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Thrift Savings Plan

 

Rates of Return updated from TSP.gov on July 2007

TSP stock funds post losses for July 08/02/07 All of the stock-based funds in the 401(k)-style retirement savings plan lost money last month.

Questions and Answers on the Effect of Lifting Percentage Limits on Employee Contributions to the TSP

Thrift Saving Plan Links | Thrift Saving Plan News

 

 

Thrift Savings Plan Calculators

Loan interest rate for new loans: 5.125%. (05/23/06)

C Fund
Sept.:
 (0.90)%
Last 12 Months:
12.57%

F Fund
Sept..1.23%

Last 12 Months: 4.18%

G Fund
Sept.: 0.37%
Last 12 Months:
4.37%
S Fund  
Sept.:  (1.01)%
Last 12 Months:
25.86%

I Fund

Sept.: 3.23%
Last 12 Months:
23.77%

TSP Website

Percentages in (   ) are negative.

August 2005 L 2040 L 2030 L 2020 L 2010 L Income
  0.07% 0.07% 0.15% 0.16% 0.17%
Last 12 Months

Thrift Savings Plan Open Season and PostalEASE

USPS Liteblue Extranet for Postal Employees

TSPTalk.com - Thrift Savings Plan Info

 

TSP Contribution Elections and Cancellations
(USPS PIN)
Use the PostalEASE telephone system or the PostalEASE employee Web site during TSP open season to begin contributing, to change contribution amount or percentage, or to cancel TSP contributions.
To use PostalEASE, you will need your Employee ID (this number is found on your earnings statement) and USPS personal identification number (PIN), available only from PostalEASE.
Call toll free: 877-4PS-EASE (877-477-3273).
Don't know your USPS PIN? Call PostalEASE; press 1; enter Employee ID (this number is found on your earnings statement); when prompted to enter PIN, pause, then press 2. Your USPS PIN will be mailed to your address of record, usually by the next business day.
Career employees who have trouble using PostalEASE, or who are unable to use a telephone, may contact local personnel office for help.
TSP Fund Investment Elections
(TSP PIN)
Contact TSP directly, during or outside TSP open season, to change investment of future TSP contributions or money already in account.  Go to the TSP Web site at www.tsp.gov, or call the TSP ThriftLine toll-free at 877-968-3778 (TDD toll-free at 877-847-4385). Or mail TSP-50, Investment Allocation, to TSP, available from your local personnel office (election not effective as quickly).
To use the TSP Web site or TSP ThriftLine, you must know your TSP PIN, available only from TSP.
Don't know your TSP PIN? Request it from www.tsp.gov - choose Account Access. Or via TSP ThriftLine or TSP service office toll-free at 877-968-3778 (TDD toll-free at 877-847-4385), and then follow the instructions. Your new TSP PIN will be mailed to your address of record.
PostalEASE and TSP Information Mailed to Career Employees A TSP leaflet with PostalEASE instructions and TSP elimination of TSP open season letter was mailed to all career employees. If you do not receive the mailing by mid-April, contact your local personnel office. In addition, a TSP summary, cover letter, and PostalEASE instructions are mailed to all newly hired career employees soon after their accession PS Form 50 action is processed.
TSP Policy Changes Beginning July 1, 2005, all career employees may make TSP contribution elections (start, stop, or change) at any time.

Thrift Saving Plan Links

Thrift Saving Plan News

June a slow month for TSP investments
None of the five basic funds in the Thrift Savings Plan fared well in June, with three posting losses and the others making minimal gains. The reliable government securities (G) fund performed the best, but increased just 0.42 percent. Its gains over the previous year remained lower than those for any of the others, with an increase of 4.90 percent. The F Fund, made up of fixed-income bonds, had the smallest losses of the remaining three, losing 0.27 percent for June. Its yearlong earnings remained positive, at 6.23 percent. The S Fund, which invests in the stocks of small- and mid-sized American companies, lost 1.53 percent, after posting the biggest gains for May. The fund still grew 19.47 percent for the last 12 months. Finally, the C Fund, which tracks Standard & Poor's 500 Index of stocks in large and medium-sized domestic companies, lost 1.70 percent. But the fund's 12-month gains were the second-highest, at 20.63 percent. (703/07)

