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  1. #301
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Norfolk, VA
    Any opinions on the Thrift Savings Plan available to Federal employees?
    Bob Green
    DBR Survivor Football Champion
    2010 & 2016

  2. #302
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Washington, DC area
    Quote Originally Posted by MartyClark View Post
    Any thoughts on these as an investment?

    I have an acquaintance who sells these. He's giving me a hard sell.
    Thoughts? Don't buy from friends or acquaintances...

    -jk

  3. #303
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Green View Post
    Any opinions on the Thrift Savings Plan available to Federal employees?
    Incredibly low fees. Some may decry the lack of investment choice but the basics are there.

    I'm probably being petty in another thread.

  4. #304
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Norfolk, VA
    Quote Originally Posted by YmoBeThere View Post
    Incredibly low fees. Some may decry the lack of investment choice but the basics are there.
    Thanks! TSP is my investment choice due to matching funds and convenience.
    Bob Green
    DBR Survivor Football Champion
    2010 & 2016

  5. #305
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    Quote Originally Posted by -jk View Post
    Thoughts? Don't buy from friends or acquaintances...

    -jk
    ain't that the truth. It can become awkward, I know, but unless you view yourself as a charitable institution, it's far easier to say no.
    Quite a few years ago a friend tried to sell me some variable annuities (which I basically knew I didn't want) but I took his fistful of literature and gave it a good reading one day (something I bet a lot of people don't do).

    Many "features" to these annuities, including "locking in your gains" after a good year. But when I read all the stuff, I found that the product charged 1.5% as a regular annual fee, another 1% for this lock in feature, and another 1% for some other features I can't recall. All together, 3.5% in fess...I'm sure his commission would have been a good one had I bit.

    One issues these days is that a high tide lifts all boats, so even people I know who pay outrageous fees are pretty happy, because the market has been skyrocketing, their balances increase nicely, and they just don't realize how much money they're leaving on the table.

    As a side note: my friend who got the hard sell about his 401k was already in a Vanguard index fund, ultra low cost, and it appeared to me to be a very good one as it was targeted towards his retirement age...he even got some periodic calls from a Vanguard agent, not trying to sell him anything, but just to check in and ask if he wanted to move more towards bonds as he aged...in other words, very good service with no profit motive. I was impressed.

  6. #306
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Quote Originally Posted by budwom View Post
    Many "features" to these annuities, including "locking in your gains" after a good year. But when I read all the stuff, I found that the product charged 1.5% as a regular annual fee, another 1% for this lock in feature, and another 1% for some other features I can't recall. All together, 3.5% in fess...I'm sure his commission would have been a good one had I bit.

    One issues these days is that a high tide lifts all boats, so even people I know who pay outrageous fees are pretty happy, because the market has been skyrocketing, their balances increase nicely, and they just don't realize how much money they're leaving on the table.

    As a side note: my friend who got the hard sell about his 401k was already in a Vanguard index fund, ultra low cost, and it appeared to me to be a very good one as it was targeted towards his retirement age...he even got some periodic calls from a Vanguard agent, not trying to sell him anything, but just to check in and ask if he wanted to move more towards bonds as he aged...in other words, very good service with no profit motive. I was impressed.
    It appears you see things a bit more clearly than most. Props!

    If you're seeing nice gains you may not mind leaving money on the table - unless you're aware of even nicer gains by those who are leaving less on the table. Usually people are not so aware, or deceive themselves by assuming the overall market movements mirror (in magnitude) what is going on in their accounts.

    That said, we have some upper level service thing (I forget the term they use) at Vanguard and we can almost never reach our assigned advisor, nor have him get back to us personally (usually it's someone else; sometimes this is due to the technical nature of our questions). I recognize this, however, and accept it, because Vanguard is all about low cost. But the difference in front-line competence and "reachability" with higher cost Fidelity reps is noticeable, in my experience. Funny thing - you get what you pay for (if you're lucky and watchful).

  7. #307
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    duplicate - oops!

  8. #308
    Quote Originally Posted by cspan37421 View Post

    That said, we have some upper level service thing (I forget the term they use) at Vanguard and we can almost never reach our assigned advisor, nor have him get back to us personally (usually it's someone else; sometimes this is due to the technical nature of our questions). I recognize this, however, and accept it, because Vanguard is all about low cost. But the difference in front-line competence and "reachability" with higher cost Fidelity reps is noticeable, in my experience. Funny thing - you get what you pay for (if you're lucky and watchful).
    Vanguard terms:
    Flagship with $1million at Vanguard
    Flagship Select with $5 million at Vanguard

    Strongly agree, Vanguard definitely does not favor higher balance accounts as much as almost all of their competitors.

