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Old 03-07-2015, 11:20 AM
 
7,977 posts, read 11,653,739 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
^ This post is excellent. We should call 70 full retirement. Changing the dialogue would help people understand. The average life expectancy for men went from 62-63 to about 84. We still feel 62 is a good age to retire. Somehow it got into our heads that when medicine and general health were able to be improved, the entire increase in longevity should require absolutely no work because people were entitled to stop working at 62.
I thought about searching to see if there has been a thread discussion on longevity. I know the media pundits, who are quoting the medical community? insurance types?, are predicting longer and longer lives.

On the other hand the same media outlets make me wonder how our vastly overweight overmedicated society hasn't all expired already.

My father died in his mid 80s, after a fairly long episode of disability due to Parkinsons. My mother was still in her home at 88 when she had some strokes, but is still alive in care at 91.

HOWEVER. They both had extremely different lives than I. Especially as older parents their youth was one of simple and not very plentiful food, hard work, no plastic or chemicals. They grew up under Stalin in the Soviet Union and did not come to the states till after WWII. Where they continued to eat simply and work hard.

I however ate fast food, work a sedentary job, all my food stored and cooked in plastic yada yada. Am I really going to live as long as my parents? I think not. Not at least in a well and able physical condition.

Most people want to retire at an age where they still have a few spry years to enjoy themselves. I predict for me 70 will be the end of that and the start of just trying to maintain some independence. And honestly I don't know how much I'd really have to offer an employer at 69 (or most people despite what they might think).

Last edited by Giesela; 03-07-2015 at 11:33 AM..
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:21 AM
 
11,929 posts, read 20,376,242 times
Reputation: 19328
Quote:
Originally Posted by shaker281 View Post
We need to not let our "assumptions" overshadow the underlying reality.
That's a nice thought, but in reality, all we have is our assumptions because we can't know the whole story of someone's life, unless they tell us and even of they told us, it would be too long to read and massively off topic.

So it's our assumptions that fill in the holes.

And that brings up back to another thread on an other forum on CD -- why are people so MEAN online?

By the way -- we worked, we saved, I learned about mutual fund investing and now we'll have a nice safe retirement.

I used the Kiplinger's 25 mutual funds and out of them I picked 4 and 5 star Morningstar rated funds in ten year time frames, only because those stars meant that the fund was beating it's benchmark on a regular basis. I have stepped away from the Kiplinger's as I got a feel for investing.

I also go through the funds I choose and make sure I have a broad range of benchmarks, and in those funds compare the 10 largest holdings within each, to make sure I don't have a ton of overlapping holdings.

I pay attention to the management of the funds I pick, preferring more people at the helm. Stars rise and shine and fall from grace often taking the fund with it. I read some financial pages to find out who got booted and why... and keep an eye on those funds.

It's money, not my heart -- a fund I adored three years ago, may be a loser now. Really look at it, see what the holdings are, see what people are saying and if necessary, sell and don't look back.

And although my goal is to beat my benchmark (and I do on a pretty good basis) it's also not my goal to fly high. If my benchmarks are putting out 6% returns, I'm fine with 6.5 to 7... Although I do have a small fund that I gamble with -- and I do consider it gambling chasing a high flying return.

It does take watching and some small amount of research. I don't spend hours a day or even a week doing this -- I spend maybe 2 hours every six months and 10 minutes a day.
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:28 AM
 
7,977 posts, read 11,653,739 times
Reputation: 10473
[quote] I was just about to ask the same question. It's really hard, almost impossible really, to lose money in a 401k. If this is the case then you could certainly say that was on the poster for either making bad choices (too much cash) or trying to time the market by going in and out too often.[quote]



Remember the tech bubble? Remember all the different crashes of one sort or another?

Ok, maybe I overstated. I have always regained my initial investment. But despite socking into my 401k I've not really gained much more than just my initial investment over the long haul. I'm up and up, then its gone. Then it comes back. Then it goes away again. I'm probably ahead of just stuffing it in my mattress. Right now. I've tried to figure out how to come up with those numbers but they damn near make it impossible to nail down all those numbers and calculations down. Considering the 20 years, according to those, like people on this thread, who think the stock market is some sort of salvation, it has not done well for me.
For me when I say "I lost money in my 401k" I mean it hasn't done any better than sitting in a 1% interest rate savings account.

Last edited by Giesela; 03-07-2015 at 11:38 AM..
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:33 AM
 
Location: Florida
19,778 posts, read 19,880,941 times
Reputation: 23194
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallysmom View Post
That's a nice thought, but in reality, all we have is our assumptions because we can't know the whole story of someone's life, unless they tell us and even of they told us, it would be too long to read and massively off topic.

So it's our assumptions that fill in the holes.

And that brings up back to another thread on an other forum on CD -- why are people so MEAN online?

By the way -- we worked, we saved, I learned about mutual fund investing and now we'll have a nice safe retirement.

I used the Kiplinger's 25 mutual funds and out of them I picked 4 and 5 star Morningstar rated funds in ten year time frames, only because those stars meant that the fund was beating it's benchmark on a regular basis. I have stepped away from the Kiplinger's as I got a feel for investing.

