Search found 6338 matches

by Northern Flicker
Mon Sep 28, 2020 11:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Long Suffering VXUS Holder No More
Replies: 132
Views: 11114

Re: Long Suffering VXUS Holder No More

Robust inflation usually is currency depreciation. We don't know for sure what will happen moving forward, but the last time the US had robust inflation (1967-1981), non-US equities had generous real returns, and the S&P500 had a real return of zero. Another example would be equities in the Weimar R...
by Northern Flicker
Mon Sep 28, 2020 10:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do YOU find a good doctor these days...
Replies: 60
Views: 3101

Re: How do YOU find a good doctor these days...

I rely on my PCP to refer me to competent specialists when needed. I choose a PCP by choosing a well respected clinic first. I then read the credentials and bio sketches of the available PCPs. I'm sure there are many very good PCPs in small practices, but I avoid those practices these days.
by Northern Flicker
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:07 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Long Suffering VXUS Holder No More
Replies: 132
Views: 11114

Re: Long Suffering VXUS Holder No More

If I were personally to reallocate non-US equity to US equity, I would also reallocate some nominal bonds to TIPS to compensate for the reduction in inflation protection offered by holding US equity only.
by Northern Flicker
Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does the three fund portfolio provide adequate protection from inflation?
Replies: 47
Views: 3039

Re: Does the three fund portfolio provide adequate protection from inflation?

well, you could replace total bond index with a bond portfolio that is 50% intermediate treasuries and 50% intermediate TIPS.
by Northern Flicker
Sun Sep 27, 2020 1:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: iShares MSCI World ETF vs. Vanguard VT
Replies: 9
Views: 851

Re: iShares MSCI World ETF vs. Vanguard VT

I'm inclined to agree with you, and would recommend a VTI+VEA portfolio with its attractive ER, over URTH, with one caveat. With a two-fund, you're the one that has to reallocate, and that could be a psychological hurtle if international continues to underperform. Don't want to name anyone, but I s...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 26, 2020 8:33 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Is this a perfect time to pile into a 3% yield, net of fees, stable value fund?
Replies: 21
Views: 3043

Re: Is this a perfect time to pile into a 3% yield, net of fees, stable value fund?

I would not expect the 3% crediting rate to hold up throughout the low rate cycle, but that won't affect principal value. Rising rates are not a problem for SVFs either. The crediting rate is not the annual yield. The crediting rate is what you get by compounding the yield for the year. If the fund ...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 26, 2020 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Blended Scotch Drinkers Here?
Replies: 43
Views: 2652

Re: Any Blended Scotch Drinkers Here?

There are two characteristics relevant. 1. A scotch whiskey can be single malt or blended. 2. A scotch whiskey can be made from highland malt or lowland malt. Highland malts generally produce a lighter, more delicate flavor. Lowland malts generally produce a more boggy flavor. While there are some l...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 26, 2020 3:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?
Replies: 243
Views: 15486

Re: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?

Drawdown based utility functions are one of those things that sound intuitive but fail in spectacular ways. Here are some examples... Unless the utility function includes asset size as an input parameter, drawdowns are logically equivalent to rebalances. If you have a $100K portfolio and rescale it...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 26, 2020 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]
Replies: 109
Views: 6522

Re: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]

I hold non-US equities at 25% of equities. My goal is to diversify inflation risk. Having non-US equities outperform is not a good outcome at this allocation, so this is a bet on US outperformance. The purpose of holding 25% non-US equities is so that the equity portfolio has a good chance of achie...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 26, 2020 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car
Replies: 24
Views: 2895

Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

My last car purchase was a former Avis rental car that was a 6-year-old car I bought on craigslist from someone who in turn had bought it as a 1-year-old retired rental car. I drove it trouble free for another 11 years. Lease returns require showing records of scheduled maintenance so they also are ...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]
Replies: 109
Views: 6522

Re: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]

It is 1986! Nonetheless, it appears that unless we pick a very specific time frame to support a debate on the inclusion of international such as the 1970s or the 2000s, that the debate for including international is much weaker. Unless you pick the complementary timeframes, the rationale for an all...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 5:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Myths of international investing - Fidelity
Replies: 158
Views: 10329

Re: Myth's of international investing - Fidelity

The arguments for international are weak and continue to get weaker. The most important aspect to a strategy that one can stay with in all markets. If that is US only that is fine. Nothing is causing the case to get weaker. If anything, the risks associated with a US-only equity portfolio have incr...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?
Replies: 243
Views: 15486

Re: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?

