Regular IRA contributions can build healthy nest egg

The Ticker

April 07, 1999|By Julius Westheimer

THE DEADLINE for making 1998 IRA contributions is April 15. If you contribute regularly, you can build a substantial retirement nest egg. Example:

"If you're 25 years old and contribute the maximum $2,000 to your IRA every year until age 65, assuming an 8 percent return," says a local brokerage firm newsletter, "you would have $518,113 when you reach 65.

"But if you don't start contributing until 20 years before you retire, you would have only $91,524."

"To be a winning stock picker, look for large-capitalization stocks which will outperform small- and mid-cap stocks," says Spiros Segalas, a mutual fund manager.

"Favor well-known companies with global reach and minimum earnings growth of 15 percent a year. We favor pharmaceutical and high-tech stocks."

According to Better Investing magazine, the top stocks held by investment clubs, ranked by the number of clubs holding them, are: Intel Corp., PepsiCo. Inc., Merck & Co. Inc., Lucent Technologies, Home Depot Inc. and Cisco Systems Inc.

"Falling stock prices are rare. During the last five years the market declined only 23 percent of the time -- second-lowest frequency of downside risk on record." (Investment News.)

"If your first-quarter money wasn't in `big boy' mutual funds, you're probably licking your wounds. Only Net and large-cap funds soared." (Business Week.)

Pub Date: 4/07/99

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