I also go through the funds I choose and make sure I have a broad range of benchmarks, and in those funds compare the 10 largest holdings within each, to make sure I don't have a ton of overlapping holdings.

I pay attention to the management of the funds I pick, preferring more people at the helm. Stars rise and shine and fall from grace often taking the fund with it. I read some financial pages to find out who got booted and why... and keep an eye on those funds.

It's money, not my heart -- a fund I adored three years ago, may be a loser now. Really look at it, see what the holdings are, see what people are saying and if necessary, sell and don't look back.

And although my goal is to beat my benchmark (and I do on a pretty good basis) it's also not my goal to fly high. If my benchmarks are putting out 6% returns, I'm fine with 6.5 to 7... Although I do have a small fund that I gamble with -- and I do consider it gambling chasing a high flying return.

It does take watching and some small amount of research. I don't spend hours a day or even a week doing this -- I spend maybe 2 hours every six months and 10 minutes a day.

I'm not even close to trying to be mean but let me use you as an example.
Even though several of the last batch of posts have stressed it again,that advice and example is too little too late for the people of the topic, here you come along with yet another example for those that didn't do it 'right' about all the things you did 'right" so that you aren't one of those that the op asked about.
Regardless of thin or thick skins, given the thread topic, it does come across as just rubbing it in,, especially since it's been pointed out.
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:47 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,141,087 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by old_cold View Post
I'm not even close to trying to be mean but let me use you as an example.
Even though several of the last batch of posts have stressed it again,that advice and example is too little too late for the people of the topic, here you come along with yet another example for those that didn't do it 'right' about all the things you did 'right" so that you aren't one of those that the op asked about.
Regardless of thin or thick skins, given the thread topic, it does come across as just rubbing it in,, especially since it's been pointed out.
And I am sure it was not done in the spirit of "rubbing it in."

However, that is how it hit me, also.

What good is advice to someone 70 who doesn't have anything to invest, no matter how much they research?

Or -- to someone who has very little, has it in savings where at least they know they won't "lose" the principal. They are going to decide to start investing that money in "well researched stocks/mutual funds"? I don't think so.

Frankly, I only wish I had taken my money in 1995 and put it in my mattress. 1. I wouldn't have had to pay taxes on it AGAIN when I accessed it and 2. I wouldn't have lost a chunk of it when the mutual funds I had invested in (on the advice of a "respected" financial planner) tanked. Enron wasn't such a good investment, after all.

Of course, that is not the sum of my life narrative. But I think it is enough to allude to how unlikely financial advice is going to be HELPFUL (or a solution) for someone who doesn't have much of anything to invest -- especially someone 70 or older.
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Old 03-07-2015, 12:21 PM
 
29,764 posts, read 34,851,819 times
Reputation: 11675
Losing money in a 401K happens all the time to most if not all of us. Many of us factor in our original investment the ROI and that is our perspective on making/losing money. Others if they get a statement that says they have 100K and there is a market downturn and they lose 20k will consider and quote they lost money even if their investment amount was 20K and they are still up four fold. So even if that person cashed out their remaining 80k at market bottom and put it under their bed they are still up four fold. However I suspect those folks would consider themselves having lost big and still feel that way down the road. I remember when the market was bad talking to a couple of neighbors. One said they knew a guy who lost 500K and how horrible that was and how sick it made them feel. I said why? How much did he have to begin with? 1.5 million? Lost a third of it, ok! How much do you have? They nodded their head and said I see your point. Now if they had stayed the cost they would probably have it back and then some more. I wouldn't expect the poster who said they lost the money to come forth and share how or why. Especially not it this thread at this point in the discussion. Doing well in life is often a roll of the dice as to when and where we had the opportunity to do it. Please remember that many of the Vietnam Vets are and have reached their 60's and 70's. Many of them as a result were dealt a hand that did not leave them in the best shape for future retirement. The same with many of the Iraqi vets down the road. These are the obvious folks who were dealt a hand other than what they dealt for themselves and the stories are plentiful and all around us. Where are the people unable to retire? Often under a bridge or in shelter as they have been unable to retire or successfully provide for themselves for years. It isn't a easy topic to deal with and is personally threatening to both sides.
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Old 03-07-2015, 12:22 PM
 
71,468 posts, read 71,652,652 times
Reputation: 49027
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giesela View Post
I thought about searching to see if there has been a thread discussion on longevity. I know the media pundits, who are quoting the medical community? insurance types?, are predicting longer and longer lives.

On the other hand the same media outlets make me wonder how our vastly overweight overmedicated society hasn't all expired already.

My father died in his mid 80s, after a fairly long episode of disability due to Parkinsons. My mother was still in her home at 88 when she had some strokes, but is still alive in care at 91.

HOWEVER. They both had extremely different lives than I. Especially as older parents their youth was one of simple and not very plentiful food, hard work, no plastic or chemicals. They grew up under Stalin in the Soviet Union and did not come to the states till after WWII. Where they continued to eat simply and work hard.

