Withdrawals from financial accounts in retirement

July 20, 2016

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As defined contribution (DC) plans become more prevalent in the U.S. retirement system, income from financial accounts will increasingly be relied upon as an important resource of retirement funding. In this paper, Withdrawals from financial accounts in retirement, Anna Madamba and Steve Utkus, both of the Vanguard Center for Retirement Research, describe the nature of financial account withdrawals as observed in a recent survey of affluent retiree households. Their research shows that not all withdrawals are spent and suggests that the discussion needs to shift to spending, rather than withdrawal rates from financial accounts, to effectively measure the sustainability of retirement savings.

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