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Author: fieldr Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 19380  
Subject: social security Date: 3/27/2000 4:02 PM
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It seems to me that in analyzing your 62/65/70 social security choices you treat inflation somewhat inconsistently. For example, you use present dollars in calculating total benefits. However, when you analyze investment return you take the total return on investment not the excess over inflation. You do talk about considering the increase in the amount of early payout payments--but you fail to consider that a similar increase will occur on the later payments. The two will not cancel out, however, because the inflation adjustments on the later starting payments will be on a higher base. It seems to me that a relatively simple method of monitizing the value of the differing retirement decisions is to compare the cost of an inflation adjusted annuity of the given amount at each age compared with the value of the invested payments over the same time. For example if the numbers are that retirement at 65 gives a pension of $1000 per month and retirement at 70 a $1500 pension, then a comparison of the costs of a $1000 per month pension for a 65 year old with a $1500 per month pension for a 70 year old would give a figure which could be compared with the value of an investment of $500 per month for five years. While this does not give anyone a final answer and in the end personal preferences and expectations should govern, it at least gives an objective monitry value of the decision.

Otherwise, however, the distinction between present and future dollars should be treated consistantly.
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