Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

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bhsince87
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Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by bhsince87 » Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:44 pm

I can still remember writing out the check and sealing the envelope 30 years ago this week, when I sent off my first investment to Vanguard!

I was 22 years old, and my father told me I was being foolish in sending so much money to an anonymous PO box in Valley Forge, when I had not even talked to a person on the phone, let alone meet one in person!

But his fears were unfounded. The investing world has changed drastically since then, but I still use that same Prime account.

I have great respect and thanks for Mr. Bogle and his employees for treating me as a business partner, not just a customer, and for being wonderful stewards of the ship for the past 30 years!

And for those of you just starting out on the journey, congratulations! Please stick with it, because slow and steady investing works!
Retirement: When you reach a point where you have enough. Or when you've had enough.

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Taylor Larimore
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by Taylor Larimore » Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:54 pm

BH87:

I can relate to your message because we started with Vanguard in 1986.

It was the best financial decision we ever made.

Best wishes.
Taylor
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

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dccboone
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by dccboone » Sun Aug 06, 2017 4:49 pm

Congratulations BH87 on your 30th anniversary with Vanguard. Well done!

Not Law
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by Not Law » Sun Aug 06, 2017 5:05 pm

I remember that first $500 check to the STAR fund in 1986. According to our personal performance at the Vanguard site, we have a 10% rate of return for the past 10 years, and 13.7% for the last 5 years. Can't complain about that!

mindboggling
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by mindboggling » Sun Aug 06, 2017 5:15 pm

You just reminded me that I opened my first Vanguard account on Aug. 5, 1987 (Federal Money Market Reserve).
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LadyGeek
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by LadyGeek » Sun Aug 06, 2017 6:31 pm

This thread is now in the Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community forum (Boglehead anniversary).
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randomizer
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by randomizer » Sun Aug 06, 2017 6:54 pm

Only last year I celebrated 3 years with Vanguard. I have a lot of catching up to do...
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goingup
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by goingup » Sun Aug 06, 2017 7:00 pm

Nice post! We're coming up on 20 years soon.

I do remember sending in those fund deposit slips, along with a check, in a Vanguard self-addressed (pre-paid?) envelope. A week or so later the confirmation letter would come in the mail along with another deposit slip and envelope. I would periodically check our balance by phone. Can't remember when we started ACH transactions on-line.

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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by gwrvmd » Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:59 pm

I started with Vanguard in 1978. At the time Vanguard had 4 funds: Wellesley fund, Wellington Fund, Windsor Fund and S&P 500 Trust (later to become S&P 500 Index Fund).
I bought Windsor which I now own as traditional and as tax deferred plus in 6 grandchildren's 529s
I own 8 Windsor accounts, it has been good to me.....I am a disciple of John Neff who was the long term manager of Windsor............Gordon
Disciple of John Neff

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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by BarbK » Sun Aug 06, 2017 9:18 pm

We started back in the mid 80s also for the inception of the STAR fund. My husband was self employed and we would send a check in the prepaid envelopes for his yearly contribution to the brand new STAR fund and Wellesley in his SEP-IRA. The only time we even looked at the account was on the statements with the deposit form on the bottom. We continued to make the annual contributions until 2001 when he was no longer self employed. To this day, I never co-mingled any other $ into or out of the SEP-IRA.

My Daughter (age 25 now) was not interested in Roths, but when I told her how much he invested and the compounded effect, she became receptive to the idea.

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ray.james
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by ray.james » Mon Aug 07, 2017 2:22 pm

Congratulations! That is quite a journey.

In the era of internet and customer reviewed articles/books, people are finding this information much easier and hopefully making the informed choice to choosing vanguard/other low cost vendors. I am curious how people in 80's have chosen vanguard. What information drove them/convinced them to invest with vanguard.
Thank you.
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celia
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by celia » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:06 pm

I started on Aug 31, 1987 when the Profit-Sharing Retirement Plan at my small company left their old account manager (due to employee complaints) and transferred the assets to a 401K plan at Vanguard. I recall Vanguard having about 25 funds at that time, but only some of them were available in our 401K. As employees, we could also purchase our company stock (which didn't do very well in the long term).

I still have all those early paper statements and I originally owned Prime [MM], Prime Cap, World Fund Dom, and company stock. The early statements had a contact name and phone number whom we could call, probably in regards to the 401K plan (rather than for all Vanguard business). When I left the company, I left the assets there and moved on. About 15 years later when I had other assets there, the phone rep noticed I still had an old 401K and asked if I wanted to roll it into a Rollover IRA. The advantage that I liked was that I would be able to choose any of Vanguard's funds, so I agreed. The one complication was that the company had to confirm in writing I no longer worked there, but the company no longer existed. But the rep had the current contact person at the company who bought out the company who bought my company out.

Mr.BB
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by Mr.BB » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:09 pm

Congratulations! It would be nice if you received a letter from Vanguard recognizing that milestone.
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."

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celia
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by celia » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:16 pm

Mr.BB wrote:Congratulations! It would be nice if you received a letter from Vanguard recognizing that milestone.
That might be difficult to do since they've migrated to different platforms over the years. The older accounts/history are archived offline if no longer active. My original statement is from "The Vanguard Group of Investment Companies" and there is a star logo in the other corner with the logo for "The Vanguard VISTA System". This could be the 401K/ Retirement Accounts division or it could be a computer system or even something else.

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Artsdoctor
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by Artsdoctor » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:37 pm

Congratulations. I remember writing out my first check in 1987 as well. Time flies!

TravelGeek
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by TravelGeek » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:44 pm

bhsince87 wrote:I can still remember writing out the check and sealing the envelope 30 years ago this week, when I sent off my first investment to Vanguard!

