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TSP Funds Report a Mixed Bag in May

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Although the widespread volatility that engulfed financial markets in recent months continued in May, at least some funds in the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement savings program were able to claw their way back into positive territory.

The Thrift Savings Plan’s reported returns for May only reflect their performance through May 26, when much of the program’s functionality went offline to facilitate the transition to a new recordkeeper, which went live Wednesday with new website functionalities, a mobile app, and access to a window of around 5,000 mutual funds. TSP spokeswoman Kim Weaver stressed that since participants’ funds remained invested during the blackout window, any changes to the returns between May 27 and May 31 will be reflected in June’s TSP returns report next month.

The international stocks of the I Fund saw the best performance in May, gaining 1.19%. So far this year, the I Fund has fallen 11.69%. And the fixed income (F) fund ended the reporting window 1.13% in the black, bringing its 2022 performance to -8.30%.

The G Fund, which is made up of governmental securities and grows at a statutorily mandated rate, gained 0.21%. Since January, the G Fund has gained 0.86%.

But the common stocks of the C Fund continued their downward trajectory, finishing the May reporting window 1.65% in the red. So far this year, the C Fund has lost 14.35% in value. And the small- and mid-size businesses in the S Fund fell 3.53% in value last month, bringing the fund’s 2022 performance to -21.69%.

Only the most conservative of the TSP’s lifecycle (L) funds, which shifts to more stable investments as participants get closer to retirement, ended the month in the black. The L Income Fund, for participants who already have begun making withdrawals, grew 0.04%. The L 2025 lost 0.15%; L 2030, 0.35%; L 2035, 0.41%; L 2040, 0.48%; L 2045, 0.54%; L 2050, 0.61%, L 2055, 0.89%; and L 2060, 0.89%.

So far this year, the L Income Fund has lost 3.29%; L 2025, 6.18%; L 2030, 8.90%; L 2040, 10.77%; L 2045, 11.59%; L 2050, 12.33%; L 2055, 14.33%; and L 2060, 14.33%.

With the TSP’s new systems now online, participants must go to to set up a new login to access their account on both the web site and mobile app. Once logged in, participants will be able to see a personalized dashboard with information about their account performance and they now can change their investment options both by web and by mobile, as well as electronically sign documents, among other new features.