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Retirement planning probably isn’t top of mind for many 20-year-olds, but if they can be persuaded to save, they have the greatest investment ally on their side: Time.

Indeed, with retirement many decades away, they are in a position to fully harness the power of compounding, says Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate. The challenge is that younger millennials’ prefer cash above all other investments even for long-term horizons (and their zeal for cash exceeds all other generations), McBride says, citing Bankrate’s research.

To truly glean the benefits of time, investors need to be compounding the “higher rates of return that come from the stock market.” He says target-date funds would be an appropriate choice since they are heavily allocated to equities in the early career years. “Saving is one thing, but stashing long-term money in overly conservative investments will leave risk-averse investors well short of where they need to be in their golden years,” he adds.

To that end, we collected the highest-performing target-date funds over the past year with expected retirement set far in the future: 2060 (or later). They largely mirrored the broader market, turning in an average return of 12.7% for the past 12 months

Scroll through to see the top-performing target-date funds with a retirement date of 2060 or later. We also included the year-to-date returns, assets and expense ratios for each fund. (Expenses ratios are always key, but especially when an investor might be holding a fund for many years.) We also lowered our usual AUM threshold to consider funds with at least $10 million in assets (typically, our minimum threshold is $100 million.) All data from Morningstar Direct.


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