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Subject:  Re: Advice needed on IRA Date:  12/23/1999  9:28 PM
Author:  JAFO31 Number:  16826 of 88052

Illia: "Help! I am 51, female and my primary income right now is from farming. After several bad years of declining farm income, I have to supplement this income and I am considering taking income from my IRA. Right now my IRA looks like this:

300K - Technology Stocks(no Internet)
55K - Other Stocks
82K - Foreign Mutual Fund and 1 ADR
130K - Bonds
83K - Cash

Div & Int income is 15K a year

My financial planner has recently given my account to a new and inexperienced member of their firm. He wants to sell all of my tech stocks and buy bonds for income.

My largest tech holding is MSFT (others are:INTC,HWP,MOT,TXN,LU,AMAT,MU). Most are long time holdings and all have huge profits. My gut feeling tells me that it would be a mistake to sell them now. There is enough cash and income in the IRA for the next 2 years. My feeling is that the potential for continued growth outweighs the possibility of having to sell a couple of them during a down market. I would rather sell Ford or Pepsi than Microsoft.

How can I educate myself to better judge whether my thinking is faulty? The amount of information available is overwhelming, I don't have the time to read everything and I just don't know where to begin."

By my rough reckoning, you have 213k/650k portfolio (roughly 32.8% in cash and bonds), which seems conservative to me, and you are discussing selling equities to purchase more bonds. Just my $0.02.

You may want to look at The Retire Early Home Page on geocities, which has a good discussion about portfolio allocation and survivable withdrawal rates. The fellow who maintains that board is also a frequent poster on TMF as "intercst" and can be found on The Retire Early board under Speakers' Corner here on TMF.

You did not mention whether you were intending to start 72(t) SEPP withdrawals in order to avoid the 10% penalty for early IRA witdrawal or whether you just intended to pay the penalty because you did not want to be locked into 8 years of withdrawal.

Hope this helps. Regards, JAFO

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