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Personal Finance

IRA Contribution Tips and Traps

The key differences between Roth and Traditional IRA contributions, the pitfalls of backdoor Roth conversions, and the importance of spousal contributions and beneficiary forms.

Investors have until April 15 to make an IRA contribution for the 2014 tax year. In a recent interview with Morningstar director of personal finance Christine Benz, retirement expert and author Ed Slott shared some tips to explore and traps to avoid during IRA contribution season. In this excerpt, Slott discusses the key differences between Roth and Traditional IRA contributions, the pitfalls of backdoor Roth conversions, and the importance of spousal contributions and beneficiary forms.

Christine Benz: Let's begin by talking about some of the key mistakes people make when they're putting money into their IRAs. One of the key decisions people are confronted with is whether to do Roth or Traditional IRA. Do people tend to get tripped up by that decision?

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