Withdrawal time... (before retirement)

Asset allocation, risk, diversification and rebalancing. Pros/cons of hiring a financial advisor.

Withdrawal time... (before retirement)

Postby queerasmoi » 23 Jun 2011 17:11

Well, I had a good run. I received a nest egg based on a fraction of an inheritance back in 2005 when my parents entrusted me with it. I have added to it and invested it smartly over time, thanks to the help I've received on FWF.

But now, many months post-graduation with my M.Sc., I have burned through enough of my cash reserves that I have only 1-2 months left. Still looking for jobs albeit half-heartedly, but I'm also seeking counselling and I'm registered with a temp agency. And I have zero debt, which for age 29 still puts me way ahead of many others in my age bracket.

So it looks like I'm on schedule to have to sell some of my ETFs by August if income and employment remain scarce. I reason that selling about 15-20% of the portfolio would give me another 6 months or so of a reprieve, on the presumption that once I make ends meet I can start saving up again.

Thanks everyone here for keeping me in a mindset not to do anything stupid with the money. It's still here and so am I.
Last edited by ModeratorK on 11 Jan 2014 19:46, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: title confuses readers
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby kcowan » 23 Jun 2011 18:15

Wow QAM! Do you need any help in the search?
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 23 Jun 2011 19:00

Well part of it is a lack of employment experience outside of my Chemistry graduate school life, and part of it is general discouragement. But feel free to make suggestions, on the understanding that I may not like or follow them ;-)
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby newguy » 23 Jun 2011 19:06

Hmmmm... Chemist you say.

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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Shakespeare » 23 Jun 2011 19:11

IIRC, you trained as an analytical chemist. Although there are some research jobs, the main job after graduation is running a lab - which may be in a camp in a northern mine. For that, you have to be a 'people person' (I'm not) and recognize that you are performing a service. Personally, I far preferred an R&D position that I had to running a lab. YMMV - and R&D ("analytical method development") positions don't come along often.

TAing may be necessary to but food on the table for a while, while you are looking.

Added: If not a member of the CIC you may consider joining. Keep an eye on ACCN, as it is called now.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 23 Jun 2011 20:16

Thanks. I would be fine with just a job using the equipment and not managing or researching at this stage. The CIC membership fees are a bit steep for an unemployed non student.

I did enjoy TA work, but that's generally only available to current graduate students. I'm not eligible for it anymore.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Shakespeare » 23 Jun 2011 20:20

I would be fine with just a job using the equipment
Most of those go to tech school graduates, not M.Sc.'s.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby AltaRed » 23 Jun 2011 21:52

You may have to search out some of the O&G labs in Alberta, especially in the Edmonton/Calgary area. There are a number of business oriented labs around, including oil sands work in AOSTRA, U of C Research Park, etc.
Added: Perhaps the likes of Golder & Associates, AMEC, etc.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby steves » 23 Jun 2011 22:36

How about 'cooking?' i.e. a meth lab. :D
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby BRIAN5000 » 23 Jun 2011 23:18

Well part of it is a lack of employment experience outside of my Chemistry graduate school life, and part of it is general discouragement. But feel free to make suggestions, on the understanding that I may not like or follow them


Are you working at all?
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 23 Jun 2011 23:22

Shakespeare wrote:
I would be fine with just a job using the equipment
Most of those go to tech school graduates, not M.Sc.'s.


This is true, but frequently they are willing to substitute academic overexperience for hands-on experience. I did a bunch of instrument work both in my research and as a TA. I don't have management experience and I don't feel comfortable with the thought of such a role at the moment.

I'm not an synthetic chemist so I don't know how to make drugs, even if I wanted to ;)

As for the Alberta question, I have immense respect for the people of that province but I don't see moving there as a realistic prospect anytime in my future. If I leave BC then I'm going back to Ontario (TO or Ottawa area) to be with my family as I've been away for years.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Shakespeare » 23 Jun 2011 23:29

I don't see moving there as a realistic prospect anytime in my future
You have to be willing to move where the jobs are.

IIRC you did HPLC which I think some of the oil companies use, so Alberta may need to be considered (my final specialty was ICP-AES).
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 23 Jun 2011 23:31

BRIAN5000 wrote:
Well part of it is a lack of employment experience outside of my Chemistry graduate school life, and part of it is general discouragement. But feel free to make suggestions, on the understanding that I may not like or follow them


Are you working at all?


Very slightly?

I have an on-call job at a community college with no hours.

I work about 5 hours/week tutoring online (scarce hours available in the summer).

I worked for Elections Canada during the election.

The temp agency placed me for about 2 days packing boxes and entering data. That was two weeks ago and they don't have anything for me right now.

And I just signed up with a service provider which specializes in helping people who have had mental health barriers to employment.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 23 Jun 2011 23:32

Shakespeare wrote:
I don't see moving there as a realistic prospect anytime in my future
You have to be willing to move where the jobs are.

IIRC you did HPLC which I think some of the oil companies use, so Alberta may need to be considered (my final specialty was ICP-AES).


