Search found 214 matches

by Dantes
Mon Oct 08, 2018 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 3344
Views: 1004566

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"Fierce Patriot: The Tangled Lives of William Tecumseh Sherman" by Robert L. O'Connell (Random House, 2014) In the last twenty years, many books have been written about U.S. Grant. I plan to read Ron Chernow's recent effort by the end of this year. Before that pleasant task, however, I was able to ...
by Dantes
Mon Oct 08, 2018 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 3344
Views: 1004566

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

I'm trying to read The Three Musketeers, by Alexander Dumas, but I think I've bogged down. I just started Count of Monte Cristo (also by Dumas). I'm only at page 16 of 479. So far our hero has been arrested on trumped up charges by someone who will obviously benefit from that. My thoughts so far: I...
by Dantes
Tue Oct 02, 2018 4:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: In retirement
Replies: 22
Views: 2349

Re: In retirement

Your numbers don't add up nicely. I have to assume all the income you mentioned is in after tax accounts. If I make estimates on the returns for bonds, stocks and cash (2%, 3.5%, 1.5%) I can use high school algebra to guess you have something like 2.6 million total and 18,666 of your income from the...
by Dantes
Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Apartment, city noise
Replies: 43
Views: 3260

Re: New Apartment- Moved from the city to country

Most people get used to the noise and stop noticing it after awhile; I did anyway. Do you care for having music playing in the background? Except maybe car alarms; ironic because - since they are so common - no on actually ever does anything about them. I can't imagine anyone, hearing a car alarm, t...
by Dantes
Sun Sep 30, 2018 3:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3761
Views: 1068636

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Traveling Salesman on Amazon Prime. I ran across a review of it at plus.math.org; most characters (there are not very many) are mathematicians; Traveling Salesman is the classic optimization problem; four eminent mathematicians (a winner of the Fields Medal etc) are winding up a government grant an...
by Dantes
Mon Aug 27, 2018 6:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?
Replies: 102
Views: 7866

Re: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?

If you are in line in front of me at the grocery store you should definitely use cash.
by Dantes
Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Test your cognitive biases
Replies: 89
Views: 5416

Re: Test your cognitive biases

I got the top score. Probably the rigorous training I got back in the seventies for my Library Science degree.
by Dantes
Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3761
Views: 1068636

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Ordeal By Innocence on Amazon Prime. A three-part adaption of the book by Agatha Christie. Excellent, I would watch it again. It is much darker than a Poirot or Miss Marple.
by Dantes
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I tell my family/friend that they are making a financial mistake?
Replies: 87
Views: 8107

Re: Should I tell my family/friend that they are making a financial mistake?

"Financial Mistake" is a vague term. Are they putting their money into mutual funds with a 0.5% expense ratio, or are they investing in every IPO that comes down the road or in every stock anyone gives them a tip on? Are they making choices that can wipe out their net worth, or are they making choic...
by Dantes
Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What’s your Value Colombian coffee?
Replies: 53
Views: 3625

Re: What’s your Value Colombian coffee?

I like Eight O'Clock Colombian Peaks - inexpensive and widely available either whole bean or ground. Its certainly "value". But +1 to Guatemalan, I don't think I've had any I didn't like. Obviously I'm not a connoisseur, and I do have a soft spot for Eight O'Clock coffee, it was available whole bean...
by Dantes
Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good Modern Science Fiction
Replies: 321
Views: 45210

Re: Good Modern Science Fiction

Reading through these posts on sci fi, I kept stopping on yours, and remembering another series with a similar name. I actually thought it was the same name, but knew the Dunstall books weren't it as the series I kept remembering was old, real old, and had been some of the first space opera publish...
by Dantes
Thu Jul 26, 2018 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toughest Purchase of my Life. Engagement Ring time
Replies: 207
Views: 10075

Re: Toughest Purchase of my Life. Engagement Ring time

I'm the opposite of frugal, but, speaking as someone married for almost 50 years, the whole wedding and engagement process has about as much meaning as a St Patrick's Day Hallmark card. Its marketing, convincing you to spend money on something that is totally without value. So I don't see the purpos...
by Dantes
Wed Jul 25, 2018 9:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: At Retirement: thoughts on portfolio allocations & moving TIAA to VG
Replies: 9
Views: 739

Re: At Retirement: thoughts on portfolio allocations & moving TIAA to VG

Looks like 15 different investments just in Plan Number 1. I would focus on simplification, and - barring considerations such as jebmke mentions above - roll over into a single IRA would just a few standard funds. TIAA Traditional is a good bond equivalent during accumulation, but a pain to actually...
by Dantes
Tue Jul 24, 2018 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any reason to hold junk bond fund?
Replies: 50
Views: 4707

Re: Any reason to hold junk bond fund?

