TSP Ends 2013 On A Positive Note

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Nearly all the funds in the Thrift Savings Plan were in the black during the last month of 2013.

Federal employees’ retirement investments rounded out the year with four consecutive months of gains. The F Fund (fixed income) was the only one to finish the year in the red, dropping 0.56 percent in December and 1.68 percent during the last 12 months, according to the latest numbers.  

The S Fund, which is invested in small and midsize companies and tracks the Dow Jones Wilshire 4500 Index, had the strongest December, gaining 2.94 percent during the month. It was also the top performer of the year, ending 2013 up 38.35 percent.

The C Fund, invested in common stocks, also had a good year, jumping 32.45 percent in 2013 and gaining 2.54 percent in December. The I Fund, which invests in international stocks, ended the year up 22.13 percent, increasing 1.51 percent last month.

The G Fund, invested in government securities, continued its modest growth in December, increasing 0.19 percent and gaining 1.89 percent during 2013.

The L Funds -- designed to move investors to less risky portfolios as they near retirement -- all yielded across-the-board positive returns in 2013. The L Income Fund for TSP participants who already have started withdrawing money gained 0.58 percent in December. L 2020 increased 1.25 percent last month; L 2030 gained 1.56 percent; L 2040 was up 1.77 percent; and L 2050 saw a 1.98 percent boost.

In 2013, L Income was up 6.97 percent; L 2020, 16.03 percent; L 2030, 20.16 percent; L 2040, 23.23 percent; and L 2050, 26.20 percent.

With the recent boom in the market, many TSP participants have shifted their investments away from the G Fund -- considered the plan’s safest offering -- into equity funds. TSP officials, however, have said feds may be “chasing the market,” a troubling sign not seen since the months leading up to the 2008 market crash. 

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