience outweigh the covenience of doing things over the...
by dmcmahon
Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Trying the Impossible - Financing 30-Year Retirements with 40-Year Careers
Replies: 70
Views: 11130

Re: Trying the Impossible - Financing 30-Year Retirements with 40-Year Careers

The islanders and coconut analogy shows only that it's not practical to accumulate claims on future production as a means to finance retirement unless the pool of workers is expanding. In the real world of the island, retirement of any of the workers can only be financed by either stockpiling necess...
by dmcmahon
Wed Jun 29, 2016 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For those that "buy" during stock market downturns...
Replies: 158
Views: 12494

Re: For those that "buy" during stock market downturns...

I have a significant portion of my taxable bond allocation in cash. The difference between an intermediate-term bond and a savings account isn't that great right now, so I get away with this. This money stands ready to buy a large downdraft. Such a move would constitute an AA shift, but a modest one...
by dmcmahon
Thu Jun 23, 2016 10:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Actionable advice in a Brexit scenario
Replies: 162
Views: 19794

Re: Actionable advice in a Brexit scenario

According to the International Monetary Fund, in 1915 the World Gross Domestic Product totaled approximately $18 trillion dollars. The United Kingdom had a Gross Domestic Product of approximately $3 trillion dollars. I think you meant 2015, and the $18 trillion is the US GDP - world GDP is around $...
by dmcmahon
Thu Jun 23, 2016 8:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: An Alternative to Being Long the S&P 500
Replies: 18
Views: 2791

Re: An Alternative to Being Long the S&P 500

How tax efficient is that 80/20 mix?
by dmcmahon
Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?
Replies: 8
Views: 1472

Re: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?

I had a windfall, otherwise I would have just kept things simple. I received an in-kind distribution of appreciated stock shares from a partnership. Setting up the CRUT and donating the shares now while I'm still in a high tax bracket made a lot of sense. Effectively the charities will get more cash...
by dmcmahon
Wed Jun 08, 2016 4:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Yale scholars on tax treatment of stock buybacks
Replies: 28
Views: 1606

Re: Yale scholars on tax treatment of stock buybacks

As a practical matter it would seem very hard if not impossible to identify who sold stock to the company versus sold it to somebody else if this was a normal transaction using a broker. My understanding is that in general most stock buybacks do not exceed 1% of the trading in a given stock on any ...
by dmcmahon
Thu May 12, 2016 9:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Times article on the "tip of the iceberg" that is Puerto Rico
Replies: 76
Views: 13959

Re: NY Times article on the "tip of the iceberg" that is Puerto Rico

Thanks for raising awareness Larry. I've been following this disturbing trend for 10+ years now, and I avoid munis entirely due to this overhang. I recall Meridith Whitney getting trashed here for raising an alarm about this issue too early. Other than to move to a state that's less exposed than Cal...
by dmcmahon
Fri May 06, 2016 7:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: public pension plan unfunded liabilities
Replies: 75
Views: 10374

Re: public pension plan unfunded liabilities

Plan return assumptions probably need to be adjusted to the new normal of lower returns, especially on bonds.
But at least some plans are taking a hard look at overpaying for underperformance in hedge funds and other such vehicles - at last!
by dmcmahon
Wed Apr 20, 2016 7:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?
Replies: 8
Views: 1472

Re: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?

I was able to trick TT into producing a mostly correct tax return, except for that one form. What I did is lie to TT about the property - I said yes to the question about transferring 100% of the interest in the property, but then entered the deductible value calculated by my attorney as if it were ...
by dmcmahon
Wed Apr 20, 2016 6:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A new kind of a roth back door.
Replies: 7
Views: 1893

Re: A new kind of a roth back door.

I'm not sure it's a new idea and it's not limited to Roth accounts so it's more of a general retirement savings back door. I first heard the idea that's at the core of your proposal in the context of a company 401k plan. Basically the idea was to take a loan and then pay it back, thus adding the loa...
by dmcmahon
Mon Mar 28, 2016 9:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Michael Kitces says IRS auditors disapprove of Backdoor Roth IRA's
Replies: 160
Views: 26476

Re: Michael Kitces says IRS auditors disapprove of Backdoor Roth IRA's

I think this discussion is focusing on the wrong part of the interview. The point isn't that there's some hearsay about some people who got audited and reversed it. Kitces provides valuable information about the grounds that the IRS would use to object to the practice, as well as how to avoid runni...
by dmcmahon
Tue Mar 15, 2016 9:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Throw away turbo tax disk?
Replies: 16
Views: 2316

Re: Throw away turbo tax disk?

