Retirement Planning > Retirement Investing

Do Tax Rates Go Up or Down in Retirement? (Morningstar)

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The decision about whether to opt for Roth tax treatment of your retirement assets — where you pay taxes upfront in exchange for tax-free withdrawals later on — requires you to make a judgment about whether your taxes will be higher in retirement than they were while you were working, writes Christine Benz. For lower earners who are early in their careers, it’s likely that their income tax brackets will be higher in the future than they are today, making Roth contributions and conversions a good bet. For older savers, that might not be the case. Among Morningstar readers who are also retirees, individual situations ran the gamut from having a radically lower tax bracket (common among those who had taken maximum advantage of asset location and tax-advantaged investments, such as municipal bonds) to finding it difficult to reduce taxes in any noticeable way (an issue for those drawing most of their retirement income from pensions, RMDs from traditional retirement accounts, and Social Security).