I was 22 years old, and my father told me I was being foolish in sending so much money to an anonymous PO box in Valley Forge, when I had not even talked to a person on the phone, let alone meet one in person!
Pretty sure I sent my first check in 1995. S&P 500 Index fund. I think I read about John Bogle and Vanguard in Money magazine at the time.

And a year or so later, I convinced my then girlfriend to send her first check to that PO box in Valley Forge, PA. To this day she (wife now) is joking that she wants to travel to PA to see if this Vanguard company actually exists or if it just just a scam I set up all those years ago (*). Perhaps I need to sign us up for a BH conference one of these years ;)

(*) I think she was relieved the first time she came across a Vanguard ad in Money magazine i left laying around a few years after opening her account...

livesoft
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by livesoft » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:46 pm

35+ years with a Vanguard account here. We started when we got married.
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triceratop
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by triceratop » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:53 pm

livesoft wrote:35+ years with a Vanguard account here. We started when we got married.
Congrats on the mutually beneficial relationship lasting a lifetime.

Oh, and on the marriage thing, too. :wink:
"To play the stock market is to play musical chairs under the chord progression of a bid-ask spread."

Wakefield1
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by Wakefield1 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 4:06 pm

I remember there was something called "Tele-Account".
I had an IRA,probably from the first year that IRAs were allowed to ordinary individuals working for employers who offered pension to long term employees. That IRA had simply been CDs in the Credit Union,but I had heard about Vanguard and its mutual funds from a fellow runner. So I ordered an "IRA kit" to be mailed in,but I received a kit (papers to be signed and sent in) for a taxable account. I then transferred the IRA/custodianship money to "America's Utility Fund" where the IRA remained (with each year's additional contribution) for a few years until I noticed that "America's Utility Fund" was getting sold to another owner. At that point I did a custodian to custodian transfer to Vanguard. Meanwhile at some time or another I started a taxable account at Vanguard to receive such as I could save. I had,and still have some common stock I bought from (another fellow runner) who was a stockbroker who might have given me a break on commission a time or two. At some point I realized the value of directing the dividends from those stocks into diversified mutual funds. I believe that stockbroker advised me to take possession of those stock shares,in other words don't leave them in custody of the brokerage such that they could have been traded by the brokerage!(Even though the brokerage might have preferred that) That was in the time before I owned a computer or knew how to do business online or make online payments.
I met a gentleman who was in D.C. to attend some kind of newspaper sponsored Financial Workshop. After a bit of conversation he introduced himself,his name was John C. Bogle. I stayed to see his presentation which I believe contained a mathematical proof of the power of low cost index funds and how funds as a group can never outperform that group and a warning that yearly costs (as in excessive mutual fund expense ratios and trading costs) to an investment program compound in a negative way,sort of the antithesis of the benefit of receiving Compound Interest.

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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by FactualFran » Mon Aug 07, 2017 4:16 pm

gwrvmd wrote:I started with Vanguard in 1978. At the time Vanguard had 4 funds: Wellesley fund, Wellington Fund, Windsor Fund and S&P 500 Trust (later to become S&P 500 Index Fund).
Vanguard had more than those four funds at that time. Some others were: Explorer (small-cap stocks), Ivest (aggressive growth stocks), Morgan (growth stocks), Qualified Dividend (dividend stocks), Warwick (municipal bonds), Westminster (taxable bonds), and Whitehall (money market).

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flamesabers
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by flamesabers » Mon Aug 07, 2017 4:26 pm

randomizer wrote:Only last year I celebrated 3 years with Vanguard. I have a lot of catching up to do...
I think it's been 5 or 6 years for me. I would have to double check on my paperwork to see when my anniversary date is.

SueG5123
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by SueG5123 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 5:41 pm

I, too, am celebrating a 30th anniversary with Vanguard this year, but I am amused to remember that three days after I mailed my initial check for the Wellington fund, there came Black Friday (market down about 300 points, which was huge at the time), immediately followed by Black Monday (market down by 500 points). My $3000 initial deposit, of which I was quite proud, was worth about $1700 by the time the transaction actually transacted. I gulped, but kept the faith. So glad I did!

bhsince87
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by bhsince87 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 9:35 pm

Wow, nice to see there are some other old-timers here!

There is no guarantee Vanguard will keep delivering on the trust they have over the past thirty years.

But in my opinion, it's a good bet they won't let you down!
Retirement: When you reach a point where you have enough. Or when you've had enough.

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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by DaleMaley » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:25 am

I discovered Vanguard index funds back in 1990, when I did an MBA finance research term paper. I switched all my mutual funds to Vanguard in 1990 after I did the paper..........so been with Vanguard 27 years :D
Most investors, both institutional and individual, will find that the best way to own common stocks is through an index fund that charges minimal fees. – Warren Buffett

Mr.BB
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by Mr.BB » Tue Aug 08, 2017 1:48 pm

DaleMaley wrote:I discovered Vanguard index funds back in 1990, when I did an MBA finance research term paper. I switched all my mutual funds to Vanguard in 1990 after I did the paper..........so been with Vanguard 27 years :D
+1
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."

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1210sda
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Re: Celebrating 30 years with Vanguard!

Post by 1210sda » Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:19 pm

Ah, such memories.

I'm looking at my statement right now. On July 9, 1986 (31 years and almost a month ago) I invested $2,000 In the Vanguard Index Trust 500 Portfolio. Share price was $26.48, so I received 75.529 shares. Yes, the logo was indeed "The Vanguard Group of Investment Companies".

This was my start with Vanguard.

The toll free number was 1-800-662-CREW (2739). Ha Ha, I just tried it....it still works.

Interestingly, they showed my full social security number....

1210

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