September a dismal month for TSP returns

The Treasury securities-backed G fund and the fixed income investment F fund may have had slight improvements, but September was a period of overall decline for the Thrift Savings Plan.

Returns published by the TSP on Thursday indicated the federal employee 401(k) plan’s three other stock funds, and all of its Lifecycle funds had lower performance last month than in August. The G Fund, which is usually the most reliable yet unchanging, increased from 0.05% to 0.06%, while the F Fund remained in the red — but increased from -0.81% to -0.03%.

As for the other stock funds, international stock index I Fund fell from 5.12% in August to -2.60% in September; the small capitalization stock index S Fund went from 7.20% in August to -3.04% in September; and the common stock index investment C Fund performed the lowest — from 7.19% in August to -3.80% last month.

Compared to the same time in 2019, however, all stock funds except F performed worse. A year ago, the G, C, S and I Funds all had returns in the black.

As for the Lifecycle Funds, September returns were also down across the board. The biggest month-over-month decline was for the L 2055 Fund, followed closely by the L 2060 and L 2065 funds. Each had returns of -3.20% last month. The smallest drop was in the L Income Fund, which went from 1.39% in August to -0.66% in September, according to Thursday’s TSP numbers.

Compared to this time a year ago, the L Income, 2030, 2040 and 2050 Funds all had positive returns. The other Lifecycle funds did not launch until June of this year.

 

Thrift Savings Plan — September 2020 Returns
Fund Sept Year-to-Date Last 12 Months
G fund 0.06% 0.76% 1.21%
F fund -0.03% 6.75% 6.91%
C fund -3.80% 5.50% 15.05%
S fund -3.04% 3.45% 12.60%
I fund -2.60% -6.83% 0.79%
L Income -0.66% 1.59% 3.79%
L 2025 -1.58% n/a n/a
L 2030 -1.92% 1.76% 7.22%
L 2035 -2.11% n/a n/a
L 2040 -2.30% 1.73% 8.17%
L 2045 -2.46% n/a n/a
L 2050 -2.63% 1.64% 8.92%
L 2055 -3.20% n/a n/a
L 2060 -3.20% n/a n/a
L 2065 -3.20% n/a n/a

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THRIFT SAVINGS PLAN TICKER

Oct 20, 2020 Close Change YTD*
L Income 21.6569 0.0173 1.59%
L 2025 10.5150 0.0194 -
L 2030 36.0542 0.0821 1.76%
L 2035 10.6820 0.0265 -
L 2040 39.8749 0.1076 1.73%
L 2045 10.7962 0.0309 -
L 2050 23.3760 0.0712 1.64%
L 2055 11.0267 0.0427 -
L 2060 11.0268 0.0428 -
L 2065 11.0269 0.0428 -
G Fund 16.4815 0.0003 0.76%
F Fund 20.9953 -0.0434 6.75%
C Fund 51.0818 0.2405 5.50%
S Fund 61.8329 -0.053 3.45%
I Fund 31.0463 0.1542 -6.83%
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.