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Old 04-07-2020, 06:18 PM   #121
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Originally Posted by Mountain skier View Post
I understand Brokrken's opinion which is: "My only point is that if you plan to buy back in, why not just wait it out. Timing the market rarely works out well. There have been plenty of articles written about the global financial crisis and how much money you would have lost if you only missed the best 5 or 10 days of the recovery."

I have long thought this way. But my wife and I face retirement in May one of three scenarios would occur: 1) lose a lot of $ in the market this year thereby risking near-term retirement ; 2) a safe well funded more conservative/moderate retirement; or 3) attempt fat-fire moving to a very expensive/posh area.

With the market dropping we figured we better ensure retirement type #2 and admit retirement type #3 most likely an unrealistic reach at this point. #1 situation- potentially having to continue working because we lost too much $ is to horrible to think about.

Still could get back into the market. Who knows, it may work out well. Otherwise eventually getting back in to market helps hedge against inflation- hopefully. But I realize we will probably miss biggest gains. We rather miss the biggest gains but not have to work any longer vs potentially losing a lot, with potentially a slow market recovery, and having to work or forever or have a skinny retirement.

Hopefully this point of view makes sense.
Makes sense to me.

I was terrified that the bottom would fall out and prevent me from retiring in the next year.

I have been moving from 45/55 AA toward 25/75 since very early on in the drop. Almost there. Down 12% now.
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Old 04-07-2020, 07:43 PM   #122
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In a fluke, I had $35K in cash inside my IRA. I was consolidating old 403(b)s and the Vanguard website was being temperamental.

When the sh*t began to hit the fan, I began buying both equities and bonds (Vanguard index funds). I have about $13K left in cash, and have paused buying at the moment. I expect a lower downturn, and while I generally would not consider timing the market, I needed to do something with that cash besides bloat my bond allocation further.

Technically I should have only bought stocks, I guess. But my pre-meltdown AA was not terribly conservative, and I didnít want to return to it. Hoping I can buy some more low, and ride out this first year of retirement with my two+ years of cash and part-time work.
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Old 04-08-2020, 07:14 AM   #123
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Horrible time to increase cash position. I have been buying while stocks are on sale. Does anyone really think we wont be up 30% from our market low?
I'm not sure I understand this. Sure - don't sell equities when then are down, But I liquidated some bonds recently to increase cash on hand. We don't know where this market is going but, in light of massive unemployment and negatively impacted business sectors, there could be a prolonged recession or depression. Cash is potentially king if things get extremely bad. I made a few moderate equity purchases during drops in February when many of us were still eating out and travelling. I had decided to move from 60/40 to 65/35 and saw those drops as opportunities. When whole sectors closed down and people were directed to stay at home, I concluded that those purchases were likely premature. With the recent bounce I'm at 65/35 so I plan to rebalance into equities if we get the major drop I fear. If we are lucky I may never get the opportunity. In the meantime, I am glad to have the additional cash cushion I set aside.
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Old 04-08-2020, 08:47 AM   #124
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I was already about 45% cash (MM and CD) a few months before this whole mess started with about 15% Bonds and 40% Stock. So only down about 7.8% from market high. I would have less stock if it wouldn't mean more taxes from capital gain but I would not have sold while they were dropping either. There is enough in cash to see me through a couple of decades if I have that long. In the meantime I have a couple of buys in the works IF those stocks drop enough to the low offer I have established. I doubt if I will ever access any of the stocks so they will be for the children's inheritance.


Cheers!
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Old 04-08-2020, 08:53 AM   #125
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.... I would have less stock if it wouldn't mean more taxes from capital gain ....
I had enough headroom in the 0% LTCG tax bracket to pare down stocks with no capital gains tax impact... but in exchange I had to forgo any Roth conversion for 2020... but I decided that with the uncertainty with respect to stocks that it was a worthwhile trade. Only time will tell if it was a wise decision.
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Old 04-09-2020, 07:24 AM   #126
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I went the other direction from 60/40 to 96/4 last two weeks. Good luck to you.

I'm with you Viper, I sold several 100k on Feb 28 and bought back in Mar 25, about 17% cheaper. I just don't seeing being out of the market when we see things starting to improve with the virus.
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Old 04-09-2020, 08:49 AM   #127
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I'm with you Viper, I sold several 100k on Feb 28 and bought back in Mar 25, about 17% cheaper. I just don't seeing being out of the market when we see things starting to improve with the virus.
Cheers, I played this game in 2000 and 2008. The only way to beat the market and billion dollar institutional investors is to stay the course and add position when there is blood on the streets.
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Old 04-11-2020, 07:23 AM   #128
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My large cash positions were to allow me to Roth convert and delay SS. I wasn’t planning on doing any conversions until 2021, but this opportunity allowed me to use that cash to buy in. Gained 15% in a week in my HSA & tIRA and locked in those gains. Another 2 years withdrawals right there. The plan is for my cash position will be a years worth in 6 years when collecting SS and conversions are done.
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Old 04-11-2020, 10:32 AM   #129
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I'm 70% CDs (laddered - purchased 5 year CDs back when you can get 3.5%-3.7%, none of my CDs are below 3% which is nice!) and 30% Fed MM.

A couple of my CDs are maturing this month and next and I already notified the banks I am not interested in renewing and to send me a check. Going to roll them over into my Vanguard Fed MM account and keep my powder dry.

