## Browsing: funds

Q. I received a packet from my previous employer that I needed to cash out or roll over my funds to an IRA or another retirement fund. I’m 48 years old. Where can I put this fund without having to pay a broker or a financial adviser fee? Is there a fund that I can roll this into without upfront fees or an annual fee? A. The best place for this money is your Thrift Savings Plan account. You can use form TSP-60 to request the transfer.

Q: The main — and probably only — reason I need to transfer my money from TSP to a regular IRA is that I’ll be able to make withdrawals as I wish or as needed. You always advise your readers to consult someone trustworthy to advise us before we do this. My question is, how do we determine who’s trustworthy? I’ve been approached by my bank, credit union, some investment companies, etc., but I just don’t know what questions to ask or what to look for, other than their fees. A: Unfortunately, it’s not easy. But, you can start by…

Q: I read your column in Federal Times regularly. I don’t understand how your calculate (in percentages) the return on the Individual funds. Can you share with me how you do the math? A: Since all dividends and capital gains are retained in the funds, you calculate the percentage return on a TSP fund investment by dividing the fund’s share price at the end of the measurement period by its price at the beginning of the period and multiply the result by 100.

Q: I read your column in Federal Times regularly. I don’t understand how your calculate (in percentages) the return on the Individual funds. Can you share with me how you do the math? A: Since all dividends and capital gains are retained in the funds, you calculate the percentage return on a TSP fund investment by dividing the fund’s share price at the end of the measurement period by its price at the beginning of the period and multiply the result by 100.

Q: How does one go about determining the most advantageous proportions of all five funds to achieve one’s expected level of return? And after knowing that secret, how does one know when is the right time to to adjust these proportions? A: I can tell you how I do it in my practice. I know of no better way to do it: We use long-term historical data and some practical knowledge to make assumptions about the expected rate of return, standard deviation of those returns and correlation coefficients for each of the asset types underlying the asset types you’ll be…

Q: Can you comment on Thrift Savings Plan Pilot? I am five years from retirement and took a big hit from the last dip in the market. I need to maximize my TSP; how am I to know what the proper percentages are to allocate to the five funds? A: I don’t believe that market timing services are a reliable way to manage a portfolio for retirement income. Like anything else, your assets should be managed to acheive your goals, not to beat this or that arbitrary benchmark. Asking how to determine the proper asset allocation to support your goals…

Q: After reading your April 5 column, I was a bit confused if you were suggesting in his example that an investor in the L2020 fund should switch to, say, an L2010 or L Income fund when C, S and I share prices increase to reduce exposure to higher risk funds. I thought the point of the L funds was to leave them be until retirement? I have two Thrift Savings Plan accounts — one from the military (to which I no longer contribute) and one from my federal government service. This time last year, I swapped everything in my…

Q. I regularly but infrequently watch the stock market. I am investing in the L2030 TSP fund. Is there a ticker I can set my iPhone to determine how this basket of goods does on a regular basis? If not, is there an index I could use as a substitute? A. Not that I know of.

Q. The Federal Reserve Bank has indicated it will begin increasing the Federal Funds Rate this year. How much of an impact (decrease in value) will this have on the F Fund (U.S. bonds)? A. It’s impossible to say exactly, since the F Fund is composed a variety of types of bonds. In general, you should expect rising interest rates to drive down the market value of bonds, particularly treasury debt — but reasonable expectations are not always fulfilled.

As a retirement investment adviser, I find the Thrift Savings Plan’s five basic funds to be the best examples of their kinds anywhere: • The C Fund is invested in the diversified group of stocks included in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index and represents a diversified investment in the stock of large U.S. companies. • The S Fund provides investors with exposure to the performance of medium and small U.S. company stock. • The I Fund invests in the stock of companies in Europe, Asia and the Far East, the most developed foreign markets. • The G Fund is…