10:13 am, July 13, 2014

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  • We're all stock market bag holders?
    contrarian
    I know many people who have sold their stocks in the current rally, after waiting a long long time for the rebound. They all say they will never get back in the market again. People who sold after the plunge are the biggest losers. I won't buy again until the market tanks and I know I buying at the bottom.
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  • For retirement
    Linda
    When it comes to Retirement, I just let it ride. I have mostly C, some I and some others. I make less than a friend who times the market, we have worked about the same length of time, not sure how much he puts in as a percentage, but I am doing better than he is trying to time the market in the TSP. you want to time the market, do individual stocks on the side. So you can see specifically how you are doing. he thought he was doing well u til we talked about it. But, everyone has to make their own decision. I will not be rich, but I will be able to live well. (Assuming the government doesn't change things up too much)
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  • For retirement
    Moderate
    Unless you are wealthy (250000 for medicare tax and 450000 for the 20% tax) nothing changed. 250000 is a bit low, but the change is relatively low. I do not think the 20% rate and the medicare tax should apply to capital gains, but that is the law. Good luck with it.
    worker
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  • Timing the market is a game
    Hefeweizen
    However, buying low and selling high can be done with some certainty. This strategy does not require pegging the peaks and bottoms of the market curve. All you have to do is have patience to wait to sell till the Share price is satisfyingly higher than it was when you bought the shares, even if it's likely to go higher, and to wait to buy them back again after it dips to a point that is either very near or below where it was when you last sold them. I have done this for the past two years after spending a year watching, testing, and verifying my suspicions. I have missed several opportunities like the present one, during which I have held a 100-percent position in the G Fund. But that's okay because I strongly feel that the market is operating almost entirely out of emotion these days and I would have sold early in this rally anyway had I been positioned in the C and S Funds. I can wait for the market to drop again and it surely will. Does anybody REALLY think that the Dow-30 will stay above 12,000 forever? Even 11,000? Unlikely.
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  • that's the $64,000 question
    Rob
    That's just it. Nobody knows where the market is headed including the so-called experts. Yes there will be ups and downs. There always will. There are exceptions to every rule, but staying the course (investing every two weeks) through both the good times and bad seems to be the best advice one could give. I don't have the time or patience to play games with my retirement. I don't have a problem with those who want to play games. I just don't want to bail anyone out if they lose.
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  • Great points Rob
    Moderate
    Great points Rob. I agree 100%
    worker
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  • Another factor to plan for in making investment decisions
    Jeremiah
    An item in the TSP newsletter electronically published today stated that: "The President approved the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, on January 2, 2013. This law allows the TSP and other qualified plans to give participants the option to convert their traditional account balances to a Roth balance. The amount converted would be taxable to the participant. We are currently waiting for tax reporting guidance from the IRS and will be studying the actions required to offer a conversion option. After that review, we will make decisions on whether to proceed." This was the first I'd heard about this rather important piece of news for TSP account holders. Especially for estate planning purposes this is of significance. The TSP's arlier inability to convert existing TSP accounts to a Roth basis (the Roth option was made only available for new funds invested after the law was altered to allow for the establishment of TSP Roth accounts) has now been corrected. It is to be hoped that the TSP administrators will proceed affirmatively to "make decisions on whether to proceed."
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  • "...hoped that the TSP administrators will proceed affirmatively..."?
    FERS Fed
    Seems unlikely to happen. TSP administrators appear to believe that their primary mission is to protect us from ourselves by restricting any/all choices that might be too risky.
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  • Proceed Affirmatively?
    contrarian
    Would that include allowing me to roll out of the TSP into my private Roth account? If it's just to roll into the same lousy funds then will someone please tell me the scenario that this is good? It can't be to save taxes while I'm working because I'm already in the high bracket,this would just make it higher. The only people I see this helping is already retired baby boomer ME Generation, or early retired military officers.
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  • Conversion rights
    Moderate
    I am part of the baby boomer me generation. I suspect you are right about the me generation and that is unfortunate. Unfortunately, if I decided to convert, I would only get about 7 or 8 years of benefit before I had to start pulling money out. This is not worth it to me. And I am not in a high tax bracket. it would be valuable for someone who could accumulate earnings tax free over an extended period of time. Now, if they said we could leave the money in a Roth TSP, I would consider converting it a piece at a time to keep my tax bracket. Otherwise, no way.----I do think you are out of line in calling this benefit for the me generation. It is a correction of a problem as others could convert from regular to Roth on their balances. So why not the TSP?
    worker
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  • 3 to 4 week market trend timer, but have been burnt
    Honest Broker
    Because G funds draw so little returns, I am forced to be one of those market timers but not as aggressive as others. I started TSP in 1988 with 5 percent contribution and in 2000 I went up to 10 percent. In 2004, I paid off the house and then went for the max contribution. My balance was growing so fast, I thought it would hit $1 million by retirement age in 2013. In 2008, I went for a few weeks losing money and then with no news of how it would rebound I went over to all G funds to see what would happen next. It paid off and I missed the big drop. It was a few months before I ventured out of the G fund, but I had always heard the market resets itself and looking at the NASDAQ history it seemed like a reasonable risk. Well it did come back up, so I put first 20 percent and then eventually 50 percent back in the C, S and I funds. The I funds were doing great, so I shifted 30 percent in them. I did great for 2009 and 2010. Well the European market collapse in 2011 came so fast that in 3 days I had lost 3 percent before getting back into the G funds. Soon as the Europeans showed signs of steady recovery, I got back into the C, S, I, and even F funds to make about 7.5 percent interest for 2012 and I have good $600K plus nest egg. Its not the original $1M, but not bad. My dad recommends at least 7 percent growth to keep up with inflation, so I am barely ahead. You stay safe in the G funds and do not play the market a little, you could be working for a long time. I do better than the L funds, but if you are uncomfortable with managing your TSP then I would atleast go with one of them. Good luck to all, there is no silver bullet planning solution.
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