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Retirement in the Time of COVID

Updated: Sep 17, 2021

You were planning on retiring.

Then the coronavirus hit.

The best-laid plans of many individuals suddenly had to pivot this spring when the stock market crashed and people's savings dropped dramatically.

The personal finance app Personal Capital surveyed retirees and full-time workers in May of 2020. More than a third who were planning to retire in 10 years said the financial fallout from Covid-19 means they’ll delay.

Nearly 1 in 4 current retirees said the impact has made them likelier to return to work. Before the pandemic, 63% of American workers told Personal Capital they felt financially prepared for retirement. In its current survey, that number has dropped to 52%, according to a report on CNBC.

In the financial world, people treat upside and downside very differently.

Rising market numbers lure investors into dreams of glamorous vacations or lake houses. But people’s visions in a falling market are quite different. Instead of thinking of a shorter vacations, people imagine cans of rice and beans, a black-and-white dreary existence.

The best advice now is to make some short-term pivots — spend less, preserve your cash, and delay purchases — but it’s not forever. Two things can be especially harmful to retirement plans: an underfunded emergency fund and credit card debt.

But dipping into your IRA or applying for Social Security early might not be the best option.

Do your homework and talk to a financial specialist that can help you weather this storm. Contact Stevie Swain at Swain Consulting for more information. 513-818-1753.


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