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Subject:  Evaluation of investment strategy Date:  9/28/2010  10:21 AM
Author:  imzeek2u Number:  55 of 84

Hi all. Just had a meeting with our Northwestern Mutual advisor yesterday and I'm confused about a number of things which I'm not sure how to address. My wife and I started with them in 2004 and have investments covering her, myself and even my daughter. The report I received yesterday shows a return on investment of .61% (yes, less than 1%) since we started in '04. The problem I have is that since our investments are insurance and wealth building vehicles combined, I have literally no clue how to evaluate the progress of the investments. All I know is that I'm investing just under $1,200 per month and I'm not completely sure where it's going to (insurance vs. investment), in addition to it appearing to not be earning much. Each time I've met with them, I ask for a breakdown, and the reports I get don't tell the tale in a way that I can discern. I also have a ROTH IRA from TIAA-CREF at my current job (as of 2007). My employer contributes 5% automatically and I'm currently contributing only 2% myself. I asked if it makes more sense for me to divert from my Northwestern Mutual investments to the TIAA-CREF and my Northwestern Mutual advisor says that the future tax liability would likely make it less desirable. I'd like to get an unbiased review of what we have and where we should make changes, if necessary. I'd also like to get a little education so I can at least feel more comfortable about what we're doing and why. Do you think I should try and find a fee-based investment consultant for an assessment? If so, how do I find one that's truly unbiased? I'm located in Upstate NY. Thanks for any advice or assistance! :-)
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