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Everything posted by sschullo

  1. sschullo

    403(b) lawsuits hit a wall.

    Of course, these lawsuits hit a wall! They are attacking a nonexistent problem. Higher education 403(b) plans are plans we dream about in our k12 world. We all know here that the REAL problem is 403(b)s in public k12 school districts! If the plaintiffs care to look, they will find massive and in-your-face conflicts of interest, extremely high costs, and aggressive sales practices right into the teacher's classroom during recess. The only thing that the sales force care about is a signature. That signature gets them a $1000 to a $4000 commission and then move on to the next classroom before recess is over. These annuity products are so complex that attorneys are hard-pressed to understand them, and finally, they produce the most pathetic returns ever recorded by the financial industry. https://www.investmentnews.com/article/20190109/FREE/190109944/have-403-b-lawsuits-hit-a-wall-fifth-university-wins-dismissal
  2. sschullo

    2018 was suboptimal.

    Hi Moe, What you are talking about is annuitizing. No. this is not annuitizing, or purchasing an annuity so that I can get a fixed amount for the rest of my life. I don't need another annuity as my pension plan is like an annuity. TIAA sells great annuities. But the one I have was not bought. It was invested, just like a mutual fund. NO surrender fees, NO commissions, NO ongoing costs, but it has 3.0% fixed return and principal protection AND I CAN MOVE IT ANYTIME. TIAA annuities are more like mutual funds than the hideous annuities sold by all of the other large insurance carriers in the U.S.
  3. sschullo

    2018 was suboptimal.

    Pushing this up. I think it's important to keep in mind that some years our portfolios will decline because the markets decline. This should not be a surprise. But it can be for some. Some believe that just because their portfolio is diversified and balanced appropriately, that they are protected against declines. We know that is not how it works. My portfolio is not any different than the majority of Bogleheads. As you can read in this thread, most have lost anywhere from -1.0% to -5.0% (not counting real estate or investments outside of the stock and bond markets): https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=145610&p=4297509#p4297509
  4. And that year's return (2000) was an astronomical 6.18%!
  5. Hi Anthony, Happy New year. Ed wrote an article that should answer your question. https://educatorsfightingforfairness.wordpress.com/security-benefits-nea-directinvest/ I have never signed up for NEA direct, and it from what I have read by the discussions that it appears to be time-consuming and difficult because NEA and security benefit will not only NOT help you but deny that this option even exists! However, I have also read that once you get it the documentation in place, it's a terrific low-cost plan. Your friends may need assistance with the paperwork. Steve
  6. sschullo

    2018 was suboptimal.

    All of us regulars here have the same investing philosophy that I have read here and on Bogleheads since the late 1990s. That's the key. Invest in extremely low-cost ETFs or index funds that are worldwide diversified and a balance between stocks and bonds. This philosophy came straight from Bogle, and its been tweaked slightly depending on individual needs. For example, I tilt slightly to small and mid-cap stocks with my Extended Market Index holding and my international stocks and bond investments. Bogle (and others) have said that you don't need international stocks, and bonds. Rebalancing comes in different flavors. When I was contributing during my working years, I would contribute to the asset class that was down. Now I transfer from the high asset to the low asset. For example, just last October, I transferred 2% of my stock holdings into my Total Bond Market when stocks were through the roof, and my stock allocation approached 35% so I reduced it down to 32%. I only rebalance when needed. The last time I made a significant move was when I transferred $250,000 to TIAA Traditional Annuity two years ago (3.0% with no surrender, no ongoing costs, and completely liquid with principal protection). BTW, all of the above I have learned through experiencing massive losses during the tech bubble, finding out my risk tolerance, and reading the posts of the good people at Bogleheads and reading about 50 investment books over the years. None of what I post here is original from me. What is original is what actually happens when an ordinary do-it-yourselfer (DIY) uses real money and applies a low-cost portfolio that is fully diversified, stays the course, and rebalances when needed and shares two of the most important facts in investing: diversification plan and COSTS. For 25 years I have read, and read again not just from Bogle and the Bogleheads, but from others too, that high costs (1.0% or more) put a significant drain on one's long term earnings.
  7. sschullo

    2018 was suboptimal.

