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Hello from Ohio
Old 10-24-2010, 02:09 PM   #1
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Hello from Ohio

Hi there. My name is Michael, from Ohio, and I'm 28 years old and new to the forums. I am looking forward to being active on these forums and taking in some great advice from everyone, and as time goes on, give back some of the knowledge I gain.

I know jyllbean83 posted a similar thread to mine just earlier this week, so I hate to be repetitive, but am curious on what others think about my personal situation. As I mentioned, I am 28 years old. I just graduated an MBA program in May. I was working as a contractor with a financial services firm and then brought on full time as of October 1. I currently have about 7K in a Roth IRA, another 4K invested in an index fund, about 500 in other securities. I am about to set up my 401K with my employer at a 10% contribution (they will match 5%), and I am also contributing about 1-2% of my salary towards company stock purchases (we purchase at a 5% discount).

My bank account is rather thin due to being a full time student the past two years. I also incurred debt as a student and have about 2K left on 14K in credit card debt I've been paying down. But that said, my goal is to pay the credit card debt I incurred before and during business school off so that I am no longer in credit card debt. I plan to stash away an emergency fund as soon as my credit card is completely gone (should be in about a month).

I do have around 100K in student loans at a 7% interest rate that isn't going away any time soon.

So, I am just curious what others think I could possibly be doing to prepare for retirement and save. I am always curious to hear about what others think based on their own experiences.

Thanks for any insight and I am excited to be a part of these forums!
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Old 10-24-2010, 04:04 PM   #2
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1) Spend less than you earn
2) focus on saving 20% of gross pay
3) direct 15% of gross pay to retirement accounts (for example 10% to 401k and 5% to a Roth)
4) direct 5% of gross pay to short term needs (like stock options, emergency fund, saving for a house or paying down student loan debt).
5) with investing, focus on asset allocation

Enjoy life, it is really short. I can think of 3 friends which died before age 50, and 2 of them were under 40. My 40 yo brother is battling cancer, so live life, plan for future, and enjoy life- every minute you have is one you cannot get back.
Light travels faster than sound. That is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak. One person's stupidity is another person's job security.
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Old 10-25-2010, 05:30 AM   #3
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Definitely contribute to get the match on your 401k.

In this present economy, paying down a debt that is costing 7% interest would be my next focus.
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Old 10-25-2010, 05:47 AM   #4
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Look closely at the terms of your employee stock purchase plan. Depending on the terms, this might be a goldmine. For example, you get a 5% discount. What is the discount based off? In some programs it is the lesser of the start price and the end price of each six months or whatever you are committed for. If the stock moves up a lot, these deals can be very lucrative.

I think you are on the right track. Once the cards are paid off, work on killing the student loan debt.
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