  9. #309
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Green View Post
    Thanks! TSP is my investment choice due to matching funds and convenience.
    Smart... never, ever, miss out on a penny in matching funds! Only above your matching contribution level becomes debatable. This is true for all plans.

  10. #310
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    Quote Originally Posted by cspan37421 View Post
    It appears you see things a bit more clearly than most. Props!

    If you're seeing nice gains you may not mind leaving money on the table - unless you're aware of even nicer gains by those who are leaving less on the table. Usually people are not so aware, or deceive themselves by assuming the overall market movements mirror (in magnitude) what is going on in their accounts.

    That said, we have some upper level service thing (I forget the term they use) at Vanguard and we can almost never reach our assigned advisor, nor have him get back to us personally (usually it's someone else; sometimes this is due to the technical nature of our questions). I recognize this, however, and accept it, because Vanguard is all about low cost. But the difference in front-line competence and "reachability" with higher cost Fidelity reps is noticeable, in my experience. Funny thing - you get what you pay for (if you're lucky and watchful).
    yes, I've heard the same thing about the Vanguard advisors...the Vanguard guy who called my friend about his account is a "retention" guy (I have another friend who does this for TIAA), just staying in touch, trying to keep the money in house, knowing how many competitors are looking to poach.

  11. #311
    Quote Originally Posted by budwom View Post
    Many "features" to these annuities, including "locking in your gains" after a good year. But when I read all the stuff, I found that the product charged 1.5% as a regular annual fee, another 1% for this lock in feature, and another 1% for some other features I can't recall. All together, 3.5% in fess...I'm sure his commission would have been a good one had I bit.
    Variable annuities are not about gaining in account value (or they shouldn't be used in that way at least). They are filled with fees that will kill your account value. The value in a variable annuity is that you can withdrawal your money while keeping a sizable benefit base. When your account value runs out of money (due to fees and aggressive withdrawals) you annuitize. Thereby getting an income stream based upon your benefit base (which doesn't decrease with fees). Before the financial crisis variable annuities were offering tremendous guarantees (6%+ rollup rates) and those companies took a complete bath when equities dropped significantly.

  12. #312
    Sigh, sold some AAPL at $143 last year. It was $318 on Friday.

    I'm probably being petty in another thread.

  13. #313
    Quote Originally Posted by YmoBeThere View Post
    Sigh, sold some AAPL at $143 last year. It was $318 on Friday.
    I’ve been long on Apple for a while.

    Someone once told me, if you buy stock of the “thing” you want to buy (e.g. buy Apple stock instead of an iphone), is a winning investment strategy.

    I don’t know that approach is truly universal, I suspect those holding Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and Target among many others, might agree.

  14. #314
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    yeah, Warren Buffett likes to buy stock in companies that make stuff he likes...long live Dairy Queen! People buy good stuff, company makes money, not a crazy notion.

  15. #315
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Winston’Salem
    Quote Originally Posted by budwom View Post
    yeah, Warren Buffett likes to buy stock in companies that make stuff he likes...long live Dairy Queen! People buy good stuff, company makes money, not a crazy notion.
    Titleist, here I come!
    "Amazing what a minute can do."

  16. #316
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Raleigh
    Quote Originally Posted by Tripping William View Post
    Titleist, here I come!
    You're a Wise Man..
    [redacted] them and the horses they rode in on.

  17. #317
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Winston’Salem
    Quote Originally Posted by devildeac View Post
    You're a Wise Man..
    Did I say Titleist? I meant Callaway. Errr, Taylor Made. Ummm, Srixon? All of the above ....
    "Amazing what a minute can do."

  18. #318
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Raleigh
    Quote Originally Posted by Tripping William View Post
    Did I say Titleist? I meant Callaway. Errr, Taylor Made. Ummm, Srixon? All of the above ...
    I think you're on the Foothills of some great earnings...
    [redacted] them and the horses they rode in on.

  19. #319
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Winston’Salem
    Quote Originally Posted by devildeac View Post
    I think you're on the Foothills of some great earnings...
    I wouldn’t give two Hoots about it, except making my money work for me (instead of vice versa) is very much on my Radar.
    "Amazing what a minute can do."

  20. #320
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Raleigh
    Quote Originally Posted by Tripping William View Post
    I wouldn’t give two Hoots about it, except making my money work for me (instead of vice versa) is very much on my Radar.
    Certainly not Incendiary comments.
    [redacted] them and the horses they rode in on.

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