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TSP Center - The Thrift Savings Plan Community
 
"FantasyTSP™ and Discussion Forum for the Thrift Savings Plan Investor"
 
 
--- Member Statistics ---
11,249 members, 22 online
Newest member: xmrd
February 01
Confused yet?
by  United States Tomanyiron | 6 Comments

To all the novices that have joined lately, I feel your pain. You are looking for good advice, and a lot of us have let you down. We have no one with a real good YTD record and let me tell you, anyone that does have a fantastic record will eventually have his first major bad move, sooner or later.

January has been a very difficult month. Volatility is the name of the game now, and I’m not good with volatility.
I and a lot of others in stocks took another big hit on Friday and unfortunately got caught leaning the wrong way. Of course we all have our reasons. My expectations missed as a result of not having enough expertise and knowledge of what’s happening in the market. I can only say that this is a short-term obstacles going forward. If I were to let emotions come into play now that would be an even bigger mistake.

I still believe that the market exhibits well-defined and sometimes predictable patterns. They do not repeat exactly all of the time, but history suggests that these tendencies should not be ignored. Recurring stock market patterns and cycles are my bread and butter of investing.

There’s been a decent amount of contradicting signals lately. So if I was already in the G fund, I think I would stay put. Wait for something that looks like a bottom. If in stocks, I got no advice for you. For myself I’m not going to ride it all the way down. If Monday is down I’m out of here.

There is not much in the way of good charts. The dollar is holding everything hostage. Almost every currency around the world is collapsing against the dollar. This adversely impacts the earnings of exporting companies. U.S. exported goods are quickly becoming more expensive and less attractive to foreign buyers. So until that changes, I don’t know when a true up-trend will commence.

Finally, I write not because of any expertise, it’s because the writing is a mental exercise bordering on creativity, and more fun than crossword puzzles. So take all this in the “for what it’s worth” department.




January 30
Uniformed Services to recive TSP Match?! - Final Report
by  United States - Alabama LoGiK | 19 Comments

Here's some interesting info for the Uniformed Service members on this site! The report covers: Pay & Retirement, Health Benefits, and Quality of Life

http://www.mcrmc.gov/public/docs/report/MCRMC-FinalReport-29JAN15-HI.pdf

Cliff notes for Uniformed Services Retirement is below:
*** The Uniformed Services should modernize the current retirement system by adding a DC element to the DB plan. The DC element should incorporate the following attributes:

--- The Uniformed Services should begin a monthly contribution of 1 percent of members’ basic pay to Service members’ respective TSP accounts upon their Service entry date. The contribution should continue until Service members reach 20 YOS and should not depend upon their participation in TSP.

-- The Uniformed Services should automatically enroll Service members in TSP upon entry into service at an amount equal to 3 percent of their basic pay. Service members should be allowed to raise or lower their TSP contribution amount or to terminate their participation at any time. Service members who terminate their participation will be reenrolled automatically the following January at the 3 percent of basic pay amount.

-- The Uniformed Services should begin matching each Service member’s contribution to TSP, up to a maximum of 5 percent of monthly basic pay, after the completion of each member’s second year of service. The matching contribution will continue until the Service member reaches 20 YOS and is dependent upon a Service member’s monthly participation in the TSP

-- Service members should be vested in their TSP after 2 complete YOS (the standard 1 percent contribution and matching contribution provided by the Uniformed Services will belong to the Service member upon that date).

*** The Uniformed Services should provide continuation pay for all Service members who reach 12 YOS and are willing and able to obligate for 4 additional years.

-- All AC Service members should receive basic continuation pay equal to 2.5 times Service members’ monthly basic pay.

-- All RC Service members should receive basic continuation pay equal to 0.5 times Service members’ monthly basic pay, as if he/she were an AC Service member.

-- Uniformed Services should budget additional funds for continuation pay, in addition to basic continuation pay, to provide midcareer retention incentives as needed.

*** The 75 percent cap on disability retirement when a Service member uses his or her disability rating as the multiplier should be lifted. The multiplier for disability retirement when a Service member uses his or her YOS as the multiplier should be 2.0 times YOS.

*** The Secretary of Defense should be given the authority to modify the years of service requirements to qualify for retirement to either fewer or a greater than 20 years of service. The purpose of these modifications is to facilitate management actions to shape the...

Continue Reading...




