The following article with summaries of the RTP North Carolina Local Chapter meetings in 2014 is provided by Bogleheads® Forum member Steve Thorpe.
RTP, NC Chapter Meeting 9:30 AM Sat March 22, 2014
Meeting 19 of the Research Triangle Park Bogleheads was held at the Bullington Warehouse Community Room Building 54 in Durham, NC. Thank you to the eleven Bogleheads showed up at this morning’s meeting. As usual we had a fine discussion that touched on many topics, including:
- Professor Ed Tower and his student Eddie Stansky described their research comparing GMO’s historical predicted performance vs. actual performance.
- We watched Christine Benz’ interview of Jack Bogle that was recorded at last October’s national Bogleheads reunion, in which Jack discussed his expectations for stock and bond returns moving forward. FYI a bunch of videos from that meeting are available here: Bogleheads® 12 videos .
- Bond interest rates, should we be concerned? What about stock valuations? How to pick your poison?
- Preservation of assets vs. trying for growth.
- Real estate
- Age in bonds rule-of-thumb.
- Whether to consider pensions and Social Security as part of one’s fixed-income allocation.
- Quantitative easing from the Fed – how will that impact future returns?
- Emerging Markets valuations may be attractive, but regardless of valuations there is ALWAYS risk.
- Current vs. prior dividend distribution rates.
- Domestic vs. international allocation percentages
Ed recommends “Triumph of the Optimists: 101 Years of Global Investment Returns” by Elroy Dimson, Paul Marsh, and Mike Staunton.
Everyone was supportive of my idea to invite another guest-by-Skype to a future meeting.
Thanks again and I hope you have a nice weekend!
RTP, NC Chapter Meeting 9:30 AM Sat June 14, 2014
Our June 14 RTP, NC chapter meeting with special guest Rick Ferri was fabulous! Some topics covered during our Skype discussion included:
Rick described a 100-page eBook he’s writing on the “Education of an Index Investor” that will cover :
- The “Aha moment” of an investor when they develop the indexing philosophy;
- The research and implementation where an investor develops a strategy for their own unique circumstances;
- The discipline required to stick with the strategy over the long haul. He also described a rebalancing white paper he’s working on.
Here are a few of the many topics covered during our Q&A with Rick that ran for about 1 hour and 47 minutes…. we all had a great time and it was an honor to have such a fine guest at our local chapter meeting. Thank you Rick for sharing your Saturday morning with us!:
- Overconfidence in bull markets
- Life strategy funds as a way of enforcing discipline
- Tracking error
- Rick’s “Aha moment” when he realized that indexing was the way to go, and how he moved from the brokerage world to the RIA world soon after
- Bogleheads all share the philosophy but our individual strategies are all different
- Asset location, taxes and uncertainty about future tax laws
- In what circumstances there is a need for an investor to have an advisor
- The role of Single Premium Immediate Annuities (SPIAs) and which type of investors might benefit the most
- ETFs vs. traditional index funds, and in what circumstances would an ETF be the way to go.
- Bond strategies (e.g. High yield bonds or not? International bonds or not? Short or Intermediate term? etc.)
Rick highly recommends Bill Schultheis’ “The Coffee House Investor” to new investors (especially the little green book which was the first edition). Rick’s “Serious Money” is also a good one for new investors — plus it is free!
Some good news for those interested in observing our discussion – Rick and all attendees encouraged me to publicly share the recording I made. So I uploaded it to Youtube and our conversation is now viewable .
My favorite section is from 34:30 to 46:06 as Rick describes the “Aha moment” when the low-cost passively managed philosophy clicked for him. It was fascinating to learn about!
RTP, NC Chapter Meeting 11:11 AM Sat September 13, 2014
Meeting 21 of the Research Triangle Park Bogleheads® was held at Bull City Burger & Brewery. In addition to friendship, delicious burgers sourced from local farms, plus beers made on-site, we enjoyed conversation on many Boglehead topics.
- Minister’s Housing Allowance. Did you know the IRS allows certain credentialed ministers of all established church denominations to declare a housing allowance on distributions from their 403(b) retirement accounts? For retirees with 403(b) accounts who qualify for this allowance, it means the portion of their distributions that are used for housing expenses does not have to be reported as income on their annual tax return.
- North Carolina’s Bailey Settlement. As a result of the North Carolina Supreme Court’s decision in Bailey v. State of North Carolina, North Carolina may not tax certain retirement benefits received by retirees of the State of North Carolina and its local government or by the United States government retirees (including military) for each retirement plan if the retiree has five or more years of creditable service as of August 12, 1989. The exclusion also applies to retirement benefits received from the State’s 401 (k) and 457 plans if the retiree had contributed or contracted to contribute to the plan prior to August 12, 1989. Another bonus: For retirees fortunate to have Bailey-qualified 401(k) assets, they may be eligible to roll over certain Rollover IRA and other retirement plan assets into their Bailey-qualified 401(k) with the state. This may enable 401(k) withdrawals that would otherwise be taxed by the state of NC to be free of NC income tax.
- Heehyun Lim and Ed Tower’s paper on Fundamental vs. Traditional Indexing. Professor Tower shared the latest draft of the paper he’s been working on with Heehyun Lim: “Fundamental versus Traditional Indexation for International Mutual Funds: Evaluating DFA, WsdomTree and RAFI PowerShares“. This paper looks at the question of whether these fundamental approaches outperform garden-variety index funds. It is fascinating stuff!
- Fidelity share classes. Fidelity and other mutual fund companies are very clever about their marketing and distribution channels. The same fund can be packaged in many different share classes (sometimes with different names) in their efforts to maximize their revenues.
In addition we discussed risk level at retirement, interest rates, and Roth conversions.
Thanks everyone for coming yesterday & I hope to see you next time!