Author Topic: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?  (Read 51576 times)

FrugalSaver

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #450 on: March 16, 2020, 10:11:06 PM »
First of 6 planned tranches from late January  liquidation was deployed today. My continue, group together or not next 5 asset deployments 

Helvegen

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #451 on: March 16, 2020, 10:41:12 PM »
Well still pretty happy about pulling out what I did when I did. My state will likely shutdown shortly. Ecomy is trash. Prepared my daughter for pain. Fuck me, boiz.
 

American GenX

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #452 on: March 17, 2020, 05:43:22 AM »

The S&P 500 hasn't even dropped below the Dec 24, 2018 close yet.  With this crippling event that will have a long lasting effect on the economy and likely resulting in a depression, things are much worse than then, and the market still has a good ways to drop before it finds a new bottom.  I'm not rebalancing yet!

Chuck

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #453 on: March 17, 2020, 02:04:48 PM »
I've bought back in twice since I sold a little over a week ago. Both on down days. I've sold within 24 hours each time for 2-3% gains. Finding ways to grow my capital even as the market burns down.

This is getting worse before it gets better. Hundreds of thousands are likely already dead, and hundreds of thousands will probably die here in the USA. Be mindful that this will not be a V-Shaped recovery when committing cash to equities long term.

achvfi

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #454 on: March 17, 2020, 03:26:27 PM »
This is getting worse before it gets better. Hundreds of thousands are likely already dead, and hundreds of thousands will probably die here in the USA. Be mindful that this will not be a V-Shaped recovery when committing cash to equities long term.

Not sure where you are getting you numbers. As per WHO or John hopkins, in US about 100 people died so far. About 8000 people across the world.

American GenX

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #455 on: March 17, 2020, 03:51:16 PM »
This is getting worse before it gets better. Hundreds of thousands are likely already dead, and hundreds of thousands will probably die here in the USA. Be mindful that this will not be a V-Shaped recovery when committing cash to equities long term.

Not sure where you are getting you numbers. As per WHO or John hopkins, in US about 100 people died so far. About 8000 people across the world.

He's making them up.

American GenX

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #456 on: March 17, 2020, 05:00:02 PM »
I am resigning myself that some people simply insist on painting worst case scenarios and there is nothing you can say that will prevent them from crying doom and wailing hysteria.  If you challenge them with any sort of facts or optimistic outlook they simply double down and call you stupid.  They especially love to imply that others are immature and unsophisticated rubes.  It is panic porn. 

So they may sell their stocks and scream that we're all gonna die and then later quietly buy back in at higher prices but never admit the truth about when they did.       

LOL.   Hi Nancy.  You got a laugh out of me on that one.  :)

Radagast

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #457 on: March 17, 2020, 07:46:09 PM »
I sold long term bonds again yesterday when they finally crossed my rebalancing band. I did miss the all-time bond market high by quite a bit, but it was a better price relative to stocks, so I guess that was good. Ultimately I think rebalancing is going to be messy no matter how you do it.

If I rebalance once more I well have recovered all the money I put in long term bonds!

Zamboni

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #458 on: March 17, 2020, 09:28:03 PM »
Thanks for the link to the MadFientist-JL Collins interview!

My stocks allocation had run up above my target so I reallocated by selling some stocks and buying some bonds to get back to my 30% bonds target in mid-February, which is when I do it every year via my couch potato method.

At this point I'm already at just over 35% bonds . . . 40% bonds is my trigger to re-balance again, but this time I suppose I'll be selling bonds to get back to 30% and buying stocks. We'll see. I semi-seriously keep an eye on it.

Meanwhile, I switched future retirement contributions from my paycheck to be 100% stock indices for the next paycheck, and I plan to keep it that way for awhile now. Each monthly contribution is small relative to my overall balances at this point, so that will only slightly impact the bond asset allocation creep. I'll buy all the way down and again on the slow churn back up, but then I'll go back to new contributions being 70/30 once it is clear that we are upward trending for a few months.

That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #459 on: March 17, 2020, 11:16:04 PM »
This is getting worse before it gets better. Hundreds of thousands are likely already dead, and hundreds of thousands will probably die here in the USA.
Outside China, there are 120k cases worldwide as of March 18 2020.  Young people have an excellent survival rate, roughly 99.8%.  According to the following link, there have been 3k deaths in China and 5k deaths worldwide.  So your numbers on the current situation are a wild exaggeration.
https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #460 on: March 17, 2020, 11:43:15 PM »
Radagast - given our discussion in another thread, you'll find this amusing. :)
Yesterday I sold some gold - because I fear it might drop alongside stocks in a crisis!

