September 19, 2019

It’s not officially official, but we can see the clear trendline.

Total assets held in the Thrift Savings Plan funds surpassed $600 billion - $600,000,000,000 - in assets. This represents almost a doubling in value since 2012.

That figure hasn’t been officially reported yet, because FRTIB figures are released up to three months after they are compiled and reported at the monthly board meetings. So the “official” figures show that the Thrift Savings Fund (the holdings of the TSP) reached $595 billion at the end of June, as reported in the July meeting notes. Here is the trendline:

We can be confident, though, that the total value has surpassed $600 billion because of consistently positive flows of investments into the funds, and because of the increase in asset values since the end of June.

Net inflows (contributions and loan repayments minus withdrawals and loan disbursements) averaged around $5 billion year-to-date, according to most recent figures. So more people are putting money into the TSP funds than taking money out.

And according to historical share prices, at the end of June the three stock funds stood at $42.6144, $52.5433, and $30.5648 for the C, S, and I Funds respectively. By mid-September (as of this writing), those share prices had grown to $43.7382, $53.1156, and $30.4462 respectively. (See current share prices here.)

That’s an increase of around 2% for the C Fund and the S Fund, and a slight decrease in the I Fund.

According to figures on total holdings by index fund, those funds accounted for 34.6%, 11.9%, and 8.4% of total TSP fund holdings at the end of June - with the C and S Funds making up almost half of total holdings.

So let’s calculate the increase of the total amount held in the C and S Funds at the end of June - $276.4 billion ($205.7 and $70.7 billion respectively) - at just over about 2%. That increase alone would equate to almost $6 billion.

That, together with the continued inflows into the Thrift Savings Plan in general, pushes the total value over $600 billion in mid-September.

It is quite possible the fund crested over the $600 billion mark in July as markets rose at a healthy pace then (see the historical figures for the trendline in July), but then fell back during the slight market decline in August. We’ll find out when the July metrics are published.

In any event, it’s a pretty impressive feat and a testiment to what consistent investing over time can grow to over three-plus decades.

Related topics: military-investing c-fund f-fund g-fund s-fund i-fund l-funds long-term-investing tsp-updates roth-tsp