Having access to a 401(k) is a fantastic investment vehicle as part of your overall financial situation, especially with a generous employer match. However, sometimes the investment options can be overwhelming, both the number of funds available and what the funds actually represent. Well, it’s time to stop panicking about the investment selection process because this post will help make sense of it all.

Starting off simple, Lockheed Martin’s 401(k) plan offers target date funds. This type of investment isn’t too complex as it chooses a future date and gradually changes the asset allocation as time progresses. At the beginning of the fund’s lifetime, the asset allocation (stock/bond mix) is more aggressive since there is plenty of time to recover should a market downturn occur. As the target date nears, the stock and bond mix shifts more towards the bond side, since these tend to have less risk.

A target date fund is a fairly common choice due to its simplicity. Lockheed does offer other funds too, called the “Core Funds”. Here is a list of what some of the fund terminology means:

  • Domestic: Based in the United States.
  • Foreign: Based outside of the United States.
  • Fixed income: Pay investors fixed interest rates and/or dividends until a maturity date (most common example is a bond). These investments are lower risk.
  • Value: Invests in companies that may be undervalued. Usually riskier than growth stocks but with potential for higher return.
  • Index: Instead of trying to beat an index, this type of fund tracks the index. Usually fewer fees and less volatile than funds that aim to beat an index.
  • Inflation-protected: Aims to maintain purchasing power by having returns at least equal to the rate of inflation.
  • Small-cap: Invests in companies that have a market capitalization (stock price multiplied by total shares) between $300 million and $2 billion.
  • Mid-cap: Invests in companies that have a market capitalization between $2 billion and $10 billion.
  • Emerging markets: Invests in countries whose economies are considered to be developing. Tend to be slightly riskier than funds invested in countries that are already developed.
  • Commodities: Gold, natural gas, grains, oil, etc. Investments in commodities tend to have more risk.
  • High-yield: Refers to bonds that don’t have high credit ratings. Offer potential for higher returns.
  • Non-diversified: Fund will be concentrated in a certain investment type compared to a diversified fund that invests in various asset classes. Non-diversified investments are riskier because the performance of the fund depends on the returns of one or a select few companies.

While Lockheed does offer a variety of investment options, there is no “best” fund or funds. Investing isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. The selection you make should depend on your investment goals, time horizon, and risk tolerance. Happy investing!

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Be sure and check back next week for more incredibly valuable information. Cheers!


Financial Planning and Investment Advisory offered by SWMG, LLC a Registered Investment Advisor.

Lockheed Martin Retirement Specialist is not an official title or professional designation nor is it conferred by Lockheed Martin on any individual or company.

Our Complementary consultation and free report are for informational purposes only and provided free without any obligation to utilize or retain our investment advisory services.

SMWG, LLC is not affiliated with or endorsed by Lockheed Martin Corporation. Our expertise comes from working with LMT employees for several years and helping them to retire with confidence.

Investing involves the risk of loss, including loss of principal. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Investment products are not FDIC insured, have no bank guarantee, and may gain or lose value. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that any specific investment will be profitable for a client’s investment portfolio.