Search found 35721 matches

by nisiprius
Thu Sep 13, 2018 6:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Isn't cap weighting less diversified than equal weighting?
Replies: 72
Views: 2906

Re: Isn't cap weighting less diversified than equal weighting?

An investment in the (usual, cap-weighted) S&P 500 is fairly close to being the same as an investment in the cap-weighted total market, because it includes about 80% of the market by cap weight . If the goal is to mimic the market portfolio, an S&P 500 fund comes reasonably close. It's 80% of the wa...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lab test prices - exasperating!
Replies: 101
Views: 5710

Re: Lab test prices - exasperating!

So is it pointless to ask for pricing? In my experience, as nearly as I can tell... yes. Do you just go ahead with the treatment/tests/procedure and hope they don't bill you an obscene amount that's not covered under insurance? Why, yes. That is what I do. Because I haven't figured out what else to...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Benchmark Smoke And Mirrors
Replies: 14
Views: 1131

Re: Larry Swedroe: Benchmark Smoke And Mirrors

What benchmark does Dimensional use for DFSCX? The Russell 2000 index. 1) Should we suspect Dimensional of choosing it "because of the ease of outperforming it?" 2) Is it appropriate to benchmark a "micro cap" fund to a small-cap index? 3) Would it be in appropriate to benchmark a "micro cap" fund ...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 5:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mother, can I trust the stock market?
Replies: 19
Views: 2250

Re: Mother, can I trust the stock market?

...For example, how can I know that my shares of stock and my bonds are genuine and mine alone? Can some malicious person potentially inject fake securities (say, shares of Microsoft) or sell the same shares more than once?... As I understand it, the answer is "SIPC insurance." (And private insuran...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 5:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Matter/Scatter appendix: notes on methodology
Replies: 26
Views: 1529

Re: Matter/Scatter appendix: notes on methodology

Thanks for documenting the methodology, Nisiprius. I don't have much to add, we already had a good discussion in Part1, and I documented in this post the issues I see with such approach. To summarize, I just don't see that the scatter clouds are adding much value to the points (big cross) on which ...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 5:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Isn't cap weighting less diversified than equal weighting?
Replies: 72
Views: 2906

Re: Isn't cap weighting less diversified than equal weighting?

Define "diversification" first and then we can talk about it. I ought to stop at the snappy sound bite, but we also have to ask why we diversify and what we expect to get out of it. We also have to compare and contrast equal weighting (which to me is both goofy, illogical, and very difficult and exp...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 4:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Harry Browne Permanent Portfolio Discussion (Cont'd)
Replies: 668
Views: 155140

Re: Harry Browne Permanent Portfolio Discussion (Cont'd)

I just noticed the Global X Permanent ETF, PERM, ceased trading on 10/06/17. I guess it was only a temporary ETF, after all.
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 4:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing
Replies: 46
Views: 4241

Re: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing

...I think they have changed their business strategy a bit over the years, and offering some funds through retirement plans and college savings plans. They have the building blocks for it through their Core funds which are pretty much like Total Stock Index funds. My guess is that, without taking a...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 2:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Avoiding creeping complexity
Replies: 14
Views: 1408

Re: Avoiding creeping complexity

I agree about complexity. It is hard to avoid. I've been trying to squeeze it out gradually for about twelve years now. One of the tough things for a working couple is that you end up with his-and-hers 401(k)'s. And his-and-hers Roth IRAs. So without even trying, even if you rolled over your 401(k)'...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 12:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing
Replies: 46
Views: 4241

Re: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing

The ultimate in simplicity, of course, is a target date fund. DFA's target date funds... I think it is interesting how little factor tilt there is in DFA's target date funds (well, the 2060 fund anyway). Dimensional has 29% in small-caps and mid-caps, only 5% more than Vanguard. And it has no value...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:45 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Benchmark Smoke And Mirrors
Replies: 14
Views: 1131

Re: Larry Swedroe: Benchmark Smoke And Mirrors

With those facts in mind, let’s benchmark NEAGX against a more appropriate [index] than the Russell 2000 Index benchmark, which is sometimes chosen by active managers because of the ease of outperforming it. Due to the transparency of its reconstitution rules, active managers could choose to front-...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can you time the forex market?
Replies: 10
Views: 645

Re: Can you time the forex market?

Actually, it could be even worse, nedsaid. I live in a town of thirty thousand, which has a closed Facebook group with ten thousand members. About a month ago, somebody was asking about FOREX. A friend had told her that it was a pretty good way to make money and was telling her about, IIRC a no-cost...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can you time the forex market?
Replies: 10
Views: 645

Re: Can you time the forex market?

