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401(k) Day Trading: The Art of Cashing in on a Shaky Market in Minutes a Day


Praise For 401(k) Day Trading

"During extended periods of sideways market returns and high volatility, investors need a strategy to preserve their retirement savings. Rick Schmitt's trading system combines systematic dollar cost averaging with contrarian investing to grow savings for those investors who have the willingness to opportunistically restructure their 401(k) accounts and the discipline to follow a long-term plan."
—Jim Koch, Founder and Principal, Koch Capital Management LLC

For many, retirement has become increasingly difficult to both attain and afford. But there is a way today's 401(k) participant, as well as those contributing to similar retirement savings plans, can turn their retirement dreams into reality.

With over twenty-five years of experience consulting on retirement plans, author Richard Schmitt knows what it takes to make the most of them, and now, in 401(k) Day Trading: The Art of Cashing In on a Shaky Market in Minutes a Day, he shows you how.

Divided into four comprehensive parts, this reliable resource takes you step by step through the environment, rationale, and process of day trading your retirement portfolio in minutes a day. It skillfully outlines an approach to buying low and selling high through daily fund exchanges—an approach that draws on many of the fundamental principles of investment management—to exploit daily market volatility.

Richard Schmitt is an adjunct professor teaching retirement planning at the Edward S. Ageno School of Business at Golden Gate University in San Francisco. Having worked in the retirement plan industry since the origin of 401(k) plans, he has assisted companies in the design, implementation, and administration of 401(k), 403(b), 457, and other retirement savings plans for over twenty-five years. Before joining academia, he worked as a corporate manager overseeing compensation and benefits plans for a couple of the largest U.S. companies based in Silicon Valley. He also worked as a consultant at major international consulting firms serving other Fortune 500 companies. Mr. Schmitt is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries, a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries, and an Enrolled Actuary licensed to practice before the Internal Revenue Service. He graduated with distinction from the University of Michigan with a Bachelors of Business Administration degree and subsequently earned teaching credentials at San Francisco State University.

Preface ix

Acknowledgments xv

PART I Introduction 1

CHAPTER 1 Game On: Making Something Out of Nothing 3

PART II Environment 27

CHAPTER 2 The Shift: Pensions to 401(k) Plans 29

CHAPTER 3 Rules of the Game: 401(k) under the Hood 55

CHAPTER 4 Tools of the Trade: A Look at Your Assets 77

CHAPTER 5 Uneven Playing Field: Volatility in a Sideways Market 115

PART III Rationale 143

CHAPTER 6 Playbook: Retirement Savings Investment Strategies 145

CHAPTER 7 Getting an Edge: Buy Low and Sell High 187

PART IV Process 211

CHAPTER 8 Game Plan: The Art of Day Trading 213

CHAPTER 9 Postgame Press Conference: Moving Forward 251

APPENDIX A Decision Tree Controlling Transition of Day Trading Accounts 267

APPENDIX B Outside Assistance in 401(k) Day Trading through Systems, Services, or Funds 271

Notes 273

Glossary 279

About the Author 285

Index 287