Are You Rich? CNN news article

Can anybody reverse-engineer this guy's logic?

He figures that if you're married with kids in your early 40s, will live until age 90, and won't spend more than $200,000 a year, a nice little cushion would be $7.5 million. If you spend only $150,000 a year, $5 million should suffice. Or, if you can ratchet back to $100,000 a year, you'll do okay on $2.5 million.

Duncan, however, assumes a much higher rate of return (about 9.87 percent a year) and assumes you won't be upset if you can't leave your heirs much of an inheritance if any at all.

In other words, you can only withdraw 2.7% if you have $7.5M, 3% if you have $5M, and 4% if you have $2.5M. And he assumes you earn 9.87%?!

In any case, my definition of rich is "saturated." I.e., if you were to get more money, you couldn't figure out how to spend it.

That entire article is a big pile of steaming dog -hit.

Typical of the projections that financial mags, planners, etc. use as scare tactics to feather their own nest.

Last paragraph was "there are some folks with $50 million who fear they will run out of money, and others with $4 million who never worry about a thing".

Anybody on this board that has $2 million worried?

Didn't think so.
Hmmmmm - I think just maybe - I 'might' have briefly worried back in 1993 with 300k financial assets. Around the time Forbes had Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds on the Cover (exact year:confused:). The market was Wayyyyy too high and destined for a crash in the early nineties impoverishing us all. The Japanese were going to bounce back, foreign stocks were the only place to invest and the deficits were ruining the country, the dollar was doomed.

Best of all - they canned my ass - which ticked me off so much I ER'd.
Wellll - truth told - I was looking for a job when it slowly dawned that work wasn't necessary.

I promise - if I ever get to 2 mil - I'll worry for at least ten seconds.
Can anybody reverse-engineer this guy's logic?

Perhaps he is including some fixed amount of income from, say, social security, and / or a fixed savings from the kids moving out. If you assume a 2% WR and $50k outside contribution the numbers work.
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