FACTS + STATISTICS

A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report referenced in this week’s article “highlights the role annuities can play in helping people secure enough income during retirement.” With so many of us searching for additional sources of income that we can’t outlive, annuities frequently come up as an option to consider. Call us if you would like to talk about how they may fit into planning for your retirement. We’re always here to help.

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NEW DATA

This week’s article emphasizes that “Americans need to take additional steps in order to ensure a financially stable retirement – one that allows them to pay for medical bills and essential costs of living while enjoying their bucket list.” Have you thought about Fixed Indexed Annuities to help do this? The article tells us that FIA’s should be considered “to help create a foundation of conservative growth and ensure a steady income during retirement. With both growth potential and principal protection, FIAs can be a complementary product within existing portfolios since they are not subject to the volatility of the stock market.” Call us if you would like more information about FIAs, we’re always here to help.

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QUESTIONS TO ASK

“Knowing how much and where to save your money is essential to leading a financially secure life”. However, “wrapping your head around the multitude of retirement options available” can not only be stressful, but confusing. This week’s article is useful in that it provides three questions that you should be sure your financial professional to help you understand your personal situation. Call us, we are always here to help and will make sure that “you are left with more answers than questions to help you achieve your long-term financial goals”.

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BUT WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

Sometimes it is important to go back to basics and talk about the meaning of words that are often used when discussing options for getting that lifetime income you need. “Annuitization is one asset management strategy for retirees seeking to secure lifetime income.” If you are looking to obtain guidance in or near retirement and would like to understand how annuitization works so that you can make choices that are best for you, call us. We are here to help.

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SHORTFALL OR SURPLUS?

We have often discussed that one of the biggest risks to a comfortable retirement is running out of money too soon. Sometimes the difficulty is in figuring out where you stand, so I thought to share with you an on-line calculator which “helps you determine your projected shortfall or surplus at retirement. You can also see just how long your retirement savings will last.” If your results project a shortfall, call us to discuss some options you may not have considered. We’re always here to help.

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WHAT IS IT?

The other day a friend told me that sometimes it was easier to explain what something was by telling what it was typically used for. This week’s article does a good job of telling us that “the usual purpose of a deferred annuity is to accumulate value for a retirement income that is typically received as a monthly payment to supplement retirement income from other sources such as Social Security. Income from the annuity value may be taken for life or a selected number of years. This plan is called an annuity both during the period of accumulation of funds and during the pay-out period. Deferred annuities may be either IRA plans or non-IRA plans.” Should this be something that you think would suit your needs, call us. We are always here to help.

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THE SECRET

This week’s article that I thought to share with you is called “The Secret to Generating Lifetime Income.” It states that “one solution to help ensure lifetime income is adding a fixed indexed annuity (FIA) to your retirement portfolio. These products can help balance your portfolio and generate guaranteed income for life.” We certainly don’t keep these products a secret, as they are frequently used by retirees to supplement social security income. Call us, we are happy to explain how they work and to discuss if they might be a good option for you to consider. We’re always here to help.

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AT LEAST ONCE

“While a whopping 94 percent of Americans currently give themselves a passing grade on retirement, a third of them have confessed to stopping retirement savings at least once”, according to a new report cited in this week’s article. Stopping savings can happen for a variety of reasons ranging from loss of a job and income to added unexpected expenses. Because these events can also happen in retirement where income that is not derived from guaranteed investments declines, or health care costs go up, it is best to plan for these bumps in the road. Call us, we may have some choices you can select from to help you have an income you can rely on, and an income that will survive a bump in the road. We are always here to help.

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RIGHT OR WRONG ONE FOR YOU?

The editor of this week’s article wrote that “An annuity can be a very smart retirement investment for many people. That’s not just because an annuity can provide a secure revenue stream — a monthly check — for the rest of your life, no matter how long you live. On top of that, the longer you live, the more you get what’s called a “mortality credit” as you outlive other people who bought into the annuity. The income gain from that can be many times greater than any other secure investment you’re likely to find.” To help explain the different types of annuities, the editor called on an economist from the prestigious University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School to give some pointers to help understand what might be the right, or wrong one for you, including differentiating between a fixed and variable annuity. Take a look at what he said. We think you will find it of interest when you reflect on what your goals are.

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NOW THAT IT IS MAY

Now that it is May and tax season is behind us, it may be a good time to reassess how retirement has impacted or will impact your living expenses. This week I thought to share with you a chart that may help you with this assessment. “Your living expenses may increase or decrease at retirement but will likely not stay the same.” You can use this calculator to help compare living expenses that you have now to the day that you will retire. This may help you to plan your savings requirements accordingly. Call us if you need help in doing this analysis. We’re always here for you.

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