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Tricia C.

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  1. I looked into both Fidelity and Vanguard's 2035 Target Date funds, and found it interesting that Fidelity's Freedom Fund 2035 actually invests more aggressively in equities (85%) compared to it's Vanguard counterpart (75%). Which does go back to what we all have been saying that AA is largely a personal thing! Ed, thanks for the helpful info on ETFs! I think that may not all be the case now.. My husband (inspired by my own financial legwork) went looking into his Robinhood account and said that the company has begun rolling out fractional share purchases (which includes its ETF offerings).
  2. Thanks for all the sound advice, Ed & Steve. You all are my financial "guardian angels" πŸ˜ŠπŸ‘Ό keeping me on the straight and narrow! As I decide on where to invest my Roth and extra $$, I came across ETFs. My husband loves them and invests in them on his Acorns app. I read about them but would like to know what you guys think of ETFs vs. Mutual Funds. Are there more advantages in investing in one over the other? Does your investment strategy include ETFs as well? If so, how do they factor into an effective investment strategy? PS. Steve: I'm about half way through your book πŸ™‚ . I read through the parts most helpful to my current situation, and went straight into "doing" mode with my own financial affairs to put in order.
  3. Thanks for the helpful advice, Ed. I currently have my Roth IRA with Fidelity and use it to invest 100% in stocks using the Dogs of the Dow approach for some years now. I do the Pups of the Dow and not all 10 of the dogs. I'm sure you've read about this approach to equity investing, https://www.dogsofthedow.com/. Would love to hear your thoughts about it if any! Having my Roth with Fidelity and after reading your response, I am leaning toward opening a taxable investment account with them to keep things in one place.
  4. I have so far maxed out my 403b and Roth IRA contributions. Currently deciding on which company to open my taxable account with--Vanguard or Fidelity. I was wondering if any of you may have strong opinions on one over the other. I recently found out that both have dropped all online trading fees for their funds as of January this year! Reading further on Fidelity products--back in 2018, they have come up with a line of Zero Expense Ratio index funds (link here: https://www.fidelity.com/why-fidelity/pricing-fees?imm_pid=700000001008518&immid=100766&imm_eid=ep18929948113&gclid=CjwKCAjwgdX4BRB_EiwAg8O8HQrkwej9MM0cv-64YRkqKJ_u0xnoe-V6q1E23hahf5VNlHogUmPrFxoCIVcQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds) No minimum $ to invest and all with a 0% expense ratio fee. Would you know if Vanguard would have similar products? Would also appreciate any thoughts you may have on these funds. After accounting for my CDs and HYS, I found out that I was actually a 66/34, and without Cash & CDs, I'm actually closer to a 80/20 with stocks & bonds!! For investment purposes, should I account for emergency fund, CDs, HYS when re-balancing my portfolio? Thanks!
  5. Can I just say that I am thoroughly enjoying the discussion and picking up a lot of things I'd want to read about later on...like FIRE (yup..I had to google that one up!). Summer's here and for me that usually means more time to flex my "financial literacy" muscles, of which this discussion has given me much fodder. I will definitely be referencing the different points raised here as I steer ahead in my own investment journey. I feel quite blessed and fortunate to be part of the 403bwise family. Thank you all for your valuable advice!
  6. Hi, Steve. Sorry, but I accidentally skipped over your earlier post and only read it now! Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Very sound advice for sure. Thank you! I think I am leaning toward adjusting my AA to be more conservative with age. I don't think I could stomach the volatility as I get closer to retirement (planned at age 62). I will be leaving my investments as they are right now, and plot out future adjustments based on resources you, Krow & Scott have mentioned (Boglehead and Vanguard). Although, I do find Ed's approach intriguing and way cool! I wish I had similar acuity with numbers and financial scenarios. Definitely will take some more study and reflection on my part πŸ™‚ On the side, I did purchase your Late Bloomer book some time last year, but have yet to make time to finish reading it (..a bad habit of mine with any book I pick up 😞 ).
