How do you invest the Cash portion?

Discussion of the Cash portion of the Permanent Portfolio

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technovelist
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by technovelist » Fri Apr 24, 2020 11:24 am

drumminj wrote:
Wed Nov 27, 2019 9:08 pm
jhogue wrote:
Wed Nov 27, 2019 2:48 pm
11/27/19
drumminj,

I am not picking your poison because I agree with Harry Browne and craigr that all financial risks are not created equal:
That's fair, and to be clear I'm not trying to convince anyone.

I disagree though that there are no "FDIC limits to worry about". Your MM funds are held by a financial institution (in "street name", possibly even?) which may become insolvent, halt withdrawls, etc. You have insurance issues there, no? Asking sincerely, is this less risky than FDIC?

Treasuries held directly? Sure. Treasuries held on your behalf? Less so. Treasury MM? Also has risks.

Again, not trying to convince anyone to do what I do -- just trying to be clear about the risks here in the margins.
Is the only way to Treasuries directly Treasury Direct?
Mine are held at Fidelity. I think that is reasonably safe.
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by vnatale » Fri Apr 24, 2020 11:39 am

jhogue wrote:
Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:27 pm
Vinny,

Financial safety is reinforced through diversity and liquidity. T-bills held in a brokerage account at Vanguard are safe enough for “normal” times because Vanguard is a big active player in the enormous world-wide secondary market for Treasurys. Unless there is a terrific disruption in this market your money will always be completely liquid. Nevertheless, you might eventually consider diversifying your holdings of Treasury –issued securities as follows:

1. Federal Reserve notes (ie., greenbacks yielding 0% interest) kept in a safe place in your home.

2. A TreasuryDirect account in your name.

3. Paper I-bonds with registered serial numbers purchased with your annual tax refund.

Any of these will diversify your holdings away from a 100% T-bill position in a brokerage account. But understand that each of these methods poses different risks from T-bills held in a brokerage account. That is the way risk works.
Good points!

Vinny
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by vnatale » Fri Apr 24, 2020 11:40 am

drumminj wrote:
Fri Dec 06, 2019 9:56 pm
jhogue wrote:
Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:27 pm
T-bills held in a brokerage account at Vanguard are safe enough for “normal” times because Vanguard is a big active player in the enormous world-wide secondary market for Treasurys. Unless there is a terrific disruption in this market your money will always be completely liquid.
I don't mean to keep harping on the same thing, but it seems you're overlooking the aspect of relying on a third party here. Sure, the treasury market is liquid, but that doesn't mean that vanguard will be solvent. Presumably these treasuries are held in "street name", like all other instruments at a brokerage, and thus aren't in your direct possession and are at risk if there's an issue with the institution itself, which is where SIPC comes in. Is this not the case treasuries (vs stocks)?

"In normal times", sure, but if you're talking about FDIC and liquidity with a bank/MM account/CD, it seems you should be considering similar scenarios with your brokerage -- Vanguard or Fidelity or Schwab or wherever else. (I'll admit that bank receiverships are far more frequent than brokerage houses).

I agree with you on the tiers of possession and liquidity, and my intent here is just to suggest that bank accounts and CDs fall upon this same continuum, and in normal times where banks remain solvent, don't have drastically different characteristics from treasuries, aside from often paying a better rate. If I need liquidity in "normal" times, I can liquidate a treasury through my broker just as easily as I can break a CD (which I've done a few times, and takes no more than a day or two).

In "abnormal" times like the 2008 "crisis", I agree treasuries are the safer play.
And, more representing a certain point of view.

Vinny
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by vnatale » Fri Apr 24, 2020 11:41 am

mathjak107 wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 3:12 am
FEW REALIZE THIS :

if you ever check your vanguard statement or fidelity they read :
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
" SIPC insurance provides protection for assets held by you in a Vanguard Brokerage account. Vanguard Brokerage Services is a division of Vanguard Marketing Corporation, which is a member of SIPC...

Vanguard mutual funds, including any Vanguard money market fund linked to your Vanguard Brokerage account, are not covered by SIPC insurance."
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"If you buy mutual funds through a brokerage account, those funds are protected against theft by SIPC.

