Today’s retirees are finding that retirement requires at least as much psychological and emotional preparation as it does financial preparation. So, retirement planning needs to include a thorough assessment of human assets and liabilities along with an assessment of financial assets and liabilities.
A recent survey by HelloWallet has reignited concerns over the future state of retirement in the U.S. The survey reveals that 25 percent of people holding funds in a 401k or an IRA have dipped into them, and not just in a small way. Even more alarming is that the funds are being accessed through straight cash withdrawals rather than loans.
Along with fund performance and risk ratios, expense ratios are a critical factor in determining the potential of funds to outperform the indexes and their peers, but they are easily overshadowed by robust returns in strong markets. Now that the market is settling in, and fund returns are reaching relative parity with the market, expense ratios become even more important.
If you believe some of the world’s greatest investors, such as Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffet, it’s not investments that cause people to lose money; rather, it’s people who cause people to lose their money. What is meant by that is investing with sound principles and intelligent practices will always have a greater likelihood of success.
Unquestionably, the Internet has changed everything, making our lives easier and more productive as we cruise at digital speed down the information highway. No other activity better exemplifies the transformation in our daily lives as does online banking which give us instant, and, with smart phone technology, around the clock access to most any service we require of our banks.
Some, stockbrokers, stock analysts, investment gurus and individual investors will have you believe that investing is an art, requiring nuanced skill and timing based on information that only they possess. So, it’s not surprising they are very quick to attribute any successes they have to their individual abilities.