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You would think, after all these years, a financial planning professional could figure out how much someone should save in order to generate sufficient retirement income.

There are many online retirement calculators, of course, and thousands of investment professionals who profess to provide the answer. The truth, however, is that the retirement income question is so complicated, and dependent on so many factors and assumptions, that figuring out a foolproof, fail-safe savings and drawdown strategy is next to impossible.

Don’t Despair About “The Number”

But there’s no reason to feel that it’s a hopeless quest to arrive at “The Number.” First, dividend investors are already on the right track by looking at investments through the lens of the ability to generate income.

Second, even if they haven’t provided a definitive answer, advances in computer modeling and the application of statistical analysis to investment returns have added greatly to our knowledge of how much to save.

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