The biggest risk retirees face right now

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Our daily roundup of retirement news your clients may be thinking about.

The biggest risk retirees face right now
Retiring at a time when the market is down is the biggest risk that investors will face, writes an expert on Kiplinger. To minimize the impact of a market slowdown in retirement, seniors are advised to make withdrawals using the "glide-path strategy" and rely on all retirement income tools available to them, write the expert. "There are many ways to combat a sequence of poor returns, including holding enough cash to weather the storm, investing more conservatively in the early years of retirement via a “glide-path” asset allocation, or using alternative income sources so one doesn’t have to sell stocks in a bad market."

A veteran dreams of retiring. Is he on track?
A financial advisor says that a former military contractor who bought a fumbling bar in 2014 can retire in 10 years given his financial circumstances, according to this article on The Wall Street Journal. The client is collecting about $3,726 in military pension per month, made $73,000 from the bar last year and nearly #34,000 in a Roth IRA. The expert says that turning the bar into an S corporation is a good option, as it will enable him to claim tax deduction on business losses on his personal tax return and free some of his income from federal taxation.

How the new tax law creates a ‘perfect storm’ for Roth IRA conversions
The new tax law reduced the individual tax rates, creating a good opportunity for investors to convert some of their traditional assets in traditional IRA into a Roth, according to this article on MarketWatch. That's because it lowers the tax bill for the Roth conversion, enabling clients to save on taxes. Although a Roth is funded with after-tax dollars, distributions in retirement are not subject to income taxes and the account is not subject to required minimum distribution rules.

There’s a major Medicare change taking place. Here’s everything you need to know
Seniors can expect their new Medicare cards in April, with new features that will prevent fraudsters from using these cards in case they are stolen, according to this article on Money. The new cards will have randomly generated 11-digit "Medicare number" in lieu of the cardholders' Social Security number. Their doctor's staff can also retrieve their Medicare number using a secure computer site in case they don't have the new card with them during check-up. “We’ve had a few people contact us and ask ‘If I don’t have the new card at a doctor’s appointment, does that mean my provider won’t see me? That shouldn’t be an issue,” says an expert with the Medicare Rights Center.

When RMDs from retirement accounts aren't required
Retirees are expected to start taking their required minimum distribution from their traditional tax-deferred retirement plans in the year when they reach 70 1/2, but will have time until April 1 of the following year to take the distribution, according to this article on Forbes. However, they will also need to take another RMD for that year, and this could boost their tax bill, as these mandatory distributions are taxable. This option of waiting until April 1 of the following year to take the first RMD is not open to retirees who own more than 5% of the employer. Seniors who are still working are allowed to defer their RMDs from the 401(k) plan of their current employer, but not from their old plans.

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Retirement planning Retirement withdrawals Retirement benefits Retirement income 401(k) fees 401(k) Medicare