on my old account statements I couldn't tell how much I was being charged for fees, now the company has switched to a new custodial and the statements are easier to read and they seem high, but I have nothing to compare them to
Judith, unfortunately it is more difficult to identify your hidden costs in an IRA, which is why Brightscope is so valuable. You have to dig to find all your fees. I would be happy to identify you internal costs of your IRA and give you an objective summary of "total" costs. Just let me know.
Judith there are several levels of fees to consider inside a typical IRA account. There is not really a central place you can go to compare fees. But maybe a summary of the types of common fees will help you;
1) Account custodial fees - typically range from $0 to $35 per year depending on what you invest in and where it's held. 2) "Wrap" fee charged by an Adviser for managing your account on a discretionary basis - .50% to 1.5% 3) If you own ETF or Mutual Funds in the IRA then each of those will have imbedded fund management fees charged by the company you're investing with (Fidelity, Vanguard, etc...) ETF fees are usually much lower ranging from super low .07% to .50%. Mutual Funds are all over the place depending on what sort of funds you own. Ranges for most bond and stock funds typically between .50% and 2.00%. 4) Finally, if you're in commission based mutual funds you may have imbedded charges called "12B1" fees which typically range from .25% to 1.00% depending on the share class you own.
At the end of the day fees are important but far more important is your asset allocation decision and overall investment strategy. Those account for most of the actual long term returns an investor realizes.
There is not a tool such as this to see the fees your account may be subjected do so the best thing to do is to contact the company and/or advisor and ask them to detail any and all fees in writing. I hope this helps.
It depends on where your IRA accounts are held. Banks usually do not charge fees. Mutual fund companies charge an annual maintenance fee of $10 - $25 per year. Brokerage firm wrap fee accounts may be in the range of 1-2% annually.
Get your IRA statements and see if the fees are detailed there. If not, call the customer service phone number listed on the statement and ask about them.
Retail mutual funds also have some hidden fees that you may not be able to see on a statement - 12b-1 fees, annual fund operating expenses, etc.