However, if you buy mutual funds directly from a mutual fund company, they are not protected by SIPC, "because no protection is necessary : . Each mutual fund is set up as a separate entity, apart from the company that manages the fund. "The employees at a mutual fund don't have direct access to the assets,All mutual fund assets by law must be held in a trust account at a custodian bank.

That is a special account, not part of the bank's assets. The bank can fail, but the trust accounts are not involved in any way shape or form in that failure ...

https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/SIPC_pr ... tual_funds
And, important clarifications by mathjak.

Vinny
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by vnatale » Fri Apr 24, 2020 11:43 am

Kbg wrote:
Tue Dec 10, 2019 4:34 pm
Don’t forget, the govt can print money. So getting your money back is not really the issue. Far more likely problems are legal delays and in the ZA (new acronym for Zombie Apocalypse) inflationary devaluation.

To me for the first and most likely problem, treasury direct is a no brainer. Just you and your government, no middlemen of any kind.
A BIG vote for Treasury Direct.

VInny
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by vnatale » Fri Apr 24, 2020 11:46 am

mathjak107 wrote:
Wed Dec 11, 2019 2:26 am
old school thinking used to say that bonds should go in retirement accounts . the fact is taking up valuable space in tax advantaged accounts at these low yields is a waste . michael kitces found that as little as a 2% dividend over the long term wipes out any tax advantage in a taxable account. fund turnover makes it worse .

as kitces points out

"Executive Summary
In an environment where generating portfolio alpha is difficult, strategies like managing assets on a household basis to take advantage of asset location opportunities to generate “tax alpha” are becoming more and more popular. The caveat, however, is that making effective asset location decisions is not easy, either.
For instance, while the traditional asset location strategy “rule of thumb” is that tax-inefficient bonds go into an IRA, while equities eligible for preferential tax rates go into a brokerage account, the reality is that for investors with long time horizons the optimal solution may be the opposite. Once stock dividends and portfolio turnover are considered, the ongoing “tax drag” of the portfolio can be so damaging to long-term returns that placing equities into an IRA may be more efficient, even though they are ultimately taxed at higher rates!
In fact, it turns out that almost any level of portfolio turnover will eventually tilt equities towards being held in IRAs given a long enough time horizon (and especially while today’s low interest rates result in almost no benefit for bonds to gain tax-deferred growth inside of retirement accounts). Which means in the end, good asset location decisions depend not only on returns and tax efficiency, but an investor’s time horizon as well!

https://www.kitces.com/blog/asset-locat ... e-horizon/
If one is using the Vanguard Total Stock Market fund as one's 25% equity investment and it has a yield of 2.15% then it would seem to qualify? The remaining question would be what you or he would consider to be "over the long term". What do you consider to be the time range to constitute being "over the long term"?

Vinny
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mathjak107
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by mathjak107 » Mon Apr 27, 2020 2:54 am

Image


typical accumulation and retirement stages usually are looked at as 30 years .
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ochotona
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by ochotona » Mon May 11, 2020 8:41 pm

Ally Bank 1.25% on the savings accounts now...
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by Kriegsspiel » Mon May 11, 2020 8:45 pm

What are they doing that they can give you 1.25% interest
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ochotona
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by ochotona » Tue May 12, 2020 4:47 am

Kriegsspiel wrote:
Mon May 11, 2020 8:45 pm
What are they doing that they can give you 1.25% interest
Subprime auto loans probably.
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by sophie » Tue May 12, 2020 7:51 am

WSJ had a piece a few days ago about how the mortgage market is about to run into serious problems. Watch out for municipal bonds, mortgage backed securities, repurchase agreements, junk bonds etc. Which is what Ally is probably using to give you that interest rate.

T bills and Treasury money markets for me, at least until all this settles out. We could see another 2008 frozen-credit event - not saying it will happen just that it might.
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Re: How do you invest the Cash portion?

Post by technovelist » Tue May 12, 2020 8:03 am

sophie wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 7:51 am
WSJ had a piece a few days ago about how the mortgage market is about to run into serious problems. Watch out for municipal bonds, mortgage backed securities, repurchase agreements, junk bonds etc. Which is what Ally is probably using to give you that interest rate.

T bills and Treasury money markets for me, at least until all this settles out. We could see another 2008 frozen-credit event - not saying it will happen just that it might.
I don't see any way that it won't get at least that bad.
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