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Greetings, ed6713, and welcome. You asked:

<<Retiring on 01/03/2000 assuming the world is still revolving, there is not a mass uprising like my survivalist neighbor is preparing for, good Lord willing & the creek don't rise. At a young 56.
What a selection of decisions to make. The biggest is to take the comfort of the monthly retirement check with the 100% survivorship feature for my wife or take the $$$ and do it myself. She wants the assurance of the guaranteed monthly check for the obvious reasons. On the other hand, the interest rare the retirement fund is using is a paltry 6.04%.
What's a guy to do?? Give it a try and risk the "I told you so" or go with the security?????>>

First, understand fully the options available to you, and what each means to your (and her) peace of mind. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, so you must weigh that choice carefully. You're both young, so a fixed annuity payment may be great for peace of mind, but looks pretty bad twenty years from now after inflation has taken its toll on purchasing power. For some ideas on deciding on how to take your pension plan, see the first article in out new Managing Your Retirement area. Get there by clicking on the Retirement tab at the top of most screens within Fooldom.

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