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A 401(k) Conundrum: Can You Make Cash Pile Last for Life?

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Even if you’ve socked plenty of money away in your 401(k) plan and invested it carefully, some of your toughest decisions lie ahead. And don’t expect much help or clarity from the government or your employer.

Strategies for drawing down lump-sum accounts in retirement -- more important than ever in the 401(k) era -- have received little attention from policy makers. For retirees, choices about how to spend a life’s worth of savings are fraught with tricky calculations about financial risk, taxes and death.