CD investor weighs his nest-egg options

Q I have about $100,000 in a certificate of deposit that matures in July 2001. This is my total nest egg. I am 77. What would you recommend?

Name withheld, Omaha, Neb.

A Assuming you don't need to tap into the money right now and you are an inveterate CD investor, you will probably do just as well to roll over the CD instead of going with stock or bond holdings, says Paula Hogan, of Hogan Financial Management, in Milwaukee.

Stocks and bonds carry more market risk than you may wish to absorb, Ms. Hogan says. "If you need to access the money, consider a money-market mutual fund with high-credit quality."

Q Why were AT&T retirees not informed or offered financial advice about the eminent decline in value of stock and bond holdings and cuts in the company's retirement plan? I'm finding little written in scholarly journals or academic reports on this. Can you suggest where I may get some additional reports on AT&T?

D.G., Takoma Park, Md.

A AT&T does not counsel shareholders (including retirees) about the impact of stock-market gyrations on their share holdings, says Burke Stinson, a spokesman for AT&T. That is a "private matter" between the shareholder and his or her investment adviser, if any, he says.

Mr. Stinson adds that employees and retirees have been kept up to date on retirement-plan changes. You must be referring, he says, to the change in the past several years from an older annuity-type retirement plan, to a cash-balance plan. That would have affected current employees. "They were given information and counseling during the time of the changeover," he says.

Most brokerages track and file reports on AT&T. Check with them, or try the Money Central Web site (www.moneycentral.com) for more information.

Q I am leaving my company and would like to roll over stock from my company retirement account into an IRA with Fidelity Investments. Can I simply roll over all the stock, without having to convert it to cash?

G.W., Queens, N.Y.

A According to a rollover specialist at Fidelity, your retirement account can be rolled over either as stock or cash, as long as your current employer has no qualms about releasing your account to another company.

Questions about finances? Write:

Guy Halverson

The Christian Science Monitor

500 Fifth Ave., Suite 1845

New York, NY 10110

E-mail: halversong@csps.com

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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