Fed Trader

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  • #18550
    Dupont Circle

    Thanks so much for all of your insights. I used to follow the Fed Trader, but he epitomizes all of the mistakes you highlight in your posts: selling after a downturn, trading based on short term news stories, and preaching secret formulas for success.

    You are the only reason I didn’t follow his advice and sell last summer after the big drop and by my calculations you saved me close to $15k.

    Keep up the good work. And thanks very much. A donation is on the way, although that can’t come close to making up for what you saved me.

    TS Paul

    The email notification about a message board post with “Fed Trader” in the subject line was enough to get me onto the phone and back to the message board.

    I am half tempted to delete this thread because I don’t want for this to become a TSP Allocation Guide vs. The Fed Trader thing, and I am very sensitive about hosting something negative about another writer in the small Thrift Savings Plan space. But I haven’t deleted any threads to date, and this doesn’t really cross any thresholds, so I will leave it up for now.

    Touching on a couple of your points quickly:

    – while I am glad that you found some value to what I wrote last summer, I do hope that the TSP allocation guide website was only one of many sources of information you considered and you don’t make any decision based solely on what I write.

    – while I obviously favor my strategy over that of the Fed Trader over the long term, remember that anything over a period as short as the one I was discussing is just an anecdote. There may well be plenty of six month periods when the Fed Trader has outperformed me.

    – thanks very much for the donation. It appears that my monthly hosting expenses are going to quadruple to get the site onto a server which can keep up on the days I post an update, so I will spend it well. (PS, Bluehost tech support and customer service are terrible.)

    The TSP Allocation Guide www.TSPallocation.com


    Thanks TS Paul for not deleting this thread.

    I don’t always agree with you on your view of investing, but do take your views into consideration when deciding where I need to be in my investments. I consider MANY sources and apply my specifics and opinions to each and every decision I make.

    Every person’s situation is different. Fed Trader has his reasons for investing the way he does, and his position is 100% correct for him. As TS says no one should follow someone’s advice to the letter; TS or Fed Trader’s or anyone else’s; without analyzing the advice and applying their own specifics to the view points. No 2 people are in the exact same position.

    You need to look at your investments, and position in life, as a whole. Consider your TSP, investments outside of TSP including your house, cars, hard assets, cash, any IRAs, debt, income requirements in retirement, target retirement age, time in service, and comfort level as a whole. TS Paul’s investment strategy helps him sleep at night. Fed Traders makes him feel comfortable. Mine does both for me and doesn’t match either’s style.

    If you look at just the numbers, Fed trader did well for himself. He went 100% G, collected small returns in G, and got back in C/S at a cheaper price. The numbers don’t lie. Fed Trader:

    4/15 sold C28.05, S38.90 bought G14.70
    3/16 sold G14.98, bought C27.99, S34.84

    He made money. As much as TS Paul? Maybe – Maybe not. This doesn’t include his, or Pauls other investments. Doesn’t include what either is doing with other disposable income (i.e. going on vacation, paying off debt, sending extra money to a mortgage). The variables are different for every individual.

    Most importantly none of the numbers take into account the most important aspect. Quality of life.

    Invest well, but more importantly, live life well and do what makes you happy.


    I’m new to all of this and trying to figure out who to follow. Are different sites better suited for early, mid, late career investors? So far I’ve been looking at the pay site TSP Investing, and lately Fed Trader and of course this site as well. How does one determine where they fit the best?

    TS Paul

    Hi Will

    I’ve written a bit before about who I follow and why I don’t often look to TSP specific sites for insights into investing. There is nothing special about the Thrift Savings Plan — it is a very simple, fairly generic investing platform. So when it comes to the financial markets and the economy I tend to look to experts who are writing for a much broader audience.

    The goal of every investor is to maximize their returns, so there is absolutely no difference at all between early and mid-career investors. There are some considerations for those who are nearing retirement which I wrote about in one of the FAQs: Changing your investing strategy as you near and enter retirement.

    As far as determining where you fit, I don’t think you should try to find a single “fit.” Read as much as you can. It may seem daunting at first, but as you spend some time and make some mistakes, you will see that investing is really fairly simple and that there are no secret formulas.

    Good luck.

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