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  1. Tony, I double checked the fees. I called Ohio Deferred and asked what other fees there were beyond the .25 % fee. I was told there was no other fees because it's a non-profit organization, with salaried employees. No matter how I tried to reframe the question, I was told my invested money minus .25 was all I'd pay. There's also no fee to redeem LifePath shares. The new prospectus will be on the website in a few weeks, because they just switched from the actively managed strategy to an index strategy. But fees went from .45 with the active managed to .25 with the index switch. The percentages of where they invest the money is: 2020 fund large cap stocks 30.8 small and mid cap stocks 8.9 international stocks 16.6 real estate 5.2 inflation-linked bond(TIPS) 5.2 nominal bond 33.4 cash 0.0 2015 fund large cap stocks 26.0 small and mid cap stocks 8.2 international stocks 14.2 real estate 3.9 inflation-linked bond (TIPS) 6.5 nominal bonds 41.2 cash 0.0 I hope this is the information you were asking me to show. I have an appointment on Friday with a retirement planning specialist with Ohio Deferred Compensation. If there's any other questions you think I should ask regarding target date or index funds, please feel free to point it out to me!! I will ask once more about other fees. Thank you, Anne
  2. Hi, I recently wrote to the 403(b) discussion forum, under the subject "My 403(b) vendor list". My school district also offers a 457, which I had already signed up for in July. (I was checking out 403(b)s , in case of saving even more.) For the 457, I signed up with Ohio Deferred Compensation, the states non-profit program. Because I'm not savy about stocks, I signed up for the Barclay's LifePath Target-Date Portfolio. It's the index-version of the Barclay's LifePath with an annual expense of .25%. I'm learning more about index funds on this website and through reading more. I read discussions about Vanguard index funds and have since noticed that Ohio Deferred Compensation offers these Vanguard index funds: Vanguard Total International Stock Index - expense = .34 Vanguard Small-Cap Index - expense = .09 Vanguard Institutional Index - expense =.05 Vanguard Total Bond Market Index - expense = .08 I wondered if it was wiser to invest in the index funds vs. the Life Path Target-Date Funds. Is more information needed about year to date returns, or past returns before giving an opinion? I'm 52 years old with 8 more years until I retire. Thanks for any advice!
  3. Hi Tony, I think I wasn't scared, but more alerted that there was something else I needed to learn more about. Your note prompted me to research more, and so I've read some articles by John Bogle about keeping your age in mind regarding bonds. I'm getting a clearer picture of how I can invest my IRA and other after tax money, with Spartan funds or Vanguard index funds. I'm closer to decision making and how best to save for retirement. Thanks for all your input!! I'm so grateful to have found teachers, in the same boat as me, that I can talk to about these money matters! THANK YOU!
  4. Anne, I'm going to butt in even though I'm not Tony, I hope you don't mind. The question of what percentage of your portfolio goes into equities depends on a lot of variables: do you have other sources of savings, investment or retirement income? Do you have a large amount of equity in a house, and do you expect to sell it and "downsize" in retirement? If you can count on a substantial pension, you may not need to take much money out of your portfolio right away upon retirement, and might think of the "target date" as being some years beyond your actual retirement date, as the time you'll actually begin substantial withdrawals. If you want this portfolio to provide you a lifetime source of income, think about how the money will grow across your whole lifetime, which means planning for 30 or 35 years beyond your retirement date. If you're fortunate enough that you expect to leave part of your portfolio to an heir, you can move that date out even further--think of investing for your heir's timeframe. There's also an emotional aspect to this choice. If you are going to lose sleep or --even worse-- panic and sell your stocks if the value of your portfolio drops by more than, say, 30%, then you should reduce your equity exposure to the point that you'll be comfortable staying the course. We've just been through a situation where all-equity portfolios dropped in some cases more than 50%. How did you handle it? If the thought of 65% stocks makes you very nervous, than it's too much stock for you, even if the statistics suggest that's a sensible figure. That fundadvice.com site (which I have no connection to, by the way, I've just found it to be an exceptionally information-rich web site) has a chart showing the amount of volatility and average rate of return over several decades of portfolios with various bond/stock mixes. You might find that useful. Hi whyme, I see what you're saying about considering all the variables that apply to me personally, plus how willing am I to take risks....I need to analyze my circumstances along with thinking about the emotional aspect. I understand! I found the chart at fundadvice.com, under Must-Read Retirement Articles- "Fine Tuning Your Asset Allocation". Thank you for more educating, I appreciate it! I hope others can benefit from studying the chart, too. Thanks, again.
