- IRA: 25.9% gain.
- 401k: 43.3% gain
Explanation: For most of 2009, the IRA had a roughly 60/40 allocation to stocks/bonds. In contrast, the 401k was a very small fixed income percentage. Furthermore, our best fund performer for 2009 was the American Funds Europacific Growth Fund.
Bottom line: the risky 401k outperformed the IRA in 2009.
Caveat: Because my 401k has limited fixed income options, I will continue to allocate more fixed income investments to the IRA. Combined, I am shooting for a 75/25 equity/fixed income allocation.