Every quarter, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (FRTIB) releases statistics on TSP participants. This report, called the “TSP Millionaire Report” has a wealth of information about the size of people’s TSP balances.
If you’re ready to compare yourself against some of the biggest savers in the federal workforce, let’s take a look at the most recent numbers below.Get Gov Worker’s top 4 tips for federal employees!
Table of Contents
- What’s a “TSP Millionaire”?
- The FRTIB’s “TSP Millionaire Report”
- Statistic 1: How many TSP Millionaires are there right now?
- Statistic 2: How have the number of TSP Millionaires changed over the past year?
- Statistic 3: How big is the biggest TSP balance?
- Statistic 4: How many TSP participants have more than $500k in their TSP?
- Statistic 5: What’s the average TSP balance?
- How can I become a TSP millionaire?
Please do not confuse my personal blog for financial advice, tax advice or an official position of the U.S. Government. This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on a link, I get a small percentage of the sale at no additional cost to you.
What’s a “TSP Millionaire”?
If you’re reading this, I’m guessing you know that the TSP is a defined contribution retirement account available to federal employees and uniformed services members. The TSP is similar to a 401(k) in that both have the same maximum contribution limits.
So, what’s a TSP Millionaire and how is it different from a normal millionaire?
A millionaire is someone with a net worth of more than a million dollars. While 8% of Americans are millionaires, that doesn’t mean that they all can pull a million dollars out of the bank. Their million dollar net worth includes equity in real estate or other assets.
On the other hand, a “TSP Millionaire” is someone with more than $1,000,000 in their TSP. When you combine their 7 figure TSP balance with their FERS pension and Social Security, these federal employees should be set for a very comfortable retirement (although they could face a significant tax burden in their golden years).
The FRTIB’s “TSP Millionaire Report”
Each quarter, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (FRTIB) publishes a TSP Millionaire Report.
The TSP Millionaire Report is not published on the TSP website, nor is it published on the FRTIB website but instead is instead distributed to the media.
I’ve obtained the 2023 Quarter 1 TSP Millionaire Statistics and will recap the major findings of the report below.
Statistic 1: How many TSP Millionaires are there right now?
According to the FRTIB’s January 2023 statistics, there are 88,265 TSP Millionaires out of a total of 6,775,574 TSP participants.
That means that just over 1% of TSP participants have a balance over $1,000,000 in their TSP.
Statistic 2: How have the number of TSP Millionaires changed over the past year?
Last year at this time, there were 100,364 TSP millionaires. This number was cut nearly in half with the stock market losses in 2022. At the end of September, 2022, there were only 65,494 TSP millionaires. As the stock market started to rebound towards the end of 2022, the number of TSP millionaires climbed as well. Currently, there are 88,265 TSP millionaires.
Statistic 3: How big is the biggest TSP balance?
As of March 31, 2023, the largest TSP balance was $7,170,226.61.
While I would love to have seven million dollars, I’m not sure I’d want to have seven million in the TSP. Could you imagine how big your RMDs would be with that balance?
I’m a big believer in the 4% rule; that is, when you have 25x your annual expenses saved, you can live off of those assets for the remainder of your life. With an asset balance of almost $7.2 million dollars, this TSP participant could spend $286,000 per year and never run out of money. Crazy!
Statistic 4: How many TSP participants have more than $500k in their TSP?
If you want to become a TSP millionaire, the key is to invest a lot of money when you are in your 20’s or early 30’s. Some people can’t afford to invest at that age because of student loan debt or other issues. In those cases, maybe a half-million dollars is a more realistic goal.
As of January 1, 2023, there were 411,510 TSP Participants with a balance greater than $500,000. That represents about 6.5% of all of the TSP participants.
I know that many of the people on my email list have crossed this milestone. I’m super proud that my readers are such high achievers!
Statistic 5: What’s the average TSP balance?
Unfortunately, the TSP Millionaire report doesn’t give the average TSP balance. However, it does show that about 62% of TSP Participants have less than $50,000 saved in their TSP.
Therefore, it’s safe to say that the median TSP balance is less than $50,000.
How can I become a TSP millionaire?
If all of this talk of the TSP millionaire statistics has you wanting to become the next TSP millionaire, don’t worry. I wrote an entire post about how to become a TSP millionaire. Let me tell you a secret- the key is to pick the right TSP allocation and avoid emotion-fueled interfund transfers.
Read More: How to become a TSP millionaire at any age
I’ve also linked to a couple videos on the topic below.
SamSam i.e. "Gov Worker" started working for the government at age 18 and loved it so much that he never left. He started GovernmentWorkerFI in 2019 to help fellow federal employees understand their benefits, take control of their finances, and live their best lives.
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