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Greetings, Pstnme, and welcome. You asked:

<<I have an annuity currently valued at 100k. Better to leave it? Take it out an begin to manage portfolio like a fool? Can the entire amount be transferred to a tax-deferred account (ira)? or will I have to pay a tax/penalty for early withdrawal? Help!? >>

I'll leave the "better" part to you. As to surrendering that annuity and moving the net proceeds elsewhere, that depends on how you purchased that vehicle. If you bought it within an IRA, then the money may be transferred to an IRA . If purchased as part of a retirement plan like a 403b, then you must have left that job before the proceeds can be transferred to an IRA. Also, some annuities will only let you move the money over a 10-year period.

If you bought that product with after-tax dollars and it's outside of an IRA or retirement plan, then you cannot transfer the proceeds to an IRA. Additionally, on surrender you must pay income taxes on any gain plus (if you're younger than age 59 1/2) a 10% early withdrawal penalty.

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