Message Font: Serif | Sans-Serif
No. of Recommendations: 0
Your 401K had 8 options. You need to evaluate how well these options have done compared to other similar options. Having options is good, but if the fund performance fails miserably, or if the management fees are high (many 1-2%/yr), your returns will be substandard.

Compare your fund performance, year after year, and the fees in your funds, to Vanguard or Janus funds. If they beat the Vanguard S&P 500 and Vanguard Total Stock Market Index funds, then you are doing OK. If not, it is time to re-evaluate.

Having your own IRA, which could be at Vanguard, Janus, or anywhere else, gives you thousands of options. If you are at a discount broker, you can also add individual stocks and brokered CDs and bonds.
Long term, fund expenses are critical. A 1 or 2% extra bite, compounded over 20+ years, adds up big time. Many SP500 funds lag the Vanguard fund by 1 or 2% each year. That is tens of thousands of dollars after many years you have paid those fund managers, for doing what Vanguard does for 0.18%, allowing them to drive the BMWs and Lexus cars, have Rolex watches, etc. ( I tend to think of fund fees that way).

My current 401K has performed reasonably well, but sooner or later I will roll it over into the IRA which I started with my 'pension rollover'. I had to either take the cash value of the pension, or watch it wither until I could start collecting it in 10 years - they would have given me 4.5% annual 'interest' in those 10 years - bad deal. I moved it quick to Vanguard IRA.

If you are happy with your 401K fund performance, leave it there. If not, find a better place.
Print the post  


When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.