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Top Ten: Weekend reads: this hidden wrinkle in Social Security can help you decide when to file for benefits

Deciding when to begin receiving Social Security payments might be difficult. Many factors need to be considered, including the age of your spouse (if you are married), what benefits they may receive and the timing of their benefits. You can begin taking reduced benefits at age 62 and delay receiving them until age 70, when you’ll get a hefty premium. You can access your Social Security Statement here to see the current estimate of your monthly benefits at different ages.

Now here’s the good news: if you wait to claim until you reach your full retirement age (currently 66 and two months and will increase to 67 for those born in 1960 or later), retroactive benefits can ease the pain if you change your mind, as Jeffrey Levine explains.

Related: The best reason of all to postpone retirement

Dividend stocks for 2022

Getty Images

It’s possible that 2022 will be a difficult year for the stock market as the Federal Reserve allows interest rates to rise. A stream of dividend income can it easier to stay put during a down market. Here’s a list of stocks with dividend yields of at least 3% and plenty of expected cash flow to cover higher payouts.

Where to retire in the Midwest

Downtown LeClaire, Iowa.

Kevin E. Schmidt / Maquoketa Studios

Silvia Ascarelli writes the Where Should I Retire column. This week she helps a woman who wishes to move out of Illinois, but not too far from her family in the suburbs of Chicago. Here are three possible locations based on her criteria.

Try MarketWatch’s retirement location tool for your own custom search. It includes data for more than 3,000 U.S. counties and incorporates climate risk.

A stock-picking strategy you may never have thought of

Professional money managers have many ways of selecting investments, some of which are based on sophisticated mathematical models. But Fred Reichheld outlines a much simpler method that has served him well, with a portfolio that beat the Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF
VTI,
-0.11%

by 2.8 to 1 over a 10-year period.  

ETFs go meta

MarketWatch illustration/iStockphoto

Mark DeCambre writes the ETF Wrap column, with news and performance updates for exchange-traded funds. This week he shares a fascinating industry development, as ETF managers rush to create metaverse investment products in the wake of Facebook’s name change to Meta Platforms Inc.
FB,
-0.81%
.

You can sign up here to receive ETF Wrap by email.

Bitcoin and blockchain

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Mark DeCambre fills in for Frances Yue for this week’s Distributed Ledger column, which includes a warning for bitcoin holders.

 Sign up here to get Distributed Ledger delivered to your inbox weekly.

Related: Stocks will face competition from blockchain-based DAOs in the near future

The SEC’s conflict with China and what it might mean for U.S. investors

Mark Hulbert explains why a possible clampdown by the Securities and Exchange Commission on the U.S. listing of shares of Chinese companies might backfire for U.S. investors.

More from Hulbert:

It’s a good bet that Apple, Amazon and other Big Tech darlings won’t be the 2020s’ big market winners

Twitter made this shareholder-friendly move after Jack Dorsey resigned as CEO. Here’s why it just might work.

Digging further into the supply shortage

Shipping containers at the Port of Los Angeles.

Mario Tama/Getty Images

You have no doubt seen coverage of long delays for ships that need to unload freight in U.S. ports, but Katie Marriner and William Watts describe a related problem that may surprise you.

When is enough enough?

CD Moriarty offers some blunt talk to a couple well-positioned for early retirement but who fear they don’t have enough: “Retiring is more like planning a career than building a nest egg alone.

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