Thursday, November 13, 2008

I Was Warned, but I Peeked Anyway

Many warned me not to look.

Those warnings made it all the more tempting.

I was told it would freak me out.

Almost nothing freaks me out any more.

I had to look.

I guess I'm a masochist. I couldn't resist the temptation.

They were right.

Nail. Head. Right.

Now what?

I can't deny what I saw. It's right there.

My 401-K .............. losses.

I still have weekly deductions going into my toilet account.

Should I halt them and stash them in my mattress savings account?

Should I keep my investments as is? Not change a thing?

What are you doing as you watch your 401-K go down the pooper?

401-K or For Oh What, Okay?
I'm leaving everything as is.
I stopped depositing.
I moved some investments.
I took the penalty and withdrew.
What's a 401-K?
I increased my deposits. free polls


Patience said...

I won the poll! I won the poll!!

Robin said...

La la la la la la la! I can't hear you!

Seriously? I'm not looking. I'm married to an economist who obsesses enough for the both of us, but he's under strict instructions not to keep me informed of all the drama. We just keep reminding ourselves that we're not planning to retire imminently so there's plenty of time for the market to rebound.

Candy said...

We lost about 40% of what we had saved. Because my husband is 62, we moved it into the guaranteed portion of the fund, so as not to lose anything else, because we have a specific need in a limited amount of years, and won't have time to earn it back. But in my own 401K (I'm 47) I just left it. It depends what you need to do with it. If you can wait 20 years before you need to use it, it's better off there than in your mattress, I think.

Karin said...

At our age, we think it's OK to wait it out. What goes down must go back up, right? ;)

P.S. Recently, it's been taking a long time for your page to load. Is it just on my end or is everyone having a problem?

sgk213 said...

Crying, that's what your brother and I are doing about the 401K mess.

Michael said...


I felt like I was just throwing money out the window, so I decided to cut my 401k contribution from 20% to 10%. I'm stashing the extra money in my paycheck into a savings account that's earning 3%. Not a great return, but it's better than watching it disappear.

With my remaining 10% contribution, I figure I'm buying at a bargain. I didn't change any of my investment selections...right now it's only a loss on paper.

Good luck! If you find the secret to winning the lotto, let me know.

Kellan said...

I am afraid to look on-line and just wait for my statements and then I don't open them until I just can't stand it anymore. We are leaving everything where it is - and PRAYING like crazy that it bounces back!

Take care - Kellan

Ree said...

I didn't really stop depositing, but I maxed out my contributions a couple of months ago because of the amount I contribute. Now, though, ... sigh.

I have decided to take anything that I would have invested and pay down my mortgage. I certainly can't earn 6.5% anyplace else!

San said...

Thanks for reminding me..(read sarcasm)

re: Karin / slow page load---me too

lis said...

Buy a large fire proof can't be stolen safe and stash your would be further contributions in there, move your funds to the safest investment portion of your protfolio with lil' risk till it blows over, rather if in our life time it blows over.....
Of coarse the movers and shakers aren't going to say such things they want liquidity in the market. Interesting the 700 billion bailout funds to the banks are poof gone.

Greg C said...

I have made money this year with my 401k. I could give you my secret but then everyone would have it and that would cut my gains. Oh ok, there is no big secret. I buy low and sell high. Seriously I am making money.

dkuroiwa said...

My mom, in the course of one of our hour-long conversations, just let it every-so-slightly sip into the topic that maybe mine wasn't doing so good..."How 'not good'?"
" just looks bad on'll all work out...and I'm just following your brother the accountant's advice."
I'm thinking now that maybe my brother doesn't really know either what to do....I would just like to have something left when I retire...IF I ever retire.
Someone said that Australia is THE place to invest....hmmmm.....may check that out!!

Audubon Ron said...

That all depends how your 401K is set up. Keep an eye on mix. How many shares do you have? You might be buying more shares pound for pound if the price per share is low and you’re putting in the same dollar amount into your 401K. Check that out. I just peeked and lost $63,000 in my stock fund, which ain’t bad, it could be worse, but I still have the same number of shares and the bond fund ain’t drawing jack shit either. (Whoa, I’m dizzy and starting to sweat all of a sudden). The price will fluctuate but as long as you have the same number of shares, when the market begins to rebound you’ll be fine again. As you begin to move closer to retirement, you will need to migrate your 401K to a fixed bond account. You can’t afford market volatility when you’re drawing interest. Remember, you will be paying the Obama tax plan on your withdrawals. (Little Obama dig there). As far as saving cash, the answer is in your mix. How much fixed (bond), higher risk (stocks) and cash do you have. Cash is king, but you will be paying tax on it. It might be best to pay the Bush taxes on the cash now, rather than the Obama taxes on 401K later. (Another little Obama dig there). Your long term strategy needs to consider all three. The only time you change a fund is when your fund is not performing well against the average of the whole. Now would NOT be a good time to make aggressive changes. Because, they’re all getting reamed up the pipe hole. I think the real long term final strategic consideration is to marry a heart surgeon. Either way, you’re totally fubbed duck, because you ain’t going to collect social security. The only bailout NOT occurring is in the only social welfare program we got going, Social Security and Medicare. Nobody talked about how they were going to handle the long term baby boomer social security mess to come. (a final Obama dig there). You might as well get a nice ring out of the deal from your heart surgeon husband.

This is my next post and you're in it.

Whit said...

We haven't even looked at it. Hopefully by the time we need it things will be okay.