While my suggestion is a broad statment, it's almost always true. You will definitely be the exception if you have a 401k program that charges less fees than an IRA. So it's better to stop contributing to your 401k after you reach the company match limit and start contributing to an IRA. If you max out the IRA contributions for the year, you can switch back to contributing to your 401k again to take advantage of the tax-free exemption. But that's really the only benefits of the 401k. I would rather contribute to my personal stock account at that point and reap larger gains with full control over my money.
You are correct that higher income earners have to take a different approach. With salaries over $150k/year, you hit the ceiling for a traditional IRA and your 401k quickly.
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