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Thank you Peter and Fred for putting out thoughtful consideration. I understand the advantage of deferred tax growth advantage either in IRA or 401K. But when consider investment options offered in a regular brokage account, it is tempting to taking the money out, especially when only small amount will be taxed and penalized. Your advices certainly give me a second thought.

So ironically, the best situation regarding tax I can think of would be:

In some year ahead, both my wife and I lose job, and we have lowest income tax. Also, the new company's stock (old company's stock was converted to new one's to preserve cost basis) is doing very well. In a year like that, I can take the stock portion out and then sell immediately and invest it in stock of my choice at the time.

But in reality, such year is elusive in the future. Since I am heavily overweighted in the company's stock already, it may be prudent to diversify it. I didn't mention I also many company stocks in employee purchase plan and my wife holds 401k in the same company.

Thanks again for all the helpful thoughts!

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