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My company offers a Simple Retirement Plan of matching dollar for dollar up to 3%. The broker my company deals with suggests that they do not offer no load mutual funds in this Simple Retirement Plan. What would be best in the long run for me.. to invest in mutual funds with all of their attached load fees till retirement age or various individual stocks? Will I have more money working for me if I choose to invest in an individual or many stocks verses mutual funds? I just don't know what kind of management fees and commission fees (front/back load) fees are associated with individual stocks. I would probably choose to invest a year or two in Intel and let it ride for 20-25 years then choose another and so on and so on for the long haul. Will I have just as good of a return the stock route or better one with the mutual fund route?
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Greetings, Huntinpicketlint, and welcome. You wrote:

<<My company offers a Simple Retirement Plan of matching dollar for dollar up to 3%. The broker my company deals with suggests that they do not offer no load mutual funds in this Simple Retirement Plan. What would be best in the long run for me.. to invest in mutual funds with all of their attached load fees till retirement age or various individual stocks? Will I have more money working for me if I choose to invest in an individual or many stocks verses mutual funds? I just don't know what kind of management fees and commission fees (front/back load) fees are associated with individual stocks. I would probably choose to invest a year or two in Intel and let it ride for 20-25 years then choose another and so on and so on for the long haul. Will I have just as good of a return the stock route or better one with the mutual fund route? >>

Around Fooldom, we believe one should never turn down the Free Money that comes from an employer contribution to a retirement plan. In your case, it's a matter of where you may invest without the loads the present plan administrator imposes. Be aware that in a SIMPLE-IRA you have the option of moving those funds to another SIMPLE-IRA provider. Your employer does not have to make direct contributions to a provider you select for yourself, but the broker designated to receive the initial contributions must do so when you so request. The broker can (and in this case probably will) charge you a liquidation fee for doing so.

You should check with other brokers or fund families to find one that will accept your SIMPLE account. When you find one that does, then you will have greater freedom in your investment choices by having the money transferred there.

Regards..Pixy
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Find out the entire fee structure. Once you know it, there are various calculators that will tell you if the SIMPLE is a better deal, or if ignoring the plan and investing in a taxable account is a better deal. The dollar-for-dollar matching is wonderful, giving you nearly a 100% return on your investment. Nearly, because of the fees.

If you pick individual stocks, your performance will depend on the commissions & on your ability to pick stocks. If you pick mutual funds, your performance will depend on the loads, on your ability to pick the right fund, and on the fund managers' ability to pick the right stocks.

A commission on stocks is not the same as a load. A load is a fixed percentage of the whole dollar amount. A commission is a fixed dollar amount, no matter how much you have in assets.
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