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Looking to diversify your retirement portfolio? "Private Placements" is a term that refers to investing in privately-held entities, such as companies or small businesses. Investing in Private Placements using a self-directed IRA can be a simpler and faster process than acquiring a loan with institutional lenders. For self-directed IRA owners, this type of lending has the potential to bring higher returns than traditional investments such as the stock market or CDs. Also, note that with potential for higher returns comes higher risks.