What is the Safest Investment for an IRA?

There are no 100% risk-free investments, but the ideal assets to place into an IRA include bank savings accounts, CDs, Treasury securities and money market accounts – FDIC-insured investments with low risk that typically provide modest interest returns.

An individual retirement account (IRA) allows investors to invest in alternative assets like collectible art or real estate crowdfunding. Before making your decision, be sure to conduct extensive research.


Stocks, or fractional ownership pieces in publicly traded companies, provide investors with opportunities for investing at reasonable costs in companies which could grow and perform well over time – ultimately helping you meet your retirement goals more easily.

IRAs can be invested in numerous assets, from stocks and mutual funds to property. Your choice will depend on your risk tolerance, time horizon for needing money and retirement goals.

Do-it-yourself investors may benefit from investing in mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs), which tend to offer greater diversification than individual stocks; however, their returns could potentially be lower.

Investors with mild or moderate risk profiles can consider funds like the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) to broad diversify their holdings, or for aggressive investors consider one like Dimensional US Targeted Value ETF (DFSVX), which specializes in small-cap stocks.


Bonds should not form the centerpiece of investment portfolios, but bonds can provide some safety during volatile markets while offering moderate yields. There are various types of bonds and funds available; Treasury or “T-bonds” offer near risk-free returns while corporate or junk bonds offer higher risks that may offer higher rewards.

Roth IRA accounts provide investors with safe investments without incurring fees or minimum account opening requirements. Betterment offers low-fee ETFs with an intuitive allocation model; Vanguard Digital Advisor also offers low-cost robo-advisory options that allow them to create ETF-only portfolios based on risk assessment and current savings – with no minimum account opening requirement and zero account or advisory fees! Added to that are its robust planning tools and resources!


CDs are among the safest savings vehicles available, offering predictable returns and a guarantee of principal. Their higher interest rates make them particularly suitable for milestone expenses like home down payments or car purchases. Long-term CDs can help investors build up savings for these important milestones.

CDs can also help you meet longer-term financial goals such as retirement or parking funds you don’t need immediately, like retirement. But keep in mind that your funds won’t become accessible until after the term has ended and any early withdrawal penalties apply; depending on your goals and liquidity needs this could pose an issue; some banks offer shorter-term CDs, like 18 month CDs that offer greater investment flexibility.

Money Market Accounts

Money market accounts (MMAs) offer attractive interest rates that can help increase savings over time, yet are best used for short-term goals such as building up an emergency savings fund.

At many banks and credit unions, Money Market Accounts are FDIC-insured; your deposits are protected up to $250,000 per depositor at each institution. Furthermore, most MMAs offer checks as well as debit cards for your convenience.

Before selecting an MMA option, it is crucial that you thoroughly research all available choices so you can select one with features suitable for your individual needs. Check minimum balance requirements, fees and withdrawal limits prior to making a final choice; additionally be mindful of potential tax implications when making this important choice.


Annuities are long-term savings vehicles that offer guaranteed rates of return over an agreed-upon timeframe and/or lifetime income streams. Annuities also accumulate interest tax-deferred, unlike CDs, and may feature add-on features such as death benefit riders.

Annuities can provide diversification without actively managing investments, making them ideal for investors with limited time or desire. But an annuity shouldn’t be used as the only source of retirement income, and can be complex to comprehend due to various features and fees (including surrender charges). Consult a financial advisor when choosing an annuity best suited for you.

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