August brings respectable returns in TSP funds - August brought solid, even returns among the funds in the Thrift Savings Plan, after several months of weaker performance. None of the TSP's five basic funds, which comprise the $180 billion 401(k)-style retirement savings plan for federal employees, lost ground last month. The International (I) Fund continues to be the plan's star, gaining 2.76 percent for a 12-month total return of 23.44 percent, far above any of the other funds. (9/01/06)

Your TSP Statements May Not Be in the Mail

Taken from Thrift Savings Plan “What’s New in March 2006″ Web Site   - “If you are currently receiving mailed participant statements and want them to continue, you must renew your request. You can do so at Account Access or by completing and returning the Mailed Participant Statement Renewal” (3/31/06)


The FBI is investigating a bogus e-mail that was sent March 16 to some of the 3.6 million Thrift Savings Plan participants asking for their Social Security numbers and other personal information that could be used to access their accounts, TSP officials said.
TSP officials said March 17 they are unsure how many participants received the e-mail and whether any accounts were breached. As a precaution, officials shut down the portion of the Web site that allows applicants to withdraw funds or apply for loans several hours after learning of the scam March 16. Access remained suspended as of press time March 17. Transactions requested online are processed each day after noon. The bogus e-mail was sent a couple hours after the transaction period had closed for the day. TSP officials shut down the site around 6 p.m. March 16 and said they would review transactions made during the period in question to determine whether any appear suspicious before deciding whether to reactivate account access. The e-mail, purportedly sent from the address accounts@tsp. gov, informs users that an e-mail address had been added to their accounts and instructs them to contact TSP customer service with any questions by clicking on a link provided in the e-mail. The link takes users to a bogus version of the TSP account access screen, where they are asked to enter their Social Security numbers and the four-digit personal identification number (PIN) used to access their accounts. After entering that information, users are taken to another Web page where they are asked for credit card and banking information, TSP officials said. (3/17/06)
The Executive Director of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (Board) proposes to amend the Thrift Savings Plan's (TSP's) death benefit regulations to permit the TSP to rely on a participant's marital status as stated on a Federal income tax form when determining whether a deceased participant had a common law marriage.

Second financial hardship withdrawals available for Katrina victims Through December 31, 2005, victims of hurricane Katrina who have made a financial hardship withdrawal from the TSP within the past 6 months may make a second financial hardship withdrawal. For more information, see Hurricane Relief (12/01/05)

 

PERCENTAGE OF PAY LIMITS TO BE ELIMINATED: Beginning in January 2006, there will be no limit on the percentage of pay you can contribute to the TSP. However, your total contributions for the year may not exceed the IRS limit of $15,000. CATCH UP CONTRIBUTIONS: If you are - or will become - age 50 or older during 2006 and will be contributing the maximum amount in regular TSP contributions, you can make additional catch-up contributions of up to $5,000 next year. You can sign up for catch-up contributions at any time, but you must make a new election for each calendar year. Remember, TSP open seasons have been eliminated. So now you can enroll or change your contribution amount at any time.


TSP board mulls loan restrictions, automatic enrollment
Gary Amelio, executive director of the TSP, the government's version of a 401(k) retirement savings plan, wants Congress to pass four legislative initiatives that would change the plan significantly by placing limits on loans, automatically enrolling new hires, changing the default fund and revising fund definitions. (11/30/05)

Hurricane's hit on New Orleans to stall TSP mail
Thanks to Hurricane Katrina, most Americans who watch television, listen to the radio or read newspapers know that much of the city of New Orleans is below sea level. That information is especially important for the 3.4 million active and retired federal/postal/military personnel whose $160 billion retirement nest egg is safe, even though major financial operations of the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) are handled at the National Finance Center in the New Orleans area. Because the finance center and the New Orleans post office are shut down, any TSP business conducted by mail will be stalled. Nobody is at the finance center to process the information or at the main post office to sort the mail. Potentially affected are transactions such as new payroll submissions from agencies that go through the National Finance Center. Agencies that normally transmit to the center should contact the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board for instructions. They can download the instructions and send the information to the Northern Virginia data center. (8/30/05)

