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Old 05-22-2008, 08:05 AM   #21
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I think the commission is $1 per thousand, $25 minimum, can't remember exactly.

They can be sold, the price can go up or down, and you may owe tax if you sell it higher than you bought it for...check your tax advisor on that one.

Yes I believe the selling price could drop if we had a bull run in equities. But remember, we buy bonds primarily for stability and income rather than the capital gains (unless you are a professional trader of these sorts of things). If the bear continues to rampage, and the fed continues to drop interest rates, bonds could also go up...good if you want to sell, bad if you want to buy. The yield moves opposite to the price, so when the price of a bond goes up, the cash percentage rate that the bond throws off is lower because you had to invest more money to get the same amount of "fixed income".

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Old 05-22-2008, 11:44 AM   #22
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I tried to search the bonds you listed in Google and they didn't come up.

But one of the results was zionsdirect.com, which I guess is a broker. They advertise $10.95 per trade but you can't search for specific bonds until you sign up.

I left Schwab years ago because they have account maintenance fees if you balance drops below some threshold. I'm guessing they still take money unless you maintain a certain balance of assets.
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Old 05-22-2008, 04:02 PM   #23
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I think most retirees here have a cushion of 2 to 7 years' worth of living expenses in cash or bonds taht they use first. Every year, most use whatever cash the portfolio throws off (interest, dividends, etc.) and then rebalance to their target allocations, reserving as much cash as they need to top up the "buffer" of cash and bonds.
Yes - just to confirm your statement (that's what I do).

Did my "sell" in Dec '07 to fund my gross budget for '08.
I keep this in Fidelity's IMA account and transfer to my bank accounts (from where I pay bills) once a month.

Current cash is at 2-3 years (beyond the '07 "bucket").

Only "dumb thing" I did this year was to pay the Federal tax in January. Being ER'ed less than a year, I thought you had to do the quarterly tax thing, and I thought I would be "smart" to eliminate the "hassle". Now I know I don't have to make any payment (at all) till year end. Next year, I'll schedule the tax payment (one transaction via Fidelity) in December '09.

You always learn something on these boards!

- Ron
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Old 05-22-2008, 06:05 PM   #24
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I tried to search the bonds you listed in Google and they didn't come up.

But one of the results was zionsdirect.com, which I guess is a broker. They advertise $10.95 per trade but you can't search for specific bonds until you sign up.

I left Schwab years ago because they have account maintenance fees if you balance drops below some threshold. I'm guessing they still take money unless you maintain a certain balance of assets.
I just joined schwab a couple years ago, and have never had to pay any maintenance fees, but I think there is a minimum of $5000 to buy munis or other bonds. If you have your accounts at Vanguard or Fidelity, I'm sure they have similar offerings. I don't think you will find these on google or yahoo.

I think your comment abouut not being able to search for bonds probably applies everywhere...can't do it on schwab.com either unless you have an account.

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Old 05-26-2008, 08:36 PM   #25
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Yes - just to confirm your statement (that's what I do).
).

Only "dumb thing" I did this year was to pay the Federal tax in January. Being ER'ed less than a year, I thought you had to do the quarterly tax thing, and I thought I would be "smart" to eliminate the "hassle". Now I know I don't have to make any payment (at all) till year end. Next year, I'll schedule the tax payment (one transaction via Fidelity) in December '09.

You always learn something on these boards!

- Ron
Ron,
my turn to be dumb -- can you point me to a thread on this? I didn't pay tax (or enough to have to worry about estimated payments) for the first 5 years of FIRE but have had to for the past year or two. Is there a provision for non-wage-earners that exempts us from having to make quarterly pre-payments? I didn't know about this.
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Old 05-27-2008, 06:11 AM   #26
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Ron,
my turn to be dumb -- can you point me to a thread on this?
Bob, here's the link to the discussion on the M* board:

paying estimated taxes on taxable retirement ira distributions

I'll assume you can get to it. If not, drop me an email and I'll cut/paste it to you.

- Ron
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