A crystal ball into the stock market’s performance – wouldn’t that be useful! While predicting market performance to-a-t is not possible, you can help protect your savings by preparing for market uncertainty.
Market Uncertainty Heightens
This past December marked the worst decline for stocks since the financial crisis in 2008. This decline brought an uneasiness for pre-retirees. While calm settled over the financial markets once the new year hit, 2019 remains uncertain when it comes to market swings. However, uncertainly in the market isn’t anything new. Therefore, pre-retirees can do two key things to help prepare themselves for retirement when the market is down.
1. Diversify Your Portfolio
When markets decline, financial portfolios ultimately go down in value. This can have an even greater impact on retirement portfolios that aren’t balanced to protect savings. A diverse portfolio can balance risk by helping to ensure it can withstand the uncertainty of the market.
Diversifying may be the most important part of retirement planning. While there is no one right answer – or guaranteed sure thing – having a balanced financial plan is a proven strategy for income growth and wealth protection. Diversifying can mean a mix of 401(k) funds, IRAs and Roth IRAs, fixed indexed annuities (FIAs), mutual funds, stock investments, and more. Get ahead of market swings by checking in on the risk tolerance of your financial portfolio and making sure to diversify.
2. Protect Your Principal
With the stock market, there is no guarantee of upcoming returns. This serves as our reminder to think about how we can build our retirement strategy to help ensure we have a continuous source of income. A smart first step is to evaluate savings vehicles that helps protects against market volatility. Enter a fixed indexed annuity (FIA).
An FIA protects your principal even in a negative market return. At the same time, it offers the opportunity to earn interest that is tied to the performance of a well-known index, such as the S&P 500, Dow Jones, NASDAQ, etc. In all, FIAs are contracts with insurance companies, where potential interest earned is linked to an external index. When you purchase a FIA, you can expect a guaranteed minimum rate of return and tax-deferred growth.
What will happen in the stock market? Anything is possible. There will never be a crystal ball that can accurately tell us what to expect. Therefore, it is up to retirement savers to make decisions that will allow them to prepare for a retirement that fits their needs by making sure they have principle protection, a diverse portfolio, and a guaranteed source of income.
Adding an FIA to your retirement portfolio could be part of the answer to protecting yourself against market uncertainty. Talk with your financial professional to understand the specific product features and to see if the benefits of an FIA ladder up to your goals.