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To the Editors:

I have subscribed to your publication for a number of years and find quite a bit of interesting information therein. But I have one criticism about your articles concerning retirement. Most of them deal with members about to start retirement (what their asset allocation should be, withdrawal rate for 20 or 30 years, etc.). Well, I’m 88, and have been retired for 28 years on a fixed pension.

What I need is advice on how to make ends meet when most bonds, bank accounts and money market funds only yield a fraction of a percent.

I have read that the 80-year-old-plus portion of the population is increasing faster than any other segment. So how about paying some attention to our problems?

James D. Bushnell

Charles Rotblut Responds:

I have added this to my list of story ideas and will work on making it an article in a future issue of the AAII Journal.

Allocation at Retirement

Editor’s Note: We received many letters regarding our July 2010 issue covering asset allocation at retirement. Below are a few.

To the Editors:

RE: Retirement Portfolio. You miss the point. At retirement, you have two concerns: 1.) your health, and 2.) distribution of your assets. Allocating your portfolio should have been done at about age 50/55 or before.

My advice is to hold your bonds to maturity; periodic fluctuations are meaningless. Also, ladder your bonds; this gives you the periodic option to spend or reinvest in retirement. Have fun. Enjoy life. Don’t worry about things you cannot control.

Bernard V. Sigg

Comments Posted Online to “Determining Your Allocation at Retirement,” by Charles Rotblut, CFA:

I liked your conclusion, which appears to be the best. Focusing on the point often leads to a converging set of options. Your article tells people to look at the forest instead of the trees.

Andy From Pennsylvania

Your approach should be the basis for any goal-oriented plan, besides retirement (ie., college, travel, etc.). Setting priorities, monitoring the portifolio(s), establishing milestones, and readjusting, as necessary, are all part of the process.

Frank From New Jersey

It is nice to see in writing that no one strategy fits all people. We have taken the required minimum distribution (RMD) from our IRA for the last 20 years and still have nice-sized nest egg.

H. From South Carolina

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Comments Posted Online to “Allocation in Retirement: A Flat Glide Path Always Make Sense,” by Josh Cohen, CFA:

I don’t seem to ever see retirement guides telling a person to capitalize income other than his market assets. I try to and take a much more aggressive approach in my portfolio. I am able to do this as my other income allows me to smooth out the hills and valleys of the market.

Boyd From Nevada

I agree with Boyd. Calculate a present value for a stream of payments (i.e., Social Security, pension & etc.), add this to your retirement portfolio and then calculate the equity allocation you are comfortable with.

Kenneth From Colorado


Discussion

Robert from TX posted over 4 years ago:

AMEN! These comments should be a major emphasis for new investors as well as new retirees,I speak from 50 trs investing and 25 yrs retiring experience.


Joseph from WA posted over 4 years ago:

I am 87 yrs. of age and am concerned with stability of income and safety of our assets. Would likemoe articles about Closed End Tax Free Bonds which tend to fluctuate wildly at times. Mostof these funds contain AMT Bonds which are taxable and require using IRS Form 6251 at year's end. Another headache....Buyers of these Closed End Funds should investigate prior to purchase.


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