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Author: loadsOmoney One star, 50 posts Old School Fool SC1 Red Motley Fool One Everlasting Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 75794  
Subject: 401k & IRA questions Date: 1/20/2002 3:46 PM
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Hello

I have a 401K with a previous employer - all funds invested in an S&P 500 index fund. I started a new 401K with my next employer again all funds in an S&P 500 index fund. Unfortunately my new company recently changed the 401K provider and the portfolio of investments don't include an index fund. Even worse all the funds have front end loads, management fees above TMF recommended 0.75% and have the dreaded 12b-1 fees - yikes! And they said they changed the providers for a better service - go figure. Anyway I put in the request to have an index fund included and my administrator agreed saying they would contact the provider. They (Bank of America) allegedly said that they couldn't offer any more choice until our company gets bigger ......mmmm. That should happen over the next 12 months so we'll have to see.

I have two 401k questions.

1. Initially I thought it was best to roll my old 401k over into an IRA to be able to take advantage of investing in individual stock ....ahem sorry I mean companies. But I read something a while back that made me think I should roll it into my new 401k. Should I leave it where it is, stick it in an IRA or roll it into my new 401k? The last doesn't seem too prudent given the lack of choice I described earlier.
2. I am getting employer matching in my new 401k so figured it would still be best to continue making contributions despite the fees. I didn't do too much research into the funds, just picked a couple of moderately aggressive funds and one aggressive fund for expediency(I know foolish not Foolish). Am I right to continue making contributions and does anyone have any suggestions on how to make best of this bad situation?

I decided that I should also take out a Roth IRA to take advantage of tax savings. When I first read the Motley Fools section on retirement it suggested that the Foolish Four would be a good strategy. That was obviously some time ago and the Foolish Four is no longer recommended.

Three IRA questions.

1. What is a good strategy now for an IRA? Is it the Rule Makers strategy?
2. TMF advise when investing in Rule Makers that you pick 10-15 companies and keep trading costs below 2% by investing $5000 or more. An IRA has a $2000 limit so this is not possible. What should one do? Just have less diversity or what?
3. My income exceeds the $95000 threshold to start an IRA. Am I right in saying that my Adjusted Gross income is less my investment in the 401k, which would bring me back within the limits.

FYI I am 35, believe in managed risk and am prepared to learn how to evaluate companies. I am making the maximum 401k contributions.

I'm sorry if this is the same old questions but I feel I've spent quite a lot of time and energy reading the Motley Fool site already, without finding exactly what I'm after. Any advice or thoughts would be very much appreciated. Thanks for reading.
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