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Investing Specialists

Pulling Money From Your Roth IRA? Read This First

Roth withdrawals can be tax- and penalty-free, but not if you don't play by the rules.

When it comes to withdrawals, there's an awful lot to like about Roth IRAs.

First, flexibility: Because you contribute aftertax dollars to a Roth IRA, you can pull out your contributions at any time or for any reason without incurring a penalty--even if you withdraw your contribution shortly after you made it and even if you're younger than 59 1/2. That flexibility is a key reason I often recommend a Roth IRA as a good multitasking vehicle for investors who are conflicted about whether to stash money in their emergency funds or save for retirement. The ability to withdraw contributions makes the Roth a decent vehicle for both tasks.

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