May 1, 2010

1-may-2010 meeting minutes

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hello, folks

27 of us made it today. not bad for what turned out to be a pretty nice (if not a little too windy) saturday.

after needing to almost break into throwbacks restaurant, the meeting time flew by once again (at least for me). thanks to jim d and "tall" phil b for being on the panel. and thanks to the table moderators for helping the conversations move along during the break-out sessions. our panel session ran long (by voting consensus), so we only did two of the three breakout sessions. i'll bump those topics from the third session to the next meeting on AUGUST-7, 12:00, in bloomington.

this was a decidedly low tech / low maintenance meeting. no powerpoint. no pictures. no wifi. no computers. no food. no whistles. seemed to work out well.

for august-7, we'll do our usual break-out sessions, and have the other half be 'something'. if anyone has a speaker in mind, or a presentation idea, please let me know. we discussed having a CPA or tax expert give a talk with Q&A. another topic may be how to manage investing in a household when there are different interests, risk tolerance, life expectancies, and philosophies by couples. SWR and the "4% rule?" has a lot of interest. possibly we could do a "what are the boglehead investing principles and philosophy" workshop/discussion. or complete some type of investing-related survey beforehand and then analyze results w/ entire group.

anyway, please send me any topic ideas, speakers, surveys, meeting formats, etc. for future meetings. and it's never too early (or late) to RSVP for august. and don't be shy about volunteering to give a talk yourself. we have a very diverse group with tons of talent right in our group.

link to forum:
link to wiki:
link to advanced search:

jeff mc

ps, looking at our past meeting metrics... this is our 16th meeting. the first meeting was 3/12/2005 w/ 7 of us.

next minnesota meeting 7-august-2010 | bloomington | PM or email for details

Apr 13, 2010

next meeting: 1-may-2010

from: boglehead post

see below copy [edited for length] of email sent to the MN boglehead group... let me know if you want to be added to the mailing list, or get specifics on our next meeting, etc.

[quote]MN bogleheads!

the next meeting is saturday, may-1, at 10:00-12:00, in woodbury... NOT the usual 12:00-2:30. at ...

please RSVP so we can arrange tables, print enough agendas, etc. and please include additional panel and breakout topics in your reply.


from 10:00-11:00, we'll have a panel discussion. from 11:00-12:00, we'll have 2-3 breakout sessions. the panel topics and breakout sessions will be from the survey results (see below).

the panel will be:
- jim D. - charter member of MN group. has huge depth and experience with personal investing, DIY, and worked in banking
- tom R. - author of chapter in latest bogleheads retirement book. expert in retirement planning (chapter 1)
- jason G. CFA with background in personal investing, asset allocation, etc. co-leader of west side splinter group.
- me - i'll "be oprah" and moderate the panel discussion. also, could discuss my chapter on early retirement from the bogleheads' retirement book (chapter 13) and the website

i'll send out the final list of breakout topics once i hear back from you, in a 'final reminder' a few days before may 1st.

thanks to everyone who completed the latest quick survey after the last meeting. here's the survey summary:

- what do you see as an attractive bond mix for someone allocating 60% of their portfolio to bonds and 1-3 years from drawing on investments??
- What Vanguard Managed funds would you invest in and which would you avoid, including sector funds.
- DFA equivalent etf's
- there is controversy about the percentage in asset allocation in equities, bonds, cash,etc., for the age group near retirement. 60/40, 50/50, and still w/objective of staying ahead of inflation. The experts vary on this topic.
- thoughts on owning individual stocks, say 12, to enhance portfolio. I assume the holder of these stocks would keep a watchful eye on them.
- anything on taxes would likely be a benefit and also how to find a good CPA. If word of mouth is a good way, I'd like to hear some names offered.
- roth ira conversions - no income restrictions for 2010
- what do we need to know...
- Is high inflation coming? Inflation protecting our portfolio.
- What asset allocation gives the best returns over ten years with rebalancing?
- We have just had the worst ten year returns for stocks in the history of the nation. How can be countered by some other asset class?
- Does history repeat or just rhyme regarding crashes, debt, etc.?
- Are there safe strategies for income beyond the low rate CD's and money markets I see?
- What it's like to start from a $0 balance, how to get started. How to allocate assets at the very beginning. Importance of saving rate vs. specific funds purchased. Start with TSM (can't go wrong with that fund), think about it for a while, then eventually consider more complex investments.

