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Old 08-10-2016, 07:29 AM   #21
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Definitely interested how your experiment fairs. My company underfunded their pension so i had to take a 50/50..so an immediate annuity of $35k paying $170/month for life no cola..and $35k rolled over. to match $170/month i only had to put $21k into vanguards high yield corp bond and the rest into sp500 index. Obviously i took on more risk so its good to see how a more moderate risk plays out.
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Old 08-10-2016, 08:28 AM   #22
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I had a similar decision, only higher lump sum amount. As stated in a previous thread, the big driver for me to take the lump sum was the verification that if I kicked the bucket BEFORE the pension started, spouse gets $0, nada, zilch. I took the lump sum, rolled to 401k and ran...
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Old 09-01-2016, 07:29 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Backdraft57 View Post
How goes the experiment nun?

Sent from my SM-G935V using Early Retirement Forum mobile app
Well after this summer of downs and now ups this is the situation for my Vanguard Balance Index Fund.

Jan 2015 - $35.3k
Jan 2016 - $34.7k
Sept 2016 - $38.4

So since I started this experiment my return is an annualized 5.2%, not quite the 6% goal to match the annuity.
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Old 09-02-2016, 02:04 PM   #24
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At the beginning of 2015 (at age 54) I took a lump sum payment from a pension. The amount was $35k. The pension would have paid $5.6k per year starting at age 65.

I decided to do a long term experiment to see if taking the lump sum ended up as the best choice. So I deposited the money in Vanguard Balanced Fund (60/40 AA) VBINX, and sat back. I worked out that an average of 6% gain each year would support the same income as the pension to age 83.

After the first year the lump sum choice is lagging a bit.

Jan 2015 - $35k
Jan 2016 - $34k

so about a 3% loss.....Let's see what 2016 has in store.
I did the same thing and took a lump sum pension distribution at 55 and rolled it over into my IRA to let it grow. I did the number's then and saw this as a good move for me at the time.

I took your funds and did a little math. Just my quick numbers (some quick spit-balling)..

$5,600 in pension payments annually at 65 (in 11 years) - matching it with your estimated 6% off initial $35K savings - would need it to grow to $93,334.00. This wouldn't happen until between 12-13 years out (using Balanced Index average earnings since start-up). VG's Balanced Fund Index since its '92 start has averaged 8.11% annually. You'd be 66-67.

If you threw the $93,334 under your mattress at 66-67 and pulled $5600 annually off the funds (no growth of funds from 66-67 on) - you'd get over 16 years income, roughly to age 82. If you left it invested in the Balanced Index fund during that time at its avg 8.11% earnings it would last +30 years if I did my numbers correctly.

When I did this for myself - I saw the money theoretically lasting past both my lifespan and my wife's (she would be able to draw on those funds after I pass - unlike an annuity). The leftover stash (if any) would be inherited by our daughters (unlike an annuity).
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Old 09-02-2016, 05:48 PM   #25
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I took your funds and did a little math. Just my quick numbers (some quick spit-balling)..

$5,600 in pension payments annually at 65 (in 11 years) - matching it with your estimated 6% off initial $35K savings - would need it to grow to $93,334.00. This wouldn't happen until between 12-13 years out (using Balanced Index average earnings since start-up). VG's Balanced Fund Index since its '92 start has averaged 8.11% annually. You'd be 66-67.
Here's my reasoning. If I get 6% return, my $35k will grow to $66k in 11 years time (age 65). If I continue to get 6% return I can take out $5600 a year and the money will run out at age 86. That's how I did the comparison with the annuity and came up with needing a 6% annual return.

I actually think the annuity is probably going to work out as the better deal.....where can you get 6% today? The only gamble is whether I love long enough to collect. But I took the lump sum out of academic interest and because I already expect to get $70k annual income from pensions and SS at age 65.
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Old 09-03-2016, 08:45 AM   #26
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Here's my reasoning. If I get 6% return, my $35k will grow to $66k in 11 years time (age 65). If I continue to get 6% return I can take out $5600 a year and the money will run out at age 86. That's how I did the comparison with the annuity and came up with needing a 6% annual return.