Doesn't work. Too many updates needed which are no longer available on line. Save PDFs for all your returns, the old tt files will no longer be useful after about 5 years even if you keep the install disks. I generally agree with this, and personally keep PDFs of both my submitted return and all th...
by dmcmahon
Tue Mar 15, 2016 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Throw away turbo tax disk?
Replies: 16
Views: 2316

Re: Throw away turbo tax disk?

The only reason I can think of for keeping them is if for any reason you might have to reprint an old tax return. Doesn't work. Too many updates needed which are no longer available on line. Save PDFs for all your returns, the old tt files will no longer be useful after about 5 years even if you ke...
by dmcmahon
Tue Mar 15, 2016 12:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Throw away turbo tax disk?
Replies: 16
Views: 2316

Re: Throw away turbo tax disk?

The only reason I can think of for keeping them is if for any reason you might have to reprint an old tax return. Doesn't work. Too many updates needed which are no longer available on line. Save PDFs for all your returns, the old tt files will no longer be useful after about 5 years even if you ke...
by dmcmahon
Sun Mar 13, 2016 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?
Replies: 8
Views: 1472

Re: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?

Nope, that doesn't work. If you "retained an interest in the property transferred" it says you can't use TT. I didn't really retain any interest in the property, but I have an interest in the trust, which seems like it's the same idea. Sign - another call to my attorney. The needed form is...
by dmcmahon
Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?
Replies: 8
Views: 1472

Re: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?

I had an accountant prepare 5227 for the trust. It's been filed with the IRS. California has it's own form, also prepared by the accountant and filed. The trust issued a K1 to me for the 2015 unitrust amount, which I'll report this year. TT has a place for me to enter that. So far so good. The issue...
by dmcmahon
Sun Mar 13, 2016 5:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?
Replies: 8
Views: 1472

Where to enter CRUT donation in TurboTax?

I set up a Charitable Remainder Unitrust last year, using appreciated stock. I have a letter from my lawyer with the details regarding the allowable deduction based on actuarial calculations. Problem is, I have no idea where or how to enter this amount in TurboTax. 100% of my past experience with TT...
by dmcmahon
Tue Mar 08, 2016 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Handling of K1 income [from trust income]
Replies: 3
Views: 490

Handling of K1 income [from trust income]

I have a question related to K1 income. Suppose that person A receives income from trust T. The income is paid in arrears after the calendar year. That is to say, in 2016, A received income from T that was computed on the trust's 2015 income. The trust paid 100% of its income to A, so it doesn't owe...
by dmcmahon
Fri Feb 26, 2016 1:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where does the money go when stocks and bonds are in the red ?
Replies: 34
Views: 5266

Re: Where does the money go when stocks and bonds are in the red ?

Although some shares are actually entering (IPOs) and leaving (buyouts, share repurchases) the market in exchange for cash, this isn't most of the swings you're seeing. Rather, you are seeing the changing estimates of the value of the businesses represented by the shares. The market makes its judgem...
by dmcmahon
Fri Feb 26, 2016 12:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: personal savings rate vs the general population
Replies: 69
Views: 10647

Re: personal savings rate vs the general population

Throughout the rest of the article, he argues generally that the ratio of workers to retirees will remain the same and that the means of exchange will devalue to naturally enforce that ratio. I'm not sure I agree that the ratio needs to remain the same. He already admits that when social security f...
by dmcmahon
Fri Feb 26, 2016 12:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How has market regulation changed since 2008 Financial Crisis?
Replies: 17
Views: 1397

Re: How has market regulation changed since 2008 Financial Crisis?

One more thought. There is a "heads I win, tails you lose" proposition at the heart of most financial institutions. All things being equal, the company that has the most leverage will have the highest return on investment for the investors. Unless the bank goes bust, where the diversified...
by dmcmahon
Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Arguments against small-caps
Replies: 10
Views: 1720

Re: Arguments against small-caps

One could argue they're (more) overvalued (than the general market) by most metrics.

