Search found 1723 matches

by kramer
Mon Mar 12, 2007 2:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone Totally Paperless?
Replies: 87
Views: 23517

I am semi-retiring shortly and intend to go totally paperless. I will be scanning in all financial docs, tax records and medical records. In addition to archived storage, I plan to encrypt them and make them available on-line to myself. This will make tax filing and health care from overseas locatio...
by kramer
Sun Mar 11, 2007 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Never use Western Union online
Replies: 2
Views: 2794

Thanks for the information. I plan to do some long term traveling later this year. I was just about to research Western Union because I had heard of someone else doing the same kind of traveling who had set something up with Western Union in case he got robbed of everything (cash, credit, ATM cards)...
by kramer
Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Job salaries - how to estimate what's fair?
Replies: 11
Views: 5338

I am an engineer in Silicon Valley and found payscale to do a decent job when I tried it.

Kramer
by kramer
Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do you own any individual stocks?
Replies: 87
Views: 35890

Any other reasons I've overlooked? I am a cap gains captive of Berkshire B shares. When I became a true Diehard, I sold the other two individual stocks that I owned, but Berk had increased in value enough to not make sense to pay the tax. For myself, I have no reason to own individual stocks whatso...
by kramer
Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard investors have to take personal responsibility
Replies: 11
Views: 5968

Re: Security

To defeat keyloggers, download KeyScrambler (a free tool). This gives an added layer of protection. chaz Thanks for this suggestion. I just read up on this but have not tried it yet. When I travel, I would like to bring my browser on a USB memory key running portable Firefox from portableapps.com. ...
by kramer
Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Mkts. What % of TOTAL retirement AA
Replies: 32
Views: 14626

I am one month from semi-retirement. EM is 15% of my net worth and 23% of my equity holdings. I hope to shave EM down to single digits with 2008/9/10 low cap gains rates. If I sell now, my fed+state cap gains taxes are 22%. If I wait until 2008/9/10, they are about 5%. Although waiting entails some ...
by kramer
Tue Mar 06, 2007 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Credit Repair Question
Replies: 11
Views: 6077

But after you pay the bill, doesn't it show up as paid on the credit report? In other words, the blemish is still there, but at least it will show up as paid, correct? Correct How long does it take from the time you pay until it shows up as paid on the report? Should you pester the creditor to do t...
by kramer
Tue Mar 06, 2007 3:05 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Credit Repair Question
Replies: 11
Views: 6077

But after you pay the bill, doesn't it show up as paid on the credit report? In other words, the blemish is still there, but at least it will show up as paid, correct? How long does it take from the time you pay until it shows up as paid on the report? Should you pester the creditor to do this? I am...
by kramer
Sat Mar 03, 2007 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buying a Car, Paying Cash
Replies: 26
Views: 14205

Your check has nothing to do with the protection of your purchase from a dealer. The sale is a result of the mounds of papers you will be asked to sign. You can just write them a personal check. They will be happy to take it.

Kramer
by kramer
Sat Mar 03, 2007 2:24 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Adjust AA for specific risks?
Replies: 4
Views: 2898

Managing these risks involves a lot more than just AA. I am retiring early from my profession and some specific risks I must deal with (by choice): * Rapid inflation of health insurance premiums in the private market. * Health risk -- becoming unhealthy as defined by insurance companies might tie yo...
by kramer
Wed Feb 28, 2007 3:19 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much risk do I need to take?
Replies: 20
Views: 8743

Hello Raybo, I would never recommend a 100% TIPs portfolio. But just to add some perspective, here are Safe Withdrawal Rates for various time periods and various real rates of return for TIPs. I think this can add some perspective to a "how much risk do I need to take" discussion. 45 year TIPS --> S...
by kramer
Tue Feb 27, 2007 5:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: EM (VWO) down 7% today, only 18% more to go...
Replies: 24
Views: 10353

