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Glossary of Retirement Planning Terms

Looking at the 401(k) enrollment form but not sure what tax-deferred means or whether you have an employer matching program in the first place? Learn the key terms for retirement planning here.

14 Essential Investing Terms to Know
Become a better investor by defining your financial terms. Learn the lingo, and start talking and thinking like a financial pro.

4% Rule - What Is the 4% Rule?
What Is the 4% Rule?

401(k) Plan
Definition of a 401(k) retirement plan

403(b) Plan
A 403(b) plan is a retirement plan for nonprofit workers. Find out exactly how 403(b) plans work and how much you can contribute to your 403(b) in 2012.

Annuity
Definition of an annuity.

Asset Allocation
Definition of Asset Allocation

Automatic Investment Plan (AIP)
Definition of Automatic Investment Plan (AIP).

Balanced Fund
Definition of balanced fund

Behavioral Finance
Definition of behavioral finance, the study of investor psychology.

Bonus credit
Description of a variable annuity bonus credit.

Cash Balance Plan Definition
Definition of a Cash Balance retirement plan.

What's a Contingent Beneficiary?
What is a contingent beneficiary and why you should make sure yours is correct.

Contingent Beneficiary Definition
Definition of a contingent beneficiary.

Contribution Percentage Definition
Definition of a contribution percentage.

Correlated and Non Correlated Assets
Defining what it means when assets are correlated or noncorrelated.

Cost of Living Allowance (COLA)
Definition of a cost of living allowance for Social Security recipients

Defined Benefit Plan Definition
Definition of a defined benefit (DB) plan.

Defined Contribution Plan Definition
Definition of a defined contribution (DC) plan.

Deflation
Definition of deflation.

Diversification
Definition of diversification

Early Retirement Penalty
Definition of early retirement penalty

Earned Income
Learn the definition of earned income and what it means for your ability to contribute to an IRA.

Employer Matching Program
Definition of an employer matching program for a 401(k) plan

Fiduciary Duty
Definition of fiduciary duty

Home Equity
Definition of Home Equity

ESOP
What is an ESOP or employee stock ownership plan? Understan

Individual Retirement Account (IRA)
Definition of a regular individual retirement account

Inflation
Definition of the inflation

Investment Portfolio Definition
Definition of an investment portfolio.

IRA Contribution Deadline
Definition of IRA contribution deadline

IRA Rollover
Definition of an IRA rollover.

Joint and Survivor Payment Option (or Annuity)
Definition of joint and survivor payment option (or annuity)

Life Annuity Payment Option
Definition of life annuity payment option

Life Cycle Fund
Definition of Life Cycle Fund

Life Expectancy
Definition of Life Expectancy

Money Purchase Plan Definition
Definition of a money purchase plan.

Mutual Fund
Definition of a mutual fund

Non-qualified Retirement Plan Definition
Definition of a non-qualified retirement plan.

Primary Beneficiary Definition
Definition of a primary beneficiary.

Profit-Sharing Plan Definition
Definition of a profit-sharing plan.

Qualified Retirement Plan Definition
Definition of a qualified retirement plan.

Required Minimum Distribution
Definition of a Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) from a qualified retirement plan such as a 401(k) or IRA

Risk Tolerance
Definition of risk tolerance, how risk is determined and what it means for your investments.

Roth Individual Retirement Account
Definition of a Roth individual retirement account

Social Security
Definition of Social Security Retirement Plan Benefits

Spousal IRA Definition
Definition of a spousal IRA.

Suitability Standard
Definition of suitability standard

Target Benefit Plan Definition
Definition of a target benefit plan.

Target Date Fund
Definition of Target Date Fund

Tax-Deferred
Definition of tax-deferred growth available through many qualified retirement plans

What Is a 457(b) Plan?
Find out how 457(b) plans can help you save for retirement, and why a 457(b) plan is even better than a 401(k).

What Is a 403(b) Plan?
A 403(b) plan is a retirement plan for nonprofit workers. Find out exactly how 403(b) plans work and how much you can contribute to your 403(b) in 2012.

Tax-Free
Definition of tax-free growth available through a Roth IRA

What Is the Tax Saver's Credit?
Learn about the Saver's Credit and how it might reduce your tax bill.

Term Certain Payment Option
Definition of term certain payment option

Three-Legged Stool of Retirement
What is the three-legged stool of retirement?

Vesting
Understand vesting and vesting schedules for employer-sponsored retirement plans.

Market Capitalization (Market Cap)
Definition of market capitalization or market caps.

Portfolio
What is an investment portfolio and how do you get started creating one?

Profit Sharing Plan
Profit sharing plans are retirement plans that allow employers to determine how much they will contribute to an employee's retirement.

What Is a 457(b) Plan?
Find out how 457(b) plans can help you save for retirement, and why a 457(b) plan is even better than a 401(k).

What Is a 403(b) Plan?
A 403(b) plan is a retirement plan for nonprofit workers. Find out exactly how 403(b) plans work and how much you can contribute to your 403(b) in 2012.

What Is a 457(b) Plan?
Find out how 457(b) plans can help you save for retirement, and why a 457(b) plan is even better than a 401(k).

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