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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-18-2005, 06:54 PM   #41
 
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Quote:
You young puppies were making love to your hands
the last time real inflation reared its head. You have
no idea of the havoc it can play.The idea that the gov can artificially hold the CPI to 3.5% is absurd,
IMHO, of course.
You sure got that one right on!

I don't think the government can artifically hold the CPI down by large amounts. What they can do, is to shave a few basis points off thereby saving the government billions. They give with one hand, and take with the other.

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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-18-2005, 07:37 PM   #42
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Charlie -

Dont get rubbed wrong by me on this...and by the way I do remember 18% mortgage rates and my groceries making me cut an awful lot of coupons out of the paper to make them affordable...and still eating a lot of oodles of noodles.

I think we're stuck on "evil government" and "CPI manipulation".

Lets do away with that.

Long term CD's right now pay 4.6-5%. ibonds pay ~3.6%. Apparently they arent glued together all that well. In my mind, a treasury issue that is supposed to protect me from inflation and provide me with a "real rate of return" will probably ALWAYS give me a little less than a CD that is paying a fixed rate with no inflation protection. Otherwise...who the hell would buy a CD? Theres a risk element that simply has to create a premium, just like with value stocks. No?

Will 4.5%+ inflation come about, at least as measured by the CPI?

Why dont you tell me what you think will cause this to happen? Then perhaps I can understand your perspective.

My understandings of the last huge wave of inflation was the middle east folks jerking us around on oil, coming off the gold standard, a labor crunch, and a bunch of economic policies resulting from wading into some new waters.

The perceptions of many people today are that many of those issues are behind us. I dont necessarily agree with that. But I dont see any interactive factors coming about in the next 5 years that will create a runaway inflation scenario.

Labor is plentiful. I strongly doubt any of the oil bearing countries would think that now is a good idea to yank our chain with a few hundred thousand of our troops in their backyard. Supposedly we have a grip on monetary and economic policy. An unpinned currency has been defacto for decades.

So whats going to do it?

And before we recycle this one more time, I'm not saying that ibonds suck and that one should buy CD's in exclusion. I think both suck and both will barely tread water vs real inflationary pressures...if that. I think that people wanting these sorts of instruments should divvy their money up both ways...just to be sure.

I'm not completely out there...look at vanguards "target retirement income". It only holds 25% in "inflation proof" securities. Apparently asset allocation among fixed income instruments is also alive and well...
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NFCU-PFCU update
Old 02-18-2005, 10:12 PM   #43
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NFCU-PFCU update

Here's a comparison of their five-year CDs.

NFCU: 4.75% APY at $20K minimum. Six-month penalty for early redemption.
http://eics.navyfcu.org/general/rate...s?OpenFrameset

PFCU: 5.00% APY, $1K minimum. Same six-month penalty. (Also offers 7 year CDs at 5.15%.) https://www.penfed.org/rates/certrates.asp?app=CDA

First, I'm perplexed by PenFed's membership rules. This is more a snivel than a rant, but I'd blissfully assumed that Navy veterans were automatically qualified for PFCU membership. I was rudely recalibrated that just about every American veteran EXCEPT Navy/USMC is eligible. Maybe they have a non-compete agreement with NFCU?

Second, their National Military Family Association donation scheme is a hassle. Paying the $20 membership fee online can only be done via credit-card cash advance and not by EFT. (MBNA, "my" credit-card company, charges $5 for a $20 cash advance plus 19% interest.) Application to NMFA can be done by mail with a check but application by mail to PFCU must be done separately.

At this point I was thinking "OK, Nords, quit sniveling and start licking stamps." Then I decided to call NFCU.

Things began to change over the phone (after reviewing our account). NFCU stuck to their $20K minimum but raised their offer to 5% upon "discovering" that I've been a member for 25 years (yikes). I pointed out that PFCU is trying to eat NFCU's CD lunch with higher rates & longer terms, and NFCU claims that they'll be discussing that very issue at next week's rate meeting. NFCU also pointed out that their CD's accrued dividends can be withdrawn anytime penalty-free as long as the $20K isn't invaded. (PFCU's customer service rep will get back to me on that one.)

