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However, if I want to pay it off in the first few months of 2004, it would preclude me from putting much or any into my Roth for this year. Which would be the better choice?

People rattle off "401(k)" and "Roth IRA" as if they are investments. They aren't! They are account types!

Just what do you have the Roth IRA invested in? If it is (or would be) predominantly stocks, you may be better maximizing your Roth IRA contributions while you can because, once April 15, 2004 has come and gone, you will never be able to make up for missed Tax Year 2003 Roth IRA contributions.

If your Roth IRA is invested in bonds, CDs, or money markets, you may be better off just paying off the 401(k) loan.
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