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  1. I am a part of the Negotiations team and I will try to add language into the contract which will hopefully protect the teachers. It would be nice if someone has seen prior language that protects teachers in contract. I have approached our new Business Admin. about 403(b)'s and the new regs. We were not able to talk much but she mentioned something about having all of the 403(b) companies agreeing to something about sharing information with each company and that Vanguard was most likely not to agree with it. Has anyone ever heard about this agreement to share information with each company, and if it is neccessary. Thanks, steve Steve, I think it is a great idea to include in the contract specific 403b options. I would recommend working with the district to develop a plan that provides excellent investment choices and compliance with the applicable regulations.
  2. Our local is a small union so even if it was allowed, I do not think they could handle that. In fact, I know they could not. I would not trust the state union to do it. ScottyD, Please keep me informed with Vanguard. I spent too many hours fighting for Vanguard to see them taken away and would like to prevent this. steve Intruder, you are incorrect. Ssarles, the main issue is whether a low cost provider can be had that also complies with the new regs - at this point we just don't know. We need to see how Vanguard complies. I've heard some bad things about Vanguard's internal system that could lead to it having troubles complying. I am trying to find out exactly what the problem might be so that I can address it with them. ScottyD
  3. Four years ago I was successful in getting Vanguard into my school and in those years Vanguard has earned the largest share of teachers who participate in a 403(b). The school business administrator who agreed with me that Vanguard should be added just left a few months ago and we now have a new one with whom I have yet to discuss retirement plans. I am concerned that with the new regs and a new business administrator that the insurance companies may try to push out Vanguard by reducing the amount of vendors. This maybe an empty fear, but I would rather be proactive. Since our contract will be renegotiated this year and I am on the negotiations team, we also have the perfect opportunity to have something put into our contract that might prevent this. Does anyone have any language that has been put into a contract that protects the rights of teachers to have access to a low cost provider? Are there any other ideas that may not be contractual but will also safeguard the low cost providers? Thank you. steve
  4. ssarles

    Nj 457 Plan

    Joel, I do not disagree that the NJEA should lobby to improve the 457 plan and then lobby to have teachers able to contribute to the plan. However, I think the NJEA has not done their homework on retirement plans. In my local I had the approval of the union president to do what I thought was best to improve the retirement plans and I was able to get Vanguard for the 403B and looks like Fidelity for the 457. I wish I was able to get the ear of the NJEA president as easily. I also think it is not likely that the NJEA will fight for this at this moment since there is a greater concern for protecting the pension and the issue of spending caps on school districts. Steve The NJEA should place its dog in the fight and lobby for a change in the law that will allow local employers such as school districts to opt into the plan. After accomplishing that they should lobby the Deferred Compensation Board to revert back to the no-load investment lineup. They know damn well that the 403b sharks have been mutilating teachers for 45 years. Their unwillingness not to place their dog in the fight is simply a tacit endorsement of the 403b sharks to continue to do their mutilating. Here is a classic example of the average dues paying teacher being out to lunch for 45 years. Joel
  5. If you are retired, why dont you just roll the money over to an IRA. No need for a 90-24. steve
  6. ssarles

    Traditional Ira

    Yes you can fund a traditional IRA directly through a mutual fund company. I fund mine through Vanguard. The only requirements the mutual fund company will have is a minimum initial investment. Vanguard requires a $1000 initial investment in the STAR fund and then $3000 for most of the other funds. Other companies do not require a minimum investment but will require a regular investment of money. If you qualify for a traditional IRA then it is tax deductible. There is a $4000 limit for most investors and I believe the catch up is a $1000 more for those who are fifty and above. I do not believe you can fund an IRA through a salary reduction. You will have to fund it with money that has been taxed and then deduct it during tax time. You are still able to fund your 2006 IRA until April 17th of this year. If you want to make your IRA contributions very simple once you set up the IRA you can usually set up an automatic contribution to the IRA. I am paid twice a month so twice a month I contribute to my IRA. The money is direct deposited to my account on the 15th and 30th and then Vanguard withdrawals it on the same day. I never miss the money. steve quote name='kev' date='Jan 25 2007, 04:03 PM' post='12038'] OK - I previously posted about poor investment options in regard to my wife's 457 plan. This is an incredibly basic question, but it is something I really don't know that much about - traditional IRA's. I invest through T. Rowe Price in a 403b, my wife has a roth IRA (Which does not allow for tax deduction). As I have a 403b, and my wife has the option of a 457, can she invest in a traditional IRA straight through a mutual fund co. (vanguard or TRP for example)? Would the contributions be tax deductible? How do you fund a traditional IRA - is it pretax withdrawals from a paycheck, or can you pay with after tax money and then deduct it? This seems like it should be simple, but I don't understand traditional IRA's very well. Thanks for the help!
  7. ssarles

    Roth 403b

    My wife can contribute to a Roth 403B plan through Fidelity. steve Try all the other no-load firms?
  8. ssarles