January 30
Contributions Missing in TSP
by  United States - Washington Aitrus | 6 Comments

I checked my account this morning, and my regular paycheck contribution didn't get put in yesterday. It usually happens on Thursdays. Anybody else have a similar experience?




January 29
Got Caught with Pants Down
by  United States Tomanyiron | 13 Comments

“Breaking News: Strong US Dollar having negative impact on company revenues and profits!” I got reminded that there are costs to a stronger dollar when we peg economic evaluation on the strength of our currency.

Something else: "By underlining 'international developments', the Fed is highlighting that process and the attraction of the U.S. as an investment destination. That all plays in to dollar strength," said Ian Stannard, head of European FX strategy with Morgan Stanley in London.

So did the Greenback cause Wednesday’s plunge? It kinda looks like it. So where do we go from here, is the US dollar going down soon?
But should the S fund have got hit so badly? Logic would say that stocks of small companies would do better than those of large ones at times when the dollar is strong. After all, those small-caps generally rely less on international operations, and therefore have less exposure to currency effects that could reduce the dollar value of foreign sales and erode earnings growth.

If it was the US Dollar then I may have a chart to give us encouragement.
http://stockcharts.com/h-sc/ui?s=$USD&p ... =387178637

As you can see this is a daily chart of the US Dollar index (green line) for the past year. The blue line ($EMW) is overlaid to compare small caps ups and down relationship. The Stochastics RSI indicator is at the top, and is calculated based on $USD’s actions. Remember that “based on $USD’s actions”. The relationship of the two lines is not apparent until you focus on the Stoch RSI’s past actions and results. Look at the times when the Stoch RSI dipped below 0.2, six times in the past year that was a good buy signal.

Okay I’m just one guy with a “thought” and a “two cents worth”, so take that under advisement. But I will give you another chart to consider. http://stockcharts.com/h-sc/ui?s=$SPX&p ... =384816654

This is a two year chart of the S&P 500, what has happened when price has dipped down to the 125-day moving average? I know that one time it plowed through, and that can happen now. But hey, they don’t call it “risk” for nothing.

Note: Please excuse any misspelled words or improper English. I have a lot to do today, and in a hurry.




January 28
What to do? Bull or Bear?
by  United States BarbosaBLZ | 8 Comments

I just started TSP 3 years ago. I didn't seriously start putting money into my TSP until last year. I have less than 20k altogather. I am active duty in the military and currently put about 18% of my income into TSP.

I learned the hard way last year as I saw that each time I tried to move $ around I chose poorly and have horrible timing. That made me decide to just pick a fund and come rain or shine stick with it. It seems things are looking kind of bearish. Still hopefully having 20 or so years until retirement should I just leave my stuff where it is 75% in C and 25% in F or brace for a bear market and switch to heavier G and F?

Just looking for advice?




January 28
I'm growing fur!
by  United States - Kentucky Sad Al | 25 Comments

You can check my record and see I'm no stock market guru. I've been too freaked by the 2007-2008 crash that I've been far to wary for far too long. I am always looking for the next big crash, and expecting it to begin with the next dip.

But that being said, this article seems to validate my often wrong gut feeling that it has been far too long since the bear scared the bejeezus out of the bull: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/too-la ... eid=YAHOOB

Now I am at a critical stage of my life. A 20-40% loss would be devastating, and not much time is left for me to make it up when the bull returns to greener pastures. How I wish it had happened two years ago and we were in the beginnings of a recovery today.

What do you think? Does the article have merit? Do you see other signs of an imminent bear market? Predictions for 2015 were not robust, but at least a profit by the end of the year, has all that changed?




January 27
Bilizzard Effect the Markets?
by  United States Tomanyiron | 10 Comments

Today the US north-east is under severe snow storm warning, high winds and coastal flooding. At this point some airports are closed and I heard that well over 3,000 flights were canceled. The Big Apple is facing what will likely be "one of the worst snowstorms in the history of this city," said Mayor Bill de Blasio. Exchanges are planning to open as usual on Tuesday. And I think most trader's have the ability to work remotely. I'm guessing volume will probably be very low though. Markets can get pushed easy then.
Crondanet, you hunkered down, looking out those new windows at the snow yet?




 
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AGG (F Fund)
iShares Lehman Aggregate Bond (AGG)

S&P 500 (C Fund)
S&P 500 INDEX,RTH (^GSPC)

Wilshire 4500 (S Fund)
Dow Jones Wilshire 4500 Complet (^DWCPF)

EFA (I Fund)
iShares MSCI EAFE Index (EFA)