'You could lose it all' if you mix crypto with your retirement savings, expert says

·1 min read

Whether cryptocurrencies are a fad or not, one financial expert says digital currencies are not reliable investment sources for retirement savers.

“Having a large portion of crypto or anything that’s volatile is risky,” Katharine George, a financial advisor at Wealthstream Advisors, recently told Yahoo Finance Live. “You could lose it all.”

Although George doesn’t discourage crypto investing, she’s adamant that savers should only invest “an amount that [they’re] willing to lose” and not use money shored up in retirement accounts to avoid the tax consequences for account holders under age 59-and-a-half.

(Photo: Getty)
Investing in bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies for retirement calls for caution. (Photo: Getty)

Instead, stick to the tried-and-true for retirement savings. You can start with an IRA or Roth IRA, with the only downside being the lower annual contribution maximums versus an employer-sponsored 401(k).

“When you look at how much you can contribute to your retirement with a traditional 401(k), you can do much more in savings than you can with these IRA options,” she said. “But something is better than nothing.”

The benefit of IRAs and Roth IRAs, which are respectively funded with pre and post-tax dollars, is that they offer unlimited options, George explained, allowing for investments in “any type of mutual fund or ETF that is offered.” A 401(k), on the other hand, can limit investment options, she added.

“As long as you're investing in global stocks and bonds,” she said. “You're investing in lots of different types of companies, lots of different types of markets, [and] that's a great step.”

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Stephanie is a reporter for Yahoo Money. Follow her on Twitter @SJAsymkos.

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