TSP launches life-cycle funds- New life-cycle investment funds are now available to participants in the Thrift Savings Plan, as of Monday.The TSP, which is a 401(k)-style retirement savings plan for federal employees, launched its newest set of funds in order to help participants allocate their money more effectively, according to plan administrators. (8/1/05)
Thrift Savings Plan Evolves, Improves, Has More Changes Ahead
Starting July 1, participants will be able to change the amount they contribute at any time. Another big change comes in 2006. Limits on the percentage of salary that can be earmarked for the TSP will disappear .The most far-reaching change, however, will be the introduction of "life-cycle funds" into the TSP. The new funds are on track to be launched in the next month or two. When they roll out, TSP participants will receive a postcard announcement that says, "Put Your Investments on Cruise Control."
(6/26/05)
Bill will push new real estate fund for Thrift Savings Plan-The Thrift Savings Plan might be gaining a real estate fund option, according to legislation that will be introduced Monday by two members of the House Government Reform Committee (4/9/05)
TSP Is Striving to Increase Efficiency, Cut Administrative Costs-The Thrift Savings Plan is taking steps to operate more efficiently, steps that should lead to lower fees for the plan's 3.3 million participants, officials said yesterday. On average, investors in 2006 will save an estimated $3.84 annually on the TSP's administrative costs. That may sound like small change, but low fees are a key to TSP's popularity with government employees. Over the last decade, TSP has charged its participants much less in management and investment fees than major mutual funds charge in the private sector. (9/20/04)
Senate ditches 'open seasons' for federal retirement contributions -Thrift Savings Plan Open Elections Act Would Make “Open Seasons” Year-Round for Employees-The Senate unanimously approved a bill Friday that would eliminate open seasons restrictions on contributions to the Thrift Savings Plan. If it is passed by the House and signed by the president, the Senate legislation still will not affect open season restrictions on the government's matching contributions. If new employees do not begin contributing immediately, they will need to wait for an open enrollment period to begin receiving matching contributions from their agencies (Govexec 7/16/04)

Effective July 1, 2004, the TSP will make 3 changes to the loan program: see Questions & Answers on New Loan Program

  • A $50 fee will be deducted from the amount of each new loan. 
  • You will no longer be able to have two general purpose loans at the same time.  (You will still be able to have one general purpose loan and one residential loan.)
  • When you pay off a TSP loan, you will not be eligible to apply for another loan of the same type for 60 days.
Overhaul of USPS and Eliminating TSP Open Seasons Head Congressional Agenda -as it returns from the Memorial Day break. A major bill to revamp the USPS and strengthen its financial outlook is scheduled for debate and a possible vote tomorrow in the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee. The bill would revamp how postal rates are set and would free up several billion dollars that had been overpaid into the Civil Service Retirement System for postal pensions. The Senate committee also plans to take up legislation that would eliminate the TSP's open seasons (Washington Post 5/31/04)

Looks Like Open Season On TSP Open Season -A bipartisan group of senators has introduced legislation that would make it easier for federal employees to manage their accounts in the Thrift Savings Plan and to sharpen their retirement planning skills.

The bill, introduced Friday, would eliminate the TSP's twice-a-year "open seasons," the only time employees can change the amount they contribute toward retirement. (5/22/04)