I actually think the annuity is probably going to work out as the better deal.....where can you get 6% today? The only gamble is whether I live long enough to collect. But I took the lump sum out of academic interest and because I already expect to get $70k annual income from pensions and SS at age 65.
If you leave your initial $35,000.00 investment from your lump sum distribution in VG's Balanced Index fund - it would theoretically grow to $93,334.00 in 12-13 years (66-67) and provide the 6% withdrawal rate you stated you wanted to to match your $5600.00 annuity payments @ 65 (11 years). Balanced Index fund has averaged 8.11% annually since inception in '92. It's 1 yr is 9.37%, 3 yr 8.71%, 5yr 9.84% and 10 yr 6.81%.

Since it's in a rollover IRA, it would continue to grow in the Balanced Index fund tax-free for over 30 years during your lifetime of withdrawals @ 6% ($5,600.00 annually with no adjustment for inflation as would be an SPIA annuity). Given the calculator I used - you "would" theoretically be leaving behind an inheritance - unlike an annuity where your heirs get nothing when you die, only the insurance company does.

Taking the annuity payments @ 65 - you'd need to live to be 82-83 "just to break even" with the Balanced Index fund's investment growth. That is, to match the growth of the Balanced index fund to $93,334.00 and to use it up over 16+ years (assuming no further growth of those funds at 66-67, putting it under your mattress). In theory - you won't ever break even if you leave it in the Balanced Index fund for over 30 years - assuming that you'd have an inheritance to leave, where you'd have nothing to leave with the annuity.

If you're married and you pass before your spouse - the investment in the Balanced Index fund would continue to grow tax deferred and pay the $5,600 annually well past 30 years from your 66th-67th birthday. This wouldn't happen with an SPIA annuity - it's gone when you are.....

IIRC -when you and your spouse have passed - what's left of the tax-deferred initial investment from your lump sum distribution may be rolled over to a beneficiary (inherited IRA), who could continue to draw off the tax deferred Balanced Index fund at an immediate specified required withdrawal rate based on their age (Ed Slott can tell you more about this).

You state that you will live off a pension and SS to the tune of $70K annually. That's a nice income stream, and congratulations. I consider those to be income streams that are in effect annuities - that go away when you do. I also believe that no one should put all of their retirement investments into annuities. Most people have more than enough in annuities just with SS....

You may see an annuity as a better gamble and favor them, but I've never seen it that way and don't care for them. Understanding investing is far simpler to me, than understanding the complexities of annuity documentation. I believe the numbers above (simple as they are) based on your criteria, favor the investment long term.

Edit add: I reran the numbers $35K for 11years @ 8.11% - then $5600 annually, would still run past 30 years of withdrawals.
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Old 09-19-2016, 07:44 PM   #27
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You state that you will live off a pension and SS to the tune of $70K annually. That's a nice income stream, and congratulations. I consider those to be income streams that are in effect annuities - that go away when you do. I also believe that no one should put all of their retirement investments into annuities. Most people have more than enough in annuities just with SS....

You may see an annuity as a better gamble and favor them, but I've never seen it that way and don't care for them. Understanding investing is far simpler to me, than understanding the complexities of annuity documentation. I believe the numbers above (simple as they are) based on your criteria, favor the investment long term.
You've actually summed up my thinking quite well. I don't necessarily expect to get the historical returns from VBINX. but there's a good chance it will match the annuity and if it doesn't I have the utility of the lump sum. Also as I'll have pension and SS income enough to cover my expenses taking another small pension seemed a bit redundant.
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Old 01-06-2017, 12:17 PM   #28
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FYI here is the progress of my experiment to see if taking the lump sum now instead of a DB pension later will work out better. I calculated I needed to get 6% annual return from the lump sum to match the DB pension. That won't be easy, but I'm doing it out of academic interest and because it's a small sum....and I also have other DB income. I put the lump sum into Vanguard Balanced Index Admiral in Jan 2015 and here are the annual balances.

Jan 2015 - $35366
Jan 2016 - $34460
Jan 2017 - $39282

So the annualized return is currently 5.5%......lest see if bonds drag it down in 2017.
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