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pauleckler writes (in part):

If your 401K has good options, you can beat that in a taxable account only with investment options that can yield over 30% consistently. (If your tax bracket is 28%, and index fund earns 20%, your taxable investment must earn 27.8% to be equivalent).

I reply:

Not necessarily. Remember that taxes in the taxable account likely will be paid at the 20% capital gains rate, whereas withdrawals from the 401(k) will be taxed as ordinary income. Often, this factor makes a taxable account more advantageous than a 401(k) with no matching. But (as always) the only way to be sure is to run the numbers. --Bob
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