Bear market bites TSP investors

Thanks to the it-had-to-happen-sometime downturn in the stock market, the number of Thrift Savings Plan millionaires dropped to 100,364 in March. That’s down from the federal 401(k) plans high-water mark at the end of 2021. At that time there were 112,880 current, former and/or retired feds with account balances in excess of $1,000,000. A number had built accounts exceeding $3 million.

With the exception of some wealthy politicians, political appointees or lawyers-turned-federal judges, most of...

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Thanks to the it-had-to-happen-sometime downturn in the stock market, the number of Thrift Savings Plan millionaires dropped to 100,364 in March. That’s down from the federal 401(k) plans high-water mark at the end of 2021. At that time there were 112,880 current, former and/or retired feds with account balances in excess of $1,000,000. A number had built accounts exceeding $3 million.

With the exception of some wealthy politicians, political appointees or lawyers-turned-federal judges, most of the $1 million club members did it the old way. They invested at least enough to get the 5% government match. They put their money in the TSP’s higher-risk, higher-reward C and S stock funds. And let it ride. They continued to invest in the stock index funds, especially in hard times (like the 2008-9 recession) when stocks were on sale. After a spectacular and record long run of good returns, the market turned down this year for a variety of reasons, from the invasion of Ukraine to supply chain problems, shortage-induced inflation and higher prices for gas and oil.

On Wednesday’s Your Turn show, financial investor Arthur Stein talked about the market downturn. This column also provided readers with a series of charts showing how well (or not) the market has done over the past 15 years. Meantime, here’s a snapshot of the TSP today:


And here’s where it stood at the end of last year:

Nearly Useless Factoid

By David Thornton

In Oklahoma, until 2018, it was illegal to sell beer with an ABV of more than 3.2% cold. It had to be sold at room temperature.

Source: Public Radio Tulsa

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THRIFT SAVINGS PLAN TICKER

May 26, 2022 Close Change YTD*
L Income 22.7139 0.0976 -3.32%
L 2025 11.4906 0.0859 -6.04%
L 2030 39.6951 0.4221 -8.58%
L 2035 11.8294 0.1377 -9.48%
L 2040 44.4375 0.5623 -10.33%
L 2045 12.0885 0.1636 -11.10%
L 2050 26.3208 0.3788 -11.80%
L 2055 12.7499 0.2205 -13.56%
L 2060 12.7491 0.2205 -13.56%
L 2065 12.7482 0.2206 -13.57%
G Fund 16.8797 0.0013 0.65%
F Fund 19.1524 0.0124 -9.33%
C Fund 61.6252 1.2035 -12.91%
S Fund 65.3406 1.5929 -18.83%
I Fund 34.8302 0.399 -12.73%
Closing price updated at approx 6pm ET each business day. More at tsp.gov
* YTD data is updated on the last day of the month.