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Portfolio Solutions Blog

Greek mythology tells us that Icarus flew too close to the sun on wings made of feathers and wax. During Icarus’ escape from Crete, the heat from the sun melted the wax holding his wings together, sending him plummeting into the sea where he drowns.

The story of Icarus is an allegory for the danger of hubris. Investors ready to fly into retirement should beware the hubris of trying to live off of only the income yielded from their assets to avoid touching their accumulated principal.

As a retirement investor,...

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“Only buy something that you'd be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years.” –Warren Buffett

Every investor should understand that longtime investing is not the same as long-term investing. The former simply entails buying and selling assets over several years. Meanwhile, the latter requires you to buy, hold and maintain selected assets through thick and thin.

Plenty of investors find themselves unintentionally conflicted between the two.

In a 2014 study by...

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Markets move swiftly. No one knows if they will rise or fall. Everything from economics to geopolitics can send the bulls running or bring the bears out of hibernation. Add in the noise from the financial media and it seems as if every day is a time to buy or a time to sell, or both at once. The speed and uncertainty can leave you feeling like you’re stuck waiting along a railroad for the right moment to jump aboard a passing train.

So, when should you invest?

You may be surprised to hear the answer in this video from Mike Palazzolo, senior investment specialist at Portfolio...

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Determining when to start taking Social Security may seem comparable to picking what retirement lifestyle lies behind Door #1, Door #2 or Door #3. That’s because claiming Social Security early, later or at full retirement age affects the amount of your monthly benefits.

Future retirees likely feel pressured to make the right choice as many expect to use the lifetime benefit as a primary source of income. In a 2013 Gallup survey of non-retirees, Social Security...

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If a dish you order at a restaurant tastes better than what you prepare at home, it can be attributed to the skill of the chef. You don’t know how the chef does it, but it’s likely he or she follows a distinct recipe.

Similarly, some investors believe the key to success in the market is in the secret sauce, a unique investment strategy. Of course, some fund managers and investment advisers are eager to sell investors on the idea that they’ve got the best sauce available. In fact, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau found close to...

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Technology has made it far easier to live the expatriate life glamorized in the works of Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald, among other artists and writers.

You can gather information about a foreign country by spending a just few minutes online; buy or rent real estate anywhere in the world from your home office; and, in many professions, work remotely wherever you have an internet connection. Plus, mobile devices keep you connected to your family and friends – and your money – at all times.

All of this certainly benefits the many retirees who plan on taking extended...

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Raise your hand if you thought on March 9, 2009, that it was a perfect time to buy stocks?

That was the day the S&P 500 bottomed out during the financial crisis, which actually would have been a perfect time to get in the market. From that day into 2014, stock investors experienced a five-year bull market, just one of six since World War II to last that long. So, if you have your hand raised, then you might be reading this over a...

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