Federal Workforce Flexibility Act — has passed the Senate and is likely to move quickly through the House. The bill would alter the way retirement benefits under the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) are calculated for workers with part-time service. The bill would apply to workers who performed work prior to April 7, 1986, have some part-time service, and retire after the bill is enacted. Under current law, benefits for CSRS workers with part-time service are calculated using a two-step process. For workers with service prior to April 7, 1986, the current formula uses the highest salary the worker actually earned to reflect the part-time employment. For work on or after April 7, 1986, the formula uses a deemed salary (what the worker would have been earning if the worker had been working full time) to determine benefits and applies a pro-rata factor to adjust for part-time service. In effect, the current formula tends to treat new retirees with part-time service early in their careers more favorably than those whose part-time service comes at the end of their careers. The bill also eliminates open season for the Thrift Savings Plan, which restricts employees to one time period when they can make changes in their retirement contributions. The bill would allow employees to make changes any time they wanted to. (5/19/04)
Thrifty at the Thrift Plan-Budget savings at the TSP may result in cost savings for participants (4/22/04)
Thrift Savings Plan readies for new investment fund -Board members lined up strongly in support of the "life cycle" plan, which Gary Amelio, executive director of the Thrift Savings Plan, wants to offer early next year. The life cycle plan would be a collection of existing funds, automatically diversified and adjusted over time to account for each federal worker's investment preferences. A young worker, for example, could opt for a more aggressive investment strategy to increase potential returns. The program could automatically shift the investments to lower yield, lower risk funds as the worker grew closer to retirement. (4/19/04)
Want a Loan? Pay Up -Gary Amelio, executive director of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, has formally proposed charging Thrift Savings Plan members a $50 fee when they borrow money from their retirement plans. The proposal was unveiled Wednesday in the Federal Register. TSP investors have until May 7 to submit comments on it. The Thrift board proposal also would require borrowers to have only one general purpose loan out at one time, and would put in place a 60-day waiting period after a loan is repaid and a new loan can be taken out. If a TSP participant has two loans, according to the proposed rule, the second would have to be a residential loan -- which could be used for a down payment on a house or for home improvement. The waiting period, Amelio said, was to avoid potential complications when a new loan request arrived at the processing center before a final payment. (Govexec 4/7/04)

TSP officials ask lawmakers to end open seasons -Thrift Savings Plan officials said that "open seasons" are outdated and appealed to lawmakers to end the restrictive enrollment and contribution adjustment windows. The TSP currently holds two open seasons annually, during which federal employees can join the fund and begin to receive matching contributions from their agencies or adjust the amount they are saving each pay period. The open seasons scheduled for 2004 are April 15 through June 30 and Oct. 15 through Dec. 31. TSP Board Chairman Andrew Saul told lawmakers that "the board supports eliminating open seasons because it would expand participant access to the TSP and simplify plan administration."

(Govexec 3/2/04)


TSP board concerned about participants' investing styles-The Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board is planning to release a final recommendation on two new retirement investment funds by its April board meeting, but officials said Tuesday that they are concerned federal employees will invest their funds too conservatively. The Thrift Savings Plan board wants to have "lifestyle" and "life cycle" funds available to federal employees by the beginning of 2005. The April board meeting should include recommendations on what form the funds will take and what restrictions, if any, will be placed on their use. (Govexec) 2/19/04
Tax credit — If you participated in the TSP during 2003, you may be eligible for the Retirement Savings Contributions Credit, which is available to participants with an adjusted gross income of no more than $50,000 if married filing jointly, $37,500 if head of household, or $25,000 if single or married filing separately. For information, consult your tax advisor or refer to IRS Form 8880. (source: TSP.gov)
TSP Participants to Face New Rules Governing Loan Program -The Thrift Savings Plan is changing its loan program in an effort to discourage government employees and retirees from using it as a line of credit. Starting July 1, the TSP will charge a $50 fee to cover the costs of processing and administering each new loan. Currently, about 500,000 participants have loans, but the overhead costs of the program are absorbed by TSP's 3.2 million participants. Last year, in reviewing the loan program, TSP officials said the pattern of loan disbursements suggested that some participants were borrowing to essentially give themselves a line of credit while others were regularly taking out loans to pay college tuition. Under the changes that take effect in July, TSP participants will be able to take out one general purpose loan and one residential loan. When paying off a loan, they will not be allowed to apply for another loan for 60 days. (Washington Post) 1/21/04 Changes to the TSP Loan Program( PDF)
THRIFT SAVINGS PLAN FACT SHEET Catch-Up Contributions

 

Thrift board considers adding new fund to savings plan -The Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board agreed Monday to study adding a new fund to the 401k-style Thrift Savings Plan. The new fund, described by TSP Director Gary Amelio as a lifestyle fund, would be based on a participant’s tolerance to investment risk, with styles ranging from very conservative to very aggressive. Govexec 9/17
 

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