  5. Tony, I told you I was going to move my Fidelity Freedom Fund to Vanguard's Target Retirement Fund. I will retire in June of 2017, which is between 2015 and 2020. I put my IRA in Freedom Fund 2020, unsure of which I should choose between.....Perhaps that risk level is too high! See below: Freedom Fund 2020 = @ 64% stock. Freedom Fund 2015 = @ 52% stock. Vanguard Target Retirement 2020 = @ 68% stock. Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 = @ 61% stock. Given I'm 52 years old and 8 years from retirement, are you thinking I should be in the 2015 Funds? Even Vanguard's 2015 is high in the percent of stocks! Thanks for your advice!
  6. Hi whyme, Thanks for the input about Spartan funds at Fidelity. Also, I'll check into the fundadvice.com website to learn more. I appreciate the information from experienced investors!!
  7. Tony, Thank you for all the information about Vanguard. I'm going to check into moving/initiating my next Roth with them. I'm still going to try to find like minded teachers who want to add a better vendor to our list! But, I can work on my own Roth and after tax funds, too, in case we don't get a new vendor. Yesterday I got an email from the Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company agent, (VALIC). We had met once for information. She said it would only take 10 - 15 minutes to sign up and wanted to know when I would like to meet to sign paperwork. I'm not going that direction! Thanks again, Ellen
  8. Hi Dan, Thank you for showing me the 403bcompare website. I looked up every company written on my list. I did a search for 403b product information in Ohio. I couldn't come up with a similar website for Ohio, so I will have to stick to emailing or calling companies, or reading prospectives on the internet. My companies listed don't look promising, as far as fees go. The Roth is a definite for me, and I'm continuing to learn where I should invest after tax dollars. Thank you for writing your book Teach and Retire Rich. I have learned so much from your book, and it has spawned more interest and learning about taking control of my own money. I recommend it to teachers researching at this website!! Sincerely, Anne
  9. Hi Tony, Thank you for the quick response, I appreciate it. I currently do a $5,000. Roth every year, through a financial advisor. I never relied on myself, just let the advisor tell me where to put my money. I'm no longer interested in adding money to that account, given what I now understand about loads. This year I put my 2009 Roth with Fidelity, in the Freedom Fund. I'm not savy about stock so I did the target age fund. I did the Freedom Fund, but now I read how Vanguard has cheaper expense ratio. So, if I go with a target age fund again, maybe I should do my Roth with Vanguard next year. I read the phrases "tax managed and index funds". Can you tell me the specific names of recommended tax managed and index funds at Fidelity, (or any other fund company)? You said to invest in bonds using the Roth. Can you also name some of them? If my vendor's list is poor, I'll have to save with these funds. You see so many names of funds, it becomes overwhelming to someone new to managing their own funds. Thanks in advance!
  10. Hello, Could I ask for some guidance? These are the vendors on my school's 403(b) list: Horan Securities American Fidelity Mass Mutual AXA Equitable Great West Life and Annuity Oppenhiemer TransAmerica Variable Annuity Life Insurance Co I'm confused by Great West. Their website - gwrs.com, and the Educator$Money.gwrs - says they have low fees, yet, I haven't read any great positives about the company in my searches at 403(b)wise. And when I emailed them with questions, I got an email back from Horan Securities. Great West had contacted Horan and forwarded my questions to them. Horan emailed that they represent Great West for my school district. Great West's website said no load, but Horan had previously told me they sold loaded funds. With this list, am I better off maxing out a Roth, plus doing after tax investment (with target age retirement funds or stock index funds, or something else), than going with vendors on my list? At my district, if 5 people want a new vendor, the new vendor will be added to the list. I believe you'll tell me to get 5 people to request Fidelity or Vanguard or TIAA-CREF! I've been reading many of your posts! Thanks in advance, Anne
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