FOREX is traditionally one of the riskiest of all asset classes. It seems as if every couple of years you read news stories about giant banks losing literally hundreds of millions of dollars because of making a bad currency bet. FOREX is particularly bad because the expected long-term return is zero...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: russell2000,1000 and S&P 500
Replies: 4
Views: 519

Re: russell2000,1000 and S&P 500

looking: Most Bogleheads advocate tracking the total stock market, e.g. by using the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund, or many other choices from other companies. The Fidelity Zero Total Market Index Fund has gotten a lot of press and forum attention, for example. I think beginners should star...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: russell2000,1000 and S&P 500
Replies: 4
Views: 519

Re: russell2000,1000 and S&P 500

The S&P 500 was created in 1957, a successor to two earlier indexes. Here are some notes on the history of some indexes. 1) Charles Dow began to calculate the first of several stock market averages in 1884. They are not what we now call "indexes." He created the Dow Jones Industrial Average 1896. It...
by nisiprius
Wed Sep 12, 2018 5:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A case for holding international bonds
Replies: 14
Views: 1117

Re: A case for holding international bonds

Elysium, have you read Vanguard's paper, Global fixed income: Considerations for U.S. investors? It's quite interesting and full of data. It is also the paper that convinced me not to bother with it. I'm a pretty casual, sloppy, "satisficing" investor, who doubts that the exact choice of bond type c...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing
Replies: 46
Views: 4241

Re: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing

The ultimate in simplicity, of course, is a target date fund. DFA's target date funds have only had inception since since 11/2015, so it's not reasonable to try to compare their performance to e.g. Vanguard's (OK, the 2060 funds have been virtually identical if you want to peek anyway ). However, I ...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing
Replies: 46
Views: 4241

Re: Larry Swedroe: Simple Factor Investing

Weird... I looked at the article yesterday. Today, I can log into etf.com and read his September 5th article, Myth Busting Active Investing , but your link to Simple Factor Investing is giving me a "not authorized to access this page" error. I get the same result trying to search on the etf.com site...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Matter/Scatter appendix: notes on methodology
Replies: 26
Views: 1529

Re: Matter/Scatter appendix: notes on methodology

I haven't read all of the material - so forgive my ignorance here... But these plotted data points are not statistically independent. If I understand things they are from a series of highly overlapped time periods. My take is that they are small variations of the same data plotted over and over. Th...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lab test prices - exasperating!
Replies: 101
Views: 5710

Re: Lab test prices - exasperating!

...If there is an easy straightforward way to get prices on lab blood tests, could someone please tell me?... After a few serious efforts to get prices in advance for medical procedures, I concluded that it's all nonsense. It's all blaming the victim. Your story does is to confirm that it's just th...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 4:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Barron's--Vanguard Is Losing Battles on Two Fronts in Fee Wars
Replies: 53
Views: 4527

Re: Barron's--Vanguard Is Losing Battles on Two Fronts in Fee Wars

I don't really care whether Vanguard "loses" or "wins." I don't want them to collapse . I want them to keep operating the funds I personally use. I don't want the fees on Admiral shares of those funds to rise to above, oh, I don't know, 0.10%. I don't think it helps me for Vanguard to get more gigan...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing vs Market Weighting
Replies: 4
Views: 288

Re: Rebalancing vs Market Weighting

This is a frequently debated question in this forum. It is surprisingly complicated, and endlessly debated. You say "I've read, via Kitces and others, that among asset classes with similar returns that aren't exactly correlated, that frequent rebalancing tends to have a small positive return effect,...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Matter/Scatter appendix: notes on methodology
Replies: 26
Views: 1529

Re: Matter/Scatter appendix: notes on methodology

...I take it that this is meant to examine which one of two different funds/ports were better over the chosen history by slightly juggling the sequence of returns... No. It adds nothing to the question of "which is better" or "which has, had, or will have the highest return." This is Siamond's poin...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Singing/Voice Classes
Replies: 20
Views: 1305

Re: Singing/Voice Classes

I would strongly encourage giving it a shot. My experience was: a) in elementary school, (bad) music teacher tells me that "I can't sing." Believed that for about forty years, because when I tried to just sing, without any training or experience I didn't sound good. b) Was at a Fortune 500 company t...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toilet Makes A Flushing Sound Occasionally
Replies: 37
Views: 2778

Re: Toilet Makes A Flushing Sound Occasionally

Flappers are made of some kind of silicone rubber stuff that gradually hardens over time. Fresh new ones are soft and floppy and almost sticky, and will seal even if there are specks of dirt or it didn't fall down perfectly aligned. Older ones won't. Also, the valve, depending on mysteries of its me...
by nisiprius
Tue Sep 11, 2018 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TIAA: Help with Payout Options
Replies: 24
Views: 1630

Re: TIAA: Help with Payout Options

I've used a 10-payment option when I basically wanted to get out of a TIAA Traditional annuity, and that was the fastest way to do it. One choice you didn't mention on the lifetime option is level payout or graded payout. I hate that "graded payout" is so indefinite with how fast the payouts increas...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 10, 2018 8:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Cliff Asness: Liquid Alt Ragnarok?
Replies: 80
Views: 5043

Re: Cliff Asness: Liquid Alt Ragnarok?

