TSP Funds Rebounding from March Lows

Good news for TSP investors: The TSP stock funds have started to bounce back from the stock market’s low point in March.

For those who may not watch the stock market on a regular basis, the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) stock funds have been going up.

The TSP’s C Fund, for example, is up more than 11% since March 31st through the close of the market on Friday, April 17th. The S Fund is up more than 9% for the same time period and the I Fund is up just over 4%.

C Fund Up More Than 28%

More dramatically, as of the stock market’s closing on April 17th, the C Fund is now up about 28.6% from its lowest point in March.

Note that this does not mean all of the TSP’s stock funds have recovered from the bear market losses in 2020. That is not the case. The only funds that are up so far in 2020 are the G Fund and the F Fund.

The G Fund is up 0.44% in 2020 and the F Fund is up 4.69% this year.

Stocks Still Down in 2020

On the other side of the returns, the C Fund is down 10.55% this year; the S Fund is down 21.2% and the I Fund is still down 19.59% for the year so far.

So, there is a long way to go before stocks get back to their high water mark earlier this year.

No one knows, of course, how stocks will do for the rest of the year. The recent gains show optimism that the COVID-19 curve is flattening. It is possible the market may start focusing more on the economic hit the country is experiencing with millions of people filing for unemployment.

The recent upturn in stocks indicates investors see the possibility of a quick recovery if it appears efforts to combat the coronavirus crisis are working.

There is also hope among investors who do not want to miss out on a quick recovery if hopes for a viable treatment for the virus materialize from the possibilities that make such treatment possible.

No doubt, the massive amount of money from the federal government on a stimulus plan is a big factor in the short-term recovery of stock prices as well.

Long-term investors who do not react to dramatic headlines and quickly sell their investments on bad news or after a sudden dramatic decline in stock prices usually fare better in the long run as prices recover. No doubt, many TSP investors are hoping that is the case in the latest bear market that has roared this year.

About the Author

Ralph Smith has several decades of experience working with federal human resources issues. He has written extensively on a full range of human resources topics in books and newsletters and is a co-founder of two companies and several newsletters on federal human resources. Follow Ralph on Twitter: @RalphSmith47