Vanguard High-Yield Corporate (VWEAX for admiral), which another poster suggested as an alternative, is not short term. Current SEC yield is 5.85%, and credit quality is almost all in the B's. It has 7.9% C or unrated compared to 12.3% for PGHY. So there is an interesting comparison here between dur...
by Dantes
Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are socially responsible funds just another marketing ploy?
Replies: 25
Views: 2261

Re: Are socially responsible funds just another marketing ploy?

Its not clear to me what you mean by "add any value to the market". But If I could educate orphans, save whales, and kick greedy bankers (without undue effort) I would. Its like a vote, or purchasing a hybrid ten years ago; it might now, on its own, be an insignificant action, but if it reaches a cr...
by Dantes
Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying off share of children's student loans with house or stay?
Replies: 17
Views: 849

Re: Paying off share of children's student loans with house or stay?

1K per month, which you say you can pay, would pay off your 54.8K share of the amount in about 5 years with 6.78% interest. At least, according to the loan calculator at bankrate.com. Interest over the 5 years would be roughy 10K. So you certainly do not have to sell. Its a choice, and you can suit ...
by Dantes
Tue Jul 17, 2018 8:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering lump sum withdrawal from former employer's retirement fund, to have $ actively managed by pro $ manager
Replies: 10
Views: 1145

Re: Considering lump sum withdrawal from former employer's retirement fund, to have $ actively managed by pro $ manager

You have close to a million in various retirement accounts, pension, and social security, so the answer to #1 is yes you are in a good place to have retirement income of 4K a month. With a current income of over 125K, if that represents, say, 20 years a gradual growth then Social Security is likely ...
by Dantes
Sun Jul 08, 2018 7:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you take a job in a less desirable city if you had to work fewer days?
Replies: 40
Views: 3276

Re: Would you take a job in a less desirable city if you had to work fewer days?

I would have done it in a second. I usually ended up working more than 8 hours a day anyway, with the result that I had only a couple of hours of discretionary time a day M-F, and at least one weekend day would be devoted to chores and errands. I would have viewed this as a chance to nearly triple m...
by Dantes
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping at non sit down places
Replies: 94
Views: 8625

Re: Tipping at non sit down places

Yes, if there is a tip jar, unless I dislike the setup, or if the person behind the counter is unpleasant. Why not?
by Dantes
Tue Jul 03, 2018 5:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Australians and the Barefoot Investor: a NYT book review
Replies: 4
Views: 784

Re: Australians and the Barefoot Investor: a NYT book review

Thanks for posting the link. Really enjoyed the article.
by Dantes
Mon Jul 02, 2018 5:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Power of Working Longer
Replies: 185
Views: 19915

Re: Retirement strategy?

This seems rather convoluted: The authors show that, for each additional 1% you save in your retirement, increasing your investment performance by 1% for 30 years is equal to postponing your retirement by 0.4 months—not quite two weeks, in other words. Are they are saying that the 1% increase in per...
by Dantes
Sun Jul 01, 2018 8:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your property taxes?
Replies: 212
Views: 14257

Re: What are your property taxes?

Maine. A bit over 2% of assessed value. Property values are low.
by Dantes
Fri Jun 29, 2018 5:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Do you subscribe to Consumer Reports?]
Replies: 31
Views: 3032

Re: Are many of you??????

Yes, to both questions.
by Dantes
Fri Jun 22, 2018 5:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Questions about RMD and insurance.
Replies: 11
Views: 1191

Re: Questions about RMD and insurance.

What is special about the 1970's with respect to Employer health insurance? RM Only that benefits were better back then. There has been a long and mostly gradual decrease in health coverage benefits for retirees since the 1970's, to accompany the long and not so gradual increase in the cost of heal...
by Dantes
Thu Jun 21, 2018 4:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Questions about RMD and insurance.
Replies: 11
Views: 1191

Re: Questions about RMD and insurance.

The other question is about insurance. She's already signed up for Medicare. She's still getting coverage through our employer now. When she retires, she will have the option to continue purchasing the same insurance through our university, at the full university cost (rather than the subsidized co...
by Dantes
Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which Supermarket are you?
Replies: 155
Views: 9402

Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Hannaford, a northeast chain, because of nearness. 1 hour trips to Trader Joe for wine, nuts, and so on every few weeks. Local eggs from a local health food store, always. I make an effort to avoid GMO foods, and prefer organic when the price is not way higher - and it depends what the nature of the...
by Dantes
Wed Jun 13, 2018 5:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you celebrate (potty trained kid) milestone with your spouse?
Replies: 93
Views: 5623

Re: How do you celebrate (potty trained kid) milestone with your spouse?

