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About Ken Tumin

Ken Tumin founded the Bank Deals Blog in 2005 and has been passionately covering the best deposit deals ever since. He is frequently referenced by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and other publications as a top expert, but he is first and foremost a fellow deal seeker and member of the wonderful community of savers that frequents DepositAccounts.

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Forum Tips and a Thank You to the Forum Members


I thought it would be useful to highlight the discussion forum and the members who have contributed the most. We have over 10 members who have each written over 100 forum posts. Below are the top 10 members with their forum names and their post numbers as of last night. Thanks to all who have posted, but I would like to give a special thanks to the following members for their efforts in contributing to the website:

  1. 51hh - 612 posts
  2. Shorebreak - 499 posts
  3. WhataBummer - 413 posts
  4. pearlbrown - 312 posts
  5. Mike - 262 posts
  6. me1004 - 229 posts
  7. lou - 180 posts
  8. rosie43 - 120 posts
  9. darkdreamer4u - 115 posts
  10. pdxmale - 107 posts

Simple Way to View the Forum

The forum is definitely more complex than the old "open thread" post. Please understand that the forum makes things more organized which becomes important as more people leave comments. If you like a simple blog format, you can view the forum using this link. This page shows the latest featured threads in an expanded format that shows the first post of each featured thread. Click on the title of the post to view any comments for that post or to leave a comment. Unlike the blog, the forum requires you to log in before you can comment.

You can get to this Featured Threads page by using the forum menu and clicking on the "Featured Threads" link. Then click on the "Posts" link below the menu. I actually prefer the "Threads" view which shows just the title of the posts along with the number of comments or posts for each thread.

I'm the one who gives a thread "featured" status. I try to select those that I think are most interesting. The "Latest Threads" link in the forum menu will show you all of the threads including ones that haven't been marked as featured. The "Latest Posts" link will show you the latest forum comments.

Posting to the Forum

If you find a noteworthy bank deal or some interesting financial news, please consider posting this information in the forum. This can be done in 3 steps:

  1. You have to be logged in to post in the forum. If you have never registered, just click the "Register" link on the top right of a page. Note, you don't have to be logged in before you write your post, but it's required before the post can be submitted.
  2. Find the appropriate subforum. Start at the top of the forum and click on the appropriate topic.
  3. Click the "New Threads" button at the top of the subforum page, and follow the instructions. For the subforums that are specific to a particular bank, you first have to identify the bank. When you get to the message box, you can start typing your information. Note the icons at the top of the message box. These can be used to format your message. The one I use most is the link icon. This isn't active until you highlight the text that you want to convert into a link. Once the link icon is active, you can click on the icon which will open up a box where you can enter the web address.

Viewing and posting are more complicated in the forum than in the blog, but as I mentioned, this helps keep things organized. For more details on using the forum, please refer to my forum announcement post.

Related Posts


KenBDG   |     |   Comment #2
Anonymous posting is only allowed for comments in the blog. You have to be logged in to post in the forum.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #6
Oh, well, nothing new in the way of higher interest rates for CDs now or in the near future.  May as well "mix" it up among posters.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #8
Ken,   Why would you thank PDXmale for SPAMing this blog site with his incessant CCU Rewards Checking referral ads???  That, quite frankly was a big turnoff for most who use this site.
KenBDG   |     |   Comment #11
@Anonymous #8, the list was just based on the number of posts.

@smartsaver, you might want to review this forum thread which talks about REITs. You can see all of the REIT threads via the Forum Search for REITs. One advantage of the forum is that it allows discussion on topics outside the scope of just bank accounts.
pearlbrown   |     |   Comment #12
Ken, thank you for the recognition and a BIG thank you to **you**for all your hard work in bringing us this great website.  DA is my first stop of the morning (after I verify my debit card transactions ;-)   ) and I return during the day as time permits.  Your posts, as well as those of other members of this community, always offer an opportunity to learn more about different topics in finance or bring to light a different perspective that I might not have considered otherwise.  
51hh   |     |   Comment #13
Yes, thanks Ken for your labor and generousity that makes this site valuable, informative; and (sometimes) entertaining:D
Annaluisa   |     |   Comment #14
I especially enjoy reading Lou's posts.  He seems like such an informed and nice gentleman.
me1004   |     |   Comment #16
Oh, surely I don't deserve a thank you. You do, Ken. You have built a really great vertical news site here -- and I have certain background to have deep recognition of and appreciate for that. A real professional job, better than most pros, not just any old hack blog. 