    Pushing this up in case some people missed this. What is your 2018 return, and how is your portfolio balanced between stocks and bonds?
  8. sschullo

    2018 was suboptimal.

    30/70 2018 -1.97%. Worse showing and first loss since 2008. Interestingly, all of the volatility and negative returns occurred in Q4. But my portfolio is doing what its designed--follow the markets. At the bottom of this post are the returns from all of the major benchmarks both foreign and domestic. In the international stock markets, only Brazil and India were positive in 2018. What in the world happened to the world economies? The international sector has not kept up with the domestic stock markets in recent years. But take a look at my international bond index, up at 2.97%! And my total bond market index was supposed to a shellacking because of increasing interest rates, but it only lost -.05%. That's minuscule. Most of the public would pay an astronomical $20,000 for a fee-only financial adviser with an AUM fee of 1.0%, plus the costs of the investments. And $20,000 fee is conservative. For those who want to know what their financial adviser is doing ask them two questions (and DON'T get distracted by some hyperactive financial advisers): 1. What is my return for 2018? my portfolio return -1.97%. 2. What are my costs, your costs and the costs of each investment? My cost is 6.4 basis points (each bsp is one hundred of 1.0%. 10 basis points is equivalent to .10%, or 90 basis points is equivalent to .90% cost). Dollar figure: $1,024.00 for a seven-figure portfolio. This low cost allowed me to do the things I love to do in retirement, give to worthy causes (cancer research) and needy relatives, travel, concerts, dance lessons (individual lessons are not cheap), maintain and write my blog, give away my two books about finances and my 20 year experience with the hideous 403(b) system, and earn an Associate Producer role supporting a documentary about the financial independence movement, Playing with FIRE. Below I created tables and the data from my portfolio which is straight from Morningstar.com. Below are data for the major asset classes and the foreign countries' returns.
  9. When I first read this 20 years ago, I laughed. Every 403(b) investor liked low-cost mutual funds a lot... But the Grinch, Who served as benefits director, Did NOT! But it isn't funny anymore.
  10. This guy is complaining about his deflated ego because he has no competition, work stimulation and comradery, ETC., because of FIRE, WELL GO BACK TO WORK! He is not ready. FIRE experience is not for wimps. One has to be ready to be flexible, independent, experiential, and courageous. Fighting the borrow and spend culture and letting go of the work status and recognition is difficult for some.
  11. sschullo

    Vanguard lowering er on target date funds

    Great news once again from the one and only Vanguard.
  12. I read this book a long time ago. I thought the last chapters of this book when they talk to their 3 children about money was good: https://www.amazon.com/Average-Familys-Guide-Financial-Freedom/dp/0471416274/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8 The book is 20 years old now but it is inspiring as these folks cover a lot of ground. They were able to save $450,000 over 8 years making $65,000 a year with 3 children and one was disabled.
  13. Hi krow36 Couldn't find the thread where you asked me about Mr. Simon's terrific articles. Here they are: https://www.morningstar.com/articles/902822/scott-simon-article-archive.html Steve
  14. sschullo

    Potential crash?

    We have all planned for growth and downturns. Stick with your plan no matter what.
  15. sschullo

    Fire Savers Race To Retirement

    They are hoping for a January or February release.
  16. sschullo

    Vets come in, help the rookies

    Hey Dustin!!! What is your problem! :- ) LOLs! Making $80.00 an hour and TIPS driving boats as a summer job! Wow!!!! That's great. Seriously, for me, I was at one school for 14 years (out of the four different schools I taught plus UCLA extension), and I needed a change. I was the computer lab teacher and classroom teacher. It was very refreshing to me to have an outside the classroom position for a few years and then go back into the classroom, made me a better teacher. But we all know teachers who have taught the same grade, same subject, same classroom, same school for 30-40 years and still are passionate and enthusiastic. THAT'S NOT ME! I love change, and I get passionate and excited about change, because I got out of my comfort level and met new teachers, new principals, new schools. That's exciting for me, but I know it isn't for everybody, most people do not like change.
  17. sschullo