- continuation of ones from last meeting, especially asset allocation, withdrawls, and tracking methods
- Cont- using efficient methods to withdrawal strategies after retirement Minimizing taxes after retirement
- more retirement taking money out
- I think that the current and list of potential topics should give us plenty of topics. My problem is not finding an interesting topic but trying to choose among very interesting topics.
- I missed the session today on tracking portfolio (2nd breakout). It would be nice if some valuable sites were offered up, that it was noted and sent via email. Jason led this and I am also seeking software and have been unsuccessful in finding anything.
- Commodity investing
- Asset allocation and rebalancing.
- maybe a discussion of stages: early accumulation, mid-years, and transition to retirement. Also, more on withdrawal phase. Lots of good topics this meeting. Couldn't attend all. Maybe people would like to see some repeated. First time attendees have different needs than regulars. I could see one long break-out session devoted to first or second timers. They have lots of questions.

0% - significantly less
21% somewhat less
74% balance is about right
5% somewhat more
0% significantly more

32% definitely
47% possibly
16% probably not
5% definitely not

- I liked the ice breaker, good way to start the meeting.
-Don't need speaker / panel at every meeting
- I think it's important to have a moderator present at a breakout who should direct the flow of the session and make sure everyone present has a chance to ask questions they might have; sometimes one or two people tend to dominate these and drown out others??
- I was a bit frustrated that I could not attend more of the breakouts. Something we had at my job and professional mtgs were poster sessions where presenters created 'posters' that summarized their topic and attendees circulated around and viewed and discussed the work with presenter and other interested attendees. Not appropriate for all topics but might be a model to consider.
- I was frustrated with the AA review....about 6 to review in 20 minutes and the first review ate up 15 minutes. One question to ask is 'what are you trying to accomplish' or 'what is your goal'? Not enough time.
- I thought the other two break outs were better because it was easier to focus. Withdrawal strategies...found helpful. Roth: Discussion didn't really follow the topic but nevertheless was beneficial.
- Very good for my level. I learn each time. I do like to know how to avoid taxes.
- I like the idea of having a tax expert available. Maybe for next year's February/March meeting.
- I like the current mix of one speaker topic and a few breakouts at 20 minutes each. Two hours is fine but if the three sessions end up running a little over 2 hours, no big deal. Today it was about 2 hours and 10 minutes and no one seemed anxious to leave.
- Don't want to be too age-ist, but I would like to speak to other investors in their 30s and younger and find out what their challenges and considerations have been for investing.

see you soon!
jeff mc

Feb 6, 2010

6-feb-2010 meeting minutes

below is the email sent to the MN bogleheads. to be added to this list, email me

hey, folks.

i realize i was being a "tough guy" w/ the time and whistle again today, cutting off good conversations to keep us moving through the agenda. we try to strike a good balance between free-range chatting and anal-retentive, on-topic, focused discussions. and to wrap it all up in 2 hours. i'll let you decide (and answer via the survey below) how we did at that balancing act.

it was great to see so many first-timers today. about 5-6 new folks of the 33 total attendees. i especially got a kick out of having first-timer mary ann attend (the mother of my 8th grade girlfriend more than 25 years ago. small world, indeed!). if only mary ann would of whispered "vanguard" or "index funds" in my ear back then, maybe the chapter in the boglehead book could have been called "ridiculously early retirement"!

based on the voting at this meeting, the next meeting will be on saturday, May-1, without food, in woodbury, from 10:00-12:00, at some large (preferably free) spot, like the Y or library. stay tuned for details. tentative agenda, subject to change based on survey results, is to have a panel discussion for first half, breakout sessions for 2nd half. and then possibly an informal 'third half' at a nearby restaurant, for anyone who wants to eat and chat in an informal setting w/ a small group. thanks for the idea of this informal lunch, mike and that table in the back.

link to survey to find panel questions, experts, and breakout topics for 1-may meeting: PLEASE TAKE THIS SHORT SURVEY {{link removed}}

link to powerpoint and pictures

link to main forum:

link to main forum thread and subforum where future meetings will be posted:

link to rick ferri on fox business news talking about new book: (sorry the sound was too quiet and tinny during meeting)

link to MN local blog:

link to our MN boglehead comic, b.j. dewey:
the last strip (5-feb) is about LBYM... a primary theme of the early retirement chapter. she's a true boglehead!

contact jason for splinter group - west side meeting dates and/or sturdy phil for east side dates (see email CC above). they meet in between our quarterly 'full' meetings.

thanks. i think the meeting was another good one due to such an energetic group, full of vets and new folks. take the survey. go vikes :-( and see you in may.
jeff mc