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I'm currently working as a contractor (which means no retirement benefits) and I'm interested in setting up an IRA for myself. After a bit of reading I've decided I want to put the money into an index fund. However, I've heard several people say that many companies offering IRAs don't give employees this option. My questions are:

What investment houses/brokerages offer IRAs that take advantage of index funds?

Can I deposit a lump sum of money into say a Roth IRA in order to take advantage of my maximum yearly contribution? (I have been saving, but not investing in an IRA up till now)

Finally, would it be wise to set up a similar account for my wife, who is provided an IRA by her employer, but does not receive any matching on contributions.

thanks in advance!!
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