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Old 06-12-2018, 12:28 PM   #21
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For equities, how about one? VTWSX or VT. Vanguard total world funds, which will split you roughly 50/50 between US and non-US equities, which is what the relative market caps are.

Want to manage your US/non-US allocation? How about two funds? VTSMX and VGTSX or two equivalent ETFs. Total US and total non-US, respectively. The academic research would point you to just the one fund, but if you don't want quite so much non-US exposure, there is Vanguard research that points to about 30% non-US as the point of minimum volatility. Personally, I don't subscribe to the popular notion that risk = volatility, but YMMV.

Re fixed income, most here seem to point people to bond funds. I hate 'em, primarily for the fees. The FIDO bond guys can help you build a ladder of bonds at whatever risk level you're comfortable with. I have read that they have one option where they charge an ongoing fee to manage this, but I'd avoid that one. Just buy the bonds and be happy.
Thanks. I'll look into those funds. I tend to want a lower international exposure so I will consider those. I really considered going the ladder route too, but lately it just seems that I want to buy index funds, hold them and be done. But I will revisit the ladder before I do anything, for sure. Thank you.
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Old 06-12-2018, 12:29 PM   #22
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Since bogleheads.org was mentioned, I would say head over there and get help and don't be intimidated. They're the best.
will do, thanks!
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Old 06-12-2018, 12:33 PM   #23
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If you delay taking your pension, does it grow... IOW, will you get more per month if you defer? Depending on the increase, it may be worthwhile to defer. My plan had good annual percentage increases from age 55 to 60 and then lower annual increases from 60 to 65... I ended up taking at 61 to get the benefit of the higher annual percentage increases from 55 to 60.

The benefit of deferring the pension was that I was able to do larger Roth conversions from age 56 when I retired to 61 when I started taking my pension. We lived off of taxable account funds so our income was low and we could do good Roth conversions... I converted about $260k and paid ~7.5% in tax vs 28%+ when I deferred that income or 22% once we start SS.

When we talk about tax brackets, we are typically referring to the marginal tax rate... the tax rate on your last $1 of income. For a couple, 12% is $19k to $77k and 22% is $77k to $165k... but those are after deductions... before deductions 12% is $43k to $101k of income and 22% is $101k to $189k of income.
I did some checking last night and there wasn't a big difference when I put in for just a year delay as my example. It came up to a little over 3K a year plus an increase in 7K of a lump sum. And that lump sum will obviously stop once we take our pension so it's not like it would be recurring. I liked the idea of delaying it and living off taxable funds for a while, especially since we will have to take some lump sum money (apart from pension) anyway, but it doesn't seem like that would make sense to delay pension for such a small increase. I will play with it some more tonight though.

Your clarification of the tax rates helped explain where deductions fit in. Thank you!
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Old 06-12-2018, 12:55 PM   #24
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... I tend to want a lower international exposure ...
Here's a Vanguard analysis of international equities: https://www.vanguard.com/pdf/ISGGEB.pdf

and guru Ken French: https://famafrench.dimensional.com/v...home-bias.aspx
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