How to invest in the TSP

Monday - 10/15/2012, 6:27am EDT

For Your Benefit

Download mp3

October 15, 2012For Your Benefit hosts Bob Leins and John Elliott welcome Certified Financial Planner John Jilek into the studio. Jilek discusses the Thrift Savings Plan and how to invest in the TSP and get the most for your dollar.

Jilek tells Leins and Elliott that he is "bullish" on the economy at this time. "If you look at the S&P companies, they're actually sitting on several trillion dollars in cash right now," Jilek says. "I don't think you've ever had a better chance for upside than currently with a fund like the C Fund."

Jilek also says he likes the L, for "lifecycle," funds, of which there are several, tailor-made to coincide with your own projected retirement date. There is the L Income Fund, which balances stocks and bonds in a way that is best suited for those who are about to retire or have recently done so. Then there are other L funds, for those who expect to retire in 2020, 2030, 2040 and 2050. Each is weighted in a way that assumes risk for those who are farther away from retirement and offers protection for those who are nearing it.

Jilek says that, if he were in federal service, "I would actually be in the L funds." He praises them for continually re-balancing the portfolio to match the investment strategy, something that is done, not just quarterly, but actually daily by chartered financial analysts working for the L funds.

Jilek also discusses the merits of taking a loan against your TSP savings.

For Your Benefit is broadcast live Mondays at 10:00 a.m. on Federal News Radio.