Bellman's principle of optimality says that the optimal solution to any optimization problem must have a property called path independence. Bellman's principle applies to optimization by dynamic programming. Unless you discuss a dynamic programming algorithm for optimizing rebalancing decisions, it...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 2:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Swenson's Yale Portfolio
Replies: 23
Views: 2147

Re: Swenson's Yale Portfolio

The 300-year horizon should be interpreted as analogous to a 300-year individual retirement to fund, not a 300-year accumulation period.
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance
Replies: 38
Views: 4021

Re: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance

You can draw the analogy of soft dollars with frequent flyer miles all you want, but that does not change the fact that mutual fund companies receive benefits used in fund administration packaged with brokerage services, and that part of fund administration cost is not accounted for in ER. The use o...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]
Replies: 109
Views: 6522

Re: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]

It almost feels like those who are holding international want to "justify" the reasons for holding it. Look, guys... My PERSONAL sleep better at night and feel better about how my money is working is telling me to hold a VERY small amount of international and let the US markets do what they are goi...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 25, 2020 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]
Replies: 109
Views: 6522

Re: VXUS - Why? [Vanguard Total International Stock ETF]

On paper only of course, VIGAX has absolutely CRUSHED VXUS. It will always be the case that you can look back with perfect hindsight and see which segment ovetperformed in the recent past . Now all you need is a time-travel machine and you have a can't miss strategy. The point of investing in index...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 24, 2020 11:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance
Replies: 38
Views: 4021

Re: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance

How do you know it is a loss leader? Not all costs are accounted for in ER. All operational costs must be accounted in the ER. Not so. Mutual fund companies receive administrative service, data, analysis etc. from brokers packaged with transactions. These satisfy administrative needs that then do n...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 24, 2020 10:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Swenson's Yale Portfolio
Replies: 23
Views: 2147

Re: Swenson's Yale Portfolio

The article is self-contradictory. It says: Yale’s absolute return investments are designed to produce good risk-adjusted returns regardless of the direction of financial markets. And it also says that the Yale annual return was 6.8% vs 7.5% for the S&P500. I don't think being 70bp below the S&P500 ...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?
Replies: 70
Views: 5009

Re: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?

Thanks Northern Flicker for breaking this down for me. In your $10,000 example, is the $6,413 than counted as income for tax purposes? I will confirm with Vanguard. I really appreciate your help. Vanguard may rightly suggest "consult your tax advisor." You might consider doing your own draft 2020 t...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?
Replies: 70
Views: 5009

Re: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?

Forgive me for not reading all the answers. Are you confusing maximum and minimum? The maximum income in my state - California - for a couple is $24,690. You can't go over. If you are substantially under, as we accidentally were one year, it was suggested we could have gone with Medicaid. The quest...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?
Replies: 243
Views: 15486

Re: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?

Regarding rebalancing after a crash... if you were comfortable with a 55/45 allocation before a market crash, why would the same allocation become more risky after the crash? The downside risk was obviously much greater before the crash. I was comfortable with $1 million in bonds, not 45%... If I r...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Sell VNQ in Taxable? Buy in 401K?
Replies: 8
Views: 402

Re: Sell VNQ in Taxable? Buy in 401K?

A wash sale is triggered by a purchase of VNQ in any account 30 days before or after the sale, not just after. The best procedure is to turn off automatic reinvestment of distributions for all holdings of VNQ or VGSLX (if any-- this is the mutual fund share class), and sell 31 days after the last pu...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?
Replies: 243
Views: 15486

Re: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?

Regarding rebalancing after a crash... if you were comfortable with a 55/45 allocation before a market crash, why would the same allocation become more risky after the crash? The downside risk was obviously much greater before the crash. Because to get back to 55/45 after a crash, you have to conve...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?
Replies: 70
Views: 5009

Re: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?

