Question for original forum members

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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by sophie » Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:00 am

6 Iron wrote:
dualstow wrote:
I do wonder about some of the early members like Wonk, gizmo-rat, 6 iron, WildAboutHarry, et al who seldom post now, or not at all. I want to know if they moved to a different strategy or just got tired of the forum, as the portfolio mostly runs itself.
I originally started investing in the PP in 2009. Still hold the PP, and it reflects about 96% of my portfolio. My only significant variation is holding 20% of the equities as international, and using some less than ideal short term bond funds for part of the cash in 401k's. I am nearing a rebalancing band due to LTT. When I first bought the PP, LTT's were yielding about 4.5% (sigh). I have reached a point where I could more comfortably invest in the VP, but have grown used to the "vanilla", sleeping soundly, and spending my energy on other pursuits. I check it once a quarter. I lurk here about the same frequency. It is good to see some old names.

The voice of wisdom. Thank you for posting this!
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by DragonJoey3 » Fri Apr 14, 2017 2:58 pm

I mean, I learned about the PP in 2011 and joined the forum in 2012. I have nowhere near 1000 posts because as others have said, there isn't a lot to talk about for a portfolio that's just so good at what it does. (though I look forward to the next 2008-like crash where the chatter will undoubtedly pick up with new converts.)

I have a small problem where my 401k doesn't allow me to buy gold, so my PP is out of balance, but I hope to put enough into savings outside the 401k to eventually balance it completely. Just working my way towards 25/25/25/25 has been profitable, and at this point I would say close to 80% of my assets are in the PP. I also put my parents money (which I help manage for them) in the PP and it's been good to them.

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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by dualstow » Fri Apr 14, 2017 3:28 pm

Very good responses here, IMO. I wish my folks were as openminded as dragonJoey's. I got my dad into Wellesley. Good enough.
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by foglifter » Sat Apr 15, 2017 12:57 pm

I joined the forum in 2010 after discovering the famous thread on BH forum with lots of gems from Craig and MT. Initially I had 50% in pure PP in IRAs and taxable and another 50% in a PP-like portfolio in my 401k. Some of you might remember my whining about bad 401k with no gold, no LTTs, and a sole stock index fund. Some folks here encouraged me to fight for a better 401k provider (thank you!). I tried and tried and felt like hitting a wall as nothing happened. Being a small company we switched every couple years to various payroll/benefits providers, which required essentially liquidation of all 401k asstes and moving to a new provider. Then, all of a sudden, one day my patience was rewarded. Our HR finally decoupled our 401k from the payroll provider and moved the plan to Employee Fiduciary (which I researched and recommended). I couldn't believe it happened, I was happy! You can imagine what I felt when the provider sent me a clean Excel spreadsheet asking to fill in the funds and ETFs I wanted to have in the new plan. Now we have a plan with 30+ Vanguard funds and a few ETFs - including IAU and TLT! So now I have a full-fledged PP in my 401k.

As to any changes over the last few years: as many folks here, I've decided to move into GB after reading 3 times through several GB-related discussions and spending hours on portfoliovisualizer.com. I've sliced the equity bucket further to include some international small caps using DGS and VSS, but the bulk is in TSM. As to my cash portion, I don't keep cash in retirement accounts, instead I'm using my high yield savings accounts at Ally bank and Alliant CU. Gold is split between physical and IAU.

I still hang around at the forum. Since the forum has become less active I set up alerts for new posts a couple of sections (Permanent and Variable Portfolio) and it actually works well - I do get to read the new posts and when I land at the forum I can check some older threads to refresh my mind.

I'm happy to report that I "converted" three friends into PP. Just a few days ago I had a pleasure of helping one of them to move a pile of cash in his rollover Vanguard IRA into GB. Vanguard's website could use some UI redo for sure - the Buy/Sell link is hard to find! I joked to my friend that they probably don't want you to trade often. Although, if that's the case I'd hide the Sell button and make the Buy button bigger. Myself being a happy Fidelity customer it was annoying to spend time trying to get used to Vanguard's tricky UI. :D
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by stuper1 » Sat Apr 15, 2017 3:30 pm

