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Author: MajorMajor78 One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 75626  
Subject: Re: 401k Investment Allocation Date: 2/17/2011 9:33 AM
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By far one of the most important and most overlooked (especially in 401K's) aspects to funds are the expense ratio's. This is how much of your money the fund company takes to pay it's expenses, advertising, and share holders. Unless you are a good stock picker probably the best route (arguably) is t get a few good low-cost index funds that will get you very well diversified both domestically and globaly.

Vanguard is famous for it's low cost funds but those Fidelity Spartan funds you have are great. Please be aware that the Spartan Extended market is NOT a mid-cap only fund. If you plug the Spartan Extended market (FSEMX) into the Morningstar instant X-ray tool you will find that it's about 50/50 mid/small caps. Between the Spartan 500 and the Extended market you can easily cover the entire U.S. market and control any tilt (if desired) between large, mid and small caps. Dirt cheap expense ratios too. My wife has both these funds in her 401K

The Columbia Acorn International Fund Class Z (ACINX) is a global fund that covers both developed and emerging markets (24.77% emerging). It also focuses more towards mid caps and growth stocks. Ar .99 Expense ratio it is a little better than average for a mutual fund that covers emerging markets also. A little risky but not exceptionally so... If you're young this would be just fine to hold for a long time.

American Funds EuroPacific Growth Fund Class R6 (RERGX) covers developed and emerging also (20.45% emerging) but is almost exclusivly large cap stocks. Lower growth potential in theory but probably more stable. Expense ratio of .54 is very good.

WACPX Western Asset Core Plus Bond Portfolio Institutional Select Class
has a little higher expense ratio than I like on a bond fund and has a slightly riskier portfolio but that's probably OK long term. Not sure about the other bond fund.

I would personally look at the following portfolio (this is for my age and risk tolerance.)

Spartan 500 40%
Spartan extended market (FSEMX)20%
Columbia Acorn International Fund Class Z (ACINX)25%
WACPX Western Asset Core Plus Bond 15%

Diversified globally, low costs, lots of room for long-term growth. Tweak the ratios to meet your desired risk/reward ratio and swap out any funds for any like substitutes you desire. Just keep it diversified and cheap. Keep your money in your account, not in the brokers.

P.S. My wife would choose BlackRock LifePath® 2045 Fund Class J. Fire and forget. Make the decision once and never look at it again. You do typically pay a little more for this convenience of course.

Hope this helps,
Scott
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