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What should I do with my retirement accounts if I plan to retire in five years? In 10 years? In 20 years?

Tim Hanson, senior analyst at the Motley Fool: If you're retiring within the next five years, I'd make sure you have a sound asset allocation strategy that has your savings stashed in 70 percent to 80 percent bonds and treasuries and considerably less in equities. That's because you're going to need that money soon and want to protect the principal.

If you have 20 years or more, I'd still be tilting heavily toward equities (and particularly toward foreign stocks for the reasons I mention above), and be regularly saving and adding new money to the market.

If you're in between, I'd take a look at my portfolio to make sure I'm comfortable with my asset allocation plans. You have some flexibility when you're 10 years away from retirement, but you want to make sure you have a healthy mix of equity and non-equity investments.

If you're looking for greater detail on the percentages that could be right for you, I'd consider putting the cash in a Target Retirement fund, which will allocate it for you based on your time to retirement, or take a look at how these funds are allocating their assets and then make sure you're not too far off in your own portfolio.

By washingtonpost.com Editor  |  October 8, 2008; 7:05 AM ET
Categories:  Your Pocketbook  | Tags: retirement  
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