It’s a good thing I have a cousin-in-law that works for a Wells Fargo retail branch. He always fills me in on things I need to know about the companies personal banking products (Girl Ninja and I are WF clients). Normally I’d be all about a local credit union or community bank, but Wells Fargo has a product line called the Portfolio Management Account (PMA) that is pretty swaggerific.

It has some standard benefits like free checking, free cashiers checks, custom ATM cards; but the thing that really makes it stand out from the competition is the fact that a PMA member can make 100 free trades each year through their Wells Fargo brokerage account. The $30 annual fee for these types of accounts is also waived.

If you have the assets necessary to qualify, the PMA package is pretty much the best thing out there. Or at least that was true 10 days ago.

On March 31st, my cousin-in-law informed me that the 100 free trades benefit was disappearing on April 1st. Wells Fargo now charges a $6.95 per trade fee to any newly opened PMA accounts. That’s not an excessive amount by any means (E*Trade is $8), but that’s a heck of a lot more than the $0 per trade I’ve been paying for the last five years.

The accounts Girl Ninja and I already have are grandfathered in (my Roth, her traditional). But what if I quit my job a year from now. In the event I change careers, I’ll need to roll my 401k assets in to a traditional IRA. Meaning my new traditional IRA would be subject to the $7 fee.

Fortunately, I was able to call at about 8pm on Easter Sunday and get a traditional IRA opened up if/when this becomes a reality.

Well except for the fact that I have never contributed to a traditional IRA before and made a major boo-boo. I told Wells Fargo to throw $1,000 in to my new traditional IRA for the 2012 tax year. Thinking I was a good boy for putting a little more away for future-me.

Not so fast! Apparently if you max out your Roth IRA, you aren’t suppose to contribute to a traditional IRA (or vice versa).

Basically I’m only allowed to contribute $5,000 total between my traditional AND Roth IRAs. I already maxed out my Roth ($5,000) a few months ago, so my recent $1,000 addition to my traditional puts me over the maximum allowed contribution. If I left things how they are the IRS would come kick my door down, punch me in the face, and penalize me for over-contributing. How lame!

Ugh, I remember the days where I worried if I should have Golden Grahams or Cinnamon Toast Crunch for breakfast, now I’m worrying about getting a visit from Uncle Sam for investing too much. Growing up sucks.

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