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BancWest Investment Services
STARTING OUT

Start Strong and Stay on Track

At BancWest Investment Services and Bank of the West, you’ll find the tools, resources and professional assistance you need to get started on the right foot and keep you headed in the right direction.

Five Steps to a Secure Retirement


Step 1  Save early and often.

When it comes to saving for retirement, it’s never too early to start, and no amount of money is too small. Thanks to compounding, the gains on your original investment grow over time. For example, if you begin saving in your 20s, you may need to save as little as 10% of your annual income to have as much retirement savings as someone who begins saving in their 40s and sets aside more than 30% of their annual income. (Actual savings amounts and percentages may vary according to your individual needs.)

Step 2  Choose the best investment account for you.

Both effective ways to save for retirement, a Traditional IRA and Roth IRA1 have their own unique benefits. Contributions to a Traditional IRA may offer immediate tax benefits and tax-deferred earnings, but withdrawals may be taxed. On the other hand, a Roth IRA doesn’t offer immediate tax benefits, but qualified withdrawals are tax-free.

For a closer look at the benefits of each IRA, review our Roth vs. Traditional IRA Comparison Chart.

Step 3  Start simple with target date funds.2

We offer a broadly diversified group of target date funds. Simply pick the one with the date closest to your anticipated retirement, and the fund does the rest, adjusting the asset allocation over time to invest more conservatively as you approach retirement.

For a full list of our retirement accounts, visit our Retirement Account Offerings page.

Step 4  Put your savings on automatic.

Get into the habit of saving and put time on your side with the potentially cumulative effect of compounding. Sign up for our Automatic Savings Program (PDF) to automatically transfer funds between your Bank of the West savings account and your BancWest Investment Services retirement account.

Step 5  Use the power of dollar-cost averaging.3

Dollar-cost averaging refers to buying a fixed dollar amount of a particular investment on a regular schedule, regardless of market fluctuations. This means you buy more shares when prices are low and fewer when prices are high, thereby reducing risk and increasing your chances of making more money. Plus, when you sign up for automatic investing (PDF) you can schedule monthly purchases of no-load mutual funds and put the power of dollar-cost averaging on automatic.

Three Tips for Retirement Saving

Take advantage of the tax savings offered by your retirement accounts.

  • Set aside more now to help make for a more secure retirement: Open an IRA today.
  • Contribute to your 401(k): Get a head start on your goals by contributing tax-free and maximizing your contributions, if your employer matches your contributions and you've met your vesting period. Have a 401(k) from a previous employer? Open a Rollover IRA and enjoy the benefits of having your accounts in one place.

Pay off high-interest, nondeductible debt.

The sooner you pay off loans and credit cards, which often have interest rates in the double digits, the more money you can put toward your retirement.

Create an emergency fund.

Be sure to put away several months of living expenses so you can avoid dipping into savings or borrowing money if you need cash in a hurry.

1 Tax-free withdrawals of earnings are permitted five years after the first contribution that created the account. Once the five-year requirement is met, distributions will be free from federal income taxes if taken: (1) after age 59½ (2) on account of disability or death, or (3) to pay up to $10,000 of the expenses of purchasing a first home. Withdrawals that do not meet these qualifications will be subject to ordinary income taxes and a 10% federal tax penalty.

2 Investing in target date funds involves some level of risk, regardless of the allocation. Evaluate if such investment is suitable depending on your risk tolerance, current and future financials, and overall account holdings. Not all target date funds are created equal, as two similar funds may have different glide paths. Also, be aware that even though a target date fund discloses its investments and how the investment mix will shift over time, the fund manager can make changes, even if those changes create more risk, regardless of the fluctuating price levels. Investors should consider their ability to continue purchases through periods of varying price levels or changing economic conditions as opposed to low price levels. Such a plan does not assure a profit and does not protect against loss in declining markets.

3 Dollar-cost averaging involves continuous investment in securities, regardless of the fluctuating price levels. Investors should consider their ability to continue purchases through periods of varying price levels or changing economic conditions. Such a plan does not assure a profit and does not protect against loss in declining markets. The consultation with a BancWest Investment Services financial professional is complimentary. Please note: The implementation of any recommendations provided during the consultation may result in trade commissions or other fees, charges or expenses. Any recommendations and guidance provided are limited to assets held at BancWest Investment Services.

4 The consultation with a BancWest Investment Services financial professional is complimentary. Please note: The implementation of any recommendations provided during the consultation may result in trade commissions or other fees, charges or expenses. Any recommendations and guidance provided are limited to assets held at BancWest Investment Services.


* Deposit and loan products offered by Bank of the West. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

** Fifteen (15) $0 commission order executions for equities and Exchange-Traded Funds ("ETFs") per calendar month, per account ($6.95 order executions thereafter), for self-directed orders placed via the BancWest Investment Services online platform, subject to certain terms and conditions and additional fees (please refer to https://www.bankofthewest.com/personal-banking/investments/self-directed-investor.html for further details about self-directed investing available through BancWest Investment Services). If an order placed via the online platform is executed over multiple days, each day's executions for that order will be counted separately and applied against the remaining available $0 commission order executions available that month.

Online Preferred Pricing is only available to individuals with an active Premier Checking account. Individual Online Preferred Pricing eligibility is determined on a daily basis by BancWest Investment Services. Online Preferred Pricing does not apply to business/corporate accounts, investment club accounts, partnership accounts, limited liability accounts or certain fiduciary or custodial accounts. Please contact BancWest Investment Services for additional information.

Premier Checking recognizes your preferred customer status and rewards you with premium interest rates, waived fees and other benefits. Learn more or apply now. A Bank of the West Premier Checking account requires a minimum opening deposit of $500. The $30 monthly service charge will be waived for your first two (2) statement cycles and may be waived thereafter when you maintain at least $50,000 combined average monthly balance per statement cycle in this Bank of the West Premier Checking account plus other eligible personal Bank checking, money market, savings, CDs, and IRAs, and prior end-of-month account balances in eligible BancWest Investment Services investment accounts. Some accounts and services and the fees that apply to them vary from state to state. Standard deposit account fees apply. Relationship requirements and pricing are subject to change without notice.

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