Search found 451 matches

by robertalpert
Tue Dec 20, 2016 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: "Trump Rally" with any basis or doomed to come down to earth soon?
Replies: 16
Views: 2339

Re: "Trump Rally" with any basis or doomed to come down to earth soon?

Slow growth is boring and effective. That is how it should be. That's how it's been for past 8 years. He will most certainly stimulate the economy till over-stimulated; then the crash. Keeping close eye on yield curve. Rebalance (or perhaps market-timing) opportunity on the horizon. Got in before th...
by robertalpert
Thu Dec 15, 2016 11:03 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Question about the Yield Curve
Replies: 7
Views: 834

Re: Question about the Yield Curve

Can you provide a link to the article that you are talking about? Not too many on this forum would acknowledge the validity of yield curve predictions. A book by Deborah Weir explains the specifics of yield curve usage. Inverted yield curve has predicted 20 of the last 10 recessions. (many false pos...
by robertalpert
Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Will it be better to move to Schwab from Vanguard?
Replies: 23
Views: 4101

Re: Will it be better to move to Schwab from Vanguard?

Thanks all, should I stay with TD fund? Or it is better to switch to a 3 fund portfolio (whether in Vanguard or somewhere else)? How can make such a decision? :? Your current AA is apparently 90/10 (VTIVX). Perhaps this is too aggressive -- How would you change your AA? You can probably find a Vang...
by robertalpert
Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Backtesting Medigap plans
Replies: 1
Views: 403

Re: Backtesting Medigap plans

Ask for the current price for a 65 year old. Current price for a 75 year old. Current price for an 85 year old.

Beyond age 85 is not valid comparison because most carriers have not developed their charts past age 85.
by robertalpert
Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:33 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard ROTH: Non-Vanguard fund - can't exchange - have to sell?
Replies: 6
Views: 1479

Re: Vanguard ROTH: Non-Vanguard fund - can't exchange - have to sell?

If you have the old account structure (where brokerage account has different account number from the Vanguard fund account); then have to sell and wait for funds to settle before purchasing Vanguard funds. If you have upgraded to the new enhanced account structure, (Brokerage account contains both V...
by robertalpert
Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Citi Amex Costco credit card problems.....
Replies: 24
Views: 13475

Re: Citi Amex Costco credit card problems.....

Ask them if there was return mail (post office returned statements to Citi as undeliverable). If there is return mail (undeliverable), then Citi should be willing to remove all late fees --- provided you agree to make payment by phone for remaining balance in full. You may end up being responsible f...
by robertalpert
Sat Nov 19, 2016 10:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Honda Cars
Replies: 96
Views: 15162

Re: Honda Cars

I hate to bring down the Honda love here, but... I have a 2016 Accord, and the vibration at idle when in Drive is severe. I think it's going to rattle itself to pieces before long. Google it so you know what you're getting into. This is just with the 4 cylinder CVT transmission. If you're going wit...
by robertalpert
Wed Nov 16, 2016 10:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why total bond fund rather than short-maturity fund?
Replies: 30
Views: 4839

Re: Why total bond fund rather than short-maturity fund?

The price-only comparison looks like this, but it's a completely irrelevant piece of data. .......... ......... the total return of bonds in the long run comes mostly from the bond's interest payments (which become mutual fund "dividends.") Because the yield curve usually rises, longer-te...
by robertalpert
Fri Nov 11, 2016 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drain Cleaner or Plumber for slow drains?
Replies: 52
Views: 12770

Re: Drain Cleaner or Plumber for slow drains?

The trouble with drain cleaners is they can take a long time to work and the cleaner may not reach the clog site. Plumbers don't like cleaners because they might get the cleaner on their hands while snaking your pipes. If you can do the snaking yourself, that may be the cheapest most reliable method...
by robertalpert
Sat Oct 29, 2016 5:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A Medicare part D puzzle, finally solved
Replies: 53
Views: 8153

Re: A Medicare part D puzzle, finally solved

What if any role should plan ratings play in choosing an RX plan-D carrier? Humana has rating of 3-star. Some other plans with similar costs have only a 2.5-star rating. During 2016, we had Silverscript (rating of 4-star). Silverscript was also least cost for us during 2016. For 2017, it will still ...
by robertalpert
Fri Oct 21, 2016 10:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Please critique my asset allocation [70% VTSAX, 30% VTIAX]
Replies: 18
Views: 3687

Re: Please critique my asset allocation [70% VTSAX, 30% VTIAX]

You imply that your stock / bond ratio is 100 % stock / 0% bond. That may only be true if you have no debt. With debt, your percent of stock is greater than 100%.