Well, EM is my largest holding at about 15.5%, all in taxable. I have not added to my EM for about 2.5 years -- my "rebalancing" has been to add new money only to other asset classes. I intend to semi-retire this year, and rebalance out of some of EM over the next two years to get it to only single ...
by kramer
Mon Feb 26, 2007 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone peeved at Bank of America?
Replies: 8
Views: 4924

I've been with BofA in CA for about 15 years. I see them as your standard "Big Bank". I haven't had any major problems with them and their online bill pay is fantastic. They now don't remove funds from your account until the payee receives them. We also get a free safe deposit box from them. It sta...
by kramer
Mon Feb 26, 2007 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: QDI for iShares
Replies: 7
Views: 3777

Try this link (pdf file): http://www.ishares.com/material_download.jhtml?relativePath=/repository/material/downloads/ishares_1099_qdi.pdf& The way I find this each year is I go to the ishares site and type the following in the search box: qualified dividends 2006 (use year of your choice). Better sa...
by kramer
Mon Feb 26, 2007 1:58 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD's
Replies: 25
Views: 11610

Re: CD's

Good question. Well, CDs are offering up to 6.0%... Can't argue with the logic of going for a good rate. I was just curious, because sometimes people view CD's as the entire investment world and wind up being bitten by the inflation bug. I plan for CDs to be just a part of my portfolio. I will be a...
by kramer
Mon Feb 26, 2007 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD's
Replies: 25
Views: 11610

I should add that Vanguard's brokered CD alternatives are just not competitive with what is out there available from individual banks and credit unions. I did check with the Vanguard bond desk, and came up with a max CD rate in the area of 5.3%. This is not a Vanguard issue but a brokered CD issue. ...
by kramer
Mon Feb 26, 2007 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD's
Replies: 25
Views: 11610

Re: CD's

I would like to buy CDs in my IRA. Why CD's, as opposed to bonds? Good question. Well, CDs are offering up to 6.0% at PenFed (and there are other good offers out there), and are guaranteed by the government up to certain limits. Treasuries are offering something like 4.64%? Intermediate Vanguard bo...
by kramer
Mon Feb 26, 2007 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD's
Replies: 25
Views: 11610

I would like to buy CDs in my IRA. My IRA is at Vanguard, and soon I will be rolling over my 401(k) into it. Until now, the IRA has not been large enough to worry about, but with the rollover, I need to get efficient. But the problem is that accessing anything but brokered CDs within an IRA is very ...
by kramer
Sat Feb 24, 2007 5:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: HSA Accounts
Replies: 24
Views: 9925

Re: California state tax on HSA

One thing I was reminded of when preparing my taxes this week: In a few states the tax law does not conform to federal law as to HSAs. California being one such state. In calculating California AGI I had to add back in not just my HSA contribution but also the interest earned on the account. Eric <...
by kramer
Fri Feb 23, 2007 4:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Compounding, will it really get you there?
Replies: 31
Views: 13112

I think the other mistake that many folks make is buying a big house. A house is a consumption item and should be viewed as such. There is nothing wrong with owning, but the average house size in the US has more than doubled in the last 50 years as average family size has decreased. I am still a ha...
by kramer
Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:05 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Hocus banned from M* - What does that mean for this site?
Replies: 29
Views: 16254

I haven't posted much at M* because their forum software is so ancient, search is pathetic, and basically they are just taking the community for granted without investing a cent in improving things.

I fully support the new forum!!

Kramer
by kramer
Fri Feb 23, 2007 2:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Compounding, will it really get you there?
Replies: 31
Views: 13112

Hi Trebor, I always encourage people to save. I am single and have lived below my means but never deprived myself. I live in a nice rental apartment in Silicon Valley in a great downtown area where I can walk to everything, try to take an international trip each year, and visit family in Southern Ca...
by kramer
Wed Feb 21, 2007 3:29 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Employee stock options - exercise tactics
Replies: 15
Views: 7936

My wife is retired. Part of the retirement package at her ex-employer is that she got to keep her stock options. After a rough patch for the stock price, it has finally floated up to where some of her options are in the money. The problem is that they are just barely in the money, between $0-2, and...