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A weekly reality check on sensible investing and financial decision-making for Canadians. Hosted by Benjamin Felix and Cameron Passmore.

Aug 20, 2020

Michael Kitces is one of the world’s leading experts in financial services but is also a trusted authority in retirement planning research, and today he joins us for a brilliant conversation that covers both topics. Michael is the Head of Planning Strategy at Buckingham Wealth Partners, Co-Founder of XY Planning Network, AdvicePay, and fpPathfinder, and also hosts the much-admired Financial Advisor Success podcast. In the first section of the show, we shoot our questions about retirement planning Michael’s way, exploring sequence of returns risk and the implications it presents for spending and portfolio management through retirement. Michael weighs in on three approaches to variable spending, why people can do what they love and still retire well, and his research on the ‘rising equity glidepath’. He also speaks about why it’s normal to start saving after you hit forty, and why withdrawal policy statements can help you have a better idea of when your portfolio is in the red. This leads us into the financial services segment of the show and we start out hearing Michael compare the assets under management model to the fee for service one, and how XY Planning helps those who can’t afford the first by implementing the second. From there, we dive deeper into the limits of more affordable AUM models, Michael’s thoughts on which draw on theories of human nature and also function as an advisor underwriting how-to for investors. Toward the end of the show, Michael does an amazing job of contextualizing the merge of the brokerage and advisory sides of the financial system and what this means for investors. For all this and a closing exchange about the incredible work Michael is doing to lift standards for the industry through his podcast and more, be sure to tune in!


Key Points From This Episode:

  • Introducing Michael Kitces, a leader in financial services and retirement planning. [0:00:15.7]
  • Market fluctuation and how early retirement affects sequence of returns risk. [0:03:25.1]
  • Different approaches to variable spending to deal with market fluctuation. [0:06:37.6]
  • Lifestyle and banking habits: Why retirement spending rarely increases. [0:17:55.3]
  • The rising equity glidepath: Inverting the conventional retirement portfolio. [0:20:57.2]
  • How withdrawal policy statements help you know when your portfolio is in the red. [0:27:35.1]
  • Why people don’t have to endure unhappy jobs for the sake of a good retirement. [0:34.42.7]
  • Beating ‘learned helplessness’: Start saving in your 40s, you haven’t missed the boat. [0:43:41.6]
  • Assets under management versus fee for service financial advisor models. [0:48:43.3]
  • Why cheaper AUM financial advisor models can’t meet investor needs. [0:55:57.4]
  • Limits to human sociability and how to vet a financial advisor by asking how many clients they have. [0:59:43.4]
  • How tech has merged the brokerage and financial advice sides of financial systems and the effects of this. [1:04:30.6]
  • Michael’s definition of success and his gratitude for the impact his work has. [1:12:02.2]