foglifter wrote:I joined the forum in 2010 after discovering the famous thread on BH forum with lots of gems from Craig and MT. Initially I had 50% in pure PP in IRAs and taxable and another 50% in a PP-like portfolio in my 401k. Some of you might remember my whining about bad 401k with no gold, no LTTs, and a sole stock index fund. Some folks here encouraged me to fight for a better 401k provider (thank you!). I tried and tried and felt like hitting a wall as nothing happened. Being a small company we switched every couple years to various payroll/benefits providers, which required essentially liquidation of all 401k asstes and moving to a new provider. Then, all of a sudden, one day my patience was rewarded. Our HR finally decoupled our 401k from the payroll provider and moved the plan to Employee Fiduciary (which I researched and recommended). I couldn't believe it happened, I was happy! You can imagine what I felt when the provider sent me a clean Excel spreadsheet asking to fill in the funds and ETFs I wanted to have in the new plan. Now we have a plan with 30+ Vanguard funds and a few ETFs - including IAU and TLT! So now I have a full-fledged PP in my 401k.

As to any changes over the last few years: as many folks here, I've decided to move into GB after reading 3 times through several GB-related discussions and spending hours on portfoliovisualizer.com. I've sliced the equity bucket further to include some international small caps using DGS and VSS, but the bulk is in TSM. As to my cash portion, I don't keep cash in retirement accounts, instead I'm using my high yield savings accounts at Ally bank and Alliant CU. Gold is split between physical and IAU.

I still hang around at the forum. Since the forum has become less active I set up alerts for new posts a couple of sections (Permanent and Variable Portfolio) and it actually works well - I do get to read the new posts and when I land at the forum I can check some older threads to refresh my mind.

I'm happy to report that I "converted" three friends into PP. Just a few days ago I had a pleasure of helping one of them to move a pile of cash in his rollover Vanguard IRA into GB. Vanguard's website could use some UI redo for sure - the Buy/Sell link is hard to find! I joked to my friend that they probably don't want you to trade often. Although, if that's the case I'd hide the Sell button and make the Buy button bigger. Myself being a happy Fidelity customer it was annoying to spend time trying to get used to Vanguard's tricky UI. :D
Very impressive both that you got your 401k changed and converted some friends to PP thinking. If you aren't somehow in a sales-oriented profession, you ought to be, because I bet you would make a killing.
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by modeljc » Sat Apr 15, 2017 3:44 pm

stuper1 wrote:
foglifter wrote:I joined the forum in 2010 after discovering the famous thread on BH forum with lots of gems from Craig and MT. Initially I had 50% in pure PP in IRAs and taxable and another 50% in a PP-like portfolio in my 401k. Some of you might remember my whining about bad 401k with no gold, no LTTs, and a sole stock index fund. Some folks here encouraged me to fight for a better 401k provider (thank you!). I tried and tried and felt like hitting a wall as nothing happened. Being a small company we switched every couple years to various payroll/benefits providers, which required essentially liquidation of all 401k asstes and moving to a new provider. Then, all of a sudden, one day my patience was rewarded. Our HR finally decoupled our 401k from the payroll provider and moved the plan to Employee Fiduciary (which I researched and recommended). I couldn't believe it happened, I was happy! You can imagine what I felt when the provider sent me a clean Excel spreadsheet asking to fill in the funds and ETFs I wanted to have in the new plan. Now we have a plan with 30+ Vanguard funds and a few ETFs - including IAU and TLT! So now I have a full-fledged PP in my 401k.

As to any changes over the last few years: as many folks here, I've decided to move into GB after reading 3 times through several GB-related discussions and spending hours on portfoliovisualizer.com. I've sliced the equity bucket further to include some international small caps using DGS and VSS, but the bulk is in TSM. As to my cash portion, I don't keep cash in retirement accounts, instead I'm using my high yield savings accounts at Ally bank and Alliant CU. Gold is split between physical and IAU.

I still hang around at the forum. Since the forum has become less active I set up alerts for new posts a couple of sections (Permanent and Variable Portfolio) and it actually works well - I do get to read the new posts and when I land at the forum I can check some older threads to refresh my mind.

