You don't generally need to put anything into an IRA at a good broker (to open it). In fact, if you ever want to roll the money back into a qualified plan, you better not put any new funds in. Open an IRA with Waterhouse (or whoever). Make sure they know it's for a rollover (aka conduit) IRA. Have them do a direct custodial transfer from your 401K to the IRA. That way there are no adverse tax consequences. OTOH, if you don't care about ever rolling the money back, you can open a vanilla IRA and have them roll the money in, and then make your own contributions (that is what I did).
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