During panic days of last week, stocks / bonds / gold all took losses at the same time.  I don't know if markets will do the same the next time there's a panic, and I'm predicting one later this week.  So I kept some gold, and sold some gold.  Long-term treasuries are getting the crap beat out of them: the Fed dropped rates -1%, to nearly 0%... and two days later the yield on 30 year treasuries has gone up.  Looks like I will be taking some tax loss harvesting on those...

My plan is to await 10,000 COVID-19 cases in the U.S., at which point I predict the media will make it their top story, and predict the U.S. stock market will panic.  My plan is to buy stocks when that panic occurs.

Zamboni

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #461 on: March 18, 2020, 04:57:42 AM »
^Looks like we could be to that number of cases in the US this week . . .

DadJokes

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #462 on: March 18, 2020, 08:22:58 AM »
Half-ass prediction with very little thought behind it:

With people stuck at home but still in need of things, Amazon will be a great stock to own for the foreseeable future.

dragoncar

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #463 on: March 18, 2020, 08:55:19 AM »
Half-ass prediction with very little thought behind it:

With people stuck at home but still in need of things, Amazon will be a great stock to own for the foreseeable future.

Outperform yes but I think its priced in.  People will still shop less because you need money and a job for that and lots of people are losing income. 

Amazon is hiring more workers (same with groceries, Costco, etc)

ChpBstrd

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #464 on: March 18, 2020, 10:00:57 AM »
Half-ass prediction with very little thought behind it:

With people stuck at home but still in need of things, Amazon will be a great stock to own for the foreseeable future.

Outperform yes but I think its priced in.  People will still shop less because you need money and a job for that and lots of people are losing income. 

Amazon is hiring more workers (same with groceries, Costco, etc)

Has anyone thought about how this virus might be perfectly suited for our times?

Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.

Then we are constantly handling our cell phones and keyboards, which makes hand washing a lot less effective if you then go and touch a virus-covered device that hasn't or can't be washed with soap and water. Our devices are a source of constant re-contamination.

I'm already leaving my mail in the mailbox overnight, and picking it up in the morning to give it 12 hours since the mail carrier touched it. Why order anything from Amazon and bring it right into your house?

nemesis

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #465 on: March 18, 2020, 10:03:05 AM »

Has anyone thought about how this virus might be perfectly suited for our times?

Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.

Then we are constantly handling our cell phones and keyboards, which makes hand washing a lot less effective if you then go and touch a virus-covered device that hasn't or can't be washed with soap and water. Our devices are a source of constant re-contamination.

I'm already leaving my mail in the mailbox overnight, and picking it up in the morning to give it 12 hours since the mail carrier touched it. Why order anything from Amazon and bring it right into your house?
Yes it is.  And more people can remote work than ever.  We are perfectly primed for this situation...pardon my pun.


Chuck

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #466 on: March 18, 2020, 10:38:41 AM »
This is getting worse before it gets better. Hundreds of thousands are likely already dead, and hundreds of thousands will probably die here in the USA. Be mindful that this will not be a V-Shaped recovery when committing cash to equities long term.

Not sure where you are getting you numbers. As per WHO or John hopkins, in US about 100 people died so far. About 8000 people across the world.
WHO is reporting numbers given to them by individual countries. China has already been caught lying twice, and any information coming from the CCP should be disregarded. Ditto, indications are that Iran isn't being forthright: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/03/irans-coronavirus-problem-lot-worse-it-seems/607663/

We have no idea how many people actually died in Wuhan. We have no idea how bad things actually are in Iran. We have clear observation of Italy, and frankly the infection and death rates, extrapolated here, means six figures within the next week.

Exiting the market will save you a lot of capital. 

jeromedawg

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #467 on: March 18, 2020, 01:10:28 PM »
Radagast - given our discussion in another thread, you'll find this amusing. :)
Yesterday I sold some gold - because I fear it might drop alongside stocks in a crisis!

During panic days of last week, stocks / bonds / gold all took losses at the same time.  I don't know if markets will do the same the next time there's a panic, and I'm predicting one later this week.  So I kept some gold, and sold some gold.  Long-term treasuries are getting the crap beat out of them: the Fed dropped rates -1%, to nearly 0%... and two days later the yield on 30 year treasuries has gone up.  Looks like I will be taking some tax loss harvesting on those...

My plan is to await 10,000 COVID-19 cases in the U.S., at which point I predict the media will make it their top story, and predict the U.S. stock market will panic.  My plan is to buy stocks when that panic occurs.

