The Perfect Way to Save for Retirement

Everyone wants to find ways to save more for retirement, and minimizing your tax bill is the best way to make sure you hang on to as much of your hard-earned retirement nest egg as possible. One of the best ways to accomplish that goal is to open a Roth IRA.

In the following video, longtime Fool contributor and retirement expert Dan Caplinger discusses the benefits of using a Roth IRA. As Dan notes, not only do Roth IRAs allow you to enjoy tax-free growth throughout your lifetime, you can even use the Roth as an estate-planning tool to pass on tax-free treatment to your heirs as well. The key to making the most of a Roth IRA, though, is putting the most appropriate investments into it, and Dan goes through the thought process behind how to choose which investments to make with limited Roth IRA assets.

One promising stock that might fit well in a Roth IRA is Monster Beverage. But the stakes are high for the energy-drink maker these days. The stock had been nothing short of a rocket, but recent developments have sent shares spiraling downward. Health scares sparked a number of investigations at the state and federal level into the energy drink's possible role in several fatalities. With the company's value slashed in half, investors are wondering whether Monster Beverage is a value or a bust in the fast-growing energy drink category. Find out now in our premium research report, which details all you need to know about Monster Beverage. Click here now to claim your copy and start reading today.

Read/Post Comments (8) | Recommend This Article (21)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

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  • Report this Comment On May 01, 2013, at 8:30 PM, GeekZero wrote:

    The only way a ROTH makes sense is if you'll be in a higher tax bracket at *retirement* than when you add money into the account. For the vast majority of investors, the converse is true.

  • Report this Comment On May 01, 2013, at 8:44 PM, TMFGalagan wrote:

    @GeekZero - It's tempting to think so, but those who do a good job saving for retirement are often surprised at just how high their tax rates are after they retire. Moreover, Roths give you an opportunity for some estate-planning benefits that traditional IRAs lack.


    dan (TMF Galagan)

  • Report this Comment On May 01, 2013, at 10:11 PM, Molesto46 wrote:

    Come on. Get a Life. The guys at the IRS and the Fed r crooks.

  • Report this Comment On May 03, 2013, at 10:58 AM, sakarski wrote:

    I think that taxes have to go up in the future, especially for the huge number of retirees. The federal government won't be spending less but their will be fewer workers to tax, so logically the way to increase revenues is from the retirees.

    The best part of having a Roth IRA is that it gives you options. My retirement is mostly tax-deferred money, but the Roth IRA funds allow me the flexibility to take some taxable and some non-taxable withdrawals which can minimize the tax burden.

    It's always smart to give yourself options.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2013, at 1:35 AM, GeekZero wrote:

    Unfortunately, there's no guarantee the government won't change the rules and tax Roth withdrawals at some point in the future. Maybe it's better to take the advantage now -- while you can?

    <i>Roths give you an opportunity for some estate-planning benefits</i>

    Thanks, didn't know that. Hopefully those won't disappear either....

  • Report this Comment On February 12, 2014, at 3:13 PM, JDLove wrote:

    The options are very positive! You can take withdrawals tax free. The biggie to me is that a regular IRA passed to my kids is taxed over 5 years to them. Eats up a lot of the estate passed on plus places them in a higher bracket. With a Roth, my kids get it tax free without any burden.

  • Report this Comment On July 02, 2014, at 1:04 PM, pberardi wrote:

    If you are in the 25% tax bracket (30% if you add in most states) The traditional 401k contribution is better. Here is why.

    For every dollar you take away from a traditional contribution, it costs you 30% in taxes. Your take home pay shrinks. However, traditional 401k distributions when retired are taxed at ordinary income tax rates. Most financial calculators are completely wrong when they take 401k pre-tax distributions and take 25% (federal) off the top. This is completely wrong. Your distributions must run through the 10%. 15% and then 25% brackets therefore your "effective" tax rate is always going to be lower when retired regardless of your bracket.

    Effective tax rate in retirement will likely be lower than the marginal tax rate you are paying today.

    Keep in mind, you also get a standard tax deduction along with personal exemptions plus additional exemption for being 65 or older. The tax rates and deductions are indexed to inflation and will go up in order to prevent bracket creep.

    If you are young and in a lower bracket than 25%. the roth contribution is better. Not because it's tax free because you're still giving up 10-15% marginal tax savings by doing so. It;s because over the course of 30-40 years, the compounding of that savings will likely put you in the 25% bracket when retired. Therefore the 15% marginal tax rate savings today will cost you a potentially higher effective rate when retired.

    If you're in the 25% bracket now, max out the pretax 401k and then calc the immediate tax savings from your contribution, take those tax savings and do a roth IRA! That will really give your retirement savings a boost.

    Of course it just boils down to you saving more!

  • Report this Comment On July 07, 2014, at 7:54 PM, AZLZRD1 wrote:

    Can you own both a 401k and a Roth IRA? Does this change with age (i.e. over 60)?

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Dan Caplinger

Dan Caplinger has been a contract writer for the Motley Fool since 2006. As the Fool's Director of Investment Planning, Dan oversees much of the personal-finance and investment-planning content published daily on With a background as an estate-planning attorney and independent financial consultant, Dan's articles are based on more than 20 years of experience from all angles of the financial world.

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