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Powerful Proof Anyone Can Invest for an Early Retirement - February 14, 2020

Accomplishing the financial cushion to retire early is a fantasy for most. Bringing the fantasy to reality is not as difficult as it sounds. The key is straightforward: Save significantly more every month. Sounds simple, correct? One moment.

Usually, advisors advise 15% to 20% of total income saved every month as an objective - yet in the event that you want to retire earlier, you likely need to tighten that number up to 40% or half of your pay. Not a discipline easily practiced when you review or consider that a substantial segment of your paycheck goes to basic, non- negotiable lifestyle needs. But if you are willing to make some serious lifestyle adjustments and trade-offs, it's achievable.

A generally new development called Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE) has been created around this "sacrifice and over-save now to retire early" idea. FIRE supporters create exacting savings plans (up to 75% of income) and make related compromises like living in small homes, walking to work every day, prohibitive weight control plans, etc. This way might be unreasonably prohibitive for many, yet the mentality offers a few takeaways that may merit consideration.

First, stick with the fundamentals of long-term growth investing: Choose a diversified portfolio of stocks with exposure to different styles, sizes, sectors, and regions.

You may be able to accelerate your potential retirement earnings by consciously seeking higher returns (and also accepting more risk) in your investment portfolio. But whatever your risk tolerance, your portfolio must be diversified to protect against extreme market movements that could jeopardize your early retirement objective. You can choose from a number of ways to allocate investments to diversify your portfolio, and these should be informed by your individual goals, growth and income needs, appetite for risk, and age.

Once you have accelerated your savings and put an ongoing plan in place, invest your savings into your portfolio as soon as possible. Don't try to time the market. Leave your portfolio alone, and let the compounding nature of the markets do its magic to help grow your retirement nest egg exponentially over time.

Astute investors pick retirement growth stocks with low beta, strong earnings estimates, positive sales growth, and expected future growth.

The Zacks Rank routinely recognizes lower risk growth retirement portfolio picks, and here are a few that may be worth considering: Summit Financial (SMMF), Brinker International (EAT) and First Financial Corp. (THFF). These growth stocks have strong Zacks Ranks and a beta of 1 or lower, with earnings and sales growth of at least 5% over the past 5 years.

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First Financial Corporation Indiana (THFF): Free Stock Analysis Report

Brinker International, Inc. (EAT): Free Stock Analysis Report

Summit Financial Group, Inc. (SMMF): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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