Any tax loss harvesting you have done or plan on doing as well?

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #468 on: March 18, 2020, 01:17:47 PM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

American GenX

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #469 on: March 18, 2020, 05:23:38 PM »

The S&P 500 hasn't even dropped below the Dec 24, 2018 close yet.  With this crippling event that will have a long lasting effect on the economy and likely resulting in a depression, things are much worse than then, and the market still has a good ways to drop before it finds a new bottom.  I'm not rebalancing yet!

The S&P 500 finally dipped below the Dec 24, 2018 level during intraday trading, but closed higher.  I'm still expecting and waiting for the market to drop further before starting any rebalancing.  The worst in this ordeal is yet to come.

MilesTeg

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #470 on: March 18, 2020, 06:29:59 PM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

Establish a package quarintine in the garage or freezer chest.

dragoncar

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #471 on: March 18, 2020, 07:33:16 PM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

Establish a package quarintine in the garage or freezer chest.

I wouldnt freeze that may prolong viability of virus

v8rx7guy

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #472 on: March 18, 2020, 07:59:35 PM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

Establish a package quarintine in the garage or freezer chest.

I wouldnt freeze that may prolong viability of virus

Just have all packages flow thru a tunnel of ultraviolet light or something like that which kills viruses.

Radagast

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #473 on: March 18, 2020, 08:10:25 PM »
Another day, another filled limit purchase order set a few days ago, from the handy surplus of recently stockpiled cash temporarily not needed for a house. I plan to keep these to one a week for a little sustainability, as I flail around for the the falling knife. Maybe. It is hard to sit out every new 10% drop though.

"Small cap value" is selling for 2013 prices, and not far from 2008 prices. I am scared to even look at what year prices international stocks are selling for. OK I looked Ow my eyes!

MilesTeg

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #474 on: March 18, 2020, 08:29:39 PM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

Establish a package quarintine in the garage or freezer chest.

I wouldnt freeze that may prolong viability of virus

Not much choice with frozen goods.

AdrianC

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #475 on: March 19, 2020, 06:25:48 AM »
I am scared to even look at what year prices international stocks are selling for. OK I looked Ow my eyes!
I know. A few weeks ago someone posted about tax loss harvesting. I was like, can't do that when you don't have any losers, har har.

Well, thanks to VXUS we've now got actual capital losses that will last for 9 years. Gulp.

GuitarStv

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #476 on: March 19, 2020, 06:56:16 AM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

Establish a package quarintine in the garage or freezer chest.

I wouldnt freeze that may prolong viability of virus

Not much choice with frozen goods.

As long as you cook 'em you should be fine.  But yeah . . . frozen goods like berries/fruit?  Maybe stop ordering them.

FIRE-Man

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #477 on: March 19, 2020, 07:04:14 AM »
Im down about 1 red Ferrari right now.

Just bought an additional 15K VTSAX last night. Hoping to buy all the way down.

Are we all gonna make it ?

GuitarStv

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #478 on: March 19, 2020, 07:59:33 AM »
Are we all gonna make it ?

Not according to mortality rates.

CrankAddict

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #479 on: March 19, 2020, 08:28:06 AM »
So far I've not sold a thing.  I started at 70/30 stocks/bonds which has me currently at 57/43 stocks/bonds.  I know the normal wisdom is a) don't sell anything when it drops, that'll only lock in losses and b) just keep contributing at your normal schedule and c) when the market is down, buy extra to capitalize on the deals.  But we certainly aren't in normal times so I'm going back and forth on what I should be doing with contributions at this point (I'm still 100% committed to not selling the current holdings, that window is long gone). 

First, I don't see how we can be anywhere near the bottom yet, so it seems premature to burn extra cash reserves to scoop up "good" deals now that will likely not look so good in a month.  In that regard sitting on cash doesn't seem too bad.  Thoughts?

Second, by the numbers above I'm in need of a rebalance currently, but is there really an argument for doing it now if we know almost certainly it'll shift more downward in the coming months?  The more it drops the better of a move the rebalance will be.  I could do it several times along the way but you get maximum results waiting longer in a down trending market.  No?

For the monthly contribution amounts I've been doing since pre crisis, I'm torn between continuing to buy VTSAX and just DCA this thing vs going with VMFXX and waiting till we get much lower to buy in bulk.  What are you all thinking?

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #480 on: March 19, 2020, 09:09:29 AM »
Sunday, March 8, I started at 73% stocks, and last week sold until I was down to 62% stocks.
Sunday, March 15, I started at about 60% stocks, and have been buying - especially yesterday and today.
I'm now at 78% stocks.

