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Here's a statement of the obvious: The opinions expressed here are those of the participants, not those of the Mutual Fund Observer. We cannot vouch for the accuracy or appropriateness of any of it, though we do encourage civility and good humor.

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  • @MFO Members: 7 place to keep your money.:
    1. In A Coffee Can Buried In Back Yard
    2. In A Ice Cube Tray In Freezer
    3. In The Bible
    4. Between Stairway Planks
    5. In The Towel Bowl Tank
    6. Inside Pillow Covers
    7. In A Body Orifice
  • Hi sir @_Ted..Don't burn the house buy real gold assets bars
  • Is this really an article on " alternative places to park your money" (from the column), or just a random list of investments (and non-investments like cash) outside of stocks?
    1. Federal Bonds ...
    In early January 2019, the yield from a 10-Year Treasury Note was around 2.730%, which is close to a record low.
    2.7% sounds so, well, last season now, with 10-years yielding 1.72% as I write this.
    2. Real Estate ... real estate can also be an unreliable investment, especially in the short term. ...
    3. Precious Metals.
    There you go, John.
    4. Luxury Assets ...
    luxe investments are hardly a sure bet. While data on their historical returns are elusive, they are generally thought to have lagged stock market returns.

    5. Cash, Hidden Away
    Although stuffing money under your mattress has become a cliché, it unquestionably keeps your funds close at hand ... this method probably qualifies only for a doomsday scenario.
    Mattress, coffee can, is there a difference?
    6. In a Business, Perhaps a Farm?
    "Iowa farmland prices have gone down in four of the last five years according to Iowa State University, who attributes it to lower commodity prices and higher interest rates."
    7. Cryptocurrency ... Of course, this is also a high-risk, high-reward opportunity
    I'm not suggesting that all, or any, of these is necessarily a bad investment (though I have serious doubts about some of them). Rather I'm questioning whether they address the premise of the column, viz. "For the especially wary, the above alternatives to a traditional bank or stocks may make sense for at least a percentage of net worth."

    Really, does stashing cash in a mattress ever make sense as an "alternative[] to a traditional bank"? Unless rates drop below zero.

  • Check out the beginning of "El Camino," the so-called sequel to "Breaking Bad" for a place to hide some big bucks. Of course, the dough was discovered, thereby diminishing the future value of the hiding place for others.
  • edited November 2019
    BenWP said:

    Check out the beginning of "El Camino," the so-called sequel to "Breaking Bad" for a place to hide some big bucks. Of course, the dough was discovered, thereby diminishing the future value of the hiding place for others.

    This is the only El Camino I’m familiar with. Yeah - I could be tempted to stash some cash in this baby.:)


  • edited November 2019
    1. Federal Bonds ... Maybe if you’re over 80. They don’t return much. But they’re probably safer than hiding cash under your pillow.

    2. Real Estate ... What kind and for how many years? Buildable residential lots in desirable areas are probably a good bet if you’re willing to sit on the investment for 10 years or longer. But you’ll pay property taxes along the way. Stay away from the REIT funds. They’ve been hot for a long while. Due for a long cooling off period.

    3. Precious Metals ... Not for the faint of heart. As close to rolling the wheel at a casino as you can get. Having said that, I’m optimistic precious metals will do well over the next decade - probably outperforming stocks. They’re very dangerous to play with however. A good pm fund can gain 60% one year and lose 50% the following year.

    4. Luxury Assets ... Not for amateurs. You’re playing in the big leagues against experienced traders and dealers who know what they’re doing. Not a wise investment for the little guy. That said, I own a few Morgan Dollars from the Carson City mint in MS+ condition. Beautiful specimens. So these kinds of investments may offer you two different types of “appreciation.”

    5. Cash, Hidden Away. ... I’m tempted to say “Duh.” However, there’s always the slight chance you’ll have a rare coin or bill in that stash buried in the back yard. If you do, you might “net” more when you dig it up than what CDs are currently yielding.

    6. In a Business, Perhaps a farm ... Well, I wouldn’t care to slog around in a barnyard all day long or to roll out of bed every morning when the rooster crows. But if that’s your idea of a good time go for it. I know lots of people who’ve squandered small fortunes starting businesses that didn’t work. Their high hopes went up in smoke. There’s always the Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Sam Walton or Steve Jobs of course. But those are the exceptions.

    7. Cryptocurrency ... Just go to the casino. Same general idea.

  • Breeder Cup Classic runs tomorrow. Better than the casino !
  • @hank: It's true an El Camino vehicle is in the film, but it's not the hiding place. According to today's NYTimes, old Japanese cars are beginning to appreciate in value. I am hanging in to my Nissan 300ZX convertible, whose use in MI weather is really limited by rationalizing that it's an investment. (I hope my wife doesn't read this.)
  • @hank and @BenWP