    Vets come in, help the rookies

    I also taught on Saturdays and evenings at UCLA extensions educational technology for teachers seeking their credentials. I just did a Googled on side gigs for teachers and came up with the list below. Perhaps somebody else would offer addtional ideas. 33 Legitimate Ways Any Teacher Can Make Extra Money https://www.weareteachers.com/ways-teachers-can-make-extra-money/ Apr 19, 2018 - 33 Legit Ways Teachers Can Make Extra Money. Sell your lesson plans. Teacher Pay Teachers has changed the way teachers get and share content. Try tutoring online or in-person. Write an eBook. 4. Make money by flipping furniture. Sell your stuff. Buy and sell designers brands. Become a picker. Drive for Uber or Lyft. The 15 Best Side Hustles for Teachers - Side Hustle Nation https://www.sidehustlenation.com/best-side-hustles-for-teachers/ Dec 4, 2017 - Here are the best ways for teachers and educators to make extra money ... have time to spare, babysitting would be a good side gig to consider. The Best Side Hustles and Summer Jobs for Teachers https://www.thebalancecareers.com › ... › Job Searching › Job Listings › Part-Time Jobs Aug 24, 2018 - If you're looking to earn more money this summer, here are the perfect opportunities for you. Tutor. You're already great at educating. Camp Counselor. One job that is always in fashion in the summer is the role of camp counselor. Tour Guide. Freelance Writer. Babysitter. Online Teacher. Brand Ambassador. 20 Modern Ways For Teachers to Make Extra Money in 2018 | Bored ... https://www.boredteachers.com/teaching.../ways-for-teachers-to-make-extra-money Jan 31, 2018 - It's not only a clever way to earn some side cash, it's a time-saver (and ... online is a fun way for teachers to earn extra money while doing what they do best, .... those looking to make some extra income around their day jobs. 30 Side Jobs For Teachers That Are Online | The Money Making ... moneymakingteacher.com/30-side-jobs-for-teachers-that-are-online/ Mar 13, 2018 - After seeing countless people asking what kinds of side jobs are for teachers, I decided to compile a list that would allow you to work part-time ... 12 Ways to Make Money on the Side as a Teacher | Edudemic www.edudemic.com › Articles Oct 20, 2015 - Let's take a look at some of the best approaches out there. (Note: We've chosen to focus on jobs that will directly call on your skills as a teacher, ... Best Side Hustles for Teachers to Make More Money During the ... https://millennialmoneyman.com/best-side-hustles-for-teachers-to-make-more-money-... May 3, 2018 - These are the best online side hustles for teachers and anyone who: ... This gig is flexible, makes a decent income, and impacts lives across ... 12 Side Hustles Perfect for Teachers to Earn Extra Money - Wallet Hacks https://wallethacks.com/teacher-side-hustles/ Oct 23, 2018 - For many educators, a side hustle is a must because many areas don't pay ... The best part is that you can often get paid in cash or turn it into ... it all depends on your writing ability, skills, and the gigs you're able to secure. Eight Perfect Side Gigs for Educators | Education World https://www.educationworld.com/eight-perfect-side-gigs-educators What if a job for supplemental income actually led to better lessons, free meals ... Today, Education World shares a variety of side gigs that are just perfect for the ... Any opportunities with you admin credential? My story of how I got my tech coaching position. I gave one of my many 3 minute public talks to the Board of Education over the 403(b) plan. This one time my future boss was in the audience and heard my talk and he offered me the tech coaching position in the hall right after the talk! I interviewed with him several times before but never offered me the job. He said that I now understood the bureaucratic "system". My talk was about the 403(b) and he was right that I really understood the system, but had nothing to do with educational technology!
  18. sschullo

    Vets come in, help the rookies

    1. Take approved for credit/salary point workshops to increase your salary to the top of the scale. 2. Get your admin credential. It widens your opportunities for out of the classroom positions. I got it not to be a principal, but two out of the classroom positions. Technology coach and Title 1 coordinator, which increased my salary. It took me one year to get my admin credential assuming you already have a masters degree. 3. Look around for different blogs that offer opportunities for side gigs to replace those opportunities that have dried up. There are thousands and thousands of blogs.
  19. sschullo

    Why Aren't Millenials Spending More?

