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What are some good low-cost index funds for my IRA?

April 20, 2012: 5:05 AM ET

I want to start an IRA with low-cost index funds. Are there any with minimums as low as $1,000?
—Jason Hartman, Canoga Park, Calif.

You can find what you're looking for at Charles Schwab, which offers several low-cost stock and bond index funds with investment minimums of only $100 (for either IRAs or taxable accounts) and no upfront fees.

Or, instead of piecing together multiple funds yourself, you can get an entire index fund portfolio in one shot by investing in a target-date retirement fund, says Daniel Culloton, associate director of fund analysis at Morningstar. The Vanguard Target Retirement series, composed of that firm's index funds, is on our MONEY 70 list of recommended funds and has a $1,000 minimum.

—Anne C. Lee

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