bigato's journal

Where are you and where are you going?
Seppia
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by Seppia » Tue Jul 09, 2019 1:38 am

At Google there is an internal document called "No Heroes". It basically says that if your load is too high - let the damn thing fail. Perhaps it's not important, and only you think it is. Perhaps the higher ups don't realize it's important and they need to be reminded of it. Reliable infrastructure cannot depend on heroic actions of a small group of people, and especially on actions of a single person. Let it fail - the world will take notice. Or not, in which case you should move to something more useful.
What a great document.
I'm going to "steal" this for sure

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Thu Jul 25, 2019 11:21 pm

This week I finished moving my investments from the bank where I work to another broker which is a nice fintech that doesn't charge per transaction nor for custody. Made around 21% real gains in the last 12 months after taxes, but these last months were a great period to make easy money, so not so much due to my skills. At least I was able to correctly read the situation and allocate accordingly. Or so I want to believe.

Because I did the broker transfer through liquidating at the source and buying again at the destination (less bureacracy), I took the oppportunity to change my allocation to better reflect my views and knowledge at the moment. Basically it's roughly:

35% ETF small caps
35% ETF 50 biggest companies
20% Gold (futures contract)
10% Money (local equivalent of T-Bills)

So yeah, I'm transitioning away from following a fixed portfolio it seems. The allocations above do not account for all my networth, though, so the description is not so precise. In my bank, I still have roughly more year of expenses in CDs, plus I have this card from the job that basically can be used to buy groceries only. It keeps piling up because I don't use all my monthly stipend and the amount it has right now would be enough for about one year of groceries. So you see, plenty of money buffer so that I don't have to touch the investment allocation above, plus I'm counting on receiving my wages the following months, and if I were to be fired, I'd get access to a big chunk of unemployment insurance deposit that would be, at this moment, like 50% of the sum of investments described above.

The money I have on CDs at my bank is intended to be used for expenses during the next year, and my plan now is to replenish every six months from investments so that it will always have something between 6 months to one year of expenses at any point in time. Although that "expenses account" is now at the bank where I work, I plan on opening an account with another fintech which I admire a lot, and transfer to there. They offer credit card and simple money account free of charge. Also, parked money earns the same as the local equivalent of t-bills. I don't plan on keeping any customer relationship to the company I work now after i quit.

Other than that, all money from the job that enters my account now goes will be transfered directly to the broker account and invested. The idea is to ignore the money from the job and get used to this flow of living from the investments. The plan is to keep piling up on t-bills at this moment until I decide to allocate them elsewhere. I may double my current gold position, and after that increase the ETF's. At least this is the plan until my financial forecast changes. I see stocks rallying up some more (20% probably, or possibly more depending on politics) around here in the following months and decreasing interest rates the same as the world trend. Internationally I believe we may see some more QE in a while and gold appreciating as a consequence. If I am wrong and world leaders decide to be fiscally responsible for a change, gold would depreciate and stocks would keep flat for a while, rendering my strategy stupid. In that case my money buffers and my future wages (or unemployment fund) should keep me from ruining my networth. If I am right, I could have another 20% of real gains in the following 12 months. If doom strikes, I have land and can grow food. That's also why I don't consider holding physical gold. If the system is so badly broken that it would be safer to have the metal in my hands, I won't care much about financial capital anyway.


On other news, I finally started seeing an autism specialist this week. It was only one session so far, and I should probably have the second next month. Those two should be enough to have that line of expenses among my top three this month, but yet it feels good to spend on this. She told me it should take something between 4 to 8 sessions to have the diagnosis for autism/aspergers/not. I may pursue this further, as a means of self knowledge and also to try to uncover some potential psychological blindspots that could be lurking in here. One thing that caught my attention so far is that she told me that, in her opinion, high-functioning ASD and asperger's are different enough that although the official consensus nowadays is to merge them, they are different enough that she thinks that it would be better to name them differently.

Scott 2
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by Scott 2 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 1:27 am

I am very interested to read about your experience with the autism specialist. The expense and time involved have stopped me from seeking such help, but I often wonder what the returns would be. I know the coping strategies I have adopted from various books and videos do make my life a lot better.

