Fedweek

number of tsp millionaires cut in half coronavirus

Investment losses due to stock market drops in the first calendar quarter of this year—a historically bad three-month period for stocks—cost TSP investors some $75 billion, the TSP has reported.

Data released at this week’s monthly meeting of the TSP board showed a collective valuation of accounts of $557.3 billion as of the end of March, compared with $632.6 billion as of the end of calendar year 2019. During the three months, withdrawals just about offset newly invested money, with a net inflow of about $1 billion.

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The average account balance for a those under the FERS system—both current employees and retirees who have kept their accounts open—as of year-end 2019 was $151,731 and for those under CSRS $161,101. Through March the averages fell to $133,183 and $145,028, respectively.

The TSP earlier reported that the number of accounts worth more than $1 million had been almost cut in half during the first calendar quarter but had not provided an accounting of the total dollar impact on accounts across the program.

The markets underlying the stock funds have posted gains in April but remain well below the levels of the start of the year and even further below the peak reached in mid-February.

Since the stock markets dropped, some TSP investors also have been shifting money into the most stable of the TSP funds, especially the government securities G fund.

That fund now holds 46.6 percent of assets—including what is invested in that fund by the lifecycle L funds—compared with 38.5 percent at year-end 2019, while the bond F fund percentage has risen from 5.3 to 5.9 percent.

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