  7. Wow. Thanks, MNGopher. That is what I am learning--it is a very personal decision. The resources and discussion all help me to formulate one that I can feel confident about. Thank you!
  8. It's always nice to hear different view points on the matter. Thank you for all the information and helpful discussion! I certainly have much reflection to do over the next several months as I decide what to do with my current allocations. Thanks again, gentlemen, and have a lovely weekend! 🌞
  9. Hello, I am seeking information on how to adjust my portfolio of mutual fund choices (or mix) to meet our age group. I know as we get older, more of our choices need to turn to more conservative funds. My husband and I are turning 45 this year, what percentage should we be investing in equities, and how much in other types of funds? The best option for me with my employer was Security Benefit NEA Direct Invest, and I've followed Ed LaFave's advice (Thanks, Ed!) and invested into the following funds: Vanguard Total Stock Market (at 52.5%), Vanguard Total International Stock Market (at 22.5%), and Vanguard Total Bond Market (at 25%). Ed (and others) if you see this, I would love to ask you if these percentages would still work for me at 45. And how should I adjust the percentages each year going forward? Some people take the "easy way" and purchase target-date mutual funds that self adjust as you get older. They of course carry a higher expense ratio, so I have tended to shy away from them. Finally, would the group have any additional resources they would recommend to facilitate this sort of planning? Thank you!!
  10. Thanks, Tony! Both my husband and I are turning 45 this year. At what age can you qualify for the 403b catch-up provisions? My next question (which I will try to articulate in a separate post) is how to adjust our portfolio of mutual fund choices to meet our age group. I know as we get older, more of our choices need to turn to more conservative funds.
  11. 🌟You guys are rock stars🌟 Thanks so much!! So grateful for all the helpful advice and information. And to Ed, I did switch over to Security Benefit NEA Direct Invest last year for my 403b with your advice, and have my investments under the Vanguard funds you described in your article. (I may have a follow up question to that about allocations, but will post it separately under a different 'topic')
  12. So someone from Public Employee Retirement Assistance (PERA) https://publicemployeeretirementassistance.com/ contacted me and said that they were going to educate me on 403b options offered by my employer (Prince George's County Public Schools). The initial email invite read: What I thought would be a non-biased discussion turned out to be a little of a sell on a fixed index universal life insurance policy with National Life Group. She called it a "growth annuity" that could help diversify my existing investments (403b, Roth, CDs, savings). She suggested that I shift some of my contributions from my Roth (for starters) into the IUL she seemed to be soft-selling. That's when the red flags started popping up for me. She made it sound appealing though that you get most of the benefits of a bull market and no risk to cash contributions during bear markets. She also talked about there being tax advantages to this type of investment: namely that money borrowed on this policy are tax free, and that you did not have to repay the loans (just that they would reduce the death benefit.) Lastly, she indicated that this was a good way to have a fixed income component that I could not outlive, and that this was a way to help cover long-term care costs (although didn't really get into the specifics on this point.) My questions are as follows: As a typical sales pitch went, there was a much greater focus on the benefits of this type of investment and very little information on the downside of this type of investment. What is the downside to investing in a fixed index universal life insurance policy? Is this type of diversification even needed beyond what I'm already doing? How else can I ensure that any future long-term care needs are met? I really value the knowledge I have gained from this forum, and hope you can help me understand more about this type of investment (i.e. under what circumstances would an IUL make sense,) and any other light you care to shed on this subject. Thanks, Tricia
  13. Thanks for the valuable advice, Krow! I have yet to check out their website, and will definitely reach out to the 403bwise community if there's something I'm not sure about. Thanks again!
  14. Krow, can you please direct me to jebjebitz post with the SB office number? Would love to read that discussion thread as well. Thanks!!
  15. Thanks, Krow. I found the page you were referring to! Ditto, Whyme. That was the same method I used to located their fee information. Makes me wonder how the info Krow found reconciles with the information on the Retirement Plan Fees page? Or are these fees in addition to the annual 0.14% mentioned?
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