The presidential election may be over, but for retirement investors, the worries are just starting. It’s far from clear whether President-elect Donald Trump will live up to his promises, including preserving Social Security and Medicare. Meanwhile, other GOP leaders see an opportunity to institute major entitlement and health care reforms. House Speaker Paul Ryan, for one, is signaling that he intends to move ahead with his plan to privatize Medicare, which would pose big financial challenges to anyone near or in retirement. For more on what these changes would mean, follow the links below. Meanwhile, stay focused on your own saving and investing goals. And look for ways to find common ground, especially with those who hold different political views or are part of another generation. One group is launching a new mentoring program, which seeks to link boomers with millennials to help needy children—a great example of the positive thinking we need right now.
One note: Retire with Money will be taking a break next week—Happy Thanksgiving! The next issue will appear Dec. 2.
P.S. If you like this weekly update, please pass it on to a friend! And if you got it from a friend, sign up here for email delivery each Friday to make sure you don’t miss the next issue.
THIS WEEK’S RETIREMENT NEWS, INSIGHTS AND ADVICE
What Couples Nearing Retirement Need to Do Now
Once you reach your late 50s or your 60s, retirement is no longer a distant dream—you’re reaching the point where you’re finally achieving your lifelong goals. But you have big decisions to make, and you don’t want to make an irrevocable mistake. Here’s what to do once you reach the home stretch. And for more perspective, read about these three couples who are getting ready for retirement, and try this quiz to see if you’re on the same page as your spouse about your goals. MONEY
8 Steps to Financial Security
You don’t necessarily have to be a millionaire to achieve financial security, says columnist Liz Weston. Start by spending less than you earn. Then follow through on these basic steps. If you need an incentive, consider that your stress level will go down once you have an emergency fund in place. AP
6 End-of-Year Retirement Planning Tips
Yikes, there are only six weeks until 2017 arrives. So make sure you do all you can to take advantage of this year’s tax breaks and savings opportunities. Writer Emily Brandon lays out your options. Boomers, don’t forget your 401(k) catch-up contributions. US NEWS
The Real Lessons the Presidential Election Holds for Your Investment Strategy
Since the surprise finish to the presidential election, you’ve probably been inundated with investing and retirement tips. But before you start scooping up stocks or hunkering down in cash, consider these tips from contributor Walter Updegrave. Preview: Focus on the basics you can control, and avoid overreacting. MONEY
The Bright Side of Rising Interest Rates
If the recent increase in bond yields is any guide, interest rates are headed up. That may hurt bond values, and the losses for bonds with longer maturities may be painful. (Stay with short- and intermediate-term bonds to minimize this.) Still there’s an upside, says portfolio manager Ben Carlson. Over time, you can reinvest in bonds paying higher yields—bond funds will do that for you. A WEALTH OF COMMON SENSE
How Amending the Affordable Care Act Could Raise Boomers’ Premiums
There’s a huge amount of speculation about what will happen to Obamacare when Donald Trump takes office. One possibility: Laws that limit the premiums that can be charged to older buyers may be changed. That could mean much higher prices for older Americans, points out editor Richard Eisenberg. NEXT AVENUE
How Trump May Remake Medicare
Speaking of political reform, Medicare is also being targeted for an overhaul. During his campaign, President-elect Trump said little about the program, though he suggested he would leave it alone. But other GOP leaders see an opportunity to revamp Medicare in ways that may cut benefits. Retirement expert Howard Gleckman lays out the key ways the program may be redesigned. Yes, it would likely mean paying higher premiums. FORBES
Where Millennials and Boomers Agree After Controversial Election
In the wake of a bitter election battle, it’s nice to hear some good news: the notion of generational warfare is a myth. Young and old recognize our interdependence and the need for cooperation. That’s the impetus for a new mentoring program that seeks to link boomers and millennials, with the aim of helping children in need. Reporter Mark Miller explains. MONEY
6 Ways to Make You Feel Richer in Retirement
The thought of retirement may be both tempting and scary. All the more reason to make sure you’re fully prepared. These simple moves can help you stretch your budget and afford the lifestyle you want. Hint: When it comes to discounts, age can be an asset. MARKETWATCH
YOUR RETIREMENT QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Is a Roth Conversion Allowed If a Retiree Is Turning 70½?
Q: Can you do a conversion from your IRA to a Roth IRA in the year you will be 70½? If so, must the conversion be done before you turn 70½?
A: There’s no age limit for doing a Roth conversion, says Jeffrey Levine, chief retirement strategist for Ed Slott & Co. in Rockville Centre, N.Y. You could do one at age 90 if you like. Yet converting a traditional individual retirement account, whose tax-deferred contributions are taxed when withdrawn, into a Roth IRA, whose contributions are taxed on the way in but not the way out, isn’t for everyone. READ MORE
WORDS OF WISDOM
“Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes.”
–Writer Oscar Wilde