TCL 6-Series 2020 Roku TV 65R635

David Katzmaier/CNET

Let’s talk TVs. You know where I stand: A lot of lower-end models are perfectly good — and definitely easier on the wallet. But what do you sacrifice when you choose a cheap TV instead of a high-end model from, say, Samsung or Sony?

For answers, we brought in CNET TV guru David Katzmaier. Trust me, if you’re in the market for a new screen, you do not want to miss this discussion.

Also in this episode: My new-favorite coffee maker costs a measly $16. We’ll be doing a much deeper coffee dive soon, but for now, here’s the gadget to get.

You can listen to the episode (and past ones) right here:  

Looking for all the links and other info we referenced in the show? You can find them in the show notes, which are available in the embedded player (above). Just click Description.

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Our indicative theme on Expensive Performers – which includes companies trading at increasingly higher valuation multiples but are executing well, with consistently expanding Operating Margins and Revenues – is up by about 39% year-to-date on an equally weighted basis. This compares to the S&P 500 which is up by just about 5% over the same period. We believe that companies in this theme are likely building a competitive advantage in the businesses they are operating in, implying that earnings growth could be stronger going forward. Veeva Systems (VEEV), up 96% year-to-date, is the biggest driver of the theme’s return this year. On the other side, Heico (HEI) stock is down by about -7% year to date. Below is a quick rundown of some of the stocks and their performance over the past year.

See our theme on Expensive Performers for detailed criteria for picking the stocks in the theme.

Veeva Systems (VEEV) is a cloud-computing company focused on applications for the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry. The stock is up by 96% year-to-date. (related: Veeva Systems & Ansys – Two Software Stocks You May Have Overlooked)

VEEV

ServiceNow (NOW) develops a cloud computing platform to help companies manage digital workflows for enterprise operations, The stock is up by 75% year-to-date.

Pool Corporation (POOL) is a wholesale distributor of swimming pool supplies and equipment.  The stock is up by 53% year-to-date.

IDEXX Laboratories (IDXX) sells products and services catering to the companion animal veterinary, livestock and poultry, water testing, and dairy markets. The stock is up by 47% year-to-date.

MSCI (MSCI) is a financial data provider that is best known for its financial indices, which money managers use to benchmark investment performance. The stock has gained 35% year-to-date.

Heico Corporation (HEI) is an aerospace and electronics company that focuses

Our indicative theme on Expensive Performers – which includes companies trading at increasingly higher valuation multiples but are executing well, with consistently expanding Operating Margins and Revenues – is up by about 39% year-to-date on an equally weighted basis. This compares to the S&P 500 which is up by just about 5% over the same period. We believe that companies in this theme are likely building a competitive advantage in the businesses they are operating in, implying that earnings growth could be stronger going forward. Veeva Systems, up 96% year-to-date, is the biggest driver of the theme’s return this year. On the other side, Heico stock is down by about -7% year to date. Below is a quick rundown of some of the stocks and their performance over the past year.

See our theme on Expensive Performers for detailed criteria for picking the stocks in the theme.

Veeva Systems is a cloud-computing company focused on applications for the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry. The stock is up by 96% year-to-date. (related: Veeva Systems & Ansys – Two Software Stocks You May Have Overlooked)

VEEV

ServiceNow develops a cloud computing platform to help companies manage digital workflows for enterprise operations, The stock is up by 75% year-to-date.

Pool Corporation is a wholesale distributor of swimming pool supplies and equipment. The stock is up by 53% year-to-date.

IDEXX Laboratories sells products and services catering to the companion animal veterinary, livestock and poultry, water testing, and dairy markets. The stock is up

There’s an old truism about vacation homes: Nature wants them back.



Austin Allison wearing a suit and tie: Pacasso's co-founder Austin Allison


© Courtesy of Pacaso
Pacasso’s co-founder Austin Allison

Indeed between the maintenance, upkeep, taxes, hassle of finding short-term renters, and typically small number of days per year homeowners are actually in residence, vacation homes are generally a great way to make memories—and a poor way to invest your money.

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Now two veterans of Zillow have a new spin on second homes—they want to pair you up with likeminded buyers to own just the amount of the house you’ll actually use. Their company, called Pacaso (pronounced like the painter), launched this week. Pacaso’s chairman is Zillow cofounder and former CEO Spencer Rascoff; its CEO is Dotloop founder and former Zillow executive Austin Allison. The company says it has raised $17 million in Series A funding, from investors including Maveron, Crosscut, Global Founders Capital, Howard Schultz, and other Zillow and Amazon executives. The startup has also secured $250 million in debt financing to purchase shares of homes. 

Allison says Pacaso is addressing a basic mismatch in the marketplace. “Ten million people own second homes in America. Most of them sit vacant for 11 months of the year. Meanwhile there are tens of millions of people that aspire to own a second home, but can’t afford it,” he told Fortune.

So how do you find your dream home? On Pacaso’s site you can fill out a form with your desired location and price range. Then Pacaso works with local real estate agents to find a home that meets your criteria, and pairs you up with other buyers seeking a similar hideaway. (As of now, Pacaso deals in only turnkey homes, no fixer-uppers.) If Pacaso finds a group or individual who wants 50% of a property, they’ll set up an



a man sitting at a table in front of a laptop: How an expensive endowment insurance policy can strain your finances


© Venkatasubramanian K
How an expensive endowment insurance policy can strain your finances

You might think the grass is greener on the other side, but if you take the time to water your own grass, it would be just as green. Money Traps always look lush green from afar; mix this with the fear of missing out (FOMO) and it’s a deadly cocktail sure to give a money hangover.

I know Usha (name changed) for a few years now: a smart independent woman working for a multinational company, single mother blessed with two bright children. Financial troubles brewed, as life events unlocked with separation. Tackling financial obligations coming her way, she was strong enough to take them in her stride, never fading the smile on her face and her optimism.

Heavy expenses, lower savings

Usha lives in a rented apartment in a plush locality in Mumbai, near her workplace. Her elder son is studying abroad for his masters, while her younger son in doing his graduation and would also follow his elder brother. Her mother stays with her. Usha earns a fat take-home salary of Rs 6 lakh per month. After separation from her husband two apartments’ loan installments amounting to Rs 3.50 lakh per month became a burden. These EMIs itself accounted for 55 per cent of her take home pay. Besides, she shells out rent of Rs 1.30 lakh per month to accommodate her kids and her mother. After all the household spends and obligations, her monthly surplus is hardly about Rs 25000 per month. That’s just 5 per cent of her take home income.

Working at a senior management level expecting a yearly bonus of Rs 20 lakh post tax, Usha is also eligible for Employee stock options after completing three years from her joining date. She