I tried to describe the range of responses on this thread to my spouse; her response was that Bogleheads have to much time on their hands.

More seriously, this event brings its own reward. But for young parents dinner out without the kids is a good thing on occasion.
by Dantes
Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3.75 mortgage with PMI or refinance 4.4 no PMI
Replies: 6
Views: 741

Re: 3.75 mortgage with PMI or refinance 4.4 no PMI

I was unaware that private mortgage insurance could last indefinitely, but checking I see it does in some cases, such as FHA. One consequence of this is that if interest rates go up it may reach a point where its not worth refinancing to avoid the PMI. Where is "future P & I - $818" coming from? Tha...
by Dantes
Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Schwab's market predictions next 10 years
Replies: 20
Views: 2936

Re: Schwab's market predictions next 10 years

Its a perfectly reasonable article. If people want predictions they could find a lot worse, and if they looked around they would find basically the same projections in lots of different places. Lower US returns, stronger international returns, lower bond returns has been the general consensus for so...
by Dantes
Tue Jun 05, 2018 12:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS calculator for estimated amount $ working min years 40 quarters or fixed # of years
Replies: 12
Views: 1035

Re: SS calculator for estimated amount $ working min years 40 quarters or fixed # of years

Both wages and bend points are adjusted based on the National Average Wage Index, as of the year the recipient turns 62. Strictly speaking, your AWI and bend points are determined based on the year you turn 60, discussion here: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=210395 Thanks! The...
by Dantes
Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS calculator for estimated amount $ working min years 40 quarters or fixed # of years
Replies: 12
Views: 1035

Re: SS calculator for estimated amount $ working min years 40 quarters or fixed # of years

Both wages and bend points are adjusted based on the National Average Wage Index, as of the year the recipient turns 62. This year - for those who turn 62 in 2018 - the bend points are 895 and 5,397. If your wages, after indexing, were 120,000 a year, then the total would be 1,800,000. Divide that b...
by Dantes
Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New SS claiming calculator ["Open Social Security" - ObliviousInvestor]
Replies: 65
Views: 6109

Re: New SS claiming calculator

(I was also surprised that the alternative I put in was worth more, in todays dollars, than the recommended strategy.) Yes, this is apparently a bug. If you could provide more information that would help me hunt down the problem. More like my bug! I put in, as an alternative, what we actually did, ...
by Dantes
Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New SS claiming calculator ["Open Social Security" - ObliviousInvestor]
Replies: 65
Views: 6109

Re: New SS claiming calculator

A nice, simple design. But why does the "Test an Alternative Claiming Strategy" section require dates for both my spouse's month/year to claim spousal benefits, and my own month/year to claim spousal benefits. That was with birth years of 1950. (I was also surprised that the alternative I put in was...
by Dantes
Mon Jun 04, 2018 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer-subsidized retiree health insurance questions
Replies: 19
Views: 1340

Re: Employer-subsidized retiree health insurance questions

Access to a plan that is not restricted to a specific geographical area in your country is valuable. I have a 50% subsidy from a university. I could actually pay a bit less if I went with a local Medicare Advantage plan, unsubsidized, but I value not being restricted to a specific network.
by Dantes
Sat Jun 02, 2018 4:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Milestones on the way to FI [Financial Independence]
Replies: 33
Views: 4579

Re: Milestones on the way to FI

Having a real emergency fund. That provided the stability needed for budgeting and saving.
by Dantes
Sun May 20, 2018 7:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying shares in Demutualized bank
Replies: 19
Views: 1811

Re: Buying shares in Demutualized bank

You may be able to make some money with it, but that's a bug not a feature. Like with insurance companies, demutualization is usually more about a windfall for insider employees than either the fiscal strength of the institution or account holders. Where I used to work I could stand on a street cor...
by Dantes
Sun May 20, 2018 6:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Benefits and Medicare Part B Premiums Question
Replies: 10
Views: 1483

Re: SS Benefits and Medicare Part B Premiums Question

I was already receiving spousal benefits when I went on Medicare Part B. My first month of Part B coverage was April 2018, and my April Social Security payment (received in April for my March benefit ) was the first showing the withdrawal for the Medicare premium. So to me it looks like the premium ...
by Dantes
Mon May 14, 2018 8:03 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: The front page is ugly
Replies: 140
Views: 13765

Re: The front page is ugly

And Google should update its front page as well.
by Dantes
Thu May 03, 2018 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a house and High tax state.. Does it make sense anymore??
Replies: 28
Views: 2442

Re: Buying a house and High tax blue state.. Does it make sense anymore??