    Yep, not having any to spend was my young adult experience 100%, and Wow! That was a HUGE blessing in disguise. I practiced frugal living while growing up and in my entire life.
  20. sschullo

    How To Teach Your Kids About Money

    Hi Ed, Not sure why you are posting this. I forgot about the value. As I said, I kept it for sentimental reasons, to remember my mom and her foresight who bought this stock decades ago. I learned what a stock was when I was ten years old. I wonder how many adults know what a stock is today? Can any of us imagine any of our future relatives owning our investment 50 years from now! Steve
  21. sschullo

    How To Teach Your Kids About Money

    Exactly my experience. I inherited some of my mother's 3m stock that she bought in the 50s and 60s. I just sold them a couple of years ago. I kept them for sentimental reasons AND those stocks doubled in price by the time I sold them in 2015 (over 15 years). I was very lucky that they grew that much. What I have learned from individual stocks even from great companies, that the stock doesn't always grow. Cisco Systems is a great company too that I used to own back in the tech bubble mania, but their stock was CRAP from 2000 until just a couple of years ago when I finally broke 2000 high. It was pure luck for me that 3M grew as much as it did. I sold it for $166 and it is now about $200. I have ZERO regrets that I sold it too soon. Heck, I made a ton of money off that stock, and I'll take what I got. I don't play stupid games (will it go up or down?) with individual stocks. 3M was the last individual stock I will ever own. Now I own it in Vanguards Total Stock Market Index!
  22. sschullo

    How To Teach Your Kids About Money

    My parents did not have money either, but they modeled frugal living by running a small dairy farm in Wisconsin. When my father died, my mother saved and invested. She worked as an assembly line worker and bought 3M stock, the company she worked for 25 years (Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Co.) and she bought US savings bonds. I did the same thing when I enlisted in the Marines and saved $500 in bonds by the time I was discharged 2 years later. Immigrants did that sort of thing back in the first half of the 20th century in this country. It wasn't until my 40s that I realized that I learned a lot about building wealth and living a healthy wholesome life without crap all from my parents, they lived the frugal and investing life. I never earned much money until I was in my 40s, and so I kept up my frugal living, and I was lucky enough to find a spouse who had similar background and together we lived frugally, invested in California real estate, invested our 403(b) money in the stock and bond market, and did better a whole lot better financially than both of our parents together. My parents did not teach me in the usual sense. And I was smart enough to appreciate what they did. Anyway, that's why I like the quote. It means a great deal to me.
  23. Hi Tony, The FI and FIRE communities get this 100%. It's in their blood! Steve
  24. sschullo

    Big Change At Vanguard

    In my uncomplicated Wisconsin farm-boy common sense, use DCA when you start investing in your tax-deferred retirement plan (401k, 403b or 457b plan including Roth 401k, 403(b) or 457b) because you have no choice when starting from zero assets. That's how those plans work. I never DCA an employer-sponsored tax-deferred plan into cash. There may be a reason to DCA into cash, but I never experienced a reason for doing that. For me, it complicates my plan. I need and require simplicity. Lump-sum when you a lucky enough to receive a windfall such as a sale of real estate, rebalancing your 6 or 7 figure portfolio and/or received an inheritance. In rebalancing my portfolio last October because my stock allocation rose to a trigger point 35% (supposed to be 30% stocks 70% bonds), I lumped sum about $30,000 from my Vanguard stock index ETF into my Vanguard Total Bond Market Index. I reduced my stock exposure and increased my bond exposure and my portfolio is now about 31% stock/ 69% bond. Few portfolios are perfect.
  25. sschullo

    How To Teach Your Kids About Money

    I like this quote by a British journalist: The easiest way for your children to learn about money is for you to not have any. Katharine Whitehorn.