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Author: ataloss Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 5069  
Subject: Re: FIRE Benchmarks Date: 9/23/2003 2:04 PM
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As I said before, there is no "myth" of a 4% safe withdrawal rate. That number is just what came up based on very thorough tests of the historical data using a particular methodology. If investors and would-be FIREees can't understand what the number means, it is hardly intercst's fault, now is it?

And I think that intercst has been quite careful in this regard. One person (ok hocus) has claimed that by 100% safe intercst meant to refer to 100% future safety. I can't find anything to support this on rehp. I am not sure how this misconception arose.

FWIW, I would actually agree with you that one should probably be more diversified than US stocks and US bonds. However, the safe withdrawal studies were not done with other asset classes, so when I am ready to cash in my chips, I will be either looking for a relevant published study or doing my own multi asset class safe withdrawal study.

The way I see it if I can get asset classes with expected returns similar to us stocks but with less than perfect correlation, the it makes sense to diversify (unless expenses are totally out of line.) The longest data series is for us stock indexes so it makes sense to use this for swr studies as intercst has done.
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