So I appreciate it. So I post to try to help all, but also to help a very good site that is deserving of reader support. 

Thank you, Ken. Nice to know I'm appreciated at some level too.
lou   |     |   Comment #17
Thank you Annaluisa for the nice comment but I agree with me1004, all the credit should go to Ken for developing a site which has helped countless people to obtain superior returns on their money. As for the nice gentleman comment, my wife says you should see me before I have my coffee in the AM.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #19
As far as reits go you might want to check with blackrock.

I personally have Vanguard high yield bond fund VWEHX that pays me 7%

I also have a mortgage fund  REM is the symbol pays me 12% it does fluctuate.

NLY AGNC are mortgage reits they pay high yields, I went with REM because it was a fund with them in there so I wasn't concentrated in 1.

You can buy bond funds also, the higher the duration(the maturity) in years the more it will be affected by higher rates.

All of these will be negatively impacted by higher rates, be careful and do your homework.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #21
I do not have a lot of money in either of these... but so far okay.

mak1118   |     |   Comment #22
The VWEHX is vanguard...... vanguard is low low expenses no loads.
REM is an ETF

As I said they will lose value if rates go up... so be careful.

I have them in an IRA
mak1118   |     |   Comment #23
blackrock has a lot of muni bond funds especially new york if you live there no state tax also 6% yields but again be careful if rates head up.

mak1118   |     |   Comment #25
Right now at today's NAV VWEHX yields 6.75% and has a .25% expense ratio.  The nav price is 5.89, i bought it at 5.55 so a little gain there also. 

It will fluctuate but it's the yield you are drawing, unless you sell it when it is down in price.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #27
When I bought it, it was paying I think 7.15% or a little more but as the nav price goes up the yield comes down and vice versa
mak1118   |     |   Comment #28
I don't have any municipal bonds anymore but when I did I always tried to buy state general obligation, they are safer.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #29
Don't get me wrong municipals are safer than people think but I am very conservative and I always felt state GOs were the safest way to go even if I had to give up a little yield. 

Hope it was helpful, cya
lou   |     |   Comment #31
Hey guys, a fund like VWEHX can drop in price for many reasons. Certainly if interest rates go up, but much more likely if we have a crash in the stock market circa 2008-2009. High yield bond funds tend to correlate to the stock market (although less volatile) much more than most people think.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #32
As far as stocks go I mainly stick to the index fund VTI and then buy a few decent yielding stocks also.

My major stock buying days are over unless something happens to make them real cheap again.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #33
Lou:   That is why you are being paid a higher rate, risk. I reinvest the dividends and I will add to it if it drops and over time I think it will be fine. If somebody looks at the fund that often you will drive yourself nuts, I try to look out further. I am conservative like I said but some risk is necessary, imo.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #35
When the nav goes down the yield goes up so you are being compensated and if you don't need the income you buy more shares at lower prices and higher yield.


Lou I did say be careful and people need to do their own homework.

lou   |     |   Comment #36
"When the nav goes down the yield goes up"

Mak1118, this is only true for new money into the fund. Whatever you have already invested will receive the lower yield.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #37
Lou:  Not on a fund, what I have in there will drop in value but the yield will go up. It is not a single bond it is a bond fund.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #41
Single bonds will go down in value and your rate is what it was when you bought it, you know what you will get back at maturity but if you sell it early that is a different story.

Bond funds nav and yield will fluctuate on you and you are not guaranteed what you will get back at maturity because there is no maturity on a bond fund, but duration will give you an idea how much it will move.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #42
Don't hold me to this but if your bond fund has a duration of say 7 to 10 years for every 1% raise in rates the nav will drop 10%...... not sure but I think I remember this is the case.


Hey if I keep going I might be at the top of that list...... haha
mak1118   |     |   Comment #43
IMO the stock market moves in cycles..... secular bull cycles and secular bear cycles... in 2000 we entered a secular bear cycle(IMO) and they usually last anywhere from 15 to 20 years..... never a gurantee but eventually we will enter another bull cycle. Is this it or do we have further to go.... that is the hard question.

