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My company will soon offer the option of putting up to 50% of one's 401-K contribution into a self-directed account, where one could buy and sell individual stocks (as opposed to the usual, mutual fund-only choices).

Sounds good at first glance, but the account incurs a $100 annual maintenance fee, and trades are $20 each. This strikes me as excessive - both in absolute terms as well as a percentage of the amount an average employee would annually contibute.

For instance, lets say someone making $50,000 a year elects to put aside 3% in the account. The $100 takes almost 7% out of that investment - this works just like the broker-sold funds which do nobody any good.

Does anyone have this option in their 401-K, and -if so - what kind of fees are associated with it?

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