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Federal Employees Continue to Retire in Greater Numbers Than in Previous Years

The trend that began over a year ago of Federal employees continue to file for retirement at an increased pace compared with recent years is ongoing.

According to statistics from the Office of Personnel Management, 7,510 federal workers filed for retirement in November. That figure is a 34 percent increase over the same month in 2017, when 5,572 employees retired.

Statistics show that for the last two months there seems to be a continuation of increasing numbers of workers leaving the civil service. A study of fiscal year 2018, which ended on Sept. 30 show retirements were up 24 percent from the previous year.

If you are among those Federal Employees that has retired or is planning to retire, you will want to consult with an expert first to inquire about your federal benefits, insurance plans, and retirement strategies. Call The Benefit Coordinators today and make an appointment with one of our federal benefit coordinators. We have been helping retirees from the Federal Government with their federal retirement plans for years and we have the answers you are looking for. There is no charge so contact us today!

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TSP Unveils Plans for Expanding Withdrawal Options

The federal government’s 401(K)-style retirement savings program officials announced in December that they are planning to make it easier for participants to manage their investments.

The Thrift Savings Plan has implemented the 2017 TSP Modernization Act. That law allows federal employees and retirees to make multiple age-based withdrawals from their TSP accounts and remain eligible for partial withdrawals after they leave government. Those who have left government are able to make multiple partial post-separation withdrawals, and retirees will be able to change the amount and frequency of their annuity at any time, instead of only once per year.

Are you confused about these laws and what they mean to you? The Benefit Coordinators can help! We make it our business to say on top of all the changes in the Federal Government pension and retirement plans so we can advise our clients on how to best manage their retirement and benefits. Contact us today for an appointment and see what a difference knowing what your options are and how you can enjoy more of your retirement benefits.

We have years of experience helping Federal Government employees reap the benefits of retiring from government service. You can rely on us to get you the information you need to make those all important decisions.

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Federal Retirement Claims Increase 24 Percent in Fiscal 2018

The Office of Personnel Management has released new data regarding the number of federal employees who filed for retirement. The number of retirees increased 24 percent in 2018 over the previous year.

OPM published retirement statistics earlier that showed that 7,142 employees filed for retirement in September 2018. That brought the total federal retirement claims in fiscal 2018 to 105,298, marking a 24.1 percent increase over the number of claims from the federal workforce in fiscal 2017, which totaled 84,807.

Federal employees are often older than the private sector workers and observers have noted that there would be a wave of federal employees retiring within the next few years. In July, 14 percent of the federal workforce was eligible to retire and within five years, that figure is expected to jump to 30 percent.

The stock market is doing better than ever, which also creates a possibility for earlier retirement. If you need information about what your federal benefits are and what your federal employee retirement is going to look like, just make a call to The Benefit Coordinators. We know the laws and the different ways you can enhance your retirement and benefits you are entitled to. Feel free to contact us at your convenience to make an appointment with us.

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An Increase In Take-Home Pay Is Coming – How Will You Use It?

Within the next two months, the average American worker will likely see an estimated increase in their take home pay of $70 a paycheck, or $2,000 a year, due to the 2017 Tax Reform Act.

It’s anticipated that most Americans will immediately absorb the extra money as part of their normal budget spending; $70 per pay period could easily justify a nice dinner out or a new phone or cable upgrade for many individuals.

Think about how you can use this increase towards your retirement benefits.

The Benefit Coordinators can help advise you on how to make this windfall work in your favor. We have the experience, knowledge, and professionalism to advise you on the decisions will make your future retirement more enjoyable. The decisions you make today will make a huge difference in the future.

Contact us today and make an appointment to consult with one of our federal benefit coordinators. We can help you with your financial planning and help you understand your federal employee benefits.

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Thrift Savings Plan Board Approves Five-Year Lifecycle Fund Increments

Lifecycle funds that have been targeted within the 10 years before the participant’s retirement date have now been approved to within five-year increments. The panel that oversees the retirement savings plan for federal employees on Wednesday approved this unanimously.

Investors can move to a more conservative portfolio as they near their anticipated retirement date — on a five-year basis as recommended by consultants at Aon Hewitt following a trend in private 401(k) providers to offer lifecycle funds.

“Most have been moving to five-year increments,” Bill Ryan, a partner at the firm, told the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board. “It helps bridge the gap for participants, and it’s easier to figure out where to place someone based on their age.”

The TSP (Thrift Savings Plan) will implement the new L Fund increments in 2020.

It was also recommended by Aon Hewitt that the TSP’s I Fund, which is made up of international stocks and bonds, be diversified to include stocks in Canada, emerging markets, and international small-cap markets.

“These are large markets to which we have no exposure,” Ryan said. “By adding these, we would improve the risk portfolio for participants, as well as improve outcomes on a forward-looking basis.”

The board during approved further examination of expanding the I Fund’s portfolio during the monthly meeting, which Sean McCaffrey, deputy chief investment officer for the FRTIB, said could be done by this fall.

“We want everyone to be fully comfortable with what we’re getting into,” he said. “We’ve got a little more studying to do just to be prudent.”

“We must be thoughtful about this because of the different risks associated with various markets,” said board chairman Michael Kennedy.

TSP officials also briefed the board on their progress with preparing for the onset of the blended retirement system for the military, which is scheduled to come online in January. New troops would automatically be enrolled in the TSP and receive a matching contribution from the government under the new system. One to five percent of the service member’s salary will be contributed by the government toward their TSPs, depending on what they elect to contribute themselves. Although they will be defaulted into contributing 3 percent of their paychecks. The TSP account will begin 60 days into their service. Those who stay in the military for 20 years, and are thereby entitled to a retirement pension, would receive a less generous calculation for their annuity.

The new blended retirement system only automatically affects new service members starting Jan. 1, 2018. Current service members can opt into the new system but are grandfathered into the existing system. More than 163,000 people have signed up for the online opt-in website for service members launched in April. More have signed up through offline training events says Tom Emswiler, a senior adviser for uniformed services at TSP.

Service members will have all of 2018 to make that decision. Emswiler said testing of the TSP and military services’ payroll systems will commence next month, and beginning June 6 the Defense Department website will offer an online calculator for service members to determine whether to opt in to the blended system or stay with their current pension plan.

The agency is expecting an influx of calls and online inquiries and is working to increase its IT and call center capacity in time for the automatic enrollment system to come into effect, says TSP project manager Tanner Nohe.

Need help figuring this out? We at The Benefits Coordinator have over 30 years helping our service member customers and we have the experience and the connections to sit down with you so you can understand what this means to you individually.

Contact us today with your questions about this article or anything else you want to discuss regarding your federal employee benefits.

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