Retirement Expert: How Gold And Silver Can Solve Annuity Dilemma
As one of the world’s most well known and trusted precious metals dealers, we get a LOT of questions about where gold fits in a portfolio.
Over the years we’ve published a lot of material to address that, in broad strokes. But I thought it important we start to get a little more specific on the nitty-gritty.
As a first step, I want to quickly touch on a subject often ignored. We regularly comment about how gold has long been a hedge to stock market volatility, rising when the markets fall, helping maintain wealth and soften losses.
But not all investors are heavily invested in the stock markets. For example, anyone over 60 years old that follows the dogma of financial planning should have less than half of their investments in the stock market, and instead be focused on bonds, annuities and fixed income investments.
According to a survey from retirement fund giant TIAA-CREF, 84% of near retirement age Americans would prefer to own an annuity. Yet, only about 14% end up buying one. They believe that’s largely because of a lack of education available on the subject.
So, we thought we’d do our part to address how gold and annuities fit together, as one of the first in a series about precious metals and your portfolio.
To tackle this particular topic, I turned to a good and trusted friend, Dennis Miller. Dennis is a widely read blogger, a self-professed ‘RetireMentor’ with regular pickup from MarketWatch to the Daily Pfennig. Dennis is an old school, common sense, tell it like it is kind of guy—who came out of his own retirement solely for the joy of helping others navigate the new and complicated retirement environment.
One of his recent columns, a follow-up to his popular annuity investing guide (Dennis is the one person I know of writing on annuities who isn’t also selling them) grabbed my attention with a simple assertion:
Anyone owning an annuity “MUST” also own gold. (His emphasis.)
I reached out to him because I wanted our readers to understand why…
ALEX: Dennis, on behalf of our readers, thanks for giving us some of your time. First, can you quickly tell our readers how you came to provide retirement finance advice? You didn’t spend your career as a financial adviser.
DENNIS: My pleasure, Alex. I take great pride in telling readers I am not licensed or qualified to give professional, individual investment advice. A lot of my ideas are things they are not likely to hear from a licensed professional because they are things they can’t or won’t say.
Almost 30 years ago my wife and I were married in a nursing home. Her father was dying from Parkinson’s disease. About a month later I was in a conference room at a major brokerage firm. My mother-in-law was giving me power of attorney to look after her sizable nest egg. Talk about pressure. The looks from my wife and her family were clear, “Don’t you dare lose grandma’s money”.
I was very fortunate that the broker handling our account was my age and she was a terrific mentor. She was not only concerned about protecting grandma’s money; she also took on the challenge of educating me.
I started my company’s retirement plan with her help.
After I retired from a long career as a master sales trainer for some of America’s largest, best-known companies, I was coaxed into writing a newsletter specializing in growing a retirement nest egg safely. I got to work with some of the best analysts in the world—that’s where you and I met.
After many newsletters, a book, my column in MarketWatch… I started my own free website, Miller, On The Money, to try to reach as many of my peers and soon-to-be fellow retirees as possible.
ALEX: I know one of your most popular subjects is annuities—a popular income tool for retirees, yet one barely mentioned by mainstream market commentators because of its own defining feature: it doesn’t change value day to day with the markets. If someone is relying on or considering an annuity for retirement income, whether bought or from a pension or even the lottery, what are the biggest risks?