The biggest incentive to keeping separate 401(k) plans is for the benefit of any employer stock you hold in that company's plan.
Employer stock receives special treatment when you distribute it from the plan: the amount you originally paid for the stock is considered ordinary income when you distribute it, and any gain on that is taxed at the lower capital gain rate when you sell the shares.
Retirement » Basics » Consolidating 401(k) Plans Some people collect stamps or coins.
But perhaps you're looking at the tri-state record for most 401(k) plans held in a single portfolio.
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Many financial institutions let individual professionals open self-employed 401(k) plans that also could accept 401(k) rollovers.
After several job changes up the corporate ladder, you've left an impressive number of 401(k) plans in your wake.
Whether you should consolidate your scattered retirement plans depends on your personal preferences as well as the benefits provided and fees charged by your previous employers' 401(k) plans.
Indeed, some brokerage firms tack a small fee onto IRAs worth ,000 or less.
Likewise, 401(k) plan sponsors often charge record-keeping fees, which can chip away at your earnings.