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Author: DrTarr Big red star, 1000 posts 10+ Year Anniversary! Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 76418  
Subject: Re: Loaded Funds, IRA Date: 2/20/2011 7:32 PM
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Because I work for hedge funds ..., I am forbidden from investing in individual securities or ETFs.

First, I would call your new compliance group (trading compliance) and get clarity on investing in ETF's. Typically - the line is draw on ETF's with less than a certain amount of names (ours was 15), as you can understand why; however, ETF's based on index, sector and the like are usually allowable (not legally restricted) and they just have to monitor your trading.

An account at ML, in and of itself maynot be bad, no real experience there and as some one pointed out most of the time it is complaints about ML and praise for Vangaurd. I have a traditional that I rolled over to another street firm and found in the IRA space quite reasonable fees and excellent advice through employer - While, not so sure about ML other than typical retail advisor BS - I am sure about the funds that you got offered - and in the words of King Arthur at the French castle - RUN AWAY!! In the conversation with the advisor ask him specifically to tell you - write down - the dollar figure that it will cost you to get into these funds. If it is more that a couple bucks a trade..?? question. And ask - hey can I get vangaurd XXXXX or something?

As for not having time - you really do. A couple of months in a total market fund with Vangaurd (which I beleive you can get in your ML account) or an ETF, will not kill ya! You dont have to read 3-4 books but you can definitley get some better ideas and advice than blindly following an advisor that is paid on what you buy.

For the portfolio advice -Judging from the original post - I may be way off but it seems like you have some risk tolerance and so the mix for you is probably off. For me 40% in bonds isn't where I would recommend for anyone who has growth in mind. First tho - find out about the ETF options and the fees just for maintaining the account. Don't agree to putting the money anywhere until you are told exactly what it will cost you and you do not have to do it on the first call - THIS IS YOUR MONEY
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