PFCU's big advantage is 7-year terms and a $1K minimum. NFCU has a small advantage for inertia with no hassle factor.

It sounds like NFCU is getting ready to go up against PFCU in the next couple weeks. It'll be interesting to see where rates stand next month.
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-19-2005, 06:27 AM   #44
 
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

I have not looked into this much, only read what has been posted here. Seems to me there must be some easier ways to get 5% for 5 years. But, like Dennis
Miller says, "That's only my opinion. I could be wrong."

JG
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-19-2005, 10:18 AM   #45
 
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

I joined Penfed last month. The initial deposit and NMFA membership were charged on my credit card (not a cash advance). I also went ahead and charged 20K in CDs on the card which I also earned miles on.

When I purchased the CDs I was given two options a) reinvest the dividends or b) dividends are deposited to another account.

The only hassles I ran into is the limit on credit card purchases and electronic bank purchases is 10K each. I had to wire some funds in order to get the promotional interest rate. This cost me $15.

Penfed's website is relatively easy to use, and I've found their customer support to be excellent. No complaints here.
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-19-2005, 11:58 AM   #46
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

TH,

I agree that IF inflation behaves as predicted, then
some 5 yr CDs might have a little edge over I-Bonds.

But you are missing my central point which is that
I-bonds give protection against inflation being
higher than predicted. When you buy a 5 yr
CD you are taking a 5 year risk that inflation will
not take off .... it is a simple as that.

Now if you are talking about 1 yr CDs, which Nords
has been buying and rolling over, then it is a no-
brainer to buy I-bonds, IMHO. The best CDs are
a little over 3% right now. I-bonds pay 3.67% now
but are likely to go up at the next reset. After all
the current YOY CPI is at 3.26% and the real interest
is 1% making it likely that current I-bonds will be
paying over 4% this spring.

I posted on another thread that a 5 year ladder
at Penfed vs. I-bonds would be a hard choice.
That is because a 5 yr ladder pays 5 yr rates
(after 5 years) with only a 2.5 yr average maturity.

BTW, I never take offense at your comments even
when you are blowing smoke. You always
have a good sense of humor which I enjoy a lot.

I am glad that you can type and hold a baby at the
same time. What happened to the 25 lb. attack cat?
Is it jealous? I guess the baby is evidence that the
cat did no permanent damage while on your lap.

Cheers,

Charlie
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-19-2005, 01:49 PM   #47
 
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Quote:
But you are missing my central point which is that
I-bonds give protection against inflation being
higher than predicted. When you buy a 5 yr
CD you are taking a 5 year risk that inflation will
not take off .... it is a simple as that.
Not really. Because you can redeem the CD with only a 6 month interest penalty. So holding it for a couple years will beat the I-Bond, even if you have to redeem it early and take the penalty.

So don't look at it like a 5 year commitment.
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-19-2005, 03:31 PM   #48
 
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Once again I agree with Cut-Throat. I don't know many liberals with that much common sense (unclemick?).

JG
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-19-2005, 04:15 PM   #49
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Glad you arent taking offense, we're just chewing the fat here. [homer]Mmmm...fat...[/homer]

The 25 lb attack cat is exasperating. I get up with the baby to get something and when I come back he's enjoying the warm spot I left behind and is not pleased to be moved. But he likes to lick the baby, so I guess he's ok with it. The other day Gabe started his mad waving (I think he's giving a presentation on why we should increase his feedings) and bopped the cat on the head a couple of times. Not well received.

As C-T says, you can bail on a cd at any time with a small penalty, should the interest rates start to look displeasing. Unexpected inflation should (within a very short time) be matched with higher interest rates. At that point you revisit the decision now that you know what the new parameters are.

