Yesterday was the last day of the second financial quarter of 2007. More importantly, it was another benchmark date in evaluating my progress toward saving for my upcoming world travels!
According to my Savings Plan, I was $1,112 short of where I wanted to be as of December 31, 2006. Six months later, I am excited to be ahead by $1,790. While I fell far short of my goal for money in the ING Direct high-interest savings account, it was the direct result of a change in strategy.
Early in 2007, I decided to siphon more of my paycheck into purchasing my employer’s stock (at a 15% discount). I’ve been putting 12% of my post-tax, biweekly pay into that plan, which keeps it safe from my impetuous spending habits. As a result, I saw a $2,902 net gain, despite assuming the cost of an unforseen dental implant.
It would’ve been more, had my employer’s stock price not dropped $5/share in the past month. As a result of some investor confidence issues, the share price has become more volatile, and I do not see that changing in the latter half of the year. I am trying to decide whether I should cash out my shares now, and be happy with the concrete 15% return (and accept the higher capital gains tax), or let it ride (and potentially pay less in taxes, and earn a higher return, though risk a lower one all the same).
I am leaning toward cashing out so I can put the money in my ING account and start earning interest, which would negate my expected tax liability. I would also worry a lot less in the coming months.
(Any advice would be appreciated!)