TSP returns tumble even lower in October, many in the red

Thrift savings plan returns saw even steeper declines in October, compared to the last month. After the longest bull market in history, the numbers are bleeding red, according to a report released on Thursday.

The fund with the smallest decline — around 16 percent — was the fixed income investment fund (F fund), falling from -0.62 percent to -0.78 percent.

Two funds came close for first place in terms of greatest decline: the international stock index investment fund (I fund) and the small capitalization stock index fund (S fund). The I fund fell 8.8 percent from a positive 0.91 percent to -7.94 percent. The S fund came in second place, declining 8.3 percent from -1.76 percent to -10.06 percent.

The only fund to see a slight increase was the low-risk, government securities investment fund (G fund), increasing from 0.24 percent to 0.26 percent and mirroring August numbers. Between May and October, the G fund has stayed between 0.24 percent and 0.26 percent — the only fund with relatively stagnant returns month-to-month, according to TSP.

The common stock index investment fund (C fund) also came close, finishing with a 7.41 percent decrease, going from a positive 0.54 percent return in September to -6.84 percent last month. Still, the C fund produced the highest year-to-date (YTD) return of the investment funds, finishing at 2.98 percent. The I fund produced the smallest YTD return, finishing at -8.92 percent.

All of the TSP Lifecycle funds finished with negative returns in October, placing them in the red. The L 2050 fund tumbled the farthest, falling from 1.63 percent to -6.35 percent, a difference of 7.98 percent. Similar to this time last year, the L income fund dropped the least, finishing with -1.40 percent from 0.54 percent — a 1.94 percent decrease. The highest year-to-date lifecycle fund return came from the L 2020 fund, despite a decrease of just over 3 percent.

Since this time last year, all but the G fund are producing significantly lower returns.

Thrift Savings Plan — October 2018 Returns
Fund October Year-to-Date Last 12 Months
G fund 0.26% 2.38% 2.79%
F fund -0.78% -2.26% -1.90%
C fund -6.84% 2.98% 7.32%
S fund -10.06% -0.30% 3.07%
I fund -7.94% -8.92% -6.48%
L Income -1.40% 1.52% 2.58%
L 2020 -2.24% 1.21% 2.79%
L 2030 -4.60% 0.12% 2.51%
L 2040 -5.54% -0.35% 2.37%
L 2050 -6.35% -0.74% 2.29%