Retirement Income

Reverse Mortgage Data

There is a case to be made for home equity as the most important source of retirement funding in the United States, and this would seem to make the...


New Portfolio Management Technologies Could Further Commoditize Investment Advisory Services

Simple, web-based portfolio management tools have been proliferating over the past couple of years.

As reported recently by Bloomberg, companies such as Folio Investing, MarketRiders and Flat Fee Portfolios are providing subscription-based...

Guaranteed Income Solutions Take Center Stage

Putnam Investments President and CEO Robert Reynolds spoke on the need to address America’s lifetime income challenge at the recent Retirement Income Industry Association (RIIA) conference in Chicago.

While Reynolds has spent most of his career in leadership positions in the investment management industry, his...

Cracks Starting to Show in 401(k) Plans

A recent story in The Wall Street Journal provides a sobering and objective assessment of the current state of retirement savings in the United States. The average worker with a 401(k) account is facing drastic shortfalls in the amount of savings required to support retirement spending levels that are comparable to pre-retirement income levels. The Journal story finds that the median household age 60-62 with a 401(k) account has less than one quarter of what is needed in the account to maintain...

Robert Merton's Retirement Income Lecture

MIT Professor Robert Merton addresses the challenge of financing retirement income in a lecture delivered this past January.

Merton briefly discusses the financial crisis and suggests that it is unproductive to think about digressing to a financial world that preceded Glass-Steagall and financial innovation.  Merton’s view is that financial engineering is indispensable in addressing the large and complex issues of pension and retirement finance.

Merton’s basic prescription for improving the general state of retirement finance includes increasing savings, working longer, taking more risk.  Most would agree with the first two choices but the third—taking more risk—seems...