Tips to trim RMDs as clients approach 70: Retirement Scan

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

As you approach 70, tips like these can help trim your RMDs
Taking required minimum distributions from tax-deferred accounts starting at age 70 1/2 can inflate retirees' taxable income and boost their tax bill, according to this article on MarketWatch. To minimize their RMDs, retirees may want to roll over a portion of their traditional IRA into a Roth IRA or use their IRA funds to buy a Qualified Longevity Annuity Contract. They are also advised to maximize their IRA withdrawals within their tax bracket before turning 70 1/2 and to make bigger withdrawals for living expenses and leisure. They can also avoid paying taxes on RMDs by taking qualified charitable distributions directly from their IRA.
25 hidden obstacles that keep clients from retiring comfortably
Overspending, miscalculating retirement savings, and relying too much on their employer-sponsored retirement plans prevent people from securing a comfortable retirement, according to this article on Money. People also reduce the odds of retiring comfortably if they miss out on their employer's 401(k) matching contributions, they fail to include retirement contributions in their budget, they are too late in building their nest egg, or they start collecting Social Security benefits early. Clients who don't factor medical costs into account in retirement and those who opt to carry student loan debt and don't want to downsize in retirement are unlikely to secure their golden years.

No 401(k) plan? No problem, states offer a new solution
California has joined other states to require employers that have no 401(k) retirement plans to sign up their employees in state-run IRA, according to this article on Fox Business. Workers are automatically enrolled into the state-sponsored retirement plan but they are allowed to opt out. The plan's automatic enrollment feature can help more people improve their retirement prospects, says an expert. “If you automatically enroll people into a plan, savings actually go up quite a bit especially for younger workers. So you are not eliminating choice but instead of saying you’re out, unless you swap in…you’re in, unless you swap out. It’s quite successful.”

More free time could mean risky spending for new retirees
The Employee Benefit Research Institute says that seniors tend to spend more in the first two years of retirement, as they have more free time for shopping, eating out, and going on long vacations, according to this article on USA Today. This poses a risk to their nest egg and increases the odds of outliving their savings. According to experts, retirees should have a good grasp of their financial situation, weigh their lifestyle against their income, aim to spend more time and minimize expenses, and consider pursuing education courses.

Retirement planning: Millennials are starting fast
A survey by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies has found that 72% of millennials have been saving for retirement, and the median amount is 7% of their yearly pay, according to this article on CBS Moneywatch. This means that based on their savings rate and age, these younger workers are on track for securing their golden years. “Millennials are the youngest and largest generation in the workforce. They’ve heard the word that they need to save for retirement,” says an expert.

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