After 29 years of the “4% rule”, whether I take Social Security early, late, or not at all, isn’t going to have any affect on my level of retirement spending.
However, the ability to effectively “buy” an inflation-adjusted life annuity for about half the cost of what a for-profit insurance company would charge for the same monthly increase in my SS check makes waiting until age 70 attractive.
Could I have started SS at age 62 and just put the money in the stock market? Sure, but then the added income would have knocked me out of free Obamacare and some of these energy efficiency freebies in the Biden IRA legislation. And my asset allocation has been above 90% stock for 25+ years, do I need an even higher allocation to the stock market? Probably not.