I'm a 27, single and have no mortgage or outstanding debts.

I've been building up a pension with my company and I only just realized I can choose which funds this is invested in. I'm wondering whether I should leave it as it is or imitate the index funds I use for my personal savings. (A Vanguard life-strategy fund 80% stock 20% bonds)

Currently my pension is invested 100% in a Standard Life Mixed Blend Pension Fund which is the default option for my company.

Would the alternate portfolio below be the right way to go about it, imitating the life strategy plan my personal savings use or is there a significant difference I've missed. If I'm inexperienced should I just be leaving this alone and let my company keep the default choice?

Alternate portfolio

20% SL Vanguard Global Bond Index Pension Fund 80% SL Vanguard SRI Global Stock Pension Fund

  • For what it's worth, I manage both my 401(k) and my direct investments as a single unit, trying to maintain my target ratios across the entire set rather than keeping each pocket balanced separately.
    – keshlam
    Jul 9, 2016 at 19:39

2 Answers 2


One big pie chart.

Traditional (pretax) 401(k) and IRA, Roth 401(k) and IRA, and non-tax favored accounts. All of these need to be viewed holistically, the non-favored money is where I'd keep cash/low return safe instruments, Roth IRA for highest growth.

  • Bonds and REITs in a tax deferred account; individual company shares you plan to hold for a long time in taxable, and everything else where it fits.
    – user662852
    Jul 10, 2016 at 15:06
  • I might agree, but a 10 year sub-2% treasury? The interest is already tax favored, why waste the IRA space for this? Jul 10, 2016 at 15:09

Short Answer: Length of Time invested and risk should be correlated. From what I am hearing this is pretty good game plan for your age.


Once you get closer to retirement lets say in 20 years. You might want to treat two lumps of money with different risk. For me at 49 I have a lump of money for 55-70 that carries a lot less risk then another lump of money for when I hit 80.

This way I can wait and take Social Security at 70 when it pays the most per month.

Then I'll have another pile of money for when my care costs start being very expensive.

Or I think most people would benefit from making sure you have the funds you need for the next 5 years in items with extremely low risk and funds you need 6 years out or more you can have some risk tolerance there.

Best laid plans though.

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