Retirement statistics: Then vs. now

How long will $1 million last in retirement?

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Is this truly the worst time to retire? Bankrate took a look at some key factors to determine what today’s new retirees are up against. What follows are some key statistics that don’t bode well for the boomer who’s planning to retire today.

Timing is everything. A typical portfolio (60 percent stocks, 40 percent bonds) enjoyed great success in the 1980s. A retiree could have withdrawn 4 percent a year and still watched the investment grow, thanks to a confluence of strong yields, bull market returns and low inflation. That wasn’t the case in other years. A similar portfolio from which funds were withdrawn beginning in 1960 and 1970 each would have run out of cash before 30 years elapsed, due to high inflation. In 2013, low starting yields are expected to shorten the life span of a $1 million portfolio to 25 years. Some investors wonder, is the golden age of retirement gone?