But someone starting a new IRA with a $4000 contribution into an index fund will be paying over $20/year (2% of balance) in fees. That's pretty You're correct on the Vanguard fund fees, but you made a math error. $20 in fees on a $4000 contribution is 0.5% annually, not 2%. Assuming you contribute another 4K the next year, that brings you down to $10 in annual fees, or .25% (give or take depending on overall growth of contributed assets)I like Vanguard for my IRA, not so much for the Coverdell, where the 50K+ in assets doesn't help (because they look at my daughter's total assets, not mine), and you can only contribute 2K/yr. At least we made it up to 6K this year, so one of the $10 fees is gone.-synchronicity, who's given Vanguard a fair amount of business but acknowledges their weaknesses.
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