Retirement Consolidation

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Retirement Consolidation

Postby investhat » Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:47 pm

Hi everyone! New to the forum, but have heard you all are excellent so I thought I'd reach out with a (hopefully) easy question.

I currently have a Vanguard account from my current employer, split between the Target 2050 retirement fund (VFIFX, rate of return on my investment is 5.31%), the Mid-Cap Growth Fund (VMGRX, 3.76%) and the Growth Equity Fund (VGEQX, 2.98%). I'm currently 28 years old.

I have $3307 in a 401(A) and $1643 in a 403(B) with Fidelity from a previous employer. Breakdown is:
401(A):
- FEXKX with 2.55% rate of return
- FSMVX with 5.00%
- FFTYX with 3.90%

403(B):
- FSEAX with 0.03%
- FHKCX with 0.23%
- FEXKX with -6.12%

I also have $8299 in an account with ING Plans (Blackrock LifePath 2050).

My wife also has a 403(B) account, but I don't have the specific numbers easy at hand. Less than $10,000 for sure.

All accounts went through the recession except my current employer's account. Most have recovered their initial value, accepting one of the 403(B) funds.

I'm admittedly under-informed about managing this money. Some questions:

1) Should I be rolling all of these over into a Vanguard IRA?
2) Are there tax implications for moving these from their current home into an IRA? Should I be rolling these over before the new year?
3) Is there a path for some (or all) of these funds to be moved into an account with more liquidity (in terms of a loan or a withdrawl) in case of emergency?
4) What else should I be thinking about that I'm not?

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Retirement Consolidation

Postby 2beachcombers » Thu Dec 27, 2012 11:05 am

I just convinced my son to roll over his old 401s. You have much better choices in investments. Take a look at your expense ratios in your 401s. FFTYX er= 94bp. Fidelity Spartan funds are in the
7bp range.
There are many threads on this forum to help you with your decision. Search and educate yourself.
There are no tax hits on the rollover
Read the wiki on expense ratios.
To make specific recommendations, you need to tell us more wrt your situation.

jerry
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Re: Retirement Consolidation

Postby Peter Foley » Thu Dec 27, 2012 1:33 pm

Because you would be moving funds from tax deferred to tax deferred, there are no income tax consequences. One advantage of a 403b account is that you can take a loan from that account. (That's not usually recommended, but it is an option.)
I think you would find that managing your investments would be easier if you consolidated. You also might rethink your strategy at some point in time. You are currently mixing Target Retirement funds with other index funds. This defeats the purpose of a Target Retirement fund which is trying to keep you invested at an asset allocation appropriate for your age and risk tolerance. Adding a midcap and a growth stock fund distorts those ratios. With a more consolidated portfolio you can hold fewer funds and achieve the same equity/bond mix. While there are different schools of thought, many who post here believe that having just a few funds is sufficient for diversification purposes and facilitates rebalancing when one's asset allocation is distorted by gains or losses of an asset class.
Related to asset allocation is the fact that it is advisable to hold one's bond allocation in tax deferred account to the extent possible and equities in tax deferred or taxable. You don't want bonds in you taxable accounts because interest is taxed at your income rate.
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