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:07 am

So, the rumors about a severance package were real. It just got announced this morning. It won’t cover the remaining 17 months in my schedule, more like 10 months. But it’s close enough. I’ll sleep over it but probably will announce to my boss tomorrow that I’ll leave. Someone else in the company would need to take my place though. If it doesn’t work, either way I’ll be coming out of the closet tomorrow.

classical_Liberal
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by classical_Liberal » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:08 am

This is great news, no? Congrats!

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:36 am

Yeah, great news!
Although it’s not so clear yet that I’ll be able to leave because of the rules, the package is not exactly open to all as I’m seeing now. I’ll probably know for sure tomorrow.

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Bankai
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by Bankai » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:28 am

Ten months' severance sounds great considering how close you are to your target number. You can make up the difference at some point in future with odd jobs here and there or by monetising hobbies. I'd go for it.

rube
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by rube » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:46 am

I hope you make use of the severance package Bigato!

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Mon Jul 29, 2019 12:11 pm

There was a quick meeting of the team where the boss explained the package, assuming that it would not interest to anyone in the team. I almost couldn't contain myself hahahaha! I'm so excited by this! I just arrived home and I don't know how I will be able to sleep today! I took my time to read through the conditions of the package carefully, and will register my intention tomorrow at 1h30 pm if I don't change my mind. There's a defined number of positions that they want to reduce, and since in my team no reduction will happen, I'll depend on someone else who is in a team that is being reduced. If that person wants to go to my position (and they have the incentive because their positions are gone), I'll be able to make use of the severance package and quit. The person also needs to be approved at the destination. So, it's not a done deal yet, but given that the severance package is not so great, I think the demand won't be high and I'll be able to get my way out. Either way, in the act of trying, I'll have to disclose that I intend to retire, and there are chances that it doesn't work this time and I need to stay until 2021 as planned, with everybody being well aware that I'll quit. Actually I think this may be a good change after all, I'm becoming bored with work that is too small to make a relevant change nowadays.

If the deals works out, I'll also have access to 80% of my unemployment fund that would only be available after three years of no formal job if I were to quit myself. All in all, I think I'll be like 6 months of wages short of the original goal, which is not much more than an abstract number by now. It's not so much that I have a lot of money as it is that I have simple tastes and know how to live on so little. I want this, I don't think I'll do even more math now. But just out of curiosity, If I only make this nest egg keep up with inflation until I turn 65 (26.5 years from now), I'll be good. By then, I'll have access to the government social security money which will also be enough on its own. That's pretty damn good in my book.

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Bankai
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by Bankai » Mon Jul 29, 2019 12:27 pm

Couple of questions:

1) why do you need to disclose that you intend to retire?

2) what about housing? Here it's very difficult to rent anything unless you have regular income (wages or pension). Is this not a problem in Brazil? Or do you intend do buy just before you quit of go back to live in your countryside property?

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Mon Jul 29, 2019 12:54 pm

1. I'll have to register my intention on the system and it will be visible, so I'll probably be better by disclosing it first;
2. It may be difficult in central areas in Brazil indeed. On the outskirsts, not really, plus rent can be as lower as half. But also, I just rented this place in June for one year, so I'm fine. Also, I'd even be able to renew it without bringing up that I'm unemployed.

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Bankai
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by Bankai » Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:05 pm

So by announcing intention to retire you mean letting know ppl at work that you're taking the severance? I thought you are actually considering disclosing that you intend to ERE. Which would not be necessary at all. You can just say you like the offer and intend to get another job. Which is both true.

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Mon Jul 29, 2019 2:02 pm

Ah, I see your point. I may just tell that I don't need to work for money anymore. Back at that meeting I was so damn tempted to spit it out just for the pleasure of seeing everyone's faces looking in disbelief. It probably won't matter much since most likely I won't ever see those guys again. But yeah, good point. I'll think about it from the strategic point of view.

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Mon Jul 29, 2019 2:09 pm

Well no, I'm wrong, I see your point now. "I like the money, I'll take it if it works out". "But what will you do afterwards?". "Oh, I'll find something, not worried about that really".
And then if it doesn't work, I didn't disclose that I'll quit by 2021 anyways! They just now think that my price tag is not so high and that I can find other work elsewhere easily! Genius, thanks!