An in depth look at AQR funds performance from early 2017, well before this “2018 rough patch" https://www.ifa.com/articles/deeper_look_performance/ summary: 67% (16 funds) have underperformed their respective benchmarks since inception, having delivered a NEGATIVE alpha 33% (8 funds) have outperfo...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 10, 2018 7:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Medallion Signature guarantee?
Replies: 28
Views: 2265

Re: Medallion Signature guarantee?

I recommend that everyone have an account at a brick and mortar bank and as a condition for opening the account, verify that they can issue medallion signature guarantees to their customers. Chances are you will need that service sooner or later. +1 I would like davewi to drop at least more of a hi...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 10, 2018 7:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Between these two index funds - which one is best?
Replies: 9
Views: 1278

Re: Between these two index funds - which one is best?

This is one possible visualization of how important the difference is. (The point is that it's not important at all). The two crosses, and the center point on the two scales, show that over this particular time period, Total Stock (red) happened to outperform 500 Index (blue). That doesn't mean it a...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 10, 2018 4:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in 5G Wireless
Replies: 44
Views: 2357

Re: Investing in 5G Wireless

Even if "5G is a game changer" (whatever that means), it does not mean that it will be easy to identify the companies whose stock will soar as a result of being connected with it. With a little thought you should be able to come up with many examples of technologies that became extremely important, ...
by nisiprius
Mon Sep 10, 2018 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Intro Geology Textbooks
Replies: 17
Views: 1025

Re: Best Intro Geology Textbooks

Not a general textbook, but, the "Roadside Geology of [State name]" series is very good, and every big national park we've ever been to has had a gift shop with a book section, and the book section almost always includes the relevant "Roadside Geology" book. I took a physical geology course in the 1...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 7:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds
Replies: 26
Views: 2707

Re: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds

GRP commented: Good job taking a 7 year data set during a bull market for stocks to try and prove a point, and then showing how a stock heavy portfolio just happened to outperform a more balanced portfolio during such a period. Big surprise. I said nothing about performance, nothing. I said: Let's c...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 6:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds
Replies: 26
Views: 2707

Re: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds

Nisiprius, are you saying no need for bonds with this chart? No, exactly the opposite. You may not have been looking at the portfolio descriptions and colors correctly, I have to see if I described them clearly. GRP said "Decreasing the volatility of one part of your portfolio doesn't mean the tota...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 6:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds
Replies: 26
Views: 2707

Re: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds

I've said this countless times and have meant it every time: each portion of your portfolio should be contributing a comparable amount of risk to the total portfolio.... Decreasing the volatility of one part of your portfolio doesn't mean the total risk of the portfolio goes down. In this case I wo...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 5:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds
Replies: 26
Views: 2707

Re: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds

...So, no, don't replace bonds with MMFs. Decreasing the volatility of one part of your portfolio doesn't mean the total risk of the portfolio goes down. In this case I would argue you are actually increasing your total risk... How do you "argue" this? Over the time period shown by PortfolioVisuali...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 4:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 3289
Views: 994074

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

I'm reading Michael Connelly's The Late Show. And I have borrowed 109 East Palace: Robert Oppenheimer and the Secret City of Los Alamos again and plan to finish it. I'm also dipping into some of the short stories of the Brazilian author, Machado de Assis, 1839-1908.
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones
Replies: 69
Views: 7723

Re: Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones

I work in tech, for a company you've no doubt heard of. The open office environment is all the rage, which means it's an awful lot like working from a busy airport terminal. I don't care if the audio quality is any better than a $5 set of earbuds, the Bose QC35s are a literal sanity saver in that s...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Cliff Asness: Liquid Alt Ragnarok?
Replies: 80
Views: 5043

Re: Cliff Asness: Liquid Alt Ragnarok?

