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screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 08:14 AM   #1
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screwed by my 401k?

I've been maxing out my 401k for a few years now, putting it all into the S&P 500 index fund. (Target retirment date is in 15 years or so.) Recently I figured it might be nice to diversify some, so I checked out the other funds. Turns out they all have significant loads. I can understand that managed funds have higher operating expenses, but what's with those loads? It sounds like I don't have any options besides those funds. Should I put some money in there anyway, or effectively save 5% more by sticking with the S&P 500? Here's my options (poorly formatted, but you get the idea):
Fund Load Total Annual Fund Operating Expenses
AIM FINANCIAL SERVICES FD CL A
ALLIANZ OCC RENAISSANCE FUND A 5.50% 1.26%
CALVERT SOCIAL INVST FD EQUITY 4.75% 1.25%
DREYFUS PREMIER TECH GR CL A 5.75% 1.42%
EV WORLDWIDE HEALTH SCIENCES 5.75% 1.80%
FIDELITY ADV MID CAP FD CL T 3.50% 1.32%
HOTCHKIS&WILEY SM CP VAL A 5.25% 1.39%
ING INTERNATIONAL SMALLCAP A 5.75% 1.75%
ING INTL VALUE FD CL A 5.75% 1.61%
ML EUROFUND CL A 5.25% 1.30%
ML GLOBAL SMALLCAP FUND CL A 5.25% 1.45%
ML S&P 500 INDEX FUND CL I 0.00% 0.36%
UBS U.S. SMALL CAP GROWTH FUND 4.50% 0.85%
VAN KAMPEN EMERG GR FD CL A 5.75% 1.08%
VAN KAMPEN GRWTH & INC FD CL A 5.75% 0.81%
FEDERATED INTL HIGH INC F CL A 4.50% 1.78%
PHOENIX DUFF & PHELPS RL EST A 5.75% 1.83%
DREYFUS PREM GNMA FD CL A 4.50% 1.09%
PIMCO REAL RETURN BD FD CL A 3.75% 1.50%
PIMCO TOTAL RETURN FUND CL A 3.75% 0.90%
ML RETIREMENT RESERVES
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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 08:25 AM   #2
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Bet 75% of them under performed the S&P ... I'ld stay with the index.
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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 09:02 AM   #3
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Ick. At that point I think I'd consider reducing my 401k contributions to the minimum that I'd still get the full employer match (if any), and put my money into my own IRA/Roth or even a taxable account.
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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 10:00 AM   #4
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Do I understand that your funds within your 401k have a LOAD ?
I personally would NEVER buy a loaded fund. There are too many no-load funds out there that are as good and mostly likely better.

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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 10:03 AM   #5
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Perhaps you could talk with HR dept about this issue. If enough employees cared, you might be able to effect some change in options. After all, the 401k is supposed to be for your benefit.
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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 10:31 AM   #6
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

It looks like your 401k is with Merrill Lynch as a plan administrator. In the 401k plans ML handles all of the loads are waived, you do not pay them. You can call the 800 number to confirm this.

-Jay

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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 11:25 AM   #7
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Thanks for all your replies.

Jay is right. I just confirmed with our CFO that we don't pay sales load on the funds in our 401k plan. So now I get to figure out which ones to diversify into.

Thanks, Jay. I never would have thought to ask that question. I'm surprised ML doesn't list that information very prominently on their website somewhere.

Tim
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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 02:37 PM   #8
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Quote:
I'm surprised ML doesn't list that information very prominently on their website somewhere.

Tim
Do you think ML wants you to think loads are bad?

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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-22-2005, 07:50 PM   #9
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Quote:
Do you think ML wants you to think loads are bad?
Well, at least they could post something like:
We regret that this 401k program does not include the 'load feature' that many mutual funds offer. :-)

Tim
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Re: screwed by my 401k?
Old 04-23-2005, 09:34 PM   #10
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Re: screwed by my 401k?

Well, at least they could post something like:
We regret that this 401k program does not include the 'load feature' that many mutual funds offer.


LOL! That's pretty much sums up the way the big brokerage houses love loads.
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