2Birds1Stone
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Mon Jul 29, 2019 2:54 pm

Congratulations! Fingers crossed for you

rube
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by rube » Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:58 am

When do you expect any news about this Bigato? We're all eagerly waiting on an update while eating popcorn and sitting on the couch watching our screens and keep on refreshing the website.

bigato
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by bigato » Tue Jul 30, 2019 12:50 pm

Ahahaha sorry for the suspense.

So, today I arrived half an hour late at work (I'm almost never late). This was on purpose, because I can only have access to the computers during my working hours and the opt-in system would be online 15 minutes after I normally leave. Both the boss and my senior coleague were already there, and did some jokes about being worried about me, because I have the reputation of always being the first to arrive in the morning. There are some rumours that I may sleep in there :p

After the jokes and pleasantries, they both turned back to their computers. I said "boss?", answered "yeah?" without looking back. I then announced, "I have an important comunication to make" - and then they both turned and looked at me with eyes wide open. "This money that the company is offering, I'm gonna take it. Well, there are some rules and it is not guaranteed, but if it works out, I'm taking it. I didn't say anything yesterday because I wanted to be sure, but yeah".

My boss is the type of quiet guy who doesn't speak a lot and think things deeply before he say the words. "So are you going to the private sector?" (our company is "kind of" part of the public sector). "Well, I don't have anything lined up yet, but I think this is a good oportunity". More silence and staring in the void from both of us.

Then I told them that I wanted to make sure that there's no misunderstanding and that my decision has nothing to do with the team itself. That in my years as a programmer, that was probably the best environment I ever worked in, and the most interesting topic to work with. But, I really am not sure that the company itself will survive the changes in the market that are happening. I am aware that there are some people there that are experts of international level in their fields, that are doing their best. "Like you", I said to my boss. But on the other side, I'm also aware that the company has problems, as we both know, and that there is also a number of people with a different kind of culture who are not working in the best direction. And it is not clear to me who is going to win. I think both will sink together. He agreed. He said he it's a pity that I'm going.

The cognitive dissonance on him was so much easier this way, I could see it in his eyes. Because in his mind I'm just taking the money and getting another job, maybe even other that is already there waiting for me. I'm very thankful to Bankai who made me realize yesterday that I don't really need to mention anything about retirement or any other crazy new concept. No need to make it any harder for them, nor for me.

He asked some more questions like if I was going to stay in this city after quitting. I answered that I will probably stay a couple of months to clear my thoughts and then move back to my rural property, where I also have family, because I have nobody here and no roots. I suspect he was thinking about hiring me as an independent contractor later.

So, no need to make any colleagues feel bad for themselves by saying "I'm retiring". It was quite easy in the end. Obviously they feel that in order to be so chill about what I'm going to do after quitting, I must be in a good position. So there was some talking about investments sprouting up, people asking some advice, etc.

Also, my senior colleague was feeling nervous today, as he told me, and I suspect he is considering doing the same (we didn't have time to talk about this without other people around). He has plans to immigrate to Canada, and it is not to far away for him. He also told me that the boss asked him about this some days ago, like "is it really happening?". Because he seems concerned with keeping the knowledge transmission and succession in the team. So it looks like my talk about this from some time ago really achieved the intended effect. I feel so good about all of this, it's about as perfect as I could possibly make it.

When the system started allowing to register interest in severance package, so I did, and then came home. I'll have more information about whether it was accepted by august 19. If it works for me, my last day at work will be in october. Thinking about the rules and possible loopholes, strategically speaking, I think my chances are high and their skill to intervene to try to block me from this are low. So far so good!

2Birds1Stone
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:17 pm

Awesome update, bigato.

We are all rooting for ya.

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Bankai
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by Bankai » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:38 pm

This sounds great and you played it really well. Fingers crossed for positive final decision in August.

rube
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Re: bigato's journal

Post by rube » Tue Jul 30, 2019 2:23 pm

Well done and let's see the 19th. Though if not accepted somehow, it won't be a very long journey anyway. You're in a good position.

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