Can you quantify your stock / bond / debt ratio?
by robertalpert
Sat Oct 01, 2016 8:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Matching children's Roth IRA contributions
Replies: 41
Views: 5767

Re: Matching children's Roth IRA contributions

Could consider using a target date fund with $1000 initial minimum.

If the adult child is willing, he could grant you information access via website. It may not feel as intrusive as a mailed quarterly statement.

If a minor, then granting of information or limited agent status should be done.
by robertalpert
Thu Sep 22, 2016 10:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Help understanding the attraction to W & W [Wellington/Wellesley]
Replies: 38
Views: 6573

Re: Help understanding the attraction to W & W [Wellington/Wellesley]

I think an underrated part is the fact it's a stable, disciplined, long-term strategy of Large Value plus high quality corporate bonds for a very cheap expense ratio, even for the investor shares. Especially relevant is that Wellington and Wellesley both seem to have done a consistently good job of...
by robertalpert
Fri Sep 16, 2016 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Day Trading - Where To Start? (Coaching)
Replies: 23
Views: 3533

Re: Day Trading - Where To Start? (Coaching)

Day trading is only profitable to those who are selling the book or the day trade system. The end-user will never profit.
by robertalpert
Thu Sep 15, 2016 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Unusual? Trade Warning
Replies: 7
Views: 2195

Re: Vanguard Unusual? Trade Warning

I received this warning when I purchased VSS having sufficient funds in my sweep fund --- Prime money market. Half way through the trade settlement Vanguard (without my knowing) converted my brokerage account to the new platform, replacing the Prime sweep fund with the Federal settlement fund. Feder...
by robertalpert
Sat Sep 10, 2016 5:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard upgrading to Brokerage account comes with some nuisances
Replies: 89
Views: 21088

Re: Vanguard upgrading to Brokerage account comes with some nuisances

I took the plunge yesterday and upgraded two Roth IRAs, one T-Ira and taxable mutual fund accounts. The brokerage components were altready upgraded to the new platform by Vanguard. Had recently changed over my checking and direct deposits to the Federal MM. ... The only remaining issue is that of ac...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 30, 2016 3:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Feelings/Sentiments about Recession
Replies: 44
Views: 4616

Re: Feelings/Sentiments about Recession

joebh wrote:Other than cost, there is no advantage to using tinfoil for your helmet. It's been proven not to be effective.

Research on the fruit helmet is promising, but ongoing
Image
Perhaps stainless steel.
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Feelings/Sentiments about Recession
Replies: 44
Views: 4616

Re: Feelings/Sentiments about Recession

andy2012 wrote:I am not gonna put a penny in stock market right now except Gold and Gas
Yield curve inverted? -- Not

Recession risk? -- Not
by robertalpert
Sun Aug 21, 2016 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long wait on Vanguard Phone Lines-What's going on?
Replies: 58
Views: 11350

Re: Long wait on Vanguard Phone Lines-What's going on?

I hardly ever do any trades on my account. Prior to this, the last time was more than one year ago. This past month, I had placed two trades to purchase VSS, the final trade at beginning of the week using money in my Prime sweep money market. Mid way through this most recent trade settlement period ...
by robertalpert
Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any lawyers out there. Bike hits car, minor and parents have no insurance
Replies: 91
Views: 11191

Re: Any lawyers out there. Bike hits car, minor and parents have no insurance

bogle22 wrote:her mother rents without insurance and has no money according to her. I have a $500. deductible.
.

No apartment insurance?

Do you have uninsured motorist coverage?

Would your $500 deductible apply in this case?
by robertalpert
Thu Aug 11, 2016 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Life Strategy Funds
Replies: 32
Views: 5940

Re: Vanguard Life Strategy Funds

Your two life strategy funds should do well within an IRA. For taxable account, could consider Vanguard Tax-Managed Balanced Fund Admiral Shares (VTMFX) which is 50/50 stock / bond.
by robertalpert
Wed Aug 10, 2016 11:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

This morning I bought 77 shares of VSS at $99.09 / share. Today's closing price at 4:00pm was $98.78. Guess the 1-day loss was about $23. I set the limit at the bid price and the purchase was immediately executed one penny below that. Next week I may buy some more -- we'll see how that goes.
by robertalpert
Wed Aug 10, 2016 10:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard upgrading to Brokerage account comes with some nuisances
Replies: 89
Views: 21088

