Sunday, 8 May 2011

Retirement Investing

What does it take to retire today? Well, whatever it takes, I know that it will be a lot more than I have in my savings, especially given the fact that like many of us, I have no savings account. Perhaps that is why I tell people that I am on the "Freedom 85 Plan." Hmm, while said in jest, it may not be too far off the mark.

I used to have a RRSP (Registered Retirement Savings Plan), but the recession pretty much took care of devaluing that and left me with only a small fraction of what it once was worth. The small change that was left has long since been cashed in, while there was some cash to still be had from it.

People used to recommend investing in the stock markets, but like my RRSP, that may no longer be the best advice to prepare for retirement. The whole thing is just too uncertain. So what is a person to do? Work until the day before one's own funeral? For many that may be the sad reality; work hard, pay your taxes, and then die. Isn't that a cheerful thought? Hmm.

I don't remember where I got this from, but it illustrates this all too well. Maybe this is a more likely retirement plan for many of us:
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If you had purchased $1000 of Nortel stock a year ago, it would now be worth $49. 
With Enron, you would have $16.50 left of the original $1000. 
With WorldCom, you would have less than $5 left. 
If you had purchased $1000 of Delta Airlines stock, you would have $49 left. 
But if you had purchased $1000 worth of wine one year ago, drank all the wine, then returned the bottles for the recycling refund, you would have $214. 
Based on the above, the best current investment advice is to drink heavily and recycle.
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Well, there you have it; free investment advice. No need to thank me; I'm just glad that I was able to be of some help. However, a final caveat is in order; I take no responsibility for your liver.  

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

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