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Mark Miller: Remaking Retirement

Social Security: Delaying Equals Staying Power for Your Portfolio

Hypothetical case studies show how delaying Social Security benefits combined with a tax-efficient withdrawal strategy can add substantial longevity to a retirement portfolio.

A delayed Social Security filing can boost your monthly benefit income substantially. But did you know that a smart Social Security strategy also can boost the longevity of your portfolio?

My last column looked at an array of resources that can help individuals and couples optimize their benefits. That sparked a comment thread among Morningstar.com readers about the relationship between Social Security filing and portfolio longevity, with much of the discussion focused on an important 2012 article on the subject in the Journal of Financial Planning by William Reichenstein, a professor at Baylor University who has written extensively on Social Security planning, and William Meyer, a financial-services industry veteran.