Despite thinking this, I own the market weight via the total market ETF.
by dmcmahon
Sat Dec 05, 2015 7:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund Reopened - MUST USE]
Replies: 77
Views: 9564

Re: Vanguad Brokerage settlements

...and this account will be exposed to fluctuating valuation... I have not seen that stated anywhere . This says: m ... U.S. government money market funds will be permitted to retain the stable $1.00 per share NAV and may be offered to institutional investors. In order to be considered a government...
by dmcmahon
Sat Dec 05, 2015 3:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund Reopened - MUST USE]
Replies: 77
Views: 9564

Vanguad Brokerage settlements

[Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek] Well, so much for the new rule about floating-value MM funds only affecting institutions. I just got a letter from VBS and if I'm reading it right, I'll be required to use a new MM fund as the settlement account for any transactions, and this a...
by dmcmahon
Sun Nov 01, 2015 5:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CRUT - need some help [Charitable Remainder UniTrust]
Replies: 2
Views: 586

Re: CRUT - need some help

I guess I'll have to re-read it. Re. the payout, 5% is required I believe. The less than lifetime term is so that the charitable donations will hopefully occur while I'm still around.
by dmcmahon
Sat Oct 31, 2015 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CRUT - need some help [Charitable Remainder UniTrust]
Replies: 2
Views: 586

CRUT - need some help [Charitable Remainder UniTrust]

I set up a Charitable Remainder UniTrust (CRUT) in July of 2015. The trust is to run for 15 years, paying me 5% of the assets annually, with the balance going to various charities at the end of that term, or if I die before the 15 years are up. I decided to be my own trustee, and I'm looking for an ...
by dmcmahon
Sat Jul 25, 2015 2:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Original Research] The Failure of PE Market Timing Models
Replies: 50
Views: 5277

Re: [Original Research] The Failure of PE Market Timing Models

What happens if you factor in taxes? From what I can see its very difficult to overcome the tax drag from the trading required.
by dmcmahon
Wed Jul 22, 2015 6:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Pros and cons of adding Roth Option to 401K Plan
Replies: 103
Views: 8078

Re: Pros and cons of adding Roth Option to 401K Plan

As an employee, the Roth 401k is of little benefit to me at the moment due to my tax situation. However, it's existence means that in retirement I'll be able to convert funds into a Roth without first moving them to an IRA, which is a plus. So the employees who'll benefit may be a larger group than ...
by dmcmahon
Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: TIPS - Did you give up?
Replies: 476
Views: 69737

Re: TIPS - Did you give up?

All of mine are individual bonds with long dates. I still think inflation's inevitable and so they're a cheap hedge. I did refuse to buy them at negative yields, though. At present I'm no longer adding to my position until I have more space in tax deferred and the real yields are more attractive.
by dmcmahon
Wed Jun 24, 2015 9:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard ETF dividends?
Replies: 13
Views: 2175

Re: Vanguard ETF dividends?

Thanks. Um...what exactly is a "declaration date"?
by dmcmahon
Wed Jun 24, 2015 9:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard ETF dividends?
Replies: 13
Views: 2175

Vanguard ETF dividends?

Anyone know when they're supposed to be paid? I need to buy some shares but don't want to buy a distribution.
by dmcmahon
Tue Jun 16, 2015 10:03 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Forum software upgrade bug reports and change requests
Replies: 427
Views: 63979

Re: Forum software upgrade bug reports and change requests

Woohoo! The forum looks "right" again on my iPad!
by dmcmahon
Tue May 12, 2015 11:08 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: What's new and changed in phpBB 3.1
Replies: 69
Views: 10658

Re: What's new and changed in phpBB 3.1

How do I change font size? I'm on an iPad as I write this, and the font size is a bit large, but on the home page it is unusable it's so large. Try holding the Apple key and - (Minus). Apple+ makes it larger if you go too far. Unless I'm missing it, there are no Apple (or Control) keys on the iPad ...
by dmcmahon
Wed May 06, 2015 9:42 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: UI issues (especially iPad)? please evaluate alternate styles
Replies: 41
Views: 6908

Re: UI issues (especially iPad)? please evaluate alternate styles

Thanks Gecko, this is exactly the issue - suddenly there is about half the information content visible on the pad's screen.

Fwiw the SE Square looks like the old format, of the choices on that demo site.