Weekend Reading: Mount Everest and the Decumulation Retirement Portfolio

This article appears as part of Casey Weade's Weekend Reading for Retirees series. Every Friday, Casey highlights four hand-picked articles on trending retirement topics and delivers them straight to your email inbox. Get on the list here.
Weekend reading mount everest decumulation planning Weekend reading mount everest decumulation planning
Weekend Reading

Imagine your retirement journey as climbing Mount Everest. The peak represents your retirement date – a moment of achievement, but also where the risks intensify.


Just like climbers face avalanches and oxygen deprivation in the "death zone," retirees face the dangers of market volatility, sequence of returns risk, and unexpected expenses in the "retirement death zone."

The key is preparing for a successful descent. RMDs can be a powerful tool, allowing you to strategically draw down your portfolio based on both its performance and your remaining lifespan. However, this path is fraught with volatility, like the unpredictable weather patterns on Everest's slopes.

Annuities offer a safer route, providing guaranteed income for life – a reliable oxygen tank for your financial journey. But this stability comes at a cost, potentially limiting your financial legacy. The right path for you depends on your risk tolerance, your income needs, and your goals for the future.