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People are living longer in modern times than they did in the past. Experts project that as life spans continue to increase, the average individual will spend between twenty and thirty years in retirement. With fewer traditional pension plans available and smaller payouts from traditional government plans and private plans, retirement planning is an increasingly important part of personal investment planning.

Most people want to be financially secure during retirement. This section on retirement planning is divided into four sections that will help you achieve financial security during retirement: these four sections discuss 1) retirement basics, 2) Social Security, 3) employer-sponsored retirement plans, and 4) individual and small-business retirement plans. The sooner you begin planning and saving for retirement, the more likely it is that you will be financially secure during retirement.

President Ezra Taft Benson gave the following counsel:

Plan for your financial future. As you move through life toward retirement and the decades which follow, we invite all . . . to plan frugally for the years following full-time employment. Be even more cautious . . . about “get-rich” schemes, mortgaging homes, or investing in uncertain ventures. Proceed cautiously so that the planning of a lifetime is not disrupted by one or a series of poor financial decisions. Plan your financial future early; then follow the plan. (“To the Elderly in the Church,” Ensign, Nov. 1989, 4)

The purpose of this section is to help you lay the foundation for a successful retirement plan and encourage you to follow your plan. This section reviews and builds upon concepts discussed in earlier sections. You should read this section before reading the succeeding sections in this series.


When you have completed this section, you should be able to do the following:

  1. Describe how retirement planning fits into your personal financial plan.
  2. Explain the steps of successful retirement planning.
  3. Understand the different retirement planning vehicles.
  4. Describe payout options available at retirement.
  5. Understand one method of monitoring your retirement planning progress. 

Understanding the basics of retirement planning is important to planning, constructing, and managing a portfolio to achieve your retirement planning goals.


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