When the exact bottom hits, I won't be able to beat a high-frequency trading (HFT) algorithm to get my order in.  Maybe it takes me a few minutes to decide what I'm doing, and send buy and sell orders.  Call it 300,000 milliseconds.  HFT will execute orders in about 1 millisecond.  Talk about being outclassed!

The perfect is the enemy of the good.  Maybe I'm wrong in thinking this is the bottom, but I think it's the point of maximum uncertainty.  If testing ramps up as quickly as claimed by those running it, it could change the virus from uncertainty into certainty - expose exactly who is infected, and allow everyone they contacted recently to be tested.  If that becomes the case, the uncertainty evaporates.  It just becomes which HFT can calculate the new stock values first.

PDXTabs

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #481 on: March 19, 2020, 10:15:02 AM »
Are we all gonna make it ?

Not according to mortality rates.

Right? Which is also why I'm not worried about my portfolio. I'm worried weather or not my best mates are going to live, or my mom.

Daisyedwards800

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #482 on: March 19, 2020, 11:04:10 AM »
I have a lot of cash (70% of my holdings sold before the crash = $245,000), so when do I go back in?  Should I just buy $20,000 a day going forward or wait it out? 

CrankAddict

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #483 on: March 19, 2020, 11:39:25 AM »
The perfect is the enemy of the good.  Maybe I'm wrong in thinking this is the bottom, but I think it's the point of maximum uncertainty.  If testing ramps up as quickly as claimed by those running it, it could change the virus from uncertainty into certainty - expose exactly who is infected, and allow everyone they contacted recently to be tested.  If that becomes the case, the uncertainty evaporates.  It just becomes which HFT can calculate the new stock values first.

I'll preface by saying we're all in the dark here so I certainly can't claim anything with authority, but what are you reading that makes you think this is the point of maximum uncertainty?  Quite literally overnight the known US cases have nearly doubled and the projections have gone from "could be like this until the summer" to "could be like this for 18 months".  I feel like we are not even at the foot of Mt. Uncertainty right now.  The govt is proposing stimulus mechanisms that make some amount of sense for dealing with a shorter term crisis, but what in the world is $1000 going to do when you can't work for a year?  And now we're seeing bond prices getting hit because (per the analysis anyway) the amount of US debt being discussed, combined with everything else, could actually make US Treasuries a suspect asset for the first time.  It seems improbable - but not impossible - that a month from now we're thinking "well at least we know how this is going to play out, certainty is rising, etc"

Am I crazy?

dragoncar

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #484 on: March 19, 2020, 12:21:27 PM »
Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.
"But the NIH study found that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survives for longer on cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 2-3 days on plastic and stainless-steel surfaces."
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200317-covid-19-how-long-does-the-coronavirus-last-on-surfaces

Sometimes the address is a label, sometimes it's in plastic.  Could be rolling the dice there, and with any plastic filler inside.

Establish a package quarintine in the garage or freezer chest.

I wouldnt freeze that may prolong viability of virus

Not much choice with frozen goods.

Sure I was responding specifically to the idea of a quarantine freezer.  Keep your frozen foods in the freezer sure but dont act like they will be safe after a couple days just sitting there.  You should still consider packaging to be contaminated.

I

J Boogie

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #485 on: March 19, 2020, 12:43:59 PM »
You are right that holding bonds is typically an opportunity to earn a rebalancing bonus (this is not guaranteed just like everything else in finance).  But without having pre-determined triggers for rebalancing you are market timing and likely to let emotion influence you.  This can work out fine if you are lucky or go slightly bad otherwise.  But either way 10% bonds is pretty small potatoes so if it were me Id just hold my current allocation and try not to lose any sleep at night

Not sure I agree.

If you have a defined asset allocation, re-balancing is kinda the opposite of market timing.  It makes sense to have pre-defined triggers for re-balancing, but unless you're failing to do it each year or two or you're doing it weekly it's pretty safe and quite different than market timing.  You are always selling your highest performing asset to buy your lowest performing one.  It forces you to sell high and buy low.

When you're market timing, you think that you know what the future is and are making a gambling bet.  When you re-balance you're returning to the asset allocation you determined was the correct path to follow years ago.
I think you misread dragoncar? He said "without" predefined triggers for rebalancing you are market timing.

Lets dispel with this notion that guitarstv doesnt know exactly what hes saying

...he knows EXACTLY what he's saying.

Props for an underrated Marco Rubio stump speech excerpt.

Meanwhile in Marco Rubio gaffes, he went from marshall to the marital and then just gave up trying to spell martial law. lol.

