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Greetings, RexHavoc, and welcome.

<<I'm self employed and have recently (hastily - tax time...) set up an SEP-IRA at a bank at a pitiful interest rate, which I'd like to transfer to a broker and with which I intend to start a Foolish Four plan.

I also have a Credit Union IRA earning a terrible rate as well that I'd like to move into a Foolish Four plan.

Are there any compelling reasons to leave that poor-performing money where it is and start the FF plan with "new money?" They only total about $3.5k.

I have substantially more (~25k) in an existing 401k plan from a long-ago former employer, currently in several mutual funds. Can I move this money into some other "vehicle" without getting hammered? Or am I limited to just maneuvering within the confines of the Plan?>>

There is absolutely no reason you cannot move all of these monies to a SEP-IRA you establish with a broker of your choice. In fact, the broker can help you arrange for a direct transfer of all these funds to a single, consolidated, self-directed SEPaccount within which you can do your own trading using the strategy of your choice. The only drawback (if it is one) is moving your 401k money to this account. By doing so, the money becomes "tainted," which means in the future it can no longer be transferred into a new employer's 401k plan should you desire to do so. To Fools, this is a non-issue, but many like the ability to do so. If that's true in your case, then the 401k money should be transferred to an IRA all by itself. Doing so will ensure it retains eligibility for later transfer to a new employer's plan.

To avoid any and all tax effects, in moving this money ensure you arrange for custodian-to-custodian direct transfers. Your broker can help you do this. Also, don't be surprised if the 401k money can't be moved until certain times of the year. Many plans have strict windows for withdrawal (such as once each quarter), so there may be a slight delay in that transfer.


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