Re: Vanguard upgrading to Brokerage account comes with some nuisances

Re: Required upgrade Thanks Doc. Any timeframe on this? Yes they upgraded one of my accounts without me asking ... My info is stale. We upgraded in November 2014. I tried to do it earlier but we had to upgrade all 3 of our accounts and that took some time. The "all or none" has now change...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 11:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

Found an interesting how-to discussion from livesoft and others about ETF buying process:

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=77439
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

I like your idea of setting buy limit below the best bid and waiting. But if your buy is executed at end of day at approximately the index fund closing value, then your cost would be increased (over the index fund) by amount of spread. Why do you think that? What you wrote does not make sense to me...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

Going with VFSVX for long-term buy and hold is not a good idea, as you commented. I called Vanguard a few months ago and established two things: 1) There is no plan in the "intermediate term" (the associates' choice of words) for an Admiral Shares version of VFSVX. 2) You can do as many s...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

I would not submit a limit order to buy VSS at a price half-way between bid and ask. I would set the limit price no higher than one cent below the best bid and just wait for buyers to come to me. Or I might buy with a market order when the price of VSS is rising near the close. If VSS closes higher...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

You may also want to consider SCZ for International small - cap. I have had it for years and like it a lot. I also own VINEX, which is Vanguards Active version of Int'l small cap. It performs well too - although not as well as SCZ (iShares Small Cap version) If using an etf, I would consider altern...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

2) Logically, if you held VSS for more than two years then the decision to hold VSS over VSFVX is economical . Optimally, you may be able to purchase VSFVX in your Vanguard account in chunks of $3k and call them to convert the shares to ETF. This allows you to buy at NAV and obtain the lower expens...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

The expense ratio for VSFVX is 0.31; Expense ratio for VSS is 0.17. Savings on ETF expense ratio would be .31-.17= 0.14 This morning around 10:00 bid ask spread for VSS was buy-98.73. Sell-98.73. A difference of 0.14 From a Google search, The average bid-ask spread for VSS is 0.14. Is this bid ask ...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Re: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

[quote="triceratop"] 2) Logically, if you held VSS for more than two years then the decision to hold VSS over VSFVX is economical . Optimally, you may be able to purchase VSFVX in your Vanguard account in chunks of $3k and call them to convert the shares to ETF. This allows you to buy at N...
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX
Replies: 19
Views: 2856

Vanguard international small-cap. VSS or VSFVX

The expense ratio for VSFVX is 0.31; Expense ratio for VSS is 0.17. Savings on ETF expense ratio would be .31-.17= 0.14 This morning around 10:00 bid ask spread for VSS was buy-98.73. Sell-98.73. A difference of 0.14 From a Google search, The average bid-ask spread for VSS is 0.14. Is this bid ask s...
by robertalpert
Fri Aug 05, 2016 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: International small cap as only international fund
Replies: 32
Views: 2738

Re: International small cap as only international fund

I know many of you already tilt small cap international, but given the correlation between domestic and international large-cap, would anyone consider only owning international small cap (VFSVX, for example) as their sole international holding? Does anyone here already do this? I am seriously consi...
by robertalpert
Sat Jun 04, 2016 11:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about credit cards/credit score. Looking for help.
Replies: 16
Views: 1963

Re: Question about credit cards/credit score. Looking for help.

Do you pay off statement balance on all cards every month? If so, then closing a card(s) in good standing at zero balance would not have long lasting affect on your credit score. On the other hand, keeping some zero balance cards would be a good resource as part of your emergency funding capacity. C...
by robertalpert
Sun May 29, 2016 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund
Replies: 19
Views: 6341

Re: Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund

The new brokerage agreement takes effect July 1, so I'd expect the change in July, August, or September (not very precise, I know). Apparently the new settlement fund begins during this time period. But does this also mean that all accounts would be converted to the new (combined) brokerage format ...
by robertalpert
Sat May 07, 2016 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity or Vanguard
Replies: 93
Views: 13543

Re: Fidelity or Vanguard

This specialist informed me that I needed at least a million in VG assets for Flagship, and non VG funds don't count. Ok. I had 890k in VG stuff, and the rest was in other funds with a low basis, that I didn't want to sell right now for tax reasons. Could they make an exception, considering I would...
by robertalpert
Sat May 07, 2016 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity or Vanguard
Replies: 93
Views: 13543

Re: Fidelity or Vanguard

If you prefer Vanguard funds, then definitely go with Vanguard brokerage. If keeping a simply designed portfolio, then Vanguard customer service will be more than adequate.
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 09, 2016 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Free Windows 10 Upgrade, Yes or No?
Replies: 533
Views: 93488

Re: Free Windows 10 Upgrade, Yes or No?