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #486 on: March 19, 2020, 01:50:28 PM »
The perfect is the enemy of the good.  Maybe I'm wrong in thinking this is the bottom, but I think it's the point of maximum uncertainty.  If testing ramps up as quickly as claimed by those running it, it could change the virus from uncertainty into certainty - expose exactly who is infected, and allow everyone they contacted recently to be tested.  If that becomes the case, the uncertainty evaporates.  It just becomes which HFT can calculate the new stock values first.

I'll preface by saying we're all in the dark here so I certainly can't claim anything with authority, but what are you reading that makes you think this is the point of maximum uncertainty?  Quite literally overnight the known US cases have nearly doubled and the projections have gone from "could be like this until the summer" to "could be like this for 18 months".  I feel like we are not even at the foot of Mt. Uncertainty right now.  The govt is proposing stimulus mechanisms that make some amount of sense for dealing with a shorter term crisis, but what in the world is $1000 going to do when you can't work for a year?  And now we're seeing bond prices getting hit because (per the analysis anyway) the amount of US debt being discussed, combined with everything else, could actually make US Treasuries a suspect asset for the first time.  It seems improbable - but not impossible - that a month from now we're thinking "well at least we know how this is going to play out, certainty is rising, etc"

Am I crazy?
It may surprise you to learn W.H.O. data on U.S. cases is not useful.  Now you shouldn't believe that from me, so take a look at WHO's situational report from Sunday, March 15.  Pay special attention to the column of "no new cases for the last N days"... it will show "2" days with zero new cases in the United States.  Do you believe there were zero infections between Friday and Sunday in the U.S.?  That's what the WHO data is claiming.  Try comparing their data with several other sources, and hopefully you'll avoid using them for up to the date cases in the U.S.

I'm not sure how to capture all my thinking on this, I'll try to give some context and rough thesis.

Korea handled the crisis with testing and tracking, and is considered to have handled the virus well.  Italians even ignored the lock down after it was in place, continuing to meet up.  Italy's lock down was a mess.  Both countries have universal health care.  Now the U.S. gets hit, and Americans who are struggling will not only avoid visiting the doctor, they need the paycheck and will go to work.  No universal health care, no prior experience.

On March 9 I predicted the U.S. would hit 10,000 cases roughly Mar 20-23, and sold investments owing to my conviction I knew the virus better than the media and markets.  That's risky, but the infectious disease experts were with me - even more pessimistic than me.  So Mar 9 I sold stock, and then again when the market rebounded a couple times later that week.

I planned to sell treasuries after the Fed dropped rates... in a surprise move, they did so on Sunday, instead of waiting 3 days to their usual meeting.  They also unveiled other measures, the sum total of which revealed the Fed was preparing for an event similar to the 2008 crisis.  Markets went limit down (-7%).  I did a little bit of selling treasuries and buying stocks.  Fear ripped into the markets again, with Congress unable to agree on a relief package.  Testing remained inadequate, which hides the true number of cases.

This week, during one press conference, Dr. Deborah Birx talked about testing platforms.  The old platforms tested maybe 10/day, and new ones (in whole? each?) will test millions.  I don't think the company was trying very hard before, but now they don't want to be blamed for a lack of testing.  If they really could test millions a day, that turns a situation like Italy into a situation like Korea.  If you know for certain everyone who is infected, you no longer have uncertainty.

I consider President Trump a troll who baits the media.  But he also uses "wishful thinking" to make a claim, which is really an order for people to carry out.  So when he says "everyone will get tested who wants to get tested", he sounds like a combination of Oprah (You get a car! You get a car!) and Obama (if you like your doctor you keep your doctor).  He wants it to be true... and his re-election is definitely on the line.  So he's very motivated, and he's focused on testing.  I don't trust what he says, but I trust he will fight to get re-elected, and that means testing.

All told, I think everyone will focus on faster testing, and more of it.  In the past ~100 years, the U.S. never had to roll out epidemic testing kits urgently across the whole country.  It will be messy and have glitches.  But if testing can be scaled up to unheard of speeds, then uncertainty will be replaced by certainty.

Do you know when a vaccine was found for SARS?  They're still working on it, 18 years after SARS.  I don't think epidemics end with cures - I think they end with quarantine.  The key is knowing who to quarantine, which means testing each patient, and everyone they contacted.  With too few tests, the virus spreads faster than testing can keep up.  With excessive testing, the virus gets stopped whenever it finds someone new - them and all their contacts get tested.