If we do get another bear leg down and I don't know if we will but if we do and say the market gets back down under 10,000(hopefully 8,000) again, then I would have to hold my nose and start buying stocks for the next secular bull and I would keep buying them all the way down. VTI index fund would be my weapon of choice or you could use SPY or VOO.

BTW if you buy an individual corporate bond and the company goes out of business you will not get back all your money if any at maturity. 
lou   |     |   Comment #44
Mak1118, let's say you buy 10 shares in a particular bond fund for $10 a share (NAV) for a total of $100 and the fund loses 50% of the NAV, so now you own 10 shares for $5 a share for a total of $50. If the fund was earning and distributing $8 a share, yes, the fund's yield has increased from 8 to 16%, but your yield is still 8%. Your investment in the fund is still $100, although it is only worth $50 now, but the $8 in yield you're getting should still be divided by your initial $100 investment, not the $50 it is now worth. The last I looked, you're still out-of-pocket $100.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #45
Lou you are correct but that is the point.

Your yield the % you get changes,yes your yield would be 16% but you would stilll only recieve the same amount or maybe even a little less but for someone who needs to live off their money this gives them a chance to do it. If you have a $100,000 CD at 2% you get $2,000..... now take $100,000 and get 6.5% you recieve $6500 and it drops 20% to $80,000 and now you might be getting a yield of 8% you are still getting $6,400 yes but that is what is supposed to happen. If you don't need the money you reinvest the dividend and you add more when it is down.

It is not the cure all... it is just another tool.... as I said before be careful and do your homework. Some people will not be able to handle the fluctuations and some will... and yes it should be considered a stock market asset not a really a fixed income investment.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #46
Higher yield higher risk, it's as simple as that usually.

If you are trying to live off your 2% income from a cd and you can't so you keep spending principle...... well the amount of money you have is going down,no?   

Diversification is the name of the game.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #47
I would never suggest or would I myself ever have all my money in a high yield bond fund or any other such investment but there is a place for such investments in a portfolio if somebody can handle a little more risk.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #48
LOU:  You are never out of pocket until you sell it. What if the price went from 100 to 200 and the % yield that you get went down but you still got the same dollar amount in yield, why not use that comparison. That could happen also.

If you had money in an index fund like VTI when the market dropped in 2008 into 2009 and you sold at the bottom.... well then you lost money but if you held it and added more when it dropped you would actually have more now.

If you need the investment income to live on, well you decide Lou...... it works for me.
lou   |     |   Comment #49
Mak1118, I agree a diversified portfolio should not necessarily exclude high yield bonds, but it is important to understand the risks. Everyone's situation is different and the amount of risk a person is comfortable with is a highly personal decision. For example, an individual may have sufficient assets, so that a 2 to 3% return would be sufficient to live comfortably without risking their principal. In another case, this return would be too low and it is necessary to deploy some of their money into higher risk adjusted assets. I have no problem using a high yield bond fund (I actually buy individual high yield bonds), but, in your example, even though your yield is relatively high, you still lost $20,000. It will take many years before you have recovered the principal, if your earning $6,500 a year.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #50
LOU: It's a paper loss, you didn't lose anything until you sell might go back up... but even though as I said if you need more income you need more income..... you have to adapt.

I love CDs but the reality is OUCH.... I don't believe in what the FED is doing never have but it is what it is and sometimes you have to adapt.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #51
LOU:  I agree if I could live off of 2% I would but I am not old enough for SS or MED so what to do?

BTW if things go badly what makes you think your money is safe anywhere?

Wait and see what happens to our cash if the US ever has to default..... maybe the printing press won't save us after all......just saying.

I also have a 6 year CD ladder and I try to keep that the same..... I have 9 months worth of 5% and 6% CDs left and then it is going to start to hurt.
mak1118   |     |   Comment #52
LOU:  I bought the VWEHX at around $5.50 it is now $5.89... that is 7% gain in 6 months I could sell it now but I didn't buy it to worry if it was going to go up or down I bought it for diversification and why does it only have to be a loss.... it fluctuates.  

A gain today might be a loss next month or a loss this month mat be a gain next month.... who knows?

lou   |     |   Comment #53
"What if the US ever has to default"

I try not to think about that. It wouldn't be good for my karma. :)
Mike   |     |   Comment #54
Thanks Ken.  Keep fightin the fight.  One penny at a time.  At least, while we still have pennies  ;-)

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