I however ate fast food, work a sedentary job, all my food stored and cooked in plastic yada yada. Am I really going to live as long as my parents? I think not. Not at least in a well and able physical condition.

Most people want to retire at an age where they still have a few spry years to enjoy themselves. I predict for me 70 will be the end of that and the start of just trying to maintain some independence. And honestly I don't know how much I'd really have to offer an employer at 69 (or most people despite what they might think).
the truth is while longevity matters ,statistics about longevity don't.

as i say unlike insurers who can tell us how many people a year will die we only have two outcomes. we are alive or dead and since we do not know who is who , we have to plan like we will live to 90-95.

my mom and dad were already gone by the age i am now and i am still going strong god willing ,

right now we are adding 1 year of live every 4 years since 2000.

don't forget avereage life expactency age still means you have a 50/50 chance of living longer.

today a 65 year old couple can have at least one of them alive with a 50/50 chance at 87 .

that is a long long time to have to plan for regardless of what statistics say.


but there are ways to fill huge. short falls in savings .

i can't say it enough ,if you can work to 70 that is the equal of having saved hundreds of thousands of dollars more.

throw in a longevity insurance policy which is dirt cheap and you plan only to 85 and get a policy to kick in for very little to keep you going if you live longer than you planned for or thought.

working longer combined with a longevity policy can fill a pretty big short fall in savings if need be.

but it isn't magical. if you have issues that prevent you from working than all bets or off. you will have to find your own way of making do privately .

other ways to stretch those dollars is through good tax tax planning to get in those zero capital gains brackets while pulling as much as 22k totally tax free from ira or 401k money that was taxable when you took it out.

in fact a 65 year old couple can draw as much as 42k a year out and pay 1800 bucks in tax plus zero capital gains taxes just by organizing investments in the right accounts.

but if you take no interest in either learning or getting advice because it is to expensive wait and see what free cost you. these are the common errors that i speak of that the public makes that eats right in to what they do manage to save and leaves them underfunded.

Last edited by mathjak107; 03-07-2015 at 12:57 PM..
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:24 PM
 
2,421 posts, read 3,721,899 times
Reputation: 3455
I think it was Frontline, but can't say for sure, did a segment on Retirement. One of the things it focused on was 401K's and the fee laden mutual funds offered in them to which employees must pick. So people became disillusioned with the stock market to a certain extent, as their progress was severely hampered, some to the point of seeing very little gain out side of their contributions and a minuscule rate of return.

They stated that luckily this is changing, and more companies are trying to include index funds etc. into the mix. It really depends on what company you work for and what they offer in their 401K's, as well as the time frame you are looking at. Obviously, we have gone through some pretty bad dips to say the least since 2000, but anyone who stayed in should have at least recouped what they lost, and some who invest in low cost funds are ahead. So I can see an individual who may feel the way Giesela does, that yes, the market came back, and I regained all that I lost, but how much ahead am I? I think most people by 2014, and even some in 2013 became whole again, and today have seen some good gains since then. This might not be the case though for someone with front loaded mutual funds charging in excess of 2% fees. Not uncommon.
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,967,079 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Perhaps part of the reason for so much tension real or imagined is because:

There is a movement among some in our society to increase the redistribution of wealth from the haves to the have nots. Guess what the haves are fighting back and telling the have nots why. Expect more of it as means testing and redistribution advocates continue to divide us. Perhaps it is valid and necessary but what is justified often has unintended consequences. We as retirees are probably prime candidates to strike back. Why? We have reached the fruition stage of our life long financial efforts and are in the prime of reflecting on those efforts in the context of others. I can remember a few years ago my status in CD was "Get your hand out of my pocket".
Redistribution is a most interesting concept. It will be most interesting to see who at this stage has amassed a fortune winds up on Medicaid in order to stay in their posh nursing home. Works at both ends.
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:29 PM
 
71,468 posts, read 71,652,652 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by modhatter View Post
I think it was Frontline, but can't say for sure, did a segment on Retirement. One of the things it focused on was 401K's and the fee laden mutual funds offered in them to which employees must pick. So people became disillusioned with the stock market to a certain extent, as their progress was severely hampered, some to the point of seeing very little gain out side of their contributions and a minuscule rate of return.

They stated that luckily this is changing, and more companies are trying to include index funds etc. into the mix. It really depends on the time frame as well that you are looking at. Obviously, we have gone through some pretty bad dips to say the least since 2000, but anyone who stayed in should have at least recouped what they lost, and some who invest in low cost funds are ahead. So I can see an individual who may feel the way Giesela does, that yes, the market came back, and I regained all that I lost, but how much ahead am I? I think most people by 2014, and even some in 2013 became whole again, and today have seen some good gains since then. This might not be the case though for someone with front loaded mutual funds charging in excess of 2% fees. Not uncommon.
We discussed that frontline show many times .it was the typical skewed one sided show they usually do .

Where were the 13 million account holders at fidelity or the 10 million at vanguard telling their very positive stories.
.

Last edited by mathjak107; 03-07-2015 at 01:50 PM..
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