I am not in debt and I live pretty frugally. I would rather take a lower paying job somewhere I feel that I can live, than follow the money somewhere I can't. Many of my best friends here are from Alberta, and I've visited, but it's just not somewhere I want to set down roots even briefly.

At this point I already miss my family so much just living in a city I enjoy where I've made friends, that I could not bear to move one more time if it's not back to where they are. I will quite seriously fall apart if I have to move in this state of mind, and there has to be someone to pick up the pieces when I get there.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Pickles » 24 Jun 2011 07:25

queerasmoi wrote:At this point I already miss my family so much just living in a city I enjoy where I've made friends, that I could not bear to move one more time if it's not back to where they are. I will quite seriously fall apart if I have to move in this state of mind, and there has to be someone to pick up the pieces when I get there.


Is this a delayed reaction to the stabbing queerasmoi? If so, and if your counselling is helping, staying put for a few months more might be a good idea. If the counselling isn't working, get a new counsellor there or back east. It's hard to put forward that confident job hunter's persona when you haven't finished dealing with a trauma.

My guess is that you soldiered on to finish your degree, pushing most feelings/reaction to the side, and now that you have space and time to breathe, they are flooding back in. A month or two of acknowledging and working through these feelings can put them to bed and free you up to focus on your future. Schedule yourself this time and work hard to build yourself up, regain your confidence and get ready for the amazing adventure of the rest of your life.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Flights of Fancy » 24 Jun 2011 09:22

What she said.

What about a trip "back home" for a month or even 2 or 3 weeks? (Would M and D pick up the tab?)

Sending you really good wishes. I know that can sound insincere but you've been through a lot and worked hard, and I hope you find some kind of break so you can catch your breath and move on confidently.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby kcowan » 24 Jun 2011 09:24

queerasmoi wrote:... I will quite seriously fall apart if I have to move in this state of mind, and there has to be someone to pick up the pieces when I get there.
I wonder if Pickles has hit the nail on the head. When you get it together, the options being discussed will make more sense.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Spidey » 24 Jun 2011 09:45

I suspect that QAM is making a rather rational decision. The culture, friends and lifestyle of a region can be of great importance. Money is not always the number one consideration.

As for withdrawal, this may be a far trickier issue especially if the market continues on a downward trend. I definitely would avoid withdrawing equities when they are down significantly.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby blonde » 24 Jun 2011 10:17

Stick with the Passion. Create your own Job.

Become an Entrepreneur.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 24 Jun 2011 12:11

Pickles wrote:Is this a delayed reaction to the stabbing queerasmoi? If so, and if your counselling is helping, staying put for a few months more might be a good idea. If the counselling isn't working, get a new counsellor there or back east. It's hard to put forward that confident job hunter's persona when you haven't finished dealing with a trauma.


That's part of it. Truth be told, I wasn't very well-put-together in the weeks leading up to the attack either, as grad school had already burned me out, so I'm kinda two levels deep. And a lot of that has been brought to the surface by having to testify again earlier this month. The guy has been found guilty on 5 charges but he's out on bail with strict bail conditions while awaiting sentencing.

Spidey wrote:As for withdrawal, this may be a far trickier issue especially if the market continues on a downward trend. I definitely would avoid withdrawing equities when they are down significantly.


I'm 40% fixed-income at the moment. The market drop still hasn't gone much below the last time I rebalanced, but we'll see. I could always tap into the FI first, with the understanding though that the rest of my portfolio will become risker. Or I could withdraw a lump proportionally, so that I do sell some equities but in proportion to the rest.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 24 Jun 2011 12:14

Flights of Fancy wrote:What she said.

What about a trip "back home" for a month or even 2 or 3 weeks? (Would M and D pick up the tab?)

Sending you really good wishes. I know that can sound insincere but you've been through a lot and worked hard, and I hope you find some kind of break so you can catch your breath and move on confidently.


I would be welcome to fly back for a visit. I was going to around this time of month but the timing fell apart and flights became expensive. They do pick up the tab for visits home but I still try to find good deals. I think the next window of opportunity that I could visit may not be until late July or some time in August.
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Bylo Selhi » 24 Jun 2011 12:49

newguy wrote:Hmmmm... Chemist you say.

Great show! Bryan Cranston is da bomb :thumbsup:

queerasmoi wrote:I'm not an synthetic chemist so I don't know how to make drugs, even if I wanted to ;)

Pity. Lots of opportunities in this, um, booming export business: Canada is a leading source of synthetic drugs ;)
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby queerasmoi » 25 Jun 2011 01:10

Well I used to joke when I was doing my undergrad in French Linguistics and Chemistry that it would qualify me uniquely to make street drugs in Quebec :P
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby mudLark » 27 Jun 2011 11:27

blonde wrote:Become an Entrepreneur.
:thumbsup:
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Re: Withdrawal time...

Postby Stan » 27 Jun 2011 15:04

My business has some experience in HPLC. We could see what is available in BC if you like. Send me a PM with some details of your experience and I will see if anything is available.

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