I'm happy to report that I "converted" three friends into PP. Just a few days ago I had a pleasure of helping one of them to move a pile of cash in his rollover Vanguard IRA into GB. Vanguard's website could use some UI redo for sure - the Buy/Sell link is hard to find! I joked to my friend that they probably don't want you to trade often. Although, if that's the case I'd hide the Sell button and make the Buy button bigger. Myself being a happy Fidelity customer it was annoying to spend time trying to get used to Vanguard's tricky UI. :D
Very impressive both that you got your 401k changed and converted some friends to PP thinking. If you aren't somehow in a sales-oriented profession, you ought to be, because I bet you would make a killing.

I told my three children, my friends, given the book to number of others and I do not have one convert! Like I say NO BODY BELIEVES IN THE PP.
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by dualstow » Sat Apr 15, 2017 3:46 pm

Their loss.
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by vnatale » Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:29 pm

foglifter wrote:
Sat Apr 15, 2017 12:57 pm
I joined the forum in 2010 after discovering the famous thread on BH forum with lots of gems from Craig and MT. Initially I had 50% in pure PP in IRAs and taxable and another 50% in a PP-like portfolio in my 401k. Some of you might remember my whining about bad 401k with no gold, no LTTs, and a sole stock index fund. Some folks here encouraged me to fight for a better 401k provider (thank you!). I tried and tried and felt like hitting a wall as nothing happened. Being a small company we switched every couple years to various payroll/benefits providers, which required essentially liquidation of all 401k asstes and moving to a new provider. Then, all of a sudden, one day my patience was rewarded. Our HR finally decoupled our 401k from the payroll provider and moved the plan to Employee Fiduciary (which I researched and recommended). I couldn't believe it happened, I was happy! You can imagine what I felt when the provider sent me a clean Excel spreadsheet asking to fill in the funds and ETFs I wanted to have in the new plan. Now we have a plan with 30+ Vanguard funds and a few ETFs - including IAU and TLT! So now I have a full-fledged PP in my 401k.

As to any changes over the last few years: as many folks here, I've decided to move into GB after reading 3 times through several GB-related discussions and spending hours on portfoliovisualizer.com. I've sliced the equity bucket further to include some international small caps using DGS and VSS, but the bulk is in TSM. As to my cash portion, I don't keep cash in retirement accounts, instead I'm using my high yield savings accounts at Ally bank and Alliant CU. Gold is split between physical and IAU.

I still hang around at the forum. Since the forum has become less active I set up alerts for new posts a couple of sections (Permanent and Variable Portfolio) and it actually works well - I do get to read the new posts and when I land at the forum I can check some older threads to refresh my mind.

I'm happy to report that I "converted" three friends into PP. Just a few days ago I had a pleasure of helping one of them to move a pile of cash in his rollover Vanguard IRA into GB. Vanguard's website could use some UI redo for sure - the Buy/Sell link is hard to find! I joked to my friend that they probably don't want you to trade often. Although, if that's the case I'd hide the Sell button and make the Buy button bigger. Myself being a happy Fidelity customer it was annoying to spend time trying to get used to Vanguard's tricky UI. :D
This is dangerous to me, finding out about Employee Fiduciary above! Recently I wrote about my efforts in trying to come up with a retirement plan for our organization. On Monday I sent out a huge amount of information to our staff and yesterday we discussed it somewhat with a committee of four now set up to meet next week to choose among the three options (401(k), 403(b), SIMPLE IRA) and the details for the final choice. Now to do MY due diligence I need to look at Employee Fiduciary to make sure it is NOT superior to the three options I have exhaustively researched.

Vinny
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by foglifter » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:39 pm

vnatale wrote:
Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:29 pm
This is dangerous to me, finding out about Employee Fiduciary above! Recently I wrote about my efforts in trying to come up with a retirement plan for our organization. On Monday I sent out a huge amount of information to our staff and yesterday we discussed it somewhat with a committee of four now set up to meet next week to choose among the three options (401(k), 403(b), SIMPLE IRA) and the details for the final choice. Now to do MY due diligence I need to look at Employee Fiduciary to make sure it is NOT superior to the three options I have exhaustively researched.

Vinny
Vinny, I'm glad my old post happened to be useful to you! I did my own due diligence and compared EF with a couple of other providers before making a decision. There might be more players on the market now, but back then there weren't that many custodians offering good retirement plans to small/mid firms at reasonable prices.

