Friday, October 30, 2015

Vanguard - I am throwing in some towels

It has been fun developing the basket strategies and it has been good for our future retirement since we have had a long bull run, but it takes a lot of time. Today Kathy and I filled out three in-kind transfer forms to close the following baskets:

  • Dividend
  • eCommerce
  • Long term holdings
I am please to report that each of them grew in value 20% or more, (eCommerce was up 35%). When these assets get to Vanguard our financial advisor there will liquidate them and place them in large ETFs or mutual funds.

Kathy and I have run through a number of financial calculators trying to to the retirement spending and will we outlive our money type of analysis. We have not arrived by any means, but in addition to the time it takes to manage my investments, I do not need to keep taking that level of risk.

If it sounds like I think I am smart, it is not so. We just happened to have some cash available right after the great recession and it would have been hard not to do well.

Why I have the premium LinkedIn, (LNKD)

Last month I upgraded to the premium LinkedIn. This was a fairly serious decision at five hundred something dollars. It is also something I thought I would never do, and the reasons are detailed in Part 2. Here is what I have learned since then. The interface problems were due to the browser I was using, Firefox. When I tried Safari, everything worked. Being able to actually use the product let me see what is possible.

I have done a number of test posts and on average get five times more hits than this blog. Within a month of focusing on the tool, I was able to grow my network larger than Twitter, Facebook or Google +.  Sometime in the next 30 days I am going to add to my position, wish I had done that last week :)

Part 2 This is what I thought on 3/2/15

LinkedIn is one of the Motley Fool forever stocks so I opened up a position. However, I am thinking about unwinding it. A number of things on LinkedIn just don't work at least using Firefox. This is the most aggravating case. I have no clue how many links/friends/follows or whatever I have but it is a lot, way past that 500 milestone. And they are not just Joe Anybody's they are primarily high performing members of the security community.

About once a week one of them will reach out to me from LinkedIn to my email. I click on the reply button type in a note and hit send or what every they call it and that spinning cog, spins and spins. Have even tried letting it run for 24 hours.

The same thing, (spinning and spinning), sometimes happens when I am searching for someone that is a high performing security person and they do not come up on the first screen. So I try putting in their country or their company.

The company I work for is buying some of their business services. I have wondered if I should ask for a subscription or account or whatever they call those. But what I really wonder is is it just me? I haven't heard anyone else complain. Does it only work with Explorer with accepting cookies, 3rd party cookies and such? Is it NoScript or Ghostery that is doing me in? Or it could be some weird karma, in my IT career there have been multiple times where I was the only one having the problem.

The bottom line: we should all be gun shy of investing in software companies where the software doesn't work. Now I just need to find out, does it or doesn't it.