Sunday, August 19, 2012

What Type of Investment Should You Consider When in Retirement?

retirementretirement (Photo credit: 401(K) 2012)You would have assiduously saved sufficient corpus to meet your retirement needs. When in retirement, you should plan properly to convert your savings into income to meet your regular needs.

First prepare a quick budget to ascertain the essentials or must haves that you really need, besides the ‘nice to have’ that you really need. It is recommended that you keep 12-month expenses towards essentials and must haves in easy-to-access accounts such as checking account, money market account, or short term certificate of deposits. This approach will help you meet your regular expenses all through the year.

You may next follow investment in suitable mix of various asset classes keeping in mind your risk profile. This asset allocation policy would ensure that you don’t invest too much of money in risky equity assets. If you have already created sufficient corpus to meet your entire retirement life, you can protect the corpus by allocating larger percentage towards safer asset classes such as bonds.

Ideally you can allocate 60 percent of your overall corpus in bonds and related fixed income instruments with the rest split among equities and other asset classes.

You should also have proper drawdown strategy to meet your retirement needs. For instance, you may first start to withdraw funds for your regular needs from the interest accrued in your bonds and other fixed income instruments such as Certificate of Deposits or money market funds. These would provide predictable income. You can add fluctuating income sources such as dividend yielding stocks by making investments in individual blue-chip stocks and / or income oriented stock mutual funds.

It may be highlighted that your investments in stocks or stock mutual funds should be part of your overall asset allocation towards equities.

If you have large corpus, you can meet almost all your retirement needs from the interest and dividend earned from fixed income instruments and stocks, as indicated above. However if you haven’t built such huge corpus, you can withdraw the additional amount required, if any, from maturing Certificate of Deposits or short term bonds. To meet this requirement, as a better strategy, you may invest about two to four years of your annual expenses in short term Certificate of Deposits and bonds.

Since the above strategies might affect your overall asset allocation across various asset classes, you may review your asset allocation at least once a year and rebalance your portfolio to stay in tune with your asset allocation.

Although not a qualified finance advisor, Allan has been writing about personal finance for over 4 years using knowledge he acquired reading and talking with professionals. Allan particularly enjoys blogging about savings and has written numerous article on the topics. Aside from blogging, Allan is a regular consumer advocate and has reviewed many products from major banks including Ubank, Chase Bank and Ally Bank.

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