Northern Flicker wrote: You mentioned you have $52K in the midcap index fund you mentioned. If you have reinvested dividends, your average cost basis for the investment is likely a little higher than the $10K you invested. Suppose it is $13K. Then if you have the fund set to use average cost basis ...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 7:18 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance
Replies: 38
Views: 4021

Re: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance

The regular Fidelity index funds have low enough fees that I would prefer the added transparency of tracking a 3rd party index. I've also been unable to determine if Fidelity owns a stake in the brokers used for Zero fund transactions.
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance
Replies: 38
Views: 4021

Re: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance

I don't know . That's why I said "I think". :D It cannot be not operating itself with no expenses. That money has to come from somewhere. You may be right. Quickly perusing the cash holdings for FZROX and VTSAX shows a large difference. FZROX has .20% in cash holdings versus .03% for VTSAX. That ma...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance
Replies: 38
Views: 4021

Re: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance

retiredjg wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 5:08 pm
Northern Flicker wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:49 pm How do you know it is a loss leader? Not all costs are accounted for in ER.
I don't know. That's why I said "I think". :D

It cannot be not operating itself with no expenses. That money has to come from somewhere.
ER is not the only way money can flow from the fund to fidelity.
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?
Replies: 70
Views: 5009

Re: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?

Tax gain harvesting for a taxable account is analogous to a Roth conversion in a tax-deferred account in the sense that you realize the taxes now instead of when you withdraw from the asset later. You mentioned you have $52K in the midcap index fund you mentioned. If you have reinvested dividends, y...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?
Replies: 243
Views: 15486

Re: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?

Regarding rebalancing after a crash... if you were comfortable with a 55/45 allocation before a market crash, why would the same allocation become more risky after the crash? The downside risk was obviously much greater before the crash.
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?
Replies: 243
Views: 15486

Re: Never Ever Rebalance Bonds into Stocks?

If you own individual TIPS as in a TIPS ladder, then when each TIPS matures, you will be taxed on the total gain, including the inflation adjustment. When you sell stocks, you will be taxed on the capital gain (i.e. the difference between the price you paid and sold for), which presumably includes ...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?
Replies: 70
Views: 5009

Re: What happens if your income comes in below the minimum for the ACA?

The IRS publications state that if you qualified for a premium tax credit based on having made a reasonable and good faith estimate of income using the enrollment system, that is (using the language of the IRS publication) free from an intentional or reckless disregard for the facts, you still may/w...
by Northern Flicker
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance
Replies: 38
Views: 4021

Re: Fidelity Zero funds vs Vanguard performance

How do you know it is a loss leader? Not all costs are accounted for in ER.
by Northern Flicker
Mon Sep 21, 2020 12:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Doesn't it still make sense to hold bonds in tax advantaged?
Replies: 37
Views: 2687

Re: Doesn't it still make sense to hold bonds in tax advantaged?

The appropriate question is where do you want to hold stocks? Once that is answered, hold bonds in the remaining space.
by Northern Flicker
Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The WR in practice [Withdrawal Rate]
Replies: 67
Views: 3923

Re: The WR in practice [Withdrawal Rate]

Regarding inflation, today's $35K in 15-20 years will only be able to buy things that cost $17.5K in today's dollars. In 30-40 years, the $35K will only pay for things that cost $9K today. In other words, every 15-20 years, the cost of everything pretty much doubles. What are you going to do for me...
by Northern Flicker
Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The WR in practice [Withdrawal Rate]
Replies: 67
Views: 3923

Re: The WR in practice [Withdrawal Rate]

The future is always uncertain: I don’t know what the future looks like. We CAN see what the present conditions are, however, and they’ve never been less favorable for sustained retirement income in the past than they are now. Except for inflation (or lack thereof)? Expected inflation is pretty muc...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring to Canada
Replies: 54
Views: 4284

Re: Retiring to Canada

tj wrote: Sat Sep 19, 2020 2:24 pm
Petrocelli wrote: Sat Sep 19, 2020 2:23 pm Has anyone looked into retiring in Canada? If you have, what are the pros and cons?


