What Should You Do with Your 401(k)?

February 25, 2019
Most people with a 401(k) realize it's critical to achieving their retirement goals, but what's the best way to take care of it and help it grow?

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After you listen

  • If you'd like to try a retirement calculator or learn more about how 401(k)s work, visit workplace.schwab.com.
  • You can also find tips to help you prioritize your savings goals at Schwab's Savings Fundamentals.
  • And if you'd like to help shape the future direction of the show, please consider taking this brief survey.
  • If you'd like to try a retirement calculator or learn more about how 401(k)s work, visit workplace.schwab.com.
  • You can also find tips to help you prioritize your savings goals at Schwab's Savings Fundamentals.
  • And if you'd like to help shape the future direction of the show, please consider taking this brief survey.

A recent survey of people participating in 401(k) plans revealed that 62% of them expect their 401(k) to be their biggest source of income in retirement. But if these accounts are so critical to retirement, why are they so often neglected? In this episode Mark Riepe talks with experts from the world of retirement plan services: Catherine Golladay and Nathan Voris. They discuss saving strategies and the major stumbling blocks that can prevent you from maximizing your 401(k).

You can read more about how 401(k)s have evolved in these studies:

  • "Defined Contribution Pension Plans: Determinants of Participation and Contribution Rates," Journal of Financial Services Research, 2007, Gur Huberman, Sheena S. Iyengar, and Wei Jiang.
  • "Increasing Saving Behavior Through Age-Progressed Renderings of the Future Self," Journal of Marketing Research, November 2011, Hal E. Hershfield, Daniel G. Goldstein, William F. Sharpe, Jesse Fox, Leo Yeykelis, Laura L. Carstensen, and Jeremy N. Balinesen.

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The information provided here is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered an individualized recommendation or personalized investment advice. The investment strategies mentioned here may not be suitable for everyone. Each investor needs to review an investment strategy for his or her own particular situation before making any investment decision.

Diversification strategies do not ensure a profit and do not protect against losses in declining markets.

All expressions of opinion are subject to change without notice in reaction to shifting market conditions. Data contained herein from third-party providers is obtained from what are considered reliable sources. However, its accuracy, completeness or reliability cannot be guaranteed.

Any examples are hypothetical and provided for illustrative purposes only.

This information does not constitute and is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax, legal, or investment planning advice. Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, Schwab recommends consultation with a qualified tax advisor, CPA, financial planner, or investment manager.

Vesting means ownership of your account or your entitlement to benefits. You are always 100% vested in any contributions that you make to your retirement plan, even if you leave your employer. However, depending on what type of retirement plan you have and the choices your employer has made about the benefits under the plan, vesting of employer contributions may be immediate or may take up to seven years. Your plan’s disclosure documents will contain the specific vesting schedule.

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