Average state-wide property tax rate in New York is supposedly 1.65% ( https://smartasset.com/taxes/new-york-property-tax-calculator ). If it were 1.65% then the 20K would represent a valuation of something like 1.21 million. And if 20K is 60% of your rent then you are paying 40K annually. What is t...
by Dantes
Wed May 02, 2018 6:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally asking CURRENT customer to provide SSN card?
Replies: 58
Views: 4664

Re: Ally asking CURRENT customer to provide SSN card?

I would want to know exactly what they mean by "may be subject to providing this". That certainly means something different from "must".

Do you have 150 accounts with Ally? And what is the value of a copy of a social security card? What could be easier to fake?
by Dantes
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which literary magazine do you read?
Replies: 12
Views: 903

Re: Which literary magazine do you read?

New York Review of Books. Sometimes when I look at at new issue its like a flashback to 1972; I swear the first issue I ever saw had an article about Auden, and they still run articles about Auden. But that aside it has some really interesting content. I don't read each issue cover to cover. New Yor...
by Dantes
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:12 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can indexing be considered as active management ?
Replies: 21
Views: 1780

Re: Can indexing be considered as active management ?

airelleofmusic wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 4:39 am

Any thoughts ?

Thanks,
aom
What would be the point of this? To justify selecting funds where managers actually choose the stocks held?
by Dantes
Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: KF's simple rules to achieve FI [Financial Independence]
Replies: 451
Views: 35232

Re: KF's simple rules to achieve FI

1) The goal is Financial Independence. It is not retirement. Hence, a person may choose to work, not work, or spend more money, or do something in between. It's hard for me to see the difference between being able to choose not to work and retirement - financially speaking. I could have chosen not ...
by Dantes
Fri Apr 20, 2018 2:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NYT article: Everyone should hire a financial planner
Replies: 103
Views: 10539

Re: NYT article: Everyone should hire a financial planner

Why do you need state of the art? There is real value in letting go of that requirement since investing results don't yield to the pursuit of expertise. It's fine if it's your hobby, or you have a complicated business or estate but the discussion is whether everyone should hire a financial planner....
by Dantes
Thu Apr 19, 2018 3:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Voya sold my annuity to a LLC. Keep it or cash in?
Replies: 2
Views: 700

Re: Voya sold my annuity to a LLC. Keep it or cash in?

This seems relevant: https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1535929/000119312517375461/d498024d8k.htm Item 1.01 Entry Into a Material Definitive Agreement On December 20, 2017, Voya Financial, Inc. a Delaware corporation (the “Company”), entered into a Master Transaction Agreement (the “Agreement”)...
by Dantes
Thu Apr 19, 2018 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [When is going out to a restaurant worth it to you?]
Replies: 71
Views: 6246

Re: [When is going out to a restaurant worth it to you?]

I love to cook, and my wife cooks as well. But, we also enjoy eating out. Usually Friday and Saturday, we're at home, and we'll put together some nice meals, grill out, drink wine, etc. A lot of times on Sunday, we'll go into the city to do some walking, errands, shopping, etc., then find a place f...
by Dantes
Thu Apr 19, 2018 6:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Goof? Prime MM, "retail," "Admiral," $5 million minimum?
Replies: 20
Views: 3060

Re: Goof? Prime MM, "retail," "Admiral," $5 million minimum?

That certainly looks like an institutional requirement. I think there has been some change etween Admiral and Institutional. A search for 'Vanguard Fund 0066" on one of the lesser users search engines (which I believe to be less frequent in its updates) returns: "Vanguard - Vanguard Prime Money Mark...
by Dantes
Fri Apr 13, 2018 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cedar Fence: is Maintenance required?
Replies: 30
Views: 2491

Re: Cedar Fence: is Maintenance required?

Climate likely matters. My cedar fence was not maintained, never stained or painted. It slowly collapsed as wood rotted until it was dangerous to leave it standing. Replaced with pine. One of the most curious things about this forum is that people are meticulous about demanding financial circumstan...
by Dantes
Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you file your income taxes?
Replies: 77
Views: 6070

Re: How did you file your income taxes?

KPMG did my return, all 148 pages. I have no idea what is in all that nonsense. I cross-check a few key lines vs previous years and sign it. Is this thread actionable? Certainly its actionable. I'm interested in how others do taxes - maybe there will be a way that seems better to me. Fillable forms...
by Dantes
Tue Apr 03, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you file your income taxes?
Replies: 77
Views: 6070

Re: How did you file your income taxes?

Taxact for federal taxes. By hand for state taxes because (1) Mass dropped perfectly good custom on-line tax software, and pretends that using the various commercial applications is an improvement, (2) I don't want to pay $37 or whatever dollars it was to file a state tax because we file in two stat...