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If you're nearing, at, or even in retirement, it's time to change the way you measure success in your portfolio and individual investments. Your need to preserve what you have accumulated will now typically outweigh your need to grow your money at a benchmark rate, although you still need enough growth to ensure inflation doesn't reduce your purchasing power during retirement.

You can no longer count on a withdrawal rate, i.e. 4% to 6% of accumulated assets, to provide a reliable income stream as this causes the entire plan to be contingent on market return, something which has been quite volatile in recent years.

During your earning years, you've focused on accumulation and growth of your money. You earn money from your job or business to pay for your current living expenses. You set some aside for emergencies and for future needs like college and retirement. Your goal has been to accumulate as much as possible by earning it and investing it. You could take greater risks to do that, because you had time to earn and grow more money to cover losses.

After retirement, you typically no longer have money earned from your job or business to pay for your living expenses. You need security and possibly liquidity to ensure available funds for day-to-day costs of living along with growth to help ensure your funds last your lifetime. The growth-oriented portfolio structure of your earning years may no longer apply, and you may have to change the way you evaluate your portfolio's performance.

A retirement distribution plan focuses less on accumulating wealth and more on making it last through retirement, taking into consideration all income streams (i.e., Social Security, wages, pensions, investment income, annuity income), assets, inflation risk, investment risk, and tax exposure. Generally, a retirement distribution model will allocate a larger portion of assets to fixed income and income segments, followed by growth and income, growth, aggressive growth, and most aggressive segments in progressively lesser percentages. Numerous variables can come into play; so, each factor must be evaluated based on your individual situation.

Creating a retirement distribution plan can be complex and requires a thorough understanding of strategies as well as investment products and their associated risks. We can help you determine the asset allocation model and products that best meet your needs. Call our office at (909) 946-0101 to discuss why it might be time to bid the market benchmarks goodbye.

All investing involves risk, including loss of principal. There is no guarantee a retirement distribution plan will meet its stated goals. These investment guidelines are not intended to represent investment advice that is appropriate for all investors. Each investor's portfolio must be constructed based on the individual's financial resources, investment goals, risk tolerance, investing time horizon, tax situation and other relevant factors. Please discuss with a financial professional before implementing any investment plan.