My colleagues and I were pleased with EF. The pricing was very transparent, just 1500/year for administration plus 0.08% on top of the participant account balances. We also had a brokerage window, but nobody used it since the investment options offered in the core account were more than enough. We could slice and dice all we want. Besides the indexes we included a handful of active funds like Vanguard Health Care and PIMCO Income and ETFs (IAU, TLT).
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by vnatale » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:57 pm

foglifter wrote:
Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:39 pm
vnatale wrote:
Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:29 pm
This is dangerous to me, finding out about Employee Fiduciary above! Recently I wrote about my efforts in trying to come up with a retirement plan for our organization. On Monday I sent out a huge amount of information to our staff and yesterday we discussed it somewhat with a committee of four now set up to meet next week to choose among the three options (401(k), 403(b), SIMPLE IRA) and the details for the final choice. Now to do MY due diligence I need to look at Employee Fiduciary to make sure it is NOT superior to the three options I have exhaustively researched.

Vinny
Vinny, I'm glad my old post happened to be useful to you! I did my own due diligence and compared EF with a couple of other providers before making a decision. There might be more players on the market now, but back then there weren't that many custodians offering good retirement plans to small/mid firms at reasonable prices.

My colleagues and I were pleased with EF. The pricing was very transparent, just 1500/year for administration plus 0.08% on top of the participant account balances. We also had a brokerage window, but nobody used it since the investment options offered in the core account were more than enough. We could slice and dice all we want. Besides the indexes we included a handful of active funds like Vanguard Health Care and PIMCO Income and ETFs (IAU, TLT).
I will definitely be spending some time tomorrow investigating it.

One of the three options we have been looking at is a 403(b) with Vanguard partnering with The Newport Group as the third party administrator. The initial investing options are 54 mutual funds from Vanguard (no EFTs) but it's open architecture in that we can request funds to be added from anywhere else, i.e. Fidelity, T-Rowe Price, which is important given that we are a non-profit with Social Responsible Investing options being important to many of our employees.

Their administrative fees are base compliance fee of $750 a year plus 30/employee. Assuming 18 employees that is $1,290 per year. Then there is a recordkeeping and communication fee of $60 per employee. Finally, we'd have to pay a financial advisor at least $1,000 a year to assist us in the fiduciary role we'd be in. That's a total of $3,370 per year.

With your pricing it'd be $1,500 plus no more than $300 (at .0008) a year for a total of $1,800.

Who is the fiduciary in your case? I assume it must be your organization / business?

VInny
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by foglifter » Sat Nov 16, 2019 12:43 am

vnatale wrote:
Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:57 pm
foglifter wrote:
Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:39 pm
vnatale wrote:
Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:29 pm
This is dangerous to me, finding out about Employee Fiduciary above! Recently I wrote about my efforts in trying to come up with a retirement plan for our organization. On Monday I sent out a huge amount of information to our staff and yesterday we discussed it somewhat with a committee of four now set up to meet next week to choose among the three options (401(k), 403(b), SIMPLE IRA) and the details for the final choice. Now to do MY due diligence I need to look at Employee Fiduciary to make sure it is NOT superior to the three options I have exhaustively researched.

Vinny
Vinny, I'm glad my old post happened to be useful to you! I did my own due diligence and compared EF with a couple of other providers before making a decision. There might be more players on the market now, but back then there weren't that many custodians offering good retirement plans to small/mid firms at reasonable prices.

My colleagues and I were pleased with EF. The pricing was very transparent, just 1500/year for administration plus 0.08% on top of the participant account balances. We also had a brokerage window, but nobody used it since the investment options offered in the core account were more than enough. We could slice and dice all we want. Besides the indexes we included a handful of active funds like Vanguard Health Care and PIMCO Income and ETFs (IAU, TLT).
I will definitely be spending some time tomorrow investigating it.

One of the three options we have been looking at is a 403(b) with Vanguard partnering with The Newport Group as the third party administrator. The initial investing options are 54 mutual funds from Vanguard (no EFTs) but it's open architecture in that we can request funds to be added from anywhere else, i.e. Fidelity, T-Rowe Price, which is important given that we are a non-profit with Social Responsible Investing options being important to many of our employees.

