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Subject:  Re: 401K Rollover Question Date:  5/8/2000  9:37 AM
Author:  telegraph Number:  3858 of 20793

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.
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