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Shows & Panels
Federal employees who came into government after Jan. 1, 1984 were part of a grand experiment. Could the government transition to a private-sector-like retirement system? The answer, 25 years after the creation of the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), is a resounding yes. FERS, according to many experts, has lived up to the expectation of providing federal employees a three-piece retirement plan: a small defined pension, Social Security and a 401k-like investment opportunity in the Thrift Savings Plan. In our special report, FERS: 25 Years Later, Federal News Radio explores whether moving from the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) to FERS was a success and how FERS has evolved over the last quarter century.
The new Federal Employees Retirement System is suddenly not so new. It turned 25 this year. And next to Social Security, it is the dominant federal retirement program. So how did FERS happen, and why? Check out Senior Correspondent Mike Causey's column.
In the 25 years since the Federal Employees Retirement System went into effect, much has changed when it comes to federal retirement. Tom Trabucco, the former longtime director of external affairs at the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, and Judy Park, the former legislative director of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) Association, joined Your Turn with Mike Causey for a look back at the creation of FERS and how it has evolved over the years.
Tom Trabucco, the former long-time director of external affairs for the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, said legislative changes to the federal retirement system made by Congress a quarter-century ago actually succeeded in achieving its goals and serve as a reminder of what can be accomplished when something big needs to be done and key leaders step up to the line.
As part of the special series, FERS: 25 Years Later, Federal News Radio welcomed to its studios a retired federal couple, Neil Schiff and Linda Habenstreit who represent the federal retirement divide. When Schiff retired from the FBI's Office of Public Affairs, he was a FERS enrollee. His wife, a long-time public affairs specialist in the Agriculture Department's Foreign Agricultural Service, was covered by CSRS.
Arthur Stein, a financial planner and former federal manager, told The Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Emily Kopp Wednesday that FERS has been a boon for feds, both young and old.
The Federal Employees Retirement System, which overhauled federal pensions, turned 25 years old this year. But, the history of the federal retirement structure extends farther back than that. In this timeline, follow the key events that led to the creation of FERS.
The Thrift Savings Plan, the federal-employee 401(k), rolled out in 1987. Through the years, it's picked up some new fund options. In this interactive chart, track annual returns of all 10 TSP funds since their inception.