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  • Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post

    What? You don't think you would like to retire in Trinidad?!
    For those of you who did not get this joke, I apologize. It's well known here in Colorado.

    Trinidad, Colorado is one of the sex-change capitols of the North American continent.
    Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

    Comment


    • America's millennials are waking up to a grim financial future

      ...
      Our capacity to fetishize youth never ceases to amaze. But while older Americans definitely want to look like younger folks, they certainly don’t want their finances. That’s because the wealth gap between generations keeps widening, and their children’s future is beginning to look ugly.

      Just two years ago, the median American born in the 1980s—the cradle of millennials—had family wealth that was 34 percent below what earlier generations held at the same age, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis reported last month. And all the data show it’s probably going to get worse.
      As affluent baby boomers thank years of soaring markets for their paid-off mortgages and plump portfolios, millennials and the next cohort, Generation Z, are weighed down by student debt and stagnant wages. They can only contribute the bare minimum to their retirement plans and struggle to find affordable homes within commuting distance of their jobs.

      Of course, it’s perfectly normal for people just starting out to have less in the bank. However, the St. Louis Fed warned that, even when taking that into account, young Americans are slipping dangerously behind. For a time, Generation X was also losing out, thanks to the 2008 financial crisis. But its members managed to make up most of the shortfall in the years since, tapping into the longest economic expansion in decades.
      For some reason that period of tremendous growth barely helped millennials. The St. Louis Fed called this anomaly “a missed opportunity because asset appreciation is unlikely to be as rapid in the near future.” That’s pretty bad news for twenty and thirtysomethings who may have been hoping to catch up. But it gets worse.

      By 2034, Social Security won’t be able to pay out full benefits, the program’s trustees estimated this month. Any solution that would rectify its finances will probably require more taxes and more benefit cuts—all coming out of the pockets of younger workers. Boomers, who are exiting the workforce in droves, will already be comfortably seated when the music stops, or out of the picture.
      ....
      Fixing Social Security is hardly the only issue where younger Americans have different priorities than their elders. U.S. President Donald Trump was elected on the votes of older Americans favoring tax cuts and less government, while young voters flocked to Senator Bernie Sanders, who supports rebuilding social programs and establishing national healthcare.

      Alicia Munnell, the director of Boston College’s Center for Retirement Research, recently lamented that government inaction on Social Security means “that most baby boomers have escaped completely from contributing to a solution.” This month, she offered some depressing advice to younger Americans about what they can do to make up the difference: Work longer.
      ...
      Ouch. But Munnell assured young people that they don’t need to cancel their retirements entirely. “In fact, my research shows that the vast majority of millennials will be fine if they work to age 70,” she wrote for Politico. (Small solace given that life expectancy for Americans recently took a turn for the worse.)

      Still, Munnell has a point. Across a generational time-frame, people are still living much longer than their parents. As my colleague Peter Coy recently pointed out, a man who is “chronologically” 65 is actually more like a 55-year-old from the perspective of 1957. With the extra years, a longer career doesn’t necessarily mean a shorter retirement.

      Retirement-age Americans are already working in record numbers. Whether by choice or necessity, because of boredom or fear, a full third of those between 65 and 69 were in the workforce in May, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, along with 19 percent of those aged 70 to 74—together almost double the number 30 years ago.

      Nevertheless, the retirement advice of “just work longer” can sound pretty tone deaf to younger ears, especially when the old American promises—of advancement, financial security and home ownership for everyone who works hard—have faded into myth.
      ...
      Paychecks aren’t reflecting the improving economy. Hourly wages were unchanged in May from a year earlier. And according to a Fed survey, four in 10 Americans said it would be tough to come up with $400 for an emergency expense. The same 2017 survey found 27 percent skipping medical treatments because they can’t afford them. Another poll this month reaffirmed the inability of many Americans to save any money at all.

      So work longer? First you have to live longer, and that’s not guaranteed.

      Wide swaths of the country are getting sicker and dying younger than just a few years ago, with a widening health gap between educated, affluent Americans and everyone else. Alcohol abuse and obesity, upticks in suicide and an epidemic of drug overdoses have all played a role in an ominous milestone: Year-over-year declines in American life expectancy while the rest of the world lives ever-longer.

      Perhaps it’s a statistical blip. If not, the U.S. faces an almost dystopian future—one of hyper class-stratification in which the few are rich and living longer while the many postpone retirement, struggle to get by and ultimately die younger.
      ...
      It’s no secret the widening gap in financial security is shadowed by a similar gap in politics, setting up the potential for generational warfare at the ballot box in coming elections.

      The outcome of the 2018 midterms may largely come down to whether left-leaning millennials and Gen-Xers, who make up a majority of eligible U.S. voters, show up. In recent elections, these two demographics voted at much lower rates than previous generations at the same ages, according to the Pew Research Center. Unless that changes, wealthier, right-leaning baby boomers and the remaining members of the so-called Silent Generation will once again swamp them at the polls.

      Regardless of turnout, or even who wins, academics predict a growing animus between young and old to match the polarized party politics currently roiling the nation.
      ...
      https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/pers...KXV?li=BBnb7Kz
      Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
      TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
      Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

      Comment


      • A record number of folks age 85 and older are working. Here’s what they’re doing.

        LINK: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.262a8c3304e1

        Seventy may be the new 60, and 80 may be the new 70, but 85 is still pretty old to work in America. Yet in some ways, it is the era of the very old worker in America.

        Overall, 255,000 Americans 85 years old or older were working over the past 12 months. That's 4.4 percent of Americans that age, up from 2.6 percent in 2006, before the recession. It’s the highest number on record.

        They're doing all sorts of jobs — crossing guards, farmers and ranchers, even truckers, as my colleague Heather Long revealed in a front-page story last week. Indeed, there are between 1,000 and 3,000 U.S. truckers age 85 or older, based on 2016 Census Bureau figures. Their ranks have roughly doubled since the Great Recession.
        ...
        America’s aging workforce has defined the post-Great Recession labor market. Baby boomers and their parents are working longer as life expectancies grow, retirement plans shrink, education levels rise and work becomes less physically demanding. Labor Department figures show that at every year of age above 55, U.S. residents are working or looking for work at the highest rates on record.
        ...
        At the lower end of the age curve, the opposite holds true. Workers age 30 and younger are staying on the sidelines at rates not seen since the 1960s and ’70s, when women weren’t yet entering the workforce at the level they are today.
        ...
        People who are still working at age 85 or above are, as you might guess, unusual. You won’t find them concentrated in any particular race, ethnicity or region, but they hold very different jobs than their younger peers and rivals do.

        Most of the oldest workers are concentrated in just 26 of the 455 occupations tracked by the Census Bureau data. Those same 26 occupations are home to less than a third of the total workforce.

        Workers age 85 and older are more common in less physical industries, such as management and sales, than