I hope you’re enjoying a relaxing Thanksgiving with your family. Time away from the office has given me the opportunity to catch up on some reading, as well as enjoy the holiday.

How much retirement income is enough in your country?

It’s interesting to note how Social Security compares with other government-provided pensions.

Relatively speaking, it’s not all that generous.

However, Social Security still represents the cornerstone of most Americans’ retirement plans. It’s critical that our government makes the few minor reforms to keep it going for generations to come.

Beware the Retirement Splurge

While you’re supposed to need less money in retirement, new research shows many people are spending more—way more. In fact, by the sixth year of retirement, 23% of households are still spending 120% of their pre-retirement income or more, and this pattern held true across all income levels.

If you ever needed to stick to a budget, it’s in retirement.

One way to create some discipline is to have a retirement “paycheck,” usually checks from Social Security, any pension, an income annuity and maybe interest/dividends on investments. Try to live within the paycheck, and use your liquid savings for unexpected expenses.

And avoid the temptation to “splurge” and to go into debt.

Schwab’s Plan To Re-engineer Automated Investment Advice

“Automated Investment Advice” is a better term than “robo-advisors” since the characterization of these platforms as an “advisor” is an overstatement.

With all of the robo-advisor platforms we’ve looked at, though, none of them provide an essential component of retirement planning. They don’t account for the conversion of retirement savings to retirement income.

We believe that for the vast numbers of Baby Boomers, “savings2income” strategies can be delivered more efficiently through a combination of self-service and advisor support. That’s why we’re striving to provide educational resources, tools and advisor support that help you decide, design and find the right retirement income mix for your unique retirement income needs.