MONTHLY NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR CURRENT AND FUTURE RETIREES Can Your Life Insurance Policy Help You Out in Retirement? Under certain circumstances, it can play a crucial financial role. Besides a death benefit, a permanent life insurance policy can accrue cash value over time (provided the premiums are paid). That cash value could prove useful in or near retirement. If you need to, you could withdraw some of it to pay for medical procedures, home improvements, long-term care, or a child’s college education. It could even provide you with additional retirement income. Moreover, distributions from a permanent life insurance policy

Is Social Security Coming Up Short for Retirees? The non-partisan Senior Citizens League says yes, charging that the wrong metric is being used to determine cost of living adjustments (COLAs) to retiree benefits. The federal government uses the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) to figure various COLAs. Younger, employed people usually have lower medical expenses than older people; they also spend more money on gasoline and transportation than retirees do. Senior advocates argue that the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly (CPI-E) should be used instead of the CPI-W, especially since medical costs have

Why You Might Not Want a Lump-Sum Retirement Payout Do you have the option of receiving your retirement money as a lump sum? You may want to turn that choice down. A new MetLife study, Paycheck or Pot of Gold, warns of the “lottery effect” that can occur when all that money makes its way into a household at once. Surveying more than 1,050 retirement plan participants who had taken lump-sum payouts, MetLife found that 21% had already used up 100% of that money; on average, it had disappeared in less than six years.    Like a lottery winner bereft

How Much of Your Retirement Savings Should You Withdraw Each Year? When Fidelity Investments asked more than 1,000 pre-retirees to guess the percentage that retirement planners would recommend, 19% said 7-9% a year. (A typical recommendation might be 4%.) Additionally, another 19% of pre-retirees responding to the investment company’s Retirement IQ survey thought they could safely draw down their retirement funds at a rate of 10-15% a year. At that pace, they could risk outliving their money by their mid-seventies.    If interest rates were a few percentage points higher in this bull market, such large annual withdrawals might be

Retirement Insights February 2017

MONTHLY NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR CURRENT AND FUTURE RETIREES Retiring with an Age Difference If you are 10 or 15 years older than your spouse or partner, to what degree should that age gap influence your retirement planning? You will want to consider this question, for it may affect many aspects of your financial future – such as your planned retirement dates, how you decide to claim Social Security, and how you choose to invest.  Your age difference will lengthen your total retirement experience as a couple. For example, Social Security projects that the average man turning 62 this month

January 2017

Can You Work Your Way into Retirement? As 2016 ended, the 17th Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey appeared and noted a preference for a phased retirement among a majority (53%) of workers polled by the insurance and investment company’s Center for Retirement Studies. In fact, 48% of the pre-retirees surveyed felt that their current employer would allow them to continue working in some capacity after age 65.     How many employers are okay with workers staying on the job past 65? Perhaps more than many of us may assume: 72% of the workers Transamerica talked with said that their employer

Can You Determine Your Ideal Retirement Income by Formula? Retirement income formulas can serve as a starting point or simple estimation of the amount of money you may need per month or year, but other factors may influence those needs as well. Some articles state that you need to live on 70% or 80% of your end salary in retirement, but such rules of thumb may prove simplistic. Claims that you need to amass a certain amount to retire comfortably today can also gloss over some key retirement planning variables. For example, when and where do you think you will

Retirement Newsletter August 2016

MONTHLY NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR CURRENT AND FUTURE RETIREES WHO CLAIMS SOCIAL SECURITY AT 62, AND WHY? According to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, 48% of men and 42% of women take Social Security benefits as soon as they are eligible for them. A baby boomer who claims those benefits at age 62 will get 25% less monthly Social Security income than a boomer who waits to claim benefits at age 66, and 32% less than a boomer who puts off filing for benefits until age 70. Those who claim at first opportunity may have urgent reasons

Retirement

MONTHLY NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR CURRENT AND FUTURE RETIREES THE ADVANTAGES OF A HEALTH SAVINGS ACCOUNT Why do people open up Health Savings Accounts in conjunction with high-deductible insurance plans? For one, HSAs are funded with pre-tax income, and grow untaxed. Distributions out of an HSA are tax-free as long as they are used to pay qualified health-care expenses. On the flip side, HSA funds don’t pay for all forms of health care. You also can’t use HSA funds to pay for a Medigap policy or Medicare supplemental insurance, in case you are wondering about such a move. Since contributions