Just got my annual notice from UBS HR that it is that time of year again to sign up for benefits and the 401k plan. How much to put into the 401k? Two possible answers: 1) The absolute maximum you can; or 2) The minimum required to take advantage of the full company match. My personal answer is #1. 401k is a terrific tax deferral and savings vehicle. But at a bare minimum, it is important to find out how much your company matches, and contribute at least that much: that is free money, a rare thing in this world.