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Just some questions about the interstices of IRAs, although I do know the basic differences btw. Roth/etc.

My situation is that I have a small amount of earned income, but live mostly on disability, yet want to contribute, say $1,000/year, to a Roth with very low fees/no inactivity fees/etc.

First, does an IRA savings CD, such as from ING, still qualify as a legitimate IRA, as far as the IRS Savings Retirement Credit is concerned? And, let's say, years forward, I wanted to roll that over into an IRA with mutual funds. Is such a rollover possible and how would that work, exactly? The money from the IRA CD would just be dumped into the new acct. around maturity of it?

My three or four option choices are that ING Savings IRA for now, possibly trying TIAA-Cref, which a close relative has (but who has a ton more income, if that may be a concern for my particular situation/concern vis-a-vis fees), Vanguard's Roth in which I am required to put the initial grand in Star fund, or possibly Sharebuilder's Roth.

Let's say I choose one of the latter ones, do you 1) send them a check, and 2) then what is the correct terminology/verbage for allocating that to the balanced fund I want -- is that "placing a trade" or allocation?

What I want to do is just put a grand in there, in a reasonably balanced fund, then pick up the Retirement Savings Credit in April.

Let me know if any of my logic is off.
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