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This place is driving me nuts! I just replied at length to this post, tried to correct some typos, and The Fool eliminated the hole damned message! Second time it has happened in 2 days!

Let me try again.

But say, for example, one retires with $200k in the bank. Assume also that they collect $1000/month in SS. That's $12,000/year in SS (and in some cases, SS income is taxable so that the actual total is even lower). The interest one would earn on $200k in a *completely safe* investment vehicle (insured interest-bearing account) is nothing--even 3-year CDs barely return more than 1% right now; some aren't even earning 1%.

First observation:

WHY put it all in CD's? Why not invest in various pretty darned safe stocks? Look at returns from things like GE, AT&T (symbol T) or B&G Foods (BGS) for a few. How doe 3.5 to 5% or better sound? ANd there are many others.

By the way, the "rule of 73" can help you figure out how fast your money can double if you let the dividends or interest compound. For example, 5% dividends, allowed to compound, would double your investment in 14.6 years. So $100,000, for example, would be $200,000 in 14.6 years, assuming these companies keep going!

Whatever you do, learn how to invest, be careful never to put everything in one place, and start doing better.

Remember, too, that whatever you earn in an IRA is tax-free until you withdraw it, once you are 59-1/2 or older.

We make about $40,000 altogether and have paid zero state or federal income taxes in the last 3 years, all with standard deductions. We ARE over 65, which helps.

IOW, look at alternatives, learn some things, and be careful.

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