Nisiprius, that’s pretty impressive! In one of the footnotes, it’s also stated that Ragnarok is in comic books too :-) Dave Oops, decided to delete my posting on Ragnarök. I'd responded to Dave's remark about "still not clear on the title" because I noticed that Asness explains it in his own footno...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds
Replies: 26
Views: 2707

Re: 3 fund portfolio with Money Market instead of Bonds

In this posting, I made some comparisons between bond fund choices. The charts need some explaining, which can be found in the full posting, the series introduction, and a note on methodology . The comparison is between the historical results of investing $100/month per month over the period shown i...
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Commodities have never been cheaper - time to buy?
Replies: 42
Views: 4227

Re: Commodities have never been cheaper - time to buy?

...Despite our intellectual understanding that it makes sense to buy the unloved and sell what everyone wants... I have no such "understanding." What you have described is simply one of many active investing strategies, such as "growth at a reasonable price." This one is just "contrarian investing....
by nisiprius
Sun Sep 09, 2018 5:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I like my TechEase progressives. How can I replace them?
Replies: 4
Views: 591

Re: I like my TechEase progressives. How can I replace them?

not sure it's what you want, but Costco does offer "computer" lenses, designed to have "distant" vision at a close distance (like a computer), then progressives down to your reading distance. But of course - you'd need a current prescription. I have one... I think. And I'm a Costco member, and have...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Retirement accounts locked by Vanguard, unable to convert Admiral funds to ETF]
Replies: 57
Views: 4141

Re: [Retirement accounts locked by Vanguard, unable to convert Admiral funds to ETF]

...I see no reason why Admiral shares wouldn't transfer... Oh, well, that's an area of mystery. It was enough years ago that I don't know if it's still true, but I once tried to transfer Total Stock, Admiral shares from Vanguard to Fidelity, and I asked the Fidelity rep if they could be transferred...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Retirement accounts locked by Vanguard, unable to convert Admiral funds to ETF]
Replies: 57
Views: 4141

Re: [Retirement accounts locked by Vanguard, unable to convert Admiral funds to ETF]

That's a great idea if you live in the ideal world. In the world I live in, I have to communicate with Vanguard. For instance, if I didn't change my mutual funds at Vanguard from admiral to etfs, Vanguard would have automatically converted then to regular shares before shipping them to fidelity. So...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 08, 2018 3:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lump sum into index fund, or ETF, versus dividend fund or stock
Replies: 5
Views: 441

Re: Lump sum into index fund, or ETF, versus dividend fund or stock

There's a perennial argument about whether there is any advantage at all to using a dividend stock fund and living off the dividends, or just using a total market index fund and setting up automatic withdrawals (which would come partly out of dividends and partly out of capital appreciation). I don'...
by nisiprius
Sat Sep 08, 2018 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I like my TechEase progressives. How can I replace them?
Replies: 4
Views: 591

I like my TechEase progressives. How can I replace them?

Three years ago I got a pair of "TechEase" progressives for reading and computer use. They are progressives with a limited range of focus, maybe 1-3 feet, and, thus, better and wider coverage at the distances they do cover. I'm very happy with them. I got them as part of a package deal together with...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones
Replies: 69
Views: 7723

Re: Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones

I'm lukewarm about my (now obviously very old) Bose QuietComfort 2's. They work (still!) and the noise cancelling is effective. I am not sure what happened, but after I'd had them for two or three years, the sound quality deteriorated. When they were new, they were very good, I really enjoyed the qu...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Retirement accounts locked by Vanguard, unable to convert Admiral funds to ETF]
Replies: 57
Views: 4141

Re: [Retirement accounts locked by Vanguard, unable to convert Admiral funds to ETF]

oner, when moving assets from brokerage X to brokerage Y, avoid talking to brokerage X at all. Do all your talking to the receiving brokeage, brokerage Y, in your case Fidelity. There are two reasons for this. 1) Brokerage Y is getting your business. They are motivated to work hard and help you. Bro...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 07, 2018 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund
Replies: 1435
Views: 205999

Re: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund

I am not sure there is any disagreement that the fund pages for all of these funds under discussion truly do accurately display the gross/net expense ratio for the funds. The pictures seem besides the point and don't actually prove anything under dispute. They are illustrative of general industry p...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 07, 2018 5:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund
Replies: 1435
Views: 205999

Re: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund

Dividends on short sales 0.72%... I think that’s just a cost of doing the business-generating the profits. So to me it seems appropriate to subtract that from the ER. 2.33%-0.72%=1.61% The expense ratio is still 2.33%. It may be appropriate to subtract a number from it to get another number, and fo...
by nisiprius
Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund
Replies: 1435
Views: 205999

Re: QSPIX - thoughts on interesting fund

Nisi I was referring to QSPIX (which is the thread title after all and referred to in my post). There has been a long history about the ER on it. Lackey mentioned as well. Check footnotes for net. 1.5 or 1.6. I see footnote 4. That's not total expenses. It's a number AQR thinks is relevant and that...