The common rule of asset allocation by age is that you should hold a percentage of stocks that is equal to 100 minus your age. So if you're 40, you should hold 60% of your portfolio in stocks. Since life expectancy is growing, changing that rule to 110 minus your age or 120 minus your age may be more appropriate.
As a guide, the traditionally recommended allocation has long been 60% stocks and 40% bonds. However, with today's low return on bonds, some financial professionals suggest a new standard: 75% stocks and 25% bonds.
The #1 Rule For Asset Allocation
The result should be the percentage of your portfolio that you devote to equities like stocks. As an example, if you're age 25, this rule suggests you should invest 75% of your money in stocks.
Age-Based Asset Allocation
So if you're 30 years old you'd invest 80% of your portfolio in stocks (110 – 30 = 80). The rule of 110 is increasingly giving way to the rule of 120, however, as investors are living longer. With this rule, you use 120 in place of 110.
If you're 65 or older, already collecting benefits from Social Security and seasoned enough to stay cool through market cycles, then go ahead and buy more stocks. If you're 25 and every market correction strikes fear into your heart, then aim for a 50/50 split between stocks and bonds.
According to this principle, individuals should hold a percentage of stocks equal to 100 minus their age. So, for a typical 60-year-old, 40% of the portfolio should be equities. The rest would comprise high-grade bonds, government debt, and other relatively safe assets.
The rule of 110 is a rule of thumb that says the percentage of your money invested in stocks should be equal to 110 minus your age. So if you are 30 years old the rule of 110 states you should have 80% (110–30) of your money invested in stocks and 20% invested in bonds.
By age 40, your goal is to have a net worth of two times your annual salary. So, if your salary edges up to $80,000 in your 30s, then by age 40 you should strive for a net worth of $160,000.
Too many people get bogged down in life that they don't even start investing until it's too late. Luckily, getting started in your 30s still leaves you plenty of time to save for retirement and the future.
For example, if you're 30, you should keep 70% of your portfolio in stocks. If you're 70, you should keep 30% of your portfolio in stocks. However, with Americans living longer and longer, many financial planners are now recommending that the rule should be closer to 110 or 120 minus your age.
One reason why investing in your 20s is so important is that you're looking at a very long term, which allows you to capitalize on all that growth. Bonds can be generally lower-risk, lower-return investments that can counter the risk of stocks.
Fast answer: A general rule of thumb is to have one times your annual income saved by age 30, three times by 40, and so on. See chart below. The sooner you start saving for retirement, the longer you'll have to take advantage of the power of compound interest.
Investments and Allocation
One general rule of thumb when it comes to portfolio allocation is to subtract your age from either 100 or 110. The resulting number is the approximate percentage you should allocate to stocks. At age 50, this would leave you with 50 to 60 percent in equities.
The rule of thumb advisors have traditionally urged investors to use, in terms of the percentage of stocks an investor should have in their portfolio; this equation suggests, for example, that a 30-year-old would hold 70% in stocks, 30% in bonds, while a 60-year-old would have 40% in stocks, 60% in bonds.
The average net worth by age for Americans is $76,340 for those under age 35, $437,770 for those ages 35 to 44, $833,790 for those ages 45 to 54, $1,176,520 for those ages 55 to 64, $1,215,920 for those ages 65 to 74 and $958,450 for those age 75 and above.
In summary, at age 45, you should have a savings/net worth amount equivalent to at least 8X your annual expenses. Your expense coverage ratio is the most important ratio to determine how much you have saved because it is a function of your lifestyle.
One old rule of thumb: subtract your age from 100. The result was the percentage of your portfolio that should be in stocks. For example, at age 65, 35% of your portfolio should be in stocks. But with today's longer life spans, many planners say you need more stock than that.
For decades, investors relied on the so-called 60/40 portfolio—a mix of 60% stocks and 40% bonds, or something close to it—to generate enough stable growth and steady income to meet their financial goals.
One frequently used rule of thumb for retirement spending is known as the 4% rule. It's relatively simple: You add up all of your investments, and withdraw 4% of that total during your first year of retirement. In subsequent years, you adjust the dollar amount you withdraw to account for inflation.
The point is that you should remain diversified in both stocks and bonds, but in an age-appropriate manner. A conservative portfolio, for example, might consist of 70% to 75% bonds, 15% to 20% stocks, and 5% to 15% in cash or cash equivalents, such as a money-market fund.
Most experts say your retirement income should be about 80% of your final pre-retirement annual income. 1 That means if you make $100,000 annually at retirement, you need at least $80,000 per year to have a comfortable lifestyle after leaving the workforce.
It's possible to retire with $600,000 in savings with careful planning, but it's important to consider how long your money will last. Whether you can successfully retire with $600,000 can depend on a number of factors, including: Your desired retirement age. Estimated retirement budget.