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Retirement and Savings options

January 9, 2008

I took $1000 out of my high yeild savings account and directed it into my Roth IRA for 2008.

I could have funded the whole year with savings, but I don’t feel that I have the approrpriate cushion in my savings, especially with a cross country move coming up. Besides that, with markets being so shaky, I’m not sure I want to throw dollar cost averaging out the window this year. I wouldn’t be surprised if the market recovers nicely, but I also wouldn’t be surprised if it declines as well. I’m not an expert.

Since I’m leaving this job, I’m going to have the option of rolling my 401k (about 16k) into a regular IRA. Since my MAGI is less than $100k, I will also have the opportunity to convert it to a Roth IRA. I’ll have to look at whether or not I can take the tax hit in 2008, and the pro’s and cons of doing this.

Another thing I want to look at once I’m settled in Cali is moving a large chunk of my HYSA to a money market fund, specifically the tax exempt California one offered by Vanguard. My after tax return might be able to beat out my current high yeild savings accounts, especially since I’m not rate chasing. This article by The Finance Buff which suggests it may be so. It’ll make more of a difference if I itemize deductions (I usually take the standard), so I’ll have to do a little research on this. Or another option: TIPs? I have heard a lot about them, but my knowledge is limited. A high yield savings account is a great start, but I think I’m ready to see what else is out there and make sure I’m getting the best deal.

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