Asked by Ron  |  Submitted August 14, 2015

I am sitting on a low five digit Roth IRA with about 25 years left of working. Is it better to move to high risk, high reward funds or not?

I have been earning about 4% on my current fund, but I wanted to look into get that ROI near 10%. Is it too early to go for broke or even a couple years in the more volatile markets?

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  Answers  |  1

August 15, 2015

You'll certainly have a tough time retiring on 4% with a 25 year time frame. Why? Your real rate of return is closer to 2.5% after you factor in inflation. With such a long term horizon, you have what most people don't have, time.... You should create a diversified portfolio mixing in asset classes that you don't currently have. Why? Because by incorporating asset classes such as International, emerging markets, frontier markets, floating rate bonds, international bonds, along with small, mid, and large cap US domestics (just throwing some stuff at you that I would bet you don't own), you create a diversified portfolio, one that seeks to maximize return while taking the least amount of risk. Through correlation amongst asset classes, you are diversifying away much of the risk of just holding one of the above mentioned asset classes alone. Given your return, which I don't know how long you're measuring... 1 year, 5 year etc.. I'll be you don't have the exposure you should. Being a Roth and triple digits in value, I can assume you have been investing very conservatively for years now, unless you converted a rollover IRA. To earn 10%, you need to do more. Another thing, as you age, your portfolio should get more conservative, thus making returns such as 10% unrealistic. Now is the time to act.

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