Deva Panambur, CFA®, CFP® is the founder of Sarsi, LLC. Sarsi, LLC is an independent, fee only, Registered Investment Advisor, serving individuals and institutions. We primarily provide the following services: 1.Financial Planning: Overall financial situation of the client including cash flow, debt management, risk management/insurance, estate planning and tax planning. 2. Investment strategy 3. Asset allocation and risk management 4. Manager/Investment product selection 5. Investment monitoring and reporting.
Prior to founding Sarsi, LLC in 2010, Deva was a Senior Vice President/Partner at Executive Monetary Management (EMM), a wealth advisor with over $2Bn in assets that was a part of Neuberger Berman, before being spun off into an independent firm in 2009. At EMM, Deva led manager selection and due diligence and had joint responsibility for economic analysis, strategy analysis, portfolio management and risk management pertaining to investments of ultra high net worth clients and institutions.
Prior to joining EMM, he was a portfolio manager at the alternative strategies group of Merrill Lynch; a research analyst at Chesapeake Capital Corporation- a hedge fund; and a risk and business analyst at Deutsche Bank Asset Management where he supported various investment groups. He began his career at International Seaports Pte. Ltd. in international project finance in the Far East and the United States.
Deva earned a Bachelor of Technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, India, a Master in International Management from the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, India, and an MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management, Glendale, AZ. He has been awarded the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and is a CFP® professional.
He regularly provides expert advisory services to top consulting firms and asset management companies regarding the business and investment aspects of the investment industry. He is an Adjunct Professor of Personal Finance at Montclair State University in New Jersey and in his spare time trains candidates appearing for the CFA exam.
MBA, Finance, Thunderbird (Arizona State University)
BTech, Metallurgy, Indian Institute of Technology
Assets Under Management:
Fee only. Asset based and/or fixed.
Sarsi LLC (“Sarsi”) is a Registered Investment Advisory Firm regulated by the State of New Jersey in accordance and compliance with applicable securities laws and regulations. Sarsi does not render or offer to render personalized investment advice through this newsletter. The information provided herein is for informational purposes only and does not constitute financial, investment or legal advice. Investment advice can only be rendered after delivery of the Firm’s disclosure statement (Form ADV Part II) and execution of an investment advisory agreement between the client and Sarsi.
(Please read till the end)This is a great question. In general, it is never too early (or too late) to start saving for retirement and a 401 (K) plan is a great way to do it in a tax advantaged manner. Contributions to 401K is made with 'pre income tax dollars' and the account grows tax deferred until you withdraw from it at retirment. At that time, you will pay your then applicable income tax rate on your withdrawal.
So, from a retirement planning perspective, if you can ie if your cash flow situation allows for it, then you should contribute as much as posssible to your 401K. (For 2017 you can contribute upto $18,000 pre tax.) irrespective of what percentage of your contribution your employer matches.
If you cash flow situation does not allow for maximum contributions then you should strive to at least contribute as much as your employer matches or else you will be turning away free money.
Taking the two example you have provided (ie 100% up 3% or 50% for upto 5%) both these result in an instantaneous return on your contributions (Because of the tax advantage and the matching). While, one is better than the other per se, that difference will be reduced if you contribute more and the money compounds over a long time. Besides, while what return you earn is important, HOW MUCH you save is more important. For example, I could get a 10X return on $100 but that still comes to $1000, on the other hand a 10% return on $100,000 leaves me with $110,000. So, bottom line is to contribute as much as possible.
Beyond this it depends on your specific case (Salary level, cash flow, terms of your 401K etc) for example you may be able to contribute to an Individual IRA as well as a 401K so that you can take advantage of the higher matching % and still contribute more to suit your cash flow.
Apart from what has been discussed already below, I'll add my own opinion.
- Don't let the 'fee tail wag the dog.' Clients should be going for someone who is not only charging a reasonable fee (Under 1% if asset based fee), but also is providing good value for the fee charged. For example, many advisors include some amount of financial planning services for the asset based fee charged.
- Understand the importance of 'alignment of interest.' For example, some advisors are structured as fee-only. They do not get any commissions and, therefore, have an 'open architecture' in that they can use any product and usually choose the best available product for the client. Clients should look for advisors who will go to bat for them.
I would take a step back and ask you if you are sure you want to invest in individual stocks as opposed to broad market ETF or a low cost mutual fund. You can do very well with individual stocks, provided you have the time and the inclination to put in the effort required. While there are many examples of people who have done very well investing in individual stock, there are many more examples (especially of small investors) who have done very poorly. These small investors would have done much better dollar cost averaging (ie investing over time) into a broad ETF or low cost mutual fund, especially if they have a relatively small amount to invest.
Assuming you are convinced you want to invest in individual stocks, you have to decide what method you want to use to select stocks? You mention Beta, expected ROR and high/low price. These 'factors' are concepts that are used for technical/statistical analysis. This method is model based. Other factors you can use are momentum, trend, some fundamental factors like Price/Earnings, ROE, margins etc.
On the other hand, if you want fundamental analysis, then you have to understand the business and the industry, its growth prospects, and the quality of the management. You have to evaluate profitability/return on capital, cash flows, balance sheet quality, historical performance/future prospects, etc. If you use this method, then stick to businesses that you know and understand. If you use fundamental analysis, then the price per se is not a consideration. As they say: "Price is what you pay, value is what you get."
There are two possibilities:
1. Distribution in kind (If the 401(k) provider/custodian allows it): In this case, you can transfer all individual securities to your 'new IRA custodian'. (Custodians are firm like Charles Schwab, Fidelity, TD Ameritrade etc where you have your account). The one caveat, especially for commingled products like Mutual Funds, is that your new IRA custodian should have those products available on their platform, otherwise it will be sold and the cash will be transferred to your new IRA. The other things that may impact you is that fees can sometimes be different at different custodians (Fee: Mutual fund management fee, transaction fee, etc.)
2. Distribution in cash: If your 401(k) provider/custodian does not allow in kind distributions, then cash equal to your portfolio value will be transferred to your new account. You can then purchase securities including the ones you previously held, if they are available on your new custodian.
You should call you 401(k) providers individually to find which of these allow in kind distributions. You should also call your new IRA custodian to see if they can custody all your investments. I have found that many 401(k) plans do not allow in kind distributions. However, it is a bit easier if you are transferring from one IRA to another.
Finally, although you did not ask about this, be careful about the tax consequences of taking a distribution (ie funds/assets are sent to you), especially if you do not rollover the assets within 60 days. The best option, in my opinion, is a trustee to trustee transfer, ie assets/funds are transferred directly from one account to the other. (In the case of a cash transfer, you can still physically receive the check, but it has to be made out to your new account, not to you. Ask your custodian to explain.)