But if you're worried about unexpected high inflation, perhaps a chunk of a commodities index fund is more in line than simply holding ibonds. Pretty liquid, uses TIPS as collateral against commodities, and commodities fly when unexpected inflation comes around. Usually. In that case you get the TIPS return, the inflation protection from that, and an extra dollop of juice if inflation really runs due to the commodity run-up.

You never did say what you thought might create short term inflationary pressures that would make ibonds attractive...
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-20-2005, 11:13 AM   #50
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

If the real interest rate on I-bonds were to creep
back to the 2% range then I would like them a
lot better, but I don't know what moves real
rates other than supply and demand. I-bond rates
will spike if/when the CPI spikes. As it is, I-bonds
at 3.67% (going to 4.26% this spring, IMHO) are
just about a wash with 5 year CD's held for 2 years.

I wish Gummy had a calculator to allow comparison
of returns under different assumptions of changing
CPI and penalties for early redemption. My head
hurts trying to do back of the envelope swags.

Short rates are likely to go up more as Greenspan
turns the screw, but I don't know how 5 yr and
longer will react.

My feeling is that we are in an unstable equilibrium
situation on long rates and they will jump when
some trigger occurs ..... like another oil shock or
foreign crisis or just whenever our debt holders
spook a run on the bank because they like the euro
or other currency better. The herd mentality among
bond investors is just as scary as stock investors.
When the pendulum starts to swing it always seems
to overshoot.

Cheers,

Charlie

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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-20-2005, 11:23 AM   #51
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

I'd like ibonds a lot better if they paid 2% myself.

According to ECRI's leading economic indicators, we're going to start seeing an economic downturn in about a month that will take us to a near-recessionary posture and last until november. I too expect to see an upturn in long term rates soon, which should finally result in a drubbing of long and long-intermediate bond navs.

I also expect greenspan to follow through on his statements that he thinks the current cpi is 1% overstated, and see that number drop to 0-1.5% as we experience the economic downturn and the readjustment of the CPI.

Lets pick this back up again in about a year and see what happened...its all guessing!
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 02-20-2005, 11:35 AM   #52
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

OK, we will check back on this in 1 year.

BTW, it is inconsistent for long rates to go up if
the CPI goes down. Long rates are just a guess
at future inflation rate plus a real return premium.

Cheers,

Charlie
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 03-13-2005, 07:03 AM   #53
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Part 1 :
I think that you all are not approaching this topic in the right way.

Let me tell you all what I did with my portfolio to generate retirement income.

I had a portfolio of approx $1.2 Million of non IRA money and $240,000 of IRA Money when I retired at the age of 60 in May of 2004. I have no pension and will start Social Security at age 62. I am currently single. I have 2 working children. My home is paid off.

My objectives are to travel and enjoy the remainder of my life for as long as possible. I am not concerned about leaving an estate to my children. I planned for that several years ago.

Here is what I did:

When I was 47 I created a trust for the benefit of my 2 children. In this trust I purchased a joint life insurance policy that would pay $1,000,000 upon the death of my wife & I. My wife passed away so this amount will be paid at my death. The smartest thing I did here was pay a premium amount that would pay this policy off in 13 years. I made my final payment and I never have to make another one. My children will receive $1,000,000 when I die. To pay the premium on the policy that the trust purchased we made gifts to the trust each year that equaled the amount of the premium. Since this is in a trust this $1,000,000 is not subject to estate taxes.

What will my children inherit in a worst case? $1,000,000 plus the value of my home when I die. Currently my home is valued at about $600,000.

So when I made the statement that "I am not concerned about leaving an estate to my children". You see why I think $1.6 Million minimum is plenty. My portfolio is for me alone. If any part of my portfolio remains after I live the remainder of my life to its fullest then my children will get some more. I expect to live into my 90's God willing! I also expect to enjoy myself. To protect my home, I purchased longterm care insurance with a strong home care benefit. If I need care I would prefer having the care at home instead of going into a nursing home. Yea, this isn't cheap, but at least with this I can control my situation.

