3:47 pm, July 12, 2014

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  • Staying steady can mean getting steadily less affluent too
    Hefeweizen
    Sure, those who rode the storm in 2007 through early 2009 kept their shares of C, S and I funds, only to watch them drop like rocks, then slow regain ground. Eventually, last year and now in 2013, we see the values equal and exceed what they were before the advent the recession. That puts them back more or less to where they were, with balances looking good again, but mainly reflecting the contribution they made during that time, which purchased shares on sale. The shares which they retained during that period have gone almost nowhere. I left the stock funds when I figured the bottom was still to come (it was). After the funds hit rock bottom, they gradually started an upward movement in value, and when I recognized this trend as a real one, meaning that it might actually last, I bought back into it. At times, the market slides backward and I had no problem jumping back over to the G fund. Once the negativety passed, back to stock funds I went. Sometimes, this was a cycle that went full-circle within the space of just 10 days. I have been extremely satisfied with my results. Could I have done better simply by staying put in C and S funds? . . . perhaps, though doubtful. As a licensed pilot, I am also the type who would rather fly the plane manually rather simply activate the auto-pilot upon reaching cruising altitude. I like to keep the future in my own hands as much as possible.
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  • Buy and hold doesn't work
    contrarian
    Business insider.com has a story today of massive inflows into the market so far this year. Who wants to bet me those funds are from us 47%'ers? (I think not). Now, who wants to follow those 1%'ers and be bagholders when they bail out in May? Buy low and sell high works, but like they say, you have to be right twice. I'd say the message right now is watch the trends and don't fight the crowd. Sorry to all those who sold at the bottom, and yes the round trip was gut wrenching just to get back to even. I no longer trust Wall Street, and I am still waiting for those guys to wind up in jail rather than govt jobs.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • When to do what
    Moderate
    First Hefe, I would like to congratulate you on your skill at predicting the movements of the stock market. I am not skilled at all in that area. My TSP funds and have been in the G fund. Do I regret that now. I guess, but I am not really sure. Since I am CSRS I do not depend on the TSP. It is just a small supplement to my retirement when I am required to make withdrawals. My outside monies in stocks are handled mostly passively with dividends reinvested. I rode out the crash and, so far, appear to be okay. (Not wealthy) So, I wish you continued success, but be careful.-----To I believe Kris of the IRS, Politics has nothing to do with the discussion. I say George Bush and Ronald Reagan were the monarchs. You will say Bill Clinton and Barrack Obama were the monarchs. The truth is that the politicians will exercise the power they can get away with when pushing their positions. This is true whether they are leftists or rightists. So, cut the nonsense about "monarch" Obama. You just do not like his political positions. If you choose not to invest in the stock arena that is your choice. But do not blame it on Obama.
    worker
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  • Did better?
    Linda
    Those who got the timing right and left at the top and bought at the bottom, probably did do better than those who roads the course. However, those that rode the course did better than those than panicked, left and the bottom and stayed in the G. I roads the course and I have done a lot better than just making back my money and what I put in since the bottom.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Coming Up
    Mc
    What's coming up is worse than what happened in 2008. Nothing has changed since then, only more debt added. When interest rates rise, well....
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Predictions
    Moderate
    Did you use a crystal ball in your predictions or just ask soothsayer Sally?
    worker
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • G Fund, then the K Fund ("Kiss it Goodbye")
    Mc
    Move into the G Fund now, then later it will be the K Fund ("Kiss it Goodbye").
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Nest egg blueprint: Measure twice, cut once: My Tale
    Christopher H.
    I retired suddenly two years ago under FERS and was forced to draw out more money than I ever planned from my TSP. I calculated what my draw from the TSP could have been if the Great Recession hadn't occurred and to my dismay it is $1,000/month less than if the market had stayed on course. All of my money was in the C-60%, S-25%, and I-15% funds and I wouldn't change that. I shoveled in as much money as I could spare. Since I have to draw 9.5% (instead of the nominal 4% to keep the principal from shrinking) I have to have faith that the market will continue to grow and maintain itself. Sure, there may be downturns, but the market seems a safer long term bet than real estate, tulips, gold, guns or other fads. Another nasty surprise is the FERS supplement. It goes away when you turn 62. Then you can take Social Security to make up for the loss. Sure, you can delay taking Social Security to increase the monthly income by as much as 70%, if you can wait till age 70, but here's the kicker: the TSP supplement is about 45% of your initial pension or, in other words, you will lose $1,000 a month if you don't take Social Security at 62. For most people they will be forced to take Social Security because they cannot suffer such a loss. Fortunately for me I have a military pension that kicks in at age 60 so I might be able to wait it out. I had planned to work after retirement for as long as I liked, but my sudden retirement was due to illness which hasn't improved. I also didn't plan on my wife going bankrupt in her business and losing everything. Everything was going fairly well until Hurricane Sandy wiped out our basement (where I was spending my retirement). The old saw about having 3-6 months living expenses available applies even if you don't have a job to lose.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Hurricane Sandy wiped out your basement?
    contrarian
    No homeowners insurance? A good idea for everybody to have offsite data storage of pictures. Especially if you live near an ocean or coast (didn't think many coastal houses had basements?) One strong caution: 9.5% withdrawal rate on earnings of 4% will drain you to empty in under 13 years.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Nobody in TSP can outguess the market
    bellsc
    Use the Lifecycle funds... I converted over since they started way back when, and have reasonable increases. Yes, they get hit when the world markets get hit. They adjust daily, and the proportions between funds, quarterly. Take an FERS Retirement Seminar every year, because the law does change, no matter how far you are to retirement.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Lifecycle funds
    follyfrog
    I guess you're probably right, but I don't like how much they have in the I fund as it has had some pretty bad stretches so I've been putting about 40% in the 2040 and then keeping a mix of other bonds and stocks to try and equal about 40% in stocks but then only 10% international instead of 20%. International could of course really pick up at any time and did good off and on.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
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