Early retirement: Careful investing key to your future
PLANNING EARLY Brad Reynolds, left, a financial consultant for Smith Barney Inc., started helping one of his clients, Mitch Bowers, right, plan for his retirement two years ago. Reynolds and other investment consultants say it's important to diversify your investments in such areas as stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Photo by fredie carmichael / The Meridian Star.
By Fredie Carmichael / staff writer
Nov. 3, 2002
Mitch Bowers began planning his and his family's financial future two years ago at the age of 28.
Bowers, who owns Triple B Automotive, said he thought it was necessary to start so young because he is married and has two children. He also hopes to retire early.
Bowers is one of thousands of Americans who have their own financial consultants to help them plan early for their retirement and diversify their investments.
The plan: Don't place all investments in one, high-risk fund.
If that happens, financial experts say, people can run the risk of losing hundreds or thousands of dollars on paper if the economy falters and the stock market performs poorly.
Brad Reynolds of Meridian, a financial consultant for Smith Barney Inc., said he's seen many people recently forgo retirement plans because they had placed much of their funds in high-risk stocks.
When the stock market started to slide in recent years, many of those people at or near retirement saw their funds dramatically lose value.
Reynolds, who manages Bowers' investments, said one way to protect retirement savings is by diversifying all accounts whether it's a stock portfolio, a 401(k) plan, an IRA or other funds.
Michele Pearson, an insurance agent for GuideOne Insurance whose company also handles retirement investment plans, said she, too, thinks people should invest early for retirement.
But she said she believes there are safer ways to do it. Pearson said she encourages her clients to invest their money for retirement into annuities or certificates of deposit.
Bowers said while the stock market may continue to fluctuate, he feels confident about his investments because he works closely with his financial consultant.
Bowers said he doesn't have time to worry about his investments on a daily basis while also running his business and raising his family.