So there could be more damage and even bankrupcies ahead.  But I think testing is about to ramp up fast, and turn uncertainty into certainty.  I have to call the bottom before that happens, or markets will take off before I can buy in.  After all, I'm competing with HFT firms at millisecond speeds, so I have to guess earlier than than later.  We'll see...

atribecalledquest

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #487 on: March 19, 2020, 02:33:51 PM »
Half-ass prediction with very little thought behind it:

With people stuck at home but still in need of things, Amazon will be a great stock to own for the foreseeable future.

Outperform yes but I think its priced in.  People will still shop less because you need money and a job for that and lots of people are losing income. 

Amazon is hiring more workers (same with groceries, Costco, etc)

Has anyone thought about how this virus might be perfectly suited for our times?

Amazon next-day delivery ensures any virus floating around a warehouse gets distributed to 10k homes before it has time to degrade.

Then we are constantly handling our cell phones and keyboards, which makes hand washing a lot less effective if you then go and touch a virus-covered device that hasn't or can't be washed with soap and water. Our devices are a source of constant re-contamination.

I'm already leaving my mail in the mailbox overnight, and picking it up in the morning to give it 12 hours since the mail carrier touched it. Why order anything from Amazon and bring it right into your house?

I've instituted a 5 day cool down period for any packages in my garage.

BicycleB

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #488 on: March 19, 2020, 02:57:09 PM »
The perfect is the enemy of the good.  Maybe I'm wrong in thinking this is the bottom, but I think it's the point of maximum uncertainty.  If testing ramps up as quickly as claimed by those running it, it could change the virus from uncertainty into certainty - expose exactly who is infected, and allow everyone they contacted recently to be tested.  If that becomes the case, the uncertainty evaporates.  It just becomes which HFT can calculate the new stock values first.

I'll preface by saying we're all in the dark here so I certainly can't claim anything with authority, but what are you reading that makes you think this is the point of maximum uncertainty?  Quite literally overnight the known US cases have nearly doubled and the projections have gone from "could be like this until the summer" to "could be like this for 18 months".  I feel like we are not even at the foot of Mt. Uncertainty right now.  The govt is proposing stimulus mechanisms that make some amount of sense for dealing with a shorter term crisis, but what in the world is $1000 going to do when you can't work for a year?  And now we're seeing bond prices getting hit because (per the analysis anyway) the amount of US debt being discussed, combined with everything else, could actually make US Treasuries a suspect asset for the first time.  It seems improbable - but not impossible - that a month from now we're thinking "well at least we know how this is going to play out, certainty is rising, etc"

Am I crazy?
It may surprise you to learn W.H.O. data on U.S. cases is not useful.  Now you shouldn't believe that from me, so take a look at WHO's situational report from Sunday, March 15.  Pay special attention to the column of "no new cases for the last N days"... it will show "2" days with zero new cases in the United States.  Do you believe there were zero infections between Friday and Sunday in the U.S.?  That's what the WHO data is claiming.  Try comparing their data with several other sources, and hopefully you'll avoid using them for up to the date cases in the U.S.

I'm not sure how to capture all my thinking on this, I'll try to give some context and rough thesis.

Korea handled the crisis with testing and tracking, and is considered to have handled the virus well.  Italians even ignored the lock down after it was in place, continuing to meet up.  Italy's lock down was a mess.  Both countries have universal health care.  Now the U.S. gets hit, and Americans who are struggling will not only avoid visiting the doctor, they need the paycheck and will go to work.  No universal health care, no prior experience.

On March 9 I predicted the U.S. would hit 10,000 cases roughly Mar 20-23, and sold investments owing to my conviction I knew the virus better than the media and markets.  That's risky, but the infectious disease experts were with me - even more pessimistic than me.  So Mar 9 I sold stock, and then again when the market rebounded a couple times later that week.

I planned to sell treasuries after the Fed dropped rates... in a surprise move, they did so on Sunday, instead of waiting 3 days to their usual meeting.  They also unveiled other measures, the sum total of which revealed the Fed was preparing for an event similar to the 2008 crisis.  Markets went limit down (-7%).  I did a little bit of selling treasuries and buying stocks.  Fear ripped into the markets again, with Congress unable to agree on a relief package.  Testing remained inadequate, which hides the true number of cases.

This week, during one press conference, Dr. Deborah Birx talked about testing platforms.  The old platforms tested maybe 10/day, and new ones (in whole? each?) will test millions.  I don't think the company was trying very hard before, but now they don't want to be blamed for a lack of testing.  If they really could test millions a day, that turns a situation like Italy into a situation like Korea.  If you know for certain everyone who is infected, you no longer have uncertainty.