The most important thing, as I see it, is to make sure that I do not outlive my assets or ability to generate income.

I see a lot of posts here about withdrawal calculations. I don't agree with any of it. Because any calculation you do, you always at some point run out of money. When your asset runs out, you no longer can receive income. Remember, I expect to live into my 90's. I can not trust any of these withdrawal models. They can NOT guarantee that I will receive the income that I want for the remainder of my life.

I purchased an immediate annuity with all of my IRA money. The $240,000 pays me a monthly payment of $1,475.42 or $17,705.04 per year for as long a I live.

With $649,287.49 on my non IRA money I purchased an immediate annuity that pays me a monthly payment of $4,000.00 or $48,000 per year for as long as I live.

Is this a good investment? I say YES! These assets are to pay me the most monthly guaranteed cash flow possible. Remember I said cash flow. Cash Flow is what you feel or can hold in your hand if you choose (what I receive every month. NOT that fictional rate of return that everyone talks about. One point in time its there and the next its gone along with some of your initial investment). These assets are for my benefit only not for my children. My children are already taken care of to my satisfaction.

So I invested $889,287.49 into immediate annuities that pays me $5,475.42 per month or $65,705.04 per year for as long as I live guaranteed. What is the cash flow rate that I receive? 7.3885% This is in a world where a 10 US Treasury Bond pays 4.53% and a 30 Year pays 4.81%. See part 2
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 03-13-2005, 07:03 AM   #54
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Part 2 :
If I say this another way, I would have to buy a US Treasury Bond that pays 7.3885% in interest each and every month for entire life to match this cash flow. Well we all know that this is impossible.

Another advantage to me. Of the $5,475.42 per month of $65,705.04 per year, only $3,329.42 per month or $38,873.04 per year is considered taxable income. $2,146.00 per month or $26,832.00 per year is Tax Free (Considered a Tax Free return of initial investment).

All of my IRA money received each year taxable. Only 44.1% of the other payment is taxable income. So if you did this all with non-IRA money more of the payments would be tax free.

You say, these payments are fixed, what about inflation? Well, I will get an increase in monthly payments when my social security begins at age 62. This I think will start out in the $1,200 per month area. This portion will increase each year.

Part 2 to the inflation answer is the balance of my portfolio is to be invested and grow with some certainty so that when I feel the pinch of purchasing power loss, I can take some of that money and purchase a new immediate annuity that equals an increase in the monthly payments that I need.

What if I need ready cash? I set up a money market account with $75,000 in cash. I deposit money that I do not spend each month from the $5,475.42 per month I receive. I can not see any situation where I would need anywhere near that amount of money.

What did I invest my reaming portfolio of $475,000 in? All but $75,000 in Deferred Fixed Annuities.

I put $150,000 in a fixed annuity with a 10 year interest rate guarantee of 5.15%.

I put $100,000 in a fixed annuity with a 6 year interest rate guarantee of 4.20%

I put $150,000 in an equity index annuity. This is more long term 10 to 15 years. This gives an opportunity to earn higher interest rates than regular fixed annuities without risking your initial investment amount plus interest earned. This is NOT a variable annuity, I think variable annuities are expensive with the fees. Variable annuities are like a mutual funds, your initial investment can lose value. They have some guarantees against loss, but I just don't like them.

With these 3 annuities I am very well protected against inflation.

What am I doing with the last $75,000? This is my play money. I do some swing trading. Buy 3 or 4 stocks and hold them for 3 weeks to 6 months. If I am good at it, this $75,000 will grow nicely over time and will also provide additional inflation protection. If I suck at this, I will lose the $75,000 and I will never do this again. To this point, my $75,000 has grown to about $125,000. Can I be successful over several years? I don't yet know the answer to that. That is why I call this play money!

