An IRA is simply a set of rules governing annual contributions, transfer and rollover activities, distributions, and tax consequences associated with an investment. Think of these rules as an umbrella—underneath the umbrella is the actual investment itself. There are three basic types of IRAs - Traditional, Roth and Rollover.

Most taxpayers who have earned income are eligible for an IRA. Your spouse can have his or her own IRA even if he/she doesn’t earn income. The same $5,500 annual contribution limits apply.

An IRA is an excellent way to have savings in addition to Social Security and a company retirement plan. And with an IRA, you have a much higher degree of control over your investment choices.

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