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Old 03-18-2013, 04:20 PM   #21
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Then there is this....

Economics of Contempt: The Unofficial List of Pundits/Experts Who Were Wrong on the Housing Bubble
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:57 PM   #22
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1. Bond funds are not in a bubble even if/when interest rates rise. It will be gradual not zooming up 2 or 3% in a week.

2. Don't just do something stand there.
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Old 03-19-2013, 09:59 PM   #23
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1. Bond funds are not in a bubble even if/when interest rates rise. It will be gradual not zooming up 2 or 3% in a week.

2. Don't just do something stand there.
You trying to make the list?
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Old 03-20-2013, 07:19 AM   #24
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Then there is this....
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Guess which intermediate-term bond fund has the best performance since November 19, 2012? Is it VFIIX? VWITX? VIPSX? VBMFX?
I am pleased to announce that in the month since 2/18/2013 when this thread was started that the total returns of VFIIX, VIPSX, VBMFX are positive. VWITX has lost about 0.25% of its value.
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Old 03-20-2013, 09:39 AM   #25
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My bonds are short to intermediate term but I am monitoring unemployment and may bail on bonds at some point in time.
If that "some point" were now, where would you put your "bail bond" money? Stocks (at this level)? MM? CDs? Other??
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Old 03-20-2013, 09:53 AM   #26
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If that "some point" were now, where would you put your "bail bond" money? Stocks (at this level)? MM? CDs? Other??
My fixed income AA is currently in an intermediate term investment grade bond fund, a short-term bond fund and a high-yield corporate bond fund.

I'll probably hold and might even add to the short term and high yield corporate bond funds and liquidate the intermediate term investment grade bond fund over time and reinvest in a dividend growth stock fund (like the VG Dividend Growth fund) and an international bond fund. While I understand that the dividend growth adds equity risk to my portfolio, I'm more scared of interest rate risk than equity risk.

YMMV.
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:45 PM   #27
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Since I am getting close to retirement, I started to buy individual bonds in my portfolio 3+ years ago, getting up to a 35% allocation. With the way rates have gone, I sold some for a good profit and most of the others have been called. Rates are currently projected to be low until 2015, so look to 2016 or 2017 before any increase. Oh, low rates have been extended out for the past 3 years, so further extensions are possible and we may be looking until 2018 before any increase.

Currently, I'm heavy to cash, but I switched my FI allocation over to dividend producing stocks. I figure 3-6% annual dividends beat what's available in bonds or bond funds. While I agree rates will rise slowly, I wouldn't be surprised to see a 1-2% increase occurring over a year's time when it happens.
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:55 PM   #28
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The response that I have received several times to similar questions has been: "Get your employer to provide better choices." I haven't found my employer to be even remotely constructive in that regard, though I plan to renew my attempts today.
You certainly have the right attitude. Workers often forget that the money in the 401(k) plan IS THEIRS! What a revelation huh? It's the retirement plan of the employee, not the employer. Employees that consistently take the time to inquire about how their retirement fund is run, what options are/are not offered, how much cost/fees is pushed off on employees are looking our for their retirement and can often make a difference. If not you, who?
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Old 03-20-2013, 04:22 PM   #29
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Yup, though once we bring up the cost/fees we begin to lose leverage, given that employers recognizing how the labor market has become a buyers' market can view the costs they incur as sponsors of the plan as hurting the bottom line.

All the best advice I've read regarding talking with plan sponsors recommend to ensure that what we're suggesting is truly a win-win, i.e., that it somehow benefits the company, not just the employee. It used to be that we could express those benefits in terms of employee attraction and retention, but I'm getting that flat stare when I raise such matters now - the flat stare that says, "Fine: Go find another job, just try, will ya?"

I've been pushed off about a dozen times already. I've pinned the company accountant (who really has no power, but at least might listen) down for tomorrow morning 7:30 am. We'll see if she finds something else to do instead.

