Search Penny Hill Press

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Traditional and Roth Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs): A Primer

John J. Topoleski
Analyst in Income Security

In response to concerns over the adequacy of retirement savings, Congress has created incentives to encourage individuals to save more for retirement through a variety of retirement plans. Some retirement plans are employer-sponsored (such as 401(k) plans), and others are established by individual employees (such as Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs)).

This report describes the primary features of two common retirement savings accounts that are available to individuals. Both traditional and Roth IRAs offer tax incentives to encourage individuals to save for retirement. Although the accounts have many features in common, they differ in some very important aspects. The report explains the eligibility requirements, contribution limits, tax deductibility of contributions, and rules for withdrawing funds from the accounts.

Date of Report: January 7, 2011
Number of Pages: 17
Order Number: RL34397
Price: $29.95

Follow us on TWITTER at or #CRSreports

Document available via e-mail as a pdf file or in paper form.
To order, e-mail
Penny Hill Press  or call us at 301-253-0881. Provide a Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover card number, expiration date, and name on the card. Indicate whether you want e-mail or postal delivery. Phone orders are preferred and receive priority processing.