IRAs and HSAs

I’d like to cover two topics with this post, and get some advice from our readers on them. The first being my Roth IRA, and then some musings regarding HSAs. So read on and let me know what you think.

401k Redux

In this article I will discuss changing your future contributions, rebalancing your 401(k), and one “advanced” tactic you can use to take advantage of dips in the market.

Intro to 401k Part 2

Last week, we introduced 401(k) retirement plans and focused on their main two benefits:

  1. Tax Benefits.
  2. Employer Match

This week we’ll close out the discussion with a little talk on Roth 401(k)s and some tips for choosing Funds inside your 401(k).

How to Get Started: The Basics

In my last article, I discussed starting my portfolio, and a strategy for allocating assets efficiently while keeping the number of accounts and fees manageable. As I stated in that article I think it’s very important for those of us who want to eventually become more involved with individual stock investing to have only a small portion of our funds in a brokerage account. Because we’re very inexperienced, risking too much of our portfolio with individual stocks can leave us open to a lot of unnecessary risk. That’s why I advocate starting simply by learning the basics then building a foundation of a few stock and bond mutual funds, before allocating more to individual stocks.

This strategy may not be exciting, but to paraphrase Ben Graham, author of The Intelligent Investor, true investing should be boring. By learning the basics we can understand the full range of investments available and how to maximize their returns. We can then invest in relatively safe but consistently well-performing mutual funds. Not only do mutual funds provide instant diversification, but they also give us focus as we continue to learn about more advanced investing topics. As I will mention again, we have a lot to worry about when we’re just starting out. There’s no need to add risky investments to that list before we’re ready.

Getting started in the Market

What follows is a question posed to us after Jason’s article last week. As well as my response to that question. I hope to have answered the reader’s questions completely, and I hope that my response proves valuable as well. I’ve left the response as is, and I’ll be covering different sorts of investments and other strategies in weeks to come, as I build my own confidence and knowledge. I’ll close with a few comments that cover some areas that I feel my original response did not adequately address.

I read your Savings Speech article today, and it was not unlike many time-value-of-money articles I have read in the past. I am curious, though, what type of investment you would expect to see an average 9% return from?