Our son signed up for his company 401k plan as quickly as he could after starting work last month. The company has a good match, but he wants to make sure he is saving as much as he can to really put himself ahead in the future. He wondered how much more he needed to save – beyond the 401k to really be on track … Continue reading Playing The Percentages For Savings
Inflation is one of the assumptions that our FIRE financial model is the most sensitive to. Even a half percent change in inflation over a 40 year retirement plan is hugely significant. We use an assumption that our spending inflation will be between 2.5-3.0% a year, which is slightly higher than what the official US Consumer Price Index (CPI) has averaged. I’ve read articles in … Continue reading How Fast Are Prices Really Rising?
At a backyard ‘social-distanced’ event last weekend, people were asking me about our early retirement. As is often the case, one person cut in and asked if my wife was still working while I was being a goof off. She doesn’t work, but the question always comes with a ‘gotcha’ tone as if they are suspiciously wondering if we are really retired – or am … Continue reading From This Day Forward …
With global governments printing trillions of dollars, Euros, Yuan, and Yen to keep economies from going illiquid, I thought now would be a good time to check on Bitcoin. Longtime readers will recall I took a ‘hobby stake’ in Bitcoin back in early 2017 to test my thesis that cryptocurrencies have a role as a more reliable ’store of value’ than government-managed currencies. I have … Continue reading Bitcoin Amid CV19
I started looking at the topic of America’s growing debt before the coronavirus pandemic spread. Across all age groups, debt has been accelerating rapidly for the last two decades, and I’m sure it has gotten much worse now. This chart, from a CNBC article, shows the magnitude of the debt problem, with perhaps the greatest growth happening among older Americans … As the chart shows, … Continue reading Debt Has Spread Like A Virus
It was good advice. I had it written in a cell at the bottom of the first budget spreadsheet I put together thirty years ago: “Keep 3-6 months spending in an emergency fund. More if you smell layoffs coming.” We had just gotten married, we were watching every penny, and we viewed it as an important first step. We took the emergency fund principle from … Continue reading Locked Up
As expected, the financial markets are having a very crazy week. Starting Monday, with a shocking -3,000 point DJIA drop (-13%), the week was filled with volatility. It wasn’t the environment I expected to find any opportunity in, but on St Patrick’s Day (Tuesday), I think I found the ‘Luck of the Irish’. Longtime readers have heard my woeful tale of crashed MegaCorp stock options … Continue reading Lucky Inflection Point?
It’s hard to know even what to say this morning. I’ve heard that “every bull market is the same, but every bear market is different” because they are triggered by a unique economic disasters. That’s certainly the case now as I fear the market will open today with another 1000 point drop based on the DJIA futures. While these are unique times, they are causing … Continue reading Advice From A Century Ago
I really thought the stories about people hoarding toilet paper were just jokes until I went to our local Walmart yesterday. It’s not just toilet paper – hand santizer, hand soap, all-purpose cleaner, soup and other canned goods are selling fast. Panic buying for the COVID-19 coronavirus is in full swing. Since folks working toward FIRE have a penchant for being prepared, I’m guessing many … Continue reading Emergency Preparedness – Why Not?
We just got back from our Florida snowbird experiment and we really enjoyed ourselves. We stayed at a terrific villa in a sprawling Orlando resort complex. The weather was great for the most part, we met up with a lot of friends, and we enjoyed many of the fun things to do. While the villa is just a fraction of the size of our home … Continue reading Downsizing Day Coming?