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Before you do, think about what you plan to invest the $$ in. All taxable withdrawals from IRAs are taxed as ordinary income, regardless of the source of the earnings. With the special treatment afforded long-term capital gains (which aren't taxed until you sell) and dividends, it may be to your advantage to invest through regular taxable investment accounts.

Thanks Phil for your thoughtful reply. I did think about the other options before made decision. IMO, IRA does have some advantages from practical point of view.

1) Tax free growth until retirement. Compare to currently favorable long-term capital gain and dividend treatment but tax law may change over time.
2) Desiganated for long-term purpose. Gain or loss, no need to think short term.

1) No advantage of long-term gain over short-term gain, as all taxable withdrawals are treated as ordinary income.
2) Cannot deduct capital loss on tax.
3) Tend to overlook it (from my experience of Roth IRA) and yet another two accounts to manage (for both me and my wife).

To me, the advantages seem to slightly overweight disadvantages. Advantage 2 may not mean much with deciplined investment.

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