    Nj 457 Plan

    Joel, I believe the only way that this can change is by writing to the state senators, assemblymen, the gov, and/or the State Treasurer. The most powerful voice would be the C.W.A, since I believe they represent most of the state workers, but I think they will be more interested in preventing the state from rolling back any of the pension benefits than trying to negotiate lower fees on the 457plan. The NJEA does not have a dog in this fight since teachers have no access to this plan. If one could get an audience with the state treasurer or whatever financial committee that is run at the Statehouse then that might be the best chance for change. steve And Steve, the SACT plan's expenses are paid for by the taxpayer. 100 cents on the dollar is invested. Imagine an expense ratio of zero basis points. So the state goes from that low cost extreme to a high cost 457(b) Plan with Prudential. These people do not have a clue! NYC employees including teachers have both a 457 and 401k with Target Date retirement funds charging 21 basis points. What are we chop liver? Let's do something about it. Any ideas? Joel
  9. ssarles

    Nj 457 Plan

    The 4 state-managed funds are closed to new money. I believe they have been closed out to new money for over a year. I also believe that the state hired Mercer Investment Consulting to advise them what to do with their administration of the 457 plan and they advised the State to go with Prudential. As I recall in the Codey and McGreevy administrations there was a push for the state to turn over some if not all of the pension money to private managers. I imagine that turning over the 457 administration to a third party was a "logical" step in their thought process. Before this happened, I was going to write to my assemblymen that the 457 plan should be opened up to teachers as the SACT plan (a 403b plan) is which I believe is still run by the State. The state could actually take some pride in the way they managed the SACT plan since it beat the S&P 500 over a 10 year period. steve
  10. I believe we will have access to all funds including the Spartan funds, but I will not know for sure for a few more weeks. steve
  11. Last time I contacted Vanguard about a 457 which was in 2004, they told me they did not offer any. I contacted Fidelity and they said they would be happy to set up a plan at our school. After about two years my school business administrator said that Fidelity will be set up as a 457 plan starting this January. Unless something has happened that he has not told me, there will be no middle man. At least from my experience you can cut out the middle man. Last time I contacted Vanguard about a 457 which was in 2004, they told me they did not offer any. I contacted Fidelity and they said they would be happy to set up a plan at our school. After about two years my school business administrator said that Fidelity will be set up as a 457 plan starting this January. Unless something has happened that he has not told me, there will be no middle man. With this addition our school will have Vanguard as a 403b option and Fidelity as the 457 option. steve
  12. ssarles


    At least with the 403B which I imagine is similar to their 457 plan the 24 dollar charge by Fidelity is for your total account not for each fund that you own. I own three mutual funds in a 403b with Fidelity and they take out a total of 24 dollars a year for the account not 36 dollars so they are basically charging me 8 dollars for each fund. If I wanted to open up 24 mutual funds, I still would only be charged a total of 24 dollars. Needless to say, 24 dollars a year is not that much money at all. If you are looking for an index fund, it will be difficult to beat the ten basis points that Fidelity charges. steve quote name='SAVING4LATER' date='Oct 25 2006, 07:51 PM' post='10896'] Additional...... I spoke to the folks at Fidelity and they advised me they do charge a 24.00 annual fee which they do not waive and whatever the mutual fund itself charges. So an investor that places his or her money for example in their version of the total stock market index funds pays 10 basis points on behalf of the mutual fund expense and 24.00 per year account maint. fee. All of Fidelity's open ended funds are available and all of which are no-load. This seems like a pretty good deal. I am still waiting to hear from TIAA CREf, T ROWE PRICE and ICMA. Has anyone already done this research and knows which company will charge the least in fees aside from the already given mutual fund fees. Thanks
  13. ssarles

    457 Vendors

    I do not know about T. Rowe Price, but I contacted Vanguard about a year ago in order to try to set them up as a 457 plan provider at our school as they are one of our providers for our 403B. However, they said that they do not do that for a 457 plan. I had better luck with Fidelity. They said they would set up a 457 plan and my business administrator said that he only wants to attend a meeting to avoid some of the mistakes other schools have made with 457 plans before he sets it up. Fidelity told me that there was no minimum amount of dollars or people that they require to set it up. Good luck in getting one of them. It took me three years to get Vanguard added as a 403b provider and I am in my third year trying to get Fidelity added as a 457 provider Steve
  14. You could also use your IRA to diversify.
  15. While Vanguard does have a 3,000 dollar minimum for many of its fund, it does not apply to 403(b) plans if you are contributing on a monthly basis. I just added a fund to my 403(b) account with Vanguard and it had less than 3000 dollars in it. We added Vanguard as a vendor about two years ago and there was no overall minimum amount of dollars that had to be invested for Vanguard to open up an account with us. The only requirement was that the School had to do everything electronically which the business administrator was very happy to do. We are in the final process of adding Fidelity as a 457 provider and they also do not require any dollar minimum to be invested and all of their funds will be open to us. steve Right. And these funds are an "average" of what? These funds are probably the cheapest 1% of mutual funds available anywhere and they probably are not available in systematic investment plans without fairly substantial minimums. Please explain the relevance of a loan application fee. Vanguard also has a $15 annual fee per fund in their 403b accounts as well as a $3000 minimum, also, you can't compare target ret funds with actively managed funds, the fees are much lower. Fidelity Spartan Total Market Index would be a great fund at 7 basis points-oh, whoops, I forgot, minimum investment $100,000.
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