I consider President Trump a troll who baits the media.  But he also uses "wishful thinking" to make a claim, which is really an order for people to carry out.  So when he says "everyone will get tested who wants to get tested", he sounds like a combination of Oprah (You get a car! You get a car!) and Obama (if you like your doctor you keep your doctor).  He wants it to be true... and his re-election is definitely on the line.  So he's very motivated, and he's focused on testing.  I don't trust what he says, but I trust he will fight to get re-elected, and that means testing.

All told, I think everyone will focus on faster testing, and more of it.  In the past ~100 years, the U.S. never had to roll out epidemic testing kits urgently across the whole country.  It will be messy and have glitches.  But if testing can be scaled up to unheard of speeds, then uncertainty will be replaced by certainty.

Do you know when a vaccine was found for SARS?  They're still working on it, 18 years after SARS.  I don't think epidemics end with cures - I think they end with quarantine.  The key is knowing who to quarantine, which means testing each patient, and everyone they contacted.  With too few tests, the virus spreads faster than testing can keep up.  With excessive testing, the virus gets stopped whenever it finds someone new - them and all their contacts get tested.

So there could be more damage and even bankrupcies ahead.  But I think testing is about to ramp up fast, and turn uncertainty into certainty.  I have to call the bottom before that happens, or markets will take off before I can buy in.  After all, I'm competing with HFT firms at millisecond speeds, so I have to guess earlier than than later.  We'll see...

@MustacheAndaHalf, that's a well-reasoned case. No idea whether the specifics are right and of course it's possible to make implementation mistakes, but the logic and timing seem sensible.

I am generally leaning toward stick-to-the-plan simplicity, but credit where credit is due - good stuff, thanks for posting.

Steeze

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #489 on: March 19, 2020, 05:47:20 PM »
So far I've not sold a thing.  I started at 70/30 stocks/bonds which has me currently at 57/43 stocks/bonds.  I know the normal wisdom is a) don't sell anything when it drops, that'll only lock in losses and b) just keep contributing at your normal schedule and c) when the market is down, buy extra to capitalize on the deals.  But we certainly aren't in normal times so I'm going back and forth on what I should be doing with contributions at this point (I'm still 100% committed to not selling the current holdings, that window is long gone). 

First, I don't see how we can be anywhere near the bottom yet, so it seems premature to burn extra cash reserves to scoop up "good" deals now that will likely not look so good in a month.  In that regard sitting on cash doesn't seem too bad.  Thoughts?

Second, by the numbers above I'm in need of a rebalance currently, but is there really an argument for doing it now if we know almost certainly it'll shift more downward in the coming months?  The more it drops the better of a move the rebalance will be.  I could do it several times along the way but you get maximum results waiting longer in a down trending market.  No?

For the monthly contribution amounts I've been doing since pre crisis, I'm torn between continuing to buy VTSAX and just DCA this thing vs going with VMFXX and waiting till we get much lower to buy in bulk.  What are you all thinking?

If it were me, I would rebalance back to 70/30, then continue to rebalance each time it reached 75/25.
I still have 15% bonds and 10% cash myself - got my finger on the trigger ready to trade all for stocks. Hand is getting shaky now too. So hard not to buy more sooner.

Schaefer Light

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #490 on: March 19, 2020, 05:56:26 PM »
I have to call the bottom before that happens, or markets will take off before I can buy in.  After all, I'm competing with HFT firms at millisecond speeds, so I have to guess earlier than than later.  We'll see...
I agree with much of your post.  The issue is that no one knows what the bottom will be or when it will happen.  It seems to me that some sort of aggressive dollar cost averaging (i.e. buying more than usual, but at regular intervals) strategy might be best.  My strategy so far has been to buy more VTSAX whenever there's a huge drop, but I don't think it's a sound strategy because it's just a combination of market timing and impulse buying.

Zamboni

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #491 on: March 19, 2020, 06:30:43 PM »
^Looks like we could be to that number of cases in the US this week . . .

Or >10K cases in a few hours from when I typed that. Sweet Jesus!

NaN

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #492 on: March 19, 2020, 07:39:12 PM »
I found a market timer!! See, folks, it is totally possible to time the market.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/19/us/politics/richard-burr-coronavirus-stocks.html


Travis

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #493 on: March 19, 2020, 08:08:45 PM »
I found a market timer!! See, folks, it is totally possible to time the market.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/19/us/politics/richard-burr-coronavirus-stocks.html

Quote
Aides to Mr. Burr said that the decision to sell the stocks was a private one, which took place long before the stock market plunged and evidence of a widespread health threat emerged in the United States.

