Shows & Panels
Shows & Panels
- The 2014 Big Picture on Cyber Security
- AFCEA Answers
- American Readiness: Renewable Power and Efficiency Technologies
- Ask the CIO
- Building the Hybrid Cloud
- Connected Government: How to Build and Procure Network Services for the Future
- Continuing Diagnostics and Mitigation: Discussion of Progress and Next Steps
- Federal Executive Forum
- Federal News Radio's National Cyber Security Awareness Month Special Panel Discussion
- Federal Tech Talk
- The Future of Government Data Centers
- The Future of IT: How CIOs Can Enable the Service-Oriented Enterprise
- Government Perspectives on Mobility and the Cloud
- The Intersection: Where Technology Meets Transformation
- Maximizing ROI Through Data Center Consolidation
- Mitigating Insider Threats in Virtual & Cloud Environments
- Modern Mission Critical Series
- The New Generation of Database
- Reimagining the Next Generation of Government
- Targeting Advanced Threats: Proven Methods from Detection through Remediation
- Transformative Technology: Desktop Virtualization in Government
- The Truth About IT Opex and Software Defined Networking
- Air Traffic Management Transformation Report
- Cloud First Report
- General Dynamics IT Enterprise Center
- Gov Cloud Minute
- Government in Technology Series
- Homeland Security Cybersecurity Market Report
- National Cybersecurity Awareness Month
- Technology Insights
- The Cyber Security Report
- The Next Generation Cyber Security Experts
Shows & Panels
For FERS Folks: the Money Decision
Tuesday - 4/19/2011, 4:00am EDT
If $500 or $5,000 suddenly appeared on your doorstep would you keep it? What if you got a perfectly legal cash windfall every two weeks, the equivalent of a 5 percent tax-deferred pay raise. Would you accept?
For most people that's a no-brainer. For the vast majority of federal and postal workers (those under the Federal Employees Retirement System,) getting the extra money is easy. All they need to do is put 5 percent of their own pay, via payroll deduction, into the Thrift Savings Plan each payday. Uncle Sam will match the first five percent, although FERS employees are allowed to invest an additional 5 percent without a government match.
For any FERS employee, and especially new hires for whom the TSP is a brand new perk, the amount they put into the TSP is an important decision. So what to do?
On April 11, Joe Sullender, a certified financial planner, joined benefits expert Tammy Flanagan on her For Your Benefit radio show. He's with Wells Fargo advisors based in McLean, Va.. To hear the entire show, including tips on the best dates to retire, click here.
Meantime, here are some highlights from the program for FERS investors:
- For new hires with the Federal government, there can be some trepidation with how to proceed with saving for retirement while still managing current needs and other goals. A careful balance must be struck between long-term planning (like retirement) and more immediate needs such as education, savings, purchasing a first home or even paying down debt. However, regardless of the new FERS employee's situation, it is imperative that they contribute at least 5% to the TSP. If you contribute 5% to the TSP, they match these contributions 100% - meaning your money is essentially doubled instantly. Combine this matching with the compounding interest on these funds over the years and you can quickly see how a 5% contribution early in one's career can accumulate to quite a bit of money by retirement.
- Once the 5% contribution has been met, then you may want to consider maximizing the TSP contribution up to the 2011 limit of $16,500. Ideally, it is recommended that each FERS employee try to "max out" the TSP. Not only are all TSP contributions pre-tax, but all growth accumulates in a tax-deferred shelter, allowing it to grow faster than it would in a taxable account.
- Be sure, however, to weigh this savings against other goals that could be more immediate. First of all, it is usually advisable to not contribute more than 5% to the TSP if you have high-interest debt such as credit cards. Use all disposable income to wipe out this debt before trying to build your retirement nest egg. Additionally, many people I meet with in the mid-career stage have been maximizing their TSP and are in excellent shape for retirement - but have nothing put away for their children's college education. Be wary of this and be sure you are tackling all of your goals at the same time - water ALL of the "plants" the best that you can!
To reach me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nearly Useless Factoid
by Suzanne Kubota
For flying to become as risky as driving in the United States, a packed commercial jet would have to go down once a month, reports LiveScience. That actually happens only about once every two years.
MORE FROM FEDERAL NEWS RADIO
Time for TSP spring cleaning?
Once a year, Thrift Savings Plan participants should check their allocations are not "out of whack," said Tom Trabucco, director of external affairs for the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board.
CR could provide some BRAC traffic relief
Although it was known mostly for its cuts, the six-month budget bill Congress passed this month also included hundreds of millions of dollars in new spending intended to alleviate long-predicted traffic problems associated with the relocation of thousands of Defense Department employees in the Washington, D.C. area.
FAA suspends controller for watching movie on duty
An air traffic controller has been suspended for watching a movie when he was supposed to be monitoring aircraft. This comes on the heels of at least five cases of controllers found sleeping on the job.