No. of Recommendations: 1
Greetings, Plrf, and welcome. You wrote:

<<I am relatively new to investing and am trying to find out where to begin with my retirement. I am a 37-year-old stay-at-home mom and have a portion of money I would like to roll from an account my former (government) employmer is holding into an IRA.

I would appreciate any and all comments on the following:

1. I plan on using E-trade because several people that I know personally are happy with their service. Does anyone have any comments on using them for retirement services?

2. Until I figure out a strategy for the long run, I have been playing with the idea of using the Foolish Four as an investment plan. Does anyone have any better ideas for the short run? Of course, suggestions for the long run are welcome.

3. I am trying to read as much as possible. However, with two very small children, I am faced with constant interruptions. With such limited time I hate reading down a dead end. Does anyone have any suggested reading that I should do? >>

Well, you've taken the first step by taking an interest in your own investment program rather than just leaving it to chance or to someone else to do for you. That's great! Now it's time to gain a little understanding of what you're trying to do. In that regard, I'll offer the same suggestions to you that I do to all newcomers.

You're new to both Fooldom and to investing. That's great on both counts! You have wandered into a forum that believes you, as an individual, can do far better for yourself than most professional money managers. Provided, that is, you take some time to learn a few basic investment concepts and do some self-examination to see where you fit on the risk tolerance scale. Therefore, why not take some time now -- not later -- to be sure about what you want to do. Start first by reading The 13 Steps to Investing Foolishly, which you can access from the main, opening screen to The Motley Fool. They will suggest some important things you should consider. Then I suggest you toddle over to your local library, discount bookstore, or even here in the Fool Mart, and pick up some easily read, easily understood, inexpensive texts that will thoroughly explain how to invest in stocks using some simple systems that will take but an hour per year of your time (if you're slow) yet produce returns that put the majority of professional money managers to shame. I suggest and commend the following to you: "Beating the Dow" by O'Higgins; "The Dividend Investor" by Petty and Knowles; "The Motley Fool Investment Guide" and "You Have More Than You Think" by the Gardner brothers; "One Up on Wall Street" by Lynch; and "What Works on Wall Street" by O'Shaughnessey. All are well worth their low cost and the small investment in time it takes to read them. Get them and read them. You'll be glad you did.

While you're doing all that, also take some time to explore the various nooks and crannies of Fooldom to see what others are doing and what they're discussing. I also recommend you read my 13 Steps to Foolish Retirement Planning and my Foolish Retirement Plan Primer. Both may be found at , and they will help give you some insight as to what you can do. In the process of all that reading, you'll gain a wealth of knowledge and information that will serve to clarify how you want to approach this very personal issue. Don't be afraid to ask a question anywhere in Fooldom. Folks around here are great about answering questions and clearing up misunderstandings.


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