|>||How can I track the performance of the C and F Funds on a daily basis?|
|>||Why can't I find the performance of the Barclays Equity Index Fund or the U.S. Debt Index Fund in the newspaper?|
|>||What stocks are in the TSP stock funds?|
|>||Can you graph the returns for the G, F, C, S, and I Funds so that we can get a better overview of how the funds compare?|
|>||When I add up the C, S, or I Fund returns for the last 12 months, why is the sum different from the figure given for the "last 12 months" on the Returns & Share Prices Web page and the TSP Fact Sheet?|
|>||Why doesn't the change in the I Fund share price always correspond to the changes in the EAFE Index which it tracks?|
|How does the TSP display share prices?|
|>||Return to FAQ Table of Contents|
1. How can I track the performance of the F, C, S, and I Funds on a daily basis?
You can track the F, C, S, and I Funds on a daily basis by going to the Returns & Share Prices page on this Web site. (You can see the performance of the index that each fund tracks by looking at those indices in newspapers or on the Internet.)
The F Fund tracks the Lehman Brothers U.S. Aggregate (LBA) index. Although most newspapers do not publish the daily LBA Index values or returns, they can be found in the Wall Street Journal's Money & Investing section. Information on returns is also published on the Lehman Brothers Web site at www.lehman.com.
You can follow the performance of the C Fund by looking up the Standard and Poor's (S&P) 500 Index in your newspaper or on the S&P Web site, www.spglobal.com. Because the C Fund tracks this index, the performance of the S&P 500 Index is very close to that of the C Fund. The percentage of change in the value of the S&P 500 Index from the end of the past month to the end of the current month is approximately the same as the return for the C Fund. Please note, however, that the daily S&P 500 price index values do not include the reinvestment of dividends. As a result, the C Fund returns, which do include the reinvestment of dividends, may be higher than the published S&P Index values.
The S Fund tracks the DJ Wilshire 4500 Index, which is not published in most newspapers. You can follow its monthly performance on the Wilshire Web site at www.wilshire.com or on the Dow Jones Indexes Web site at www.djindexes.com.
The I Fund tracks the EAFE index, which is published on the Morgan Stanley Web site at mscibarra.com. The EAFE index values and performance are updated each day. The EAFE price Index values are also available in The Wall Street Journal Markets Lineup Table in Section C.
The I Fund returns will differ from the returns calculated using the EAFE Index values published in The Wall Street Journal because the values provided in The Wall Street Journal do not include the reinvestment of dividends.
2. Why can't I find the performance of the Barclays funds in the newspaper?
The Barclays U.S. Debt Index Fund, the Barclays Equity Index Fund, the Barclay's Extended Market Index Fund, and the Barclay's EAFE Index Fund — in which the F, C, S, and I Funds, respectively, are invested — are trust funds open only to tax-exempt employee benefit plans. The Barclays funds are not mutual funds and are not open to individual investors. Thus, their daily performance is not reported in the financial press.
3. What stocks are in the TSP stock funds?
Lists of the largest companies in which each of the C, S, and I Funds is invested can be found in their respective Fund Information Sheets.
4. Can you graph the rates of return for the G, F, C, S, and I Funds so that we can get a better overview of how the funds compare?
If you look in Historical Rates of Return in the Rates of Return & Share Prices section of this Web site, you will find a historical graph of the annual rates of return for the G, F, C, S, and I Funds.
Graphs of investment performance are also provided in the respective Fund Information Sheets.
5. When I add up the C, S, or I Fund returns for the last 12 months, why is the sum different from the figure given for the "last 12 months" on the Rates of Return & Share Prices Web page?
The 12-month returns on the Web page do not represent the sum of the returns for the 12 months listed. If you simply add together the returns for those 12 months, you do not take into consideration the effect of compounding, a process by which return is calculated not only on the initial principal, but also on accumulated interest on that principal. The figures on the Web Returns & Share Prices page reflect compounding. The fact sheet Calculating Periodic Returns and Annual Returns provides instructions on doing so.
6. Why doesn't the change in the I Fund share price always correspond to the EAFE Index which it tracks?
Participants have asked why, on some days, the change in the I Fund share price reported by the TSP does not match the change reported for the Morgan Stanley EAFE (Europe, Australasia, Far East) Index, which the I Fund tracks. This happens when the Board's investment manager, Barclays Global Investors (BGI) reprices its EAFE Equity Index Fund, in which the TSP invests, to reflect changes occuring after the close of the foreign markets. This process, known as "fair valuation" or "fair value pricing" occurs when there are large U.S. market or currency movements between the time the foreign markets close and 4:00 p.m. eastern time, when BGI's share prices are determined.
Fair value pricing in the TSP's I Fund occurs less than 20% of the time. The TSP is meant to be a long-term retirement savings account, not a short term trading vehicle. Mutual funds use fair value, redemption fees, and limits on numbers of trades to prevent market timing activity and the resulting excessive trading costs from hurting the performance of the fund. To date, the TSP has chosen to use only fair value pricing, but that may change in the future.
Fair valuation ensures that traders cannot "market time" the I Fund by making investment decisions based on the "stale" prices, thus diluting the returns of other participants who invest in the I Fund. Because the EAFE uses the foreign market closing prices to calculate its values, its price change will differ from the TSP's on those days.
For more information, please see the guidance from the Securities and Exchange Commission at http://www.sec.gov/divisions/investment/guidance/tyle043001.htm.
7. How does the TSP display share prices?
On July 1, 2008, the TSP began displaying share prices to four decimal places. Prior to that time, share prices were truncated to two decimal places. This change from two to four decimal places allows for greater precision in calculating account balances and in tracking the TSP funds to the indexes with which they are associated. Share prices for July 1 and after reflect the actual prices to four decimal places. In some sections on the TSP Web site and in numerous publications, share prices prior to July 1 may be shown to four decimal places. In these cases, two zeros were added to the end of the share price, but the share price does not reflect the actual value to four decimal places.
Return to Top of Page