    In line with "places to keep your money", among a long list of choices; many of which are generational, I will place "autos" and related.
    Being a baby boomer, I will relate what I have seen and know for today; related in particular to Michigan.
    The below link is a recent auction (I happened to watch on tv) for what I consider a fairly rare vehicle from the 60's-early 70's muscle car era. My having a decent amount of knowledge about certain vehicles from this time era allows me to offer the following about this car in particular; and offers a perspective of collectibles.
    Based upon what I "see" with the vehicle in the link below, the base price and options for this car would have placed the 1967 cost at about $3,800. Using an inflation calculator based only on CPI from the government, the fair value today would be about $29,000. This particular car has several options that were not so common for this period. The most "valuable" option, as far as a collectible value, is the 375hp, 396 motor. Of the reported 63,000 production units for the SS (Super Sport Chevelle) in this year, only 612 were sold to the public with this motor option. Guessing at what became of these 612 units, one may best guess is that no more than 50 remain in full factory detail, having not been modified, etc. So, if you or I purchased this new and took care of the car; and knowing that certain items would have to be replaced over the 52 years; or if we found this car stored away in a barn, this minimum ground up restoration would likely be at least $20,000 being performed by qualified individuals. Now our inflation adjusted price and $20k for restoration becomes $49,000 in today's dollars. This implied value does not take into consideration that likely no more than 50 of this vehicle would come close to the near factory perfect condition for this car. Normal demand for a limited number of "x" remaining would place further price pressures. 'Course collectible markets ebb and flow with demand from whatever forces exist.
    As to this example, I suggest the following for what I see today related to the muscle car market. I regularly attend the numerous auto shows in Michigan, during the summer months. There remain many 1,000's of these cars snuggled away in garages and storage, to find renewed life on the streets during the summer. Not including online pricing and auctions on tv; I continue to see "for sale" pricing declining in the public arena. As to the large scale auctions, many large car collections are now being sold off. What is now taking place is that the baby boomers who have purchased these cars for many years continue to sell these same cars. Fewer boomers are buyers. The supply and demand scenario, as well as market timing remains important with various investments. If one wanted a prime example to own, of a factory car as this, this would have been a must buy.
    The car in the link below had only two or three bids from my recall and sold for $45,000.

    I could have had an "emotional" inclination to purchase had I been aware of the auction ahead of time. However, those days of fun are gone; but will remain in my brain cells.
    The best remaining connection to the experience of my youth would be to find a similar car at one of the summer shows and offer to the owner: "I'll give you $500 right now for an hour's drive in your car, with you in the passenger seat. No hot rodding, just a drive about." A form of a rental experience without the hassle of ownership and filling an emotional desire.
    Author background check: I fiddled with all things mechanical from a very young age. The first major project, at age 16, was the tear down and rebuild of a standard Chevy V-8 engine, replacing some standard components with high performance parts. This took place in my parent's home basement. The "short block" was chained across 4 x4 lumber, then hand transported with the help of 3 friends; and placed into the car frame motor mounts. The rebuild survived my amateur skills and the motor performed as expected, without failure, through the eventual sale of the car. The mechanical skills and knowledge served me well into many years with a career combined between computers and mechanical. Lastly, the emotional connection and interest in this collectible area is also from the perspective of an ex-drag strip racer. Boys and their toys, eh???
    Hopefully, I didn't botch this write; as I have not performed proofreading, as this was written on the run, more or less.

    1967 Chevelle SS auction

    Handy Dandy inflation calculator

    Classic cars are still a big business. The link below is an easy look, but don't touch.
    Vanguard Motors Sales, Plymouth, MI

  • @MO Members: Sorry, but I fell asleep half way through this tome !
  • @Ted: Well, you woke up long enough to be nasty, as usual. Do everyone a favor and go back to sleep.
  • edited November 2019
    @Catch22 - May I suggest that in the future you consider posting both your complete narrative for those of us having an “IQ” above 85 and also a simplified (condensed) version for the remaining?

    I admire anyone who can tear down an engine or vehicle. My cousin’s friend was doing that with an old Model T in the basement of his parents’ home when I visited Dearborn, MI in the early 60s. It was a beautiful car. But how he intended to get it out of the basement when he had it all assembled still puzzles me to this day. A fellow in our neighborhood now owns a vintage Chevelle Super Sport. The house shakes when it rolls down the street throttled back to 15-20 mph.

    Thanks for sharing your first-hand experience.
  • Old_Joe said:

    @Ted: Well, you woke up long enough to be nasty, as usual. Do everyone a favor and go back to sleep.

  • Howdy folks,

    First off, let's go back to the Elder Baron Rothschild who stated many, many years ago, that to keep your wealth safe one should have 1/3 in securities, 1/3 in real estate and 1/3 in rare art. You can define your own 'rare art', but it ain't Beanie Babies.

    Now if you take a minute or two and run your numbers, you'll possibly be very surprised. The first time I ran mine some 15 years back, I blew chunks all over my computer screen.

    I would not use Iowa farm land as a valid metric for farm land real estate prices. Most of the farms in Iowa are fully hydroponic in that they must add EVERYTHING to the 'soil' to grow anything (i.e. water and all nutrients). The chemicals they've been using over the past decade or two have essentially sterilized the soil. Here Michigan, there's still some live soil and it's going for serious money. We're pushing $5K per acre.

    and so it goes,



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