The Internal Revenue Service has decided to keep contribution limits for 401(k)s, IRAs and other retirement accounts unchanged in 2010, rather than lowering them, as some had feared due to negative inflation. The Labor Department reported Thursday that the consumer price index has fallen 1.3% over the past 12 months.

Thus, the maximum amount workers can contribute to their 401(k) is still $16,500 with an additional $5,500 permitted for those 50 and older. IRA contributions remain at $5,000 for those under 50 and at $6,000 for those 50 or older.

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