Who advised me on how to do this? I actually found this professional on the internet through www.jdsfinancialsolutions.com . This website has a great deal of information on it. He does business nationwide. We did everything over the phone, through emails and through the mail. We worked very well together, I gave him all the information he needed to thoroughly understand my needs and he gave me all the time I needed to understand what he was proposing that I do. He gave me all the time I needed to make a decision with no pressure at all. He gave me a plan that actually works, is flexible and guarantees that I will not outlive my income & assets. Not some hypothetical withdrawal calculation that if you take out beyond the time you expect to live runs out of assets and thus income. Not some hypothetical withdrawal calculation with a hypothetical rate of return that has a possibility to be less than zero! You should talk to people who started using these withdrawal calculations in the years 1997,1998, 1999 & 2000. They are very sorry that they did this. I bet they run out of money 10 to 15 years sooner than they expected when they started them. I wonder if then even know!

I am about one year into my retirement, traveling, having fun, spending about 75% of this $5,475.42 per month and I have no worries. This strategy works great for me. Live, Love & Enjoy Life! Tony

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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 03-13-2005, 09:10 AM   #55
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Quote:
Once again I agree with Cut-Throat. I don't know many liberals with that much common sense (unclemick?).
JG
JG,
You just haven't travelled in blue areas enough.
There are plenty more CTs out there.
They got you your SS (golden ?) parachute.
Get out there and meet us,
I betcha some of us even own guns.
I never mentioned this earlier but I owed a rifle many years ago when I had a large piece of land with plenty of deer on it. But I only hunted deer for fresh meat. Just being frugal.

MJ

PS: By the the way, I am not implying that I have as much common sense as CT or you.
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 03-13-2005, 09:15 AM   #56
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?



MJ

PS: By the the way, I am not implying that I have as much common sense as CT or you.[/quote]

I would hope not
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 03-13-2005, 07:08 PM   #57
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

Quote:
I would hope not
You don't have to agree with me that quickly.

MJ
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Attack of the spamming Sh!theads!
Old 03-14-2005, 06:18 AM   #58
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Attack of the spamming Sh!theads!

Hey, guys, any way we can get rid of Tony the annuity shill?
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?
Old 03-14-2005, 09:30 PM   #59
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Re: Put some spending cash in CDs or in I bonds?

I wish i could find the quote or remember who said it,it was an exchange between a Fed guv,and a Bank of Japan official(this was back a couple of yrs,when they were about to fall in a serious deflationary spiral).It was very blunt and since it was overseas,probably didnt carry any air time.While the BOJ was biting there nails,along comes the Fed guv,and basically said,"there is no problem,we(fed bankers) decide what inflation is".in other words the way for japan to skirt the deflation spiral,was to just say"we set the perameters,inflation level is X".
That being said,rather than debate something which we have absolutely NO impute on(cept of course our wallets/purses)why not just build a ladder,mix of bonds,cd's.keep rolling them over,its really very simple.
We have absolutely no control over how the govt.,wants to compute CPI.That being said the evidence is staring you in the face,but again it really doesnt matter,just keep laddering along,short ,medium,long.My focus has been to shorten maturities as they come due,at some point this may change.When and where that inflection point comes is unknowable at this point.Worrying about future direction of interest rates is kind of like "deer in the headlights"syndrome.CD's are a tad over 2% of portfolio and will be close to 3% i suspect within the next month by the time im finished.There probably wont be any new CD's over 1yr maturity,least not yet,things will have to get juicy.Course if that happens we've probably got bigger fish to fry rather than worry about maximizing a few basis points.Good luck all-ak
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Re: Attack of the spamming Sh!theads!
Old 03-15-2005, 05:17 AM   #60
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Re: Attack of the spamming Sh!theads!

Quote:
Hey, guys, any way we can get rid of Tony the annuity shill?
Brewer: He is persistent, isn't he?

Hope this doesn't wake him up, but, even though I'm an old "phart", given where we are in interest rate cycle, and (In my opinion), due for much higher inflation in the coming years, the only way I would be interested in an annuity, would be at gun-point.
Come to think of it, I would make a run for it, and hope the pistol misfired
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