I am waiting to see if we are going to retest the lows and if we get below 20,000 again, I am going to start dollar cost averaging my 30% into index ETFs and as the CDs mature, if interest rates are still basically terrible, I will just move more of my cash portfolio into the market.
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Raising Cash
Old 04-11-2020, 06:26 PM   #130
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Raising Cash

I sold about 1/2 of this week's gains to bring the stock allocation back down to 43%, after putting cash into stock funds a few weeks ago when we were 25% down in S&P.
Just having fun with volatility, which I suspect will continue for a while; if not, that's even better. Rinse and repeat.

40% stocks is my trigger to put most of this shortterm cash-stash back in (I'm at 30% cash, so I have dry powder if a downslide continues, or to get me to full SS age without selling bonds.) I'm playing shortterm with about 1 years withdrawal, although if a decline hits 30% and lower, I'll put more of the cashstash to work in stock funds. I'm skeptical of a continued quick V-shape recovery over the next 9 months, but if that occurs, I'm fine with it. I do think we'll see more 10-15% swings back and forth. Picking up nickels in front of the steam-roller, maybe.
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Old 05-10-2020, 07:33 PM   #131
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So, almost a month since the last post in this thread and things have only gotten worse; where is everyone now?

My money's been all in cash for a couple of years now; I never did have a high tolerance for risk, and when I got a new boss I don't like two years ago I started to seriously think about retiring sooner than I might have. The work situation has calmed down and I now have no immediate plans to retire, but I'm very much in agreement with those on this thread who say that their strategy is simply, "Do I have enough?" I guess I'm glad I was in the market for a few good years, but I saved aggressively and lived frugally, so though I don't have nearly as much as a lot of you do, I feel pretty secure.

Last year when I turned 59 1/2 I rolled over as much as I could from of my 401(k), since the safest option I have there is a money market earning virtually nothing (though I'm still contributing enough to get the full company match, of course, so that's an immediate 103% return), and put it into laddered CDs whose rates now look pretty good -- 2.55% - 2.37%. My IRA (Roth, since I make too much for a traditional) is in GBU variable rate annuities (like CDs, but with an insurance company rather than a bank) at 3.25% and 3.00%. I'm fully vested in two of those three accounts, so I guess that counts as cash.

I learned in 2008 that I can't sleep at night with very much in the stock market.
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Old 05-10-2020, 08:02 PM   #132
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Still at 29% cash and waiting/watching.

The last month, despite my small sell last month, brought me back up to 46% stocks so another 2-3% gain in the S&P and I might shave off another 2-3% stocks to get me down to the 43% level.
As the market goes up, continue.

The more pertinent question is when to pull the trigger to buy, which I plan at 5-7% drops. But the performance of the S&P/especially Nasdaq has been inspiring/amazing.
I can't figure out how much even 3 year profits I'm buying at current prices, but with 40% in the game, I still benefit.
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Old 05-10-2020, 08:39 PM   #133
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I had some cash awaiting investment in my IRA when this all hit the fan, about $35K. I gradually added to holdings I already had (predictable Vanguard stock and bond index funds, including a moderate position in international). I have about 1/3 of the cash left to invest. While I've never been a market timer, this was inadvertent. I did find myself trying to guess when each downturn would bottom out and because my buys didn't occur immediately, this rarely happened. But I did buy low, in general. I think this will only get worse before it gets better (does anyone believe we are ready to "open up" the economy, and that this won't be a pandemic reboot?). Thus, I'm holding onto what's left in cash.


I have two-three years in cash outside of my IRA, and I was working part-time when this hit (having left f/t work a year or so ago). I actually am collecting unemployment now, and not spending down those 2-3 years of cash. I'll be starting to collect SS in 3 years. If the downturn hits very hard, I will probably work some more. Ugh. Meanwhile, gardening! Expenses will remain low, with a rural lifestyle - raising our food, eggs from our chickens, and wood heat.
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Old 05-10-2020, 09:45 PM   #134
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We were at 78% cash when the downturn hit...thank goodness. Started buying chunks of stocks as things dropped....about every 5% Drop on the way down. Looked stupid at first....but then bought some big chunks when it was down 25-30%. Have since sold...and we are now back to even in our portfolio even though the S&P is still down about 10-15%.

We are now back at 80% cash (money markets and laddered CDs).

We “oversaved” on purpose so that we could be very conservative like this....determined our number then added $200k to account for low returns due to conservative investing. We have agreed to NEVER go above 40% equities again...can’t sleep at night if we were 80% in equities and the market drops a lot.
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Old 05-11-2020, 11:18 AM   #135
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We lowered our equities from 50% down to 7% during March. Added a small amount of $ back in, but into a conservative Fidelity Target fund. Maybe at 10% equities now. Retiring in 11 days, so we do not want to get much more than 20% equities.

I believe the market will be in a 'W' recovery for now, so I expect at least one more significant drop. Assuming this is correct I will add another 10% into the market, otherwise will stay at the 10/90 AA.
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Old 05-11-2020, 11:27 AM   #136
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This string is making me look hard in the mirror, because Iíve contradicted my 3/31/20 self from post #36. My job is under threat now, so I converted a target date 2020 fund in my 403b fund from 70% bonds to a total bond index fund, because I might need to spend some of it this year and for the next few years. Thatís not cash, I realize, but Iím finding ways to hoard that too. In our AA overall, itís a small flinch.

At least Iím honest!
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