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Is 4.5% Still Safe?

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About four years ago, I authored an article for Financial Advisor in which I examined risks to the “4.5% safe withdrawal rule,” which I had developed over many years of research. At that time, my conclusion was that the rule was still viable. But when you consider the case of the person who retired on January 1, 2000 (someone who had to contend with not just one but an unprecedented two huge stock market declines within 10 years), the rule was under slight duress.