What Should I Do With My 401K?

Q:  The economy seems to be very unsettled again.  Do you think I should take my money out of retirement and put into cds and IRA roths?  Or keep it where it is and hope it settles down?

Val:  You will only actually realize a loss on your retirement accounts if you liquidate them.  If you have your money in a 401K or IRA retirement fund, and are too young to take the funds out without penalty, you will definately want to keep your money in the account.

[callout]Most retirement accounts, if liquidated, or when taking a distribution out of the fund, carry penalties and tax ramifications. [/callout]  Remember the old saying, “Buy low, sell high?”  It still is true today.  When the market is low, and you have the advantage of time, it is best to keep the money in the account and even add to it if possible.  Contibutions when the market is low will in fact buy you more shares of the fund you are contributing to, therefore, over time and when the market recovers you will actually have more value in the fund.

My personal opinion is to keep the money in the account, but evaluate your fund selections within the account to see if you want to move some of your distributions or money within the account, to make sure your choices are within your risk tolerance and financial goals based on your age.  Talk to your financial planner or the retirement fund representative and ask for help with evaluating your fund distribution.  That is their job, so use them to help you evaluate and manage your money.