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Financial Planning / Foolish 401(k)s


Subject:  Re: Need better results Date:  7/23/2012  9:03 AM
Author:  aj485 Number:  24925 of 26142

I have a 401k account that has barely changed values (except going downward) for the last 3 years. It seems stuck at around 100k. This account was set up when I worked for my last company. I left it invested there when I left but now I'm thinking there should be better options out there.

Currently it is at Fidelity. I have half in a BTC Lifepath 2025 account and the other half in INTECH LG CAP Growth.

Are you sure your timeframe is really 3 years - since mid-2009? Are you being charged fees in your account? If so, how large?

The reason I ask is that for the past 3 years, Intech Large Cap Growth has 16%+ annualized returns, net of advisory fees;jsessionid=b... and BlackRock Lifepath 2025 has 14%+ annualized returns since inception on 6/30/10 and the Fidelity Freedom 2025 Fund (Fideliety Freedom funds were the predecessor funds to the BlackRock Lifepath Funds in my Fidelity 401(k)) has 12%+ annualized returns for 3 years

So if you had your money in those funds for 3 years, you should be up at least 30% from 3 years ago (mid 2009) - so if your starting balance was $100k, you should be at least to $130k now.

On the other hand, if your starting point was actually mid-2008, or 4 years ago, then I wouldn't be surprised to see your investments fairly flat since then, as that was about when markets started crashing, and if you have left the money in those investments since then, you probably are about even right now, after a big drop in the latter part of 2008.

Alternatively, absent being charged signficant fees, if your timeframe really is 3 years and you've been actively managing this account by moving money from investment to investment, you might want to look at your investment strategies, rather than where the account is held. In this case, the movement of the money is likely what is causing the returns that you are getting.

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