Con: Cold. Literally the entire country.
Vancouver has a milder winter than say Washington DC.
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 19, 2020 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Losing Money with Index Funds
Replies: 149
Views: 13691

Re: Losing Money with Index Funds

Some stock investments are speculative. The intent is to try to buy low and sell high. The market is far too unpredictable for this approach to be reliable. A diversified portfolio of stocks like an index fund has eliminated by diversification most of the risk of going to zero, or of falling and nev...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 19, 2020 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

I think thr real issue is sticker shock-- the OP knew there may be a cost, but had assumed it was $30 or less like common vaccines.
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 19, 2020 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?
Replies: 46
Views: 2835

Re: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?

A 50-50 mix of intermediate treasuries and intermediate TIPS has provided similar equity downside protection as BND, but is more protected from inflation. This is the bond portfolio recommended to individuals by David Swensen, Chief Investment Officer of the Yale Endowment. VGIT and SCHP would be th...
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 19, 2020 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?
Replies: 46
Views: 2835

Re: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?

What is needed is to diversify away uncompensated sector and unsystematic risk, not the foresight to avoid it by stock picking or sector picking.
by Northern Flicker
Sat Sep 19, 2020 2:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Losing Money with Index Funds
Replies: 149
Views: 13691

Re: Losing Money with Index Funds

The only way to lose money with index funds to sell them at a loss soon after you buy them. The longer you hold them, the less likely that is to happen. Those two sentences are inconsistent. The second sentence is correct, but there are no guarantees that you will avoid monetary loss over any lengt...
by Northern Flicker
Fri Sep 18, 2020 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?
Replies: 46
Views: 2835

Re: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?

portfolio visualizer reinvests distributions to calculate accurate total returns. now, even if you go back to end dec 2019 and wish away the horrible 2020 for utilities, only 5 of the starting years 05, 06, 14, 16, 18 have higher cagrs for vpu than vti. that leaves 10 periods starting in the follow...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 17, 2020 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?
Replies: 46
Views: 2835

Re: Substituting bond with RE/utility ETFs?

wiserabbit wrote: Wed Sep 16, 2020 4:04 am I understand they're not bonds, I just want to get rid of BND.
Why did you decide to be at 80% stock in your allocation, and what changed to warrant 100% stocks now?
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 17, 2020 10:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Flu shots at the grocery store are $35 to $65. They are free at the Dr's office. We'll wait a week and get them for free. My understanding is that Shingrix is different than "regular" flu shots. Yes, but the concept is the same. The grocery store is selling convenience, and you pay for it. The copa...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 17, 2020 10:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: VTI vs VOO vs VV tax impact?
Replies: 20
Views: 1562

Re: VTI vs VOO vs VV tax impact?

Just to throw a curve-ball, I seem to recall ITOT (also Total Market like VTI) is marginally more tax-efficient ;). VTI was more tax-efficient in 2019. ITOT only had around 91% QDI: https://www.ishares.com/us/literature/tax-information/2019-qdi-summary-icrmh0220u-1088762.pdf I think VTI generally h...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Don’t understand when to pay taxes new retiree
Replies: 42
Views: 3251

Re: Don’t understand when to pay taxes new retiree

You always have at least 15 days following the end of each quarter to make a timely tax payment. Note that the IRS quarters aren't the same as the usual calendar quarters most people use. (Q2 is 2 months, Q4 is 4 months). https://www.irs.gov/faqs/estimated-tax/individuals/individuals-2 You'll want ...
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Flu shots are free to the recipient when their insurance covers it, whether administered by a doctor's office or pharmacy. They are never free.
by Northern Flicker
Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New York Life - Invest as Favor for Friend
Replies: 40
Views: 2176

Re: New York Life - Invest as Favor for Friend

NYLife has a subsidiary that offers mutual funds, probably an acquisition of another company originally. Their S&P500 fund has a 1.5% sales load and 0.54% ER. https://www.nylinvestments.com/mainstay/products-and-performance/MainStay-MacKay-S-P-500-Index-Fund The other Mainstay (NYLife) mutual funds ...
by Northern Flicker
Wed Sep 16, 2020 6:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Don't most healthcare benefits that the VA provides to veterans have a nonzero cost if the veteran chooses to get the care elsewhere? Why should it be free at a grocery store? VA healthcare has been backlogged and there are expanded options. Don't know why a grocery store per say would be included ...