After the Win 10 upgrade our HP Photosmart printer software would not work for scan. Tried a few things but they failed. So I bought an HP4520 printer for about $65 at Bestbuy. So far it's much better then the old printer which was an early wifi printer. Sometimes one just has to shell out a few $'...
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 09, 2016 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard local office???
Replies: 25
Views: 13762

Re: Vanguard local office???

I live in Minnesota and there are no local Vanguard offices in the area, question is a hassle to set up accounts and do everything online or over the phone with Vanguard? I'm getting ready to consolidate all my scattered accounts and it's either going to be Vanguard, Scottrade, Fidelity or Schawb. ...
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 02, 2016 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: my medicare drug plan charged me $ 370 per month
Replies: 26
Views: 4205

Re: my medicare drug plan charged me $ 370 per month

If $370 is for January, then you are probably Ok, since Express scripts $360 annual deductible. Check how much February's Rx bill will come to.
by robertalpert
Thu Mar 24, 2016 8:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: MedicareRX - pricing biologics
Replies: 17
Views: 1709

Re: MedicareRX - pricing biologics

Perhaps, if the doctor administers each injection, the medicine might be covered with part B instead of part D.
by robertalpert
Sun Mar 13, 2016 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Medigap policy cost
Replies: 68
Views: 37074

Re: Medicare Medigap policy cost

Plan G - lower premium and always a better value than Plan F. It's the exact same plan as F except you pay the $140 annual Part B deductible. You will always save between $200 to $300 per year in premium going with G compare to F. I prefer Plan G but have found well-known insurance carriers price t...
by robertalpert
Thu Mar 03, 2016 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Card
Replies: 39
Views: 3753

Re: Medicare Card

However, If this can be believed, we have only to wait 4 years before the soc. sec. numbers disappear from Medicare cards. http://oig.ssa.gov/newsroom/blog/apr29-medicare-card-SSN The article states: "The bill gives HHS four years to issue modernized cards to new beneficiaries, and four more y...
by robertalpert
Sun Feb 14, 2016 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loan Payoff
Replies: 40
Views: 5541

Re: Student Loan Payoff

Do you qualify for student loan forgiveness based on your physician worker status?
by robertalpert
Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you pay for exercise?
Replies: 222
Views: 22513

Re: Do you pay for exercise?

If you like aerobic exercise:

1) Walk to the gym; (no need to enter) Then walk back home.
2) Take bus to the gym; (no need to enter) Then walk back home.
by robertalpert
Sat Jan 23, 2016 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me settle this investment argument with my spouse.
Replies: 25
Views: 3612

Re: Help me settle this investment argument with my spouse.

Would the unreliable friend would have any ownership stake in the property??? If so, then this is extremely risky for you. His retired handyman friend should get a real job, raise the money himself and do this project alone. If the handiman is not willing to risk his own money, then you shouldn't ei...
by robertalpert
Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Personal Capital
Replies: 39
Views: 9160

Re: Personal Capital

Has anyone on this board had any experience with Personal Capital? I am going to have a pitch given to me and I am interested in learning about them. I find it interesting to hear what companies are proposing. My feeling is they are suggesting the 'black box' concept. They say they have a proprieta...
by robertalpert
Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cancel Medigap plan to save money for a year+?
Replies: 40
Views: 3797

Re: Cancel Medigap plan to save money for a year+?

Community rated means premiums are the same for all the participants and is calculated as the average cost of insuring that community. (Could be geographic community; could be membership-based community (eg AARP membership); Could be a professional community (eg Union members or association members...
by robertalpert
Tue Dec 22, 2015 11:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cancel Medigap plan to save money for a year+?
Replies: 40
Views: 3797

Re: Cancel Medigap plan to save money for a year+?

Robert, I'll double-check this tomorrow but it may be "community rated". What does that mean for me? Again, I'll have to check but I don't think Medicare or Medicaid are underwritten at all. No medical restrictions should be imposed based on one's health. It makes sense if you think about...
by robertalpert
Tue Dec 22, 2015 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cancel Medigap plan to save money for a year+?
Replies: 40
Views: 3797

Re: Cancel Medigap plan to save money for a year+?

If I call the company and they say that I can quit the policy for 2016 and am allowed to come back in 2017 if I need to, then I may consider doing so without any repercussions. Wouldn't they would likely consider 2017 to be a new application and require medical underwriting with a likelihood of hig...