Die With Zero – Net Fulfillment Over Net Worth

Mike Angelucci, CFP® discussed Die With Zero book about living well in retirement

Be sure to watch our continuing video blog on this topic here:  https://youtu.be/RXdZf2TAwRs   “The business of life is the acquisition of memories. In the end that’s all there is.” Carson, the butler from Downton Abbey The above quote is central to the book: “Die with Zero: Getting All You Can from Your Money and Your Life” by Bill Perkins I have included ideas from this book in our Retirement Renaissance series because I think these ideas   may help retirees live their best possible retirement. The author, Bill Perkins, is a former energy trader and professional poker player. Note: he is not a financial planner, which brings a different perspective to how one should manage their finances. His focus is on maximizing experiences and life enjoyment rather than maximizing wealth. Three of the key concepts in the book: Spending on experiences brings more happiness than buying things*. In fact, memories keep paying off in what...

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Implementing the Blue Zones

Mike Angelucci, CFP® talks about implementing the Blue Zones in our latest installment of the Retirement Renaissance Video Blog

Be sure to watch our continuing video blog on this topic here: https://youtu.be/BLFxnUbKumQ   Most of us have grown up with the standard American diet and lifestyle. It is probably not news, but this lifestyle is not the best for good health. It may seem overwhelming to think about changing. Fortunately, Dan Buettner understands this and ends his book, “The Blue Zones” with some interesting guidance.   The first recommendation is to start with the longevity test on the Blue Zones web site: https://www.bluezones.com/ This will give you an idea of your healthy life expectancy and offer some helpful suggestions that focus on the “Power 9” items listed in the previous blog.   Don’t try to change everything at once, start with one or two at a time. Any one change offers a chance to improve your long term health. Change is hard and changing habits takes 5 to 12 weeks, so give it time.   Most importantly,...

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Introduction to the Blue Zones

Mike Angelucci, CFP® introduces the Blue Zones in another edition of Retirement Renaissance

Be sure to watch our continuing video blog on this topic here: https://youtu.be/D7SVh1RFj9U A recent study by the Employee Benefits Research Institute (EBRI) found that maintaining health and wellness in retirement is by far the most important goal of retirees. Eighty-one percent of those studied said it was either very or extremely important.   Therefore, I can think of no better starting point for our Retirement Renaissance series than discussing the book “The Blue Zones: 9 Lessons for Living Longer From the People that Lived the Longest” by the National Geographic explorer Dan Buettner.   For those who have not heard of the Blue Zones, they are the 5 areas of the world that have the most centenarians (people who are 100 years old or older). The scientists who originally studied these locations circled them in blue on the map and started calling them “Blue Zones.”   The Blue Zone lessons may seem to focus on longevity...

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Introducing the Retirement Renaissance Blog

Introduction to the Retirement Renaissance Video and Blog

Be sure to watch our continuing video blog on this topic here:  https://youtu.be/D7SVh1RFj9U “The important thing to you is not how many years in your life, but how much life in your years." --  Edward J. Stieglitz,  M.D. I will never forget Saturday, March 21, 2020. An email message from my doctor reported that a recent calcium scan of my heart showed I had atherosclerosis (plaque buildup in arteries). Actually, a dangerously-high buildup of plaque. I was immediately put on a statin drug and told to schedule an appointment with a cardiologist as soon as possible. How does this relate to a new blog post on retirement living? Because, it was at that moment, at age 54, I realized that if I wanted to optimize the “life in my years” things would have to change. I enjoy my life, and my career, and I want it to continue for as long as possible. So, over...

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Portfolio Construction, Mutual Fund Selection and Apple Pies

We sometimes are asked why we might use a mutual fund rather than an ETF in the portfolios we build for our clients and why we are willing to pay a trading fee to buy that fund when an ETF can be bought for free? There is actually a process for how we arrive at that important decision. That process starts with the mix of investments we use to create a portfolio. Since the industry likes to use pie charts to help clients visualize their portfolios, I am going to use the analogy of baking a pie to help explain why we use certain investments. The finished pie is your portfolio, the recipe is the model we follow, and the ingredients are the various investments. The ingredients we use to build a portfolio are called asset classes. A sample of some of these asset classes are: Large and small company stocks, Growth...

