Fidelity can be a great place to build a low-cost, diversified portfolio.
If you share the funds available in your plan, you'd probably get some helpful input. If you want the best input, see this thread for what information to provide.
Now if one said something like, "I can choose Fidelity or Vanguard or TIAA-CREF or American funds, then which one should I choose?", then that's a different more narrowed question.
Go to 403Bwise.com and educate yourself before you make any irrevocable decisions. And also be aware that there are a few "good" annuities (like TIAA-CREF's) and many "bad" annuities.
Don't completely take my word for this - be skeptical of all advice you get (including mine.) But please make sure you go into your decision with your eyes opened via self- education.
My frame of reference is studying in great detail the 403B options offered to my daughter at a hospital she worked at a few years ago. They were basically more favorable to the hospital and the provider than they were to her but you had to dig to figure that out.
(I can't say if TIAA-CREF would have given me problems or not if I had tried rolling the 403B over to Vanguard.)
plau wrote:I am almost 30 years old and am employed at a public university. I am just beginning to educate myself on investing. I currently contribute to my 403b plan which is through Fidelity. I was just wondering what opinions there are about Fidelity and if it would be wise to look into other companies.
Welcome to the forum! The way to pick your funds (and the custodian) is by the costs. You need to look for low expense ratios combined with low or no other management costs.
See the link below for how to get help specific to your situation.
livesoft wrote:With a 403(b), one has to use the funds that your employer makes available. One cannot just go out and invest in anything. So if Fidelity is what your employer offers in its 403(b), then it really doesn't matter what opinions folks have about Fidelity because that's what you have to use.
However, it may matter in your decision whether to invest in the 403(b) or elsewhere. You'll surely want to invest enough to get any match from your employer (which is an instant 100% or 50% return on your money), but beyond that, the quality of your 403(b) is an important consideration in the decision whether to invest more in the 403(b) or in something else such as a Roth IRA (which can be invested with any provider).
Fidelity is usually a good provider, with a selection of low-cost funds, but the specific options in your 403(b), or any extra fees imposed by the provider, can make a Fidelity 403(b) a bad investment.
retiredjg wrote:The way to pick your funds (and the custodian) is by the costs. You need to look for low expense ratios combined with low or no other management costs.
There is a lot more to picking a fund (and custodian) than costs. I think costs could be the final deciding factor between two similar funds. But that is not the primary reason to pick a fund.
Start by figuring out your risk tolerance and desired asset allocation. Keep it simple until you have $50,000 or so in assets, meaning about 3 funds.
Then find the funds that match your goals.
Lastly, use costs to distinguish between similar funds.
To keep things really simple, use a target retirement fund by looking to see which one has the stock/bond ratio that is closest to your desired allocation. (This is better than selecting a target retirement fund with a year which is close to when you turn 60 or 65.)
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