The Hidden Assumptions of Financial Calculators
Don't ignore the program's defaults.
Once upon a time, financial calculators gave the median result. If stocks were projected to gain 9% annually, the program would show that a lump-sum $10,000 investment would grow in 30 years to become $132,678. The same approach applied to more complex forecasts, such as the amount of money that a retiree would retain after making several years' worth of withdrawals.