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“Nobody Knows Nothing”

A few years ago Ally Bank ran a commercial with the noble prize winning economist Thomas Sargent. In the commercial he is on a regally-decorated stage being interviewed. The interviewer asks him whether he knows what interest rates will be in two years. His response is a simple, unemotional “no.” At which point a woman enters the stage and says “if he can’t no one can.” [embed]https://youtu.be/Khn1ZqysON0[/embed] This commercial is making the point that when it comes to predicting financial markets “nobody knows nothing.”  If any year proves this, it is 2020. Who would have thought that COVID-19 would have shut down the economy, resulting in a 30% decline in the US stock market? Who could have predicted its subsequent rebound to new highs a few months later? Then there was the fear of the election and its effect on the markets, still, things moved in a positive direction. The election reminded me...

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Retirement Planning is Psycho- Logical

The theme of Rory Sutherland’s wonderful book "Alchemy: The Dark Art and Curious Science of Creating Magic in Brands, Business, and Life" is that the logical answer is not always the best answer.  This certainly holds true in the field of financial planning. We live in a world that has created an idea that science and logic will lead to optimal outcomes. Sutherland disagrees: "If we allow the world to be run by logical people, we will only discover logical things. But in real life, most things aren’t logical –they are psycho-logical. There are often two reasons behind people’s behavior: the ostensibly logical reason, and the real reason." We have been conditioned to believe that so much in life can be efficiently managed by applying the correct algorithm – including managing a retirement plan. This is the marketing strategy of many Wall Street firms. It cannot be further from the truth. Logic does...

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On Tuesday, June 23rd the IRS released Notice 2020-51, which updated and expanded CARES Act relief for Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) on tax-deferred IRAs, 401(k)s, and 403(b) accounts for 2020. An RMD is the amount the IRS mandates people age 70 ½ (born before July 1, 1949) or age 72 (born after June 30, 1949) take out of their tax-deferred accounts in order to pay tax on those savings. The two most important points of this update are: Anyone who has taken their RMD at any time in 2020 can return it to their IRA or other tax deferred account. The original legislation limited returns to RMDs taken between February 1 and May 15. Now, retirees who took their RMD (or partial RMD) in January of 2020 or after May 15, 2020 can return that RMD. The deadline to return RMDs has been extended to August 31, 2020 from the original deadline...

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Investing During a Pandemic: A Tale of Two Investors

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.” ― Charles Dickens The above quote is the first sentence of the Charles Dickens masterpiece:  A Tale of Two Cities.  There may not be a better quote to describe the volatility of the stock market and the emotional toll on investors. We know from studies of investor behavior that many tend to buy stocks during the spring of hope, and sell during the winter of despair. They buy high and sell low which results in poor long term returns. This is a natural, emotional response. When markets go down, the fight or flight part...

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Investing Is Like Poker, Not Chess

Investing is like Chess, not Poker.

The former World Series of Poker champion, and now corporate consultant, Annie Duke, has written a wonderful book on decision making titled “Thinking in Bets, Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All The Facts.” The book opens with a story that many football fans have said is the worst play call in Super Bowl history. For those that may not remember, the Seattle Seahawks were down by 4 points with 26 seconds left in the game with the ball on the one-yard line. The head coach of the Seattle Seahawks, Pete Carroll, called a pass play instead of handing off the ball to one of the best running backs in the NFL. The pass was intercepted and the New England Patriots won the Super Bowl. When the details of the situation are clearly discussed in the book -- the number of downs and time outs left, along with the fact that not one of the sixty-six passes attempted from the one-yard line...

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