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I admit - when I opened my IRA years ago I didn't have a clue. My financial advisor told me to do it and so I did - at that time it was as involved in my money as I cared to be.
I was very fortunate in the recent market downturn and my stocks have mostly recovered, with the exception of a couple of stocks (microsoft and intel which have been tremendous, and I'm not planning to sell them) the stocks in my portfolio have given lackluster returns even during the big bull. I am sitting on an over diversified a portfolio (27 stocks in all - far more than I can keep track of) most of which are companies that had major gains early on (in the eighties)and not much after. Several have the earmarks of companies in big financial trouble - negative cash flow, tremendous borrowing, huge drops in sales...
I'f I'd taken a more active interest in my own IRA's before I would have noticed that I was sitting on some really stupid stocks (PNJA??!!) that my broker thought would be a good idea and might have been for the first year - typical stupid investor handing the reigns over to a "pro".

All in all though - my returns have been good, so he did something right - If microsoft and intel wern't part of the portfolio I'd be singing a differant tune though.
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