I will turn 60 years old this year and I have a 403(b); would you recommend making changes to the distribution of my investment portfolio this year?
I will turn 60 years old this year and I have a 403(b). My current investment distribution is: 4 percent stability, 10 percent large cap stocks, 11 percent bonds, 15 percent balances, 26 percent small/mid-sized/specialty, and 34 percent large cap growth. Would you recommend making changes to the distribution of my investment portfolio this year? Should transfer most of it to stability, bonds and balanced?
First of all, at your age you still have many more years before you retire. Then, after you retire, you should use other savings for living expenses first and only tap your retirement fund when you are required to, after age 70-1/2. (By this time you will probably have converted your 403B to a rollover IRA.) So you have ten years before you will need to withdraw from this portfolio. As a result it is a long term investment and you should not pull out of equities. Granted, the market might decline, but if you were fortunate enough to have sold beforehand would you buy back? My experience is that this is a very hard thing for people to do. Stay fully invested. Market declines don't last.
(By the way, "stability" is not an asset class. What is it -- cash? If so, don't increase your cash.)
Now, one subject that you don't mention but is very important. How are the rest of your assets invested? You need total savings (pension account plus savings) of 20 times your annual living expenses in order to be likely to have a sustainable retirement. If you do not have a good mix (I'd say at least 70-30 stocks to fixed income) that is invested for growth, you should rebalance your investments.
You may not feel able to take investment risk, but in fact you can't afford NOT to take (reasonable) investment risk. Good luck.
This is a difficult question to answer since I don't know what your risk tolerance is or when you will need the money. I will say this. Given the current interest rate environment, you need to really understand your bond allocations. As interest rates rise, the value of bonds and bond funds will fall. Over the past 30 years or so, we have seen interest rates fall and bonds have helped reduce overall volatility of a portfolio. Today, it is more important to apply an active strategy around your bond holdings. I wrote an article on bonds that you can read here:
If you have a financial advisor you're working with, he/she should be able to help direct you. If not, I'm more than happy to speak with you and give you some thoughts.