Yes. That's the point.

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #494 on: March 19, 2020, 09:57:19 PM »
Or >10K cases in a few hours from when I typed that. Sweet Jesus!
My entire experiment was predicated on the U.S. hitting 10,000 cases.  I predicted it on March 9, about 10 days ago.  But I expect it to hit Friday... and it hit early Thursday.  I also expected "a crisis", and instead there was a crisis every day.  But through all that, surprisingly, I would up doing the most buying right as the U.S. hit 10,000 cases.

Take a look at the headlines - the 10,000 cases isn't even listed.  There's talk of a $1 trillion stimulus package by Congress, mention of Italy having more deaths than China, etc.


moneytaichi

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #495 on: March 20, 2020, 12:14:32 AM »
So there could be more damage and even bankrupcies ahead.  But I think testing is about to ramp up fast, and turn uncertainty into certainty.  I have to call the bottom before that happens, or markets will take off before I can buy in.  After all, I'm competing with HFT firms at millisecond speeds, so I have to guess earlier than than later.  We'll see...
I doubt that the bottom will be there right after the test is rolling out. As a huge number of people are infected, companies are forced to pause, unemployment rises, less consumption all around, it has to show up at the stocks' bottom lines. I am betting this event is as magnitude as 911, except it's happening to many countries currently. The world economy is so much more inter-waved now than 2001. It will take a long while for the society and the economy to recover. Our lives will be changed forever... Lots of uncertainty even after the test is rolling out.

joleran

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #496 on: March 20, 2020, 06:58:08 AM »
Just have all packages flow thru a tunnel of ultraviolet light or something like that which kills viruses.

The bulbs aren't crazy expensive.  UVC germicidal.  Open a large cardboard box and tear off the top flaps.  Line the inside with aluminum foil.  Turn the box upside down, reinforce the center with tape and cut a hole for the bulb to go through.  Put the bulb in the hole and duck tape or similar around the hole so light can't escape.

You now have a box you can drop around mail or other boxes for however long is needed for your bulb rating.  You then need to turn the box over and repeat.

MustacheAndaHalf

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #497 on: March 20, 2020, 07:17:55 AM »
So there could be more damage and even bankrupcies ahead.  But I think testing is about to ramp up fast, and turn uncertainty into certainty.  I have to call the bottom before that happens, or markets will take off before I can buy in.  After all, I'm competing with HFT firms at millisecond speeds, so I have to guess earlier than than later.  We'll see...
I doubt that the bottom will be there right after the test is rolling out. As a huge number of people are infected, companies are forced to pause, unemployment rises, less consumption all around, it has to show up at the stocks' bottom lines. I am betting this event is as magnitude as 911, except it's happening to many countries currently. The world economy is so much more inter-waved now than 2001. It will take a long while for the society and the economy to recover. Our lives will be changed forever... Lots of uncertainty even after the test is rolling out.
Those are valid points to make.

But this is an election year - what happens if Congress and the President allow mass unemployment?  They're gone, and they know it.  Congress will pass more relief as needed.  They've already got $1 trillion ready, which includes 2 weeks of paid sick leave.  They are going to send out checks to Americans with incomes below $99k as aid (probably with tax relief).

You could be right, but I think Congress will act to stave off unemployment.

TomTX

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #498 on: March 21, 2020, 06:11:13 AM »
I found a market timer!! See, folks, it is totally possible to time the market.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/19/us/politics/richard-burr-coronavirus-stocks.html

Quote
Aides to Mr. Burr said that the decision to sell the stocks was a private one, which took place long before the stock market plunged and evidence of a widespread health threat emerged in the United States.

Yes. That's the point.

...except he did it AFTER the high level Classified briefings where the best of the intelligence community told him how bad the coronavirus pandemic was going to be.

American GenX

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Re: Coronavirus - what are you doing with your investments / 401ks?
« Reply #499 on: March 21, 2020, 10:59:01 AM »
They are going to send out checks to Americans with incomes below $99k as aid (probably with tax relief).

It starts phasing out at $75,000, so you wouldn't get as much as your income increases above that, and very little towards the upper range.  I don't believe it's really going to help much at all.  People aren't spending much these days even if they have it.  I also think it's crazy to send checks to people that are still working.  It should be directed specifically to those that need it.  My income is too high, so I don't expect much, if any, but that's not my concern now.  It's COVID-19.

Quote
You could be right, but I think Congress will act to stave off unemployment.

They have no magic wand.  They can't stop the virus.  Prepare for hard times ahead, well after the CV19 caseload drops.