Author Topic: Deciding when to invest after a transfer  (Read 685 times)

M

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Deciding when to invest after a transfer
« on: August 15, 2022, 01:09:35 PM »
Hello,
I have a recent transaction that should have been routine that has gone badly. We were consolidating our Roth accounts by transferring my and spouses TSP Roths to our Vanguard Roth IRA. After 6 1/2 weeks, this transfer hasnít been completed - TSP is still working on it. Had they done the transfer in the 2 weeks itís supposed to take, it would have been a wash and I planned to invest the funds into VTSAX at about the same amount. However, at this point the market has risen over 10% and itís still rising- so I figure weíre looking at a $21K loss unless the market drops.

Iím wondering what you think- invest right away even though that will seal the losses or ride it out for a couple of weeks to try to recoup some of the losses? This sounds a lot like market timing but Iím wondering if itís more like not rushing to make a bad situation worse.

How should I be thinking about this- this  that went badly was a fluke and just do the next and future transfers as planned? Iím trying to learn something from these bad experiences  so I donít lose more money moving forward.

Thank you for any wisdom you can share!

« Last Edit: August 30, 2022, 06:23:30 PM by M »

gocurrycracker

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Re: Deciding when to invest after a transfer
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2022, 08:49:17 PM »
market timing never works. Trying to not "lose" because the market has changed value during a transfer is market timing.

Why did you move funds out of the TSP?

M

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Re: Deciding when to invest after a transfer
« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2022, 07:41:13 AM »
Well itís been over 8 weeks and the TSP reissued check status is unknown, although after multiple calls and hours spent talking to representatives and supervisors who canít help, they say the operations team is still working on it. Maybe by the time it gets to Vanguard the market will be back down anyway! Kidding aside, thanks for the answer. I figured that but wanted to make sure I wasnít missing something.

For me, transferring out of TSP is for a couple of reasons- one is to simplify as it is essentially a duplication of my Vanguard IRA accounts, and the IRA rules are more flexible than the TSP rules, especially related to withdraws (I.e. can choose which investment to withdraw from bs proportional withdraw, etc.). Another advantage is timing. Getting at least some of the Trad TSP to my Vanguard Trad IRA will allow for quicker annual Roth conversions (a day vs at least 2 weeks if things donít go wrong like this time) so the variability of the market is much less of a factor and I wouldnít need to go through the cumbersome TSP process annually.
Thoughts?

« Last Edit: August 30, 2022, 06:25:34 PM by M »

gocurrycracker

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Re: Deciding when to invest after a transfer
« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2022, 09:37:52 AM »
Man what a mess. Sorry that this is not going well :(

No real thoughts to share, I was just wondering your thought process for making the transfer. Makes sense.

I kept my 401k with my old employer just because they have special funds with the lowest expense ratios available. It is basically admiral shares at Vanguard but for half the cost. I have enough non-401k funds outside of that (due to an old 401k transfer when I left my first job) that I can do Roth conversions as I wish.

I don't really recall my experience with the transfer process 20+ years ago but I remember it took awhile.