It might sound like a prerequisite for playing sports, but in retirement income management, it actually refers to the inclusion of Social Security in a retirement portfolio and the tax-efficient withdrawal strategies that result.

Social Security is the largest retirement asset for an increasing number of Americans, and therefore should be accounted for in the overall retirement income plan. Our research published in the Journal of Financial Planning shows that doing nothing more than using an optimal Social Security strategy can extend a portfolio for a few years! But that’s not all. Coordinating an optimal Social Security strategy with a tax-efficient withdrawal strategy can extend a portfolio by a decade or more!


Take a look at the graph above. Ruth had about $500,000 in retirement assets. By doing nothing more than coordinating the timing of her Social Security benefits with when she began to spend down her assets, we were able to extend her portfolio for about 15 years!

The bottom line: An optimal Social Security strategy plus a tax-efficient drawdown strategy – can result in even more portfolio longevity!

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