I want to float the idea of providing an option for us to pay a fee for something better, but I doubt any of my colleagues would be happy about such a move, and I don't want to open a door that I'll regret opening.
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Old 03-20-2013, 04:28 PM   #30
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I have been steadily liquidating my junk exposure lately. There is far more downside than upside and I do not like the behavior I see going on in the junk market.
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:14 AM   #31
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I am pleased to announce that in the month since 2/18/2013 when this thread was started that the total returns of VFIIX, VIPSX, VBMFX are positive. VWITX has lost about 0.25% of its value.

Instead of picking some arbitrary timeline, how about year to date.

VWITX is the only thing in positive territory. The others are losses.

VFIIX Chart Vanguard GNMA Inv Fund Chart

So, LOL, how are your bonds doing to date, please tell us.

LOL
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:40 AM   #32
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It is well-known on the forum that I use VCSH, BIV, VFIJX, FSITX. Here are their YTD performances according to M*:
+0.45% VCSH
-0.06% BIV
-0.12% VFIJX
-0.26% FSITX

I am not worried about the performance of my bond funds. I have bought lots more FSITX recently and it has gone up since my last purchase so the YTD above from M* is not my YTD. See this thread: LOL!'s Market Timing Newsletter

And I wish to note for others that I did not pick arbitrary timelines. I picked times where you announced a purchase or started a thread.
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Old 03-26-2013, 09:48 AM   #33
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PTTRX is very good. It pretty much returns at least 6-7% every year on average and did white well during the 2008-2009 crisis. Main downside is that in periods of high inflation it does not do as well in real terms. So it is best to hedge this with some inflation based assets.
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:02 AM   #34
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PTTRX is very good. It pretty much returns at least 6-7% every year on average and did white well during the 2008-2009 crisis. Main downside is that in periods of high inflation it does not do as well in real terms. So it is best to hedge this with some inflation based assets.
PTTRX opened in 1988, and since that time there has been no high inflation, so we really don't know how it would do. We do know it has positive real returns in 21 of 24 years.
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Old 03-26-2013, 05:52 PM   #35
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I've mentioned my problem with bonds in a different thread. I currently maintain 60 stocks / 40 bonds in the market (275k) and when I retire in 30 days I'll have about $660 k to transfer into Vanguard funds. I was going to do the same ratio, but the thought of putting $264 k into bond funds right now seems irresponsible - the bond fund (VBTLX) has lost 1.25% in the last few months, and I only see bond fund NAVs dropping further the next few years. I'm planning on leaving that bond money in their stable accounts (1.75and 3%) until the bond funds seem to bottom out in future years. I see no need to put new money into almost guaranteed losses for the next several years. When the NAVs further down, then buy. Note: I'm relatively new in the market and realize I dont know everything lol.

* I'm planning a2% withdrawel beginning 2014 - travel money
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:42 PM   #36
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A Bubble Bigger than Housing Is About to Pop -- Here's How to Protect Your Portfolio - Yahoo! Finance
This just published article in Yahoo Finance certainly takes a dim view of the US Treasury and Bond market.
"Despite the country's battered financial condition, Treasury bonds are still viewed as one of the safest securities in the world. But with a terrible risk-reward ratio, growing fiscal deficits, record-low yields and attractive alternatives, the Treasury market is ripe for a long overdue correction."
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:54 PM   #37
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Thanks for the link. It makes sense.
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:31 PM   #38
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:45 PM   #39
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I think you have to be watchful and be nimble on your feet with any investments. The Fed and all the other central banks are doing the utmost to down interest rate (how come no one think of that as collusion or manipulation) because a meaningful rise in interest rate will make servicing the enormous government debts around the world impossible. Until the Central Banks lose the struggle against Bond vigilantes, and the Central Banks have all the power in this battle, substantial interest rate increase is a threat more in theory or what should normally happen. But we are living in a very abnormal time.
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Old 03-26-2013, 09:07 PM   #40
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But how long can they keep up the manipulation?
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