Their administrative fees are base compliance fee of $750 a year plus 30/employee. Assuming 18 employees that is $1,290 per year. Then there is a recordkeeping and communication fee of $60 per employee. Finally, we'd have to pay a financial advisor at least $1,000 a year to assist us in the fiduciary role we'd be in. That's a total of $3,370 per year.

With your pricing it'd be $1,500 plus no more than $300 (at .0008) a year for a total of $1,800.

Who is the fiduciary in your case? I assume it must be your organization / business?

VInny
Im not sure, probably the employer. Unfortunately that awesome low-cost plan is now history, we got acquired by a bigger firm. All that's left is memories... 😔
It's very satisfying to know I did something good by helping create a great plan for my colleagues.

Here's their pricing:
https://www.employeefiduciary.com/401k-plan-pricing
"Let every man divide his money into three parts, and invest a third in land, a third in business, and a third let him keep in reserve."
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Re: Question for original forum members

Post by vnatale » Sat Nov 16, 2019 9:57 am

foglifter wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 12:43 am
vnatale wrote:
Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:57 pm
foglifter wrote:
Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:39 pm
vnatale wrote:
Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:29 pm
This is dangerous to me, finding out about Employee Fiduciary above! Recently I wrote about my efforts in trying to come up with a retirement plan for our organization. On Monday I sent out a huge amount of information to our staff and yesterday we discussed it somewhat with a committee of four now set up to meet next week to choose among the three options (401(k), 403(b), SIMPLE IRA) and the details for the final choice. Now to do MY due diligence I need to look at Employee Fiduciary to make sure it is NOT superior to the three options I have exhaustively researched.

Vinny
Vinny, I'm glad my old post happened to be useful to you! I did my own due diligence and compared EF with a couple of other providers before making a decision. There might be more players on the market now, but back then there weren't that many custodians offering good retirement plans to small/mid firms at reasonable prices.

My colleagues and I were pleased with EF. The pricing was very transparent, just 1500/year for administration plus 0.08% on top of the participant account balances. We also had a brokerage window, but nobody used it since the investment options offered in the core account were more than enough. We could slice and dice all we want. Besides the indexes we included a handful of active funds like Vanguard Health Care and PIMCO Income and ETFs (IAU, TLT).
I will definitely be spending some time tomorrow investigating it.

One of the three options we have been looking at is a 403(b) with Vanguard partnering with The Newport Group as the third party administrator. The initial investing options are 54 mutual funds from Vanguard (no EFTs) but it's open architecture in that we can request funds to be added from anywhere else, i.e. Fidelity, T-Rowe Price, which is important given that we are a non-profit with Social Responsible Investing options being important to many of our employees.

Their administrative fees are base compliance fee of $750 a year plus 30/employee. Assuming 18 employees that is $1,290 per year. Then there is a recordkeeping and communication fee of $60 per employee. Finally, we'd have to pay a financial advisor at least $1,000 a year to assist us in the fiduciary role we'd be in. That's a total of $3,370 per year.

With your pricing it'd be $1,500 plus no more than $300 (at .0008) a year for a total of $1,800.

Who is the fiduciary in your case? I assume it must be your organization / business?

VInny
Im not sure, probably the employer. Unfortunately that awesome low-cost plan is now history, we got acquired by a bigger firm. All that's left is memories... 😔
It's very satisfying to know I did something good by helping create a great plan for my colleagues.

Here's their pricing:
https://www.employeefiduciary.com/401k-plan-pricing
I am glad you popped back in here to respond as yesterday I finally had time to investigate them and I spent many, many hours going completely through their web site and reading many of the articles that were provided on their web site.

I also connected via LinkedIn with their president & CEO and asked some questions to him.

We have a committee meeting set up on Tuesday to review all the information I'd acquired on what I had thought were going to be our three options and to choose one among those three. Now after all the investigating I did yesterday on Employer Fiduciary they are clearly going to be a fourth option and by tomorrow night I need to send out all the relevant information regarding them (including my cost analyses) to the committee. They may well now be THE choice. Would not at all have known about them or gone looking for them absent what you've put in this forum. So, many, many thanks for that. It's always amazing to me that so many significant things in life can come about through pure serendipity!

That fiduciary question is still up in the are, though. It does seem strange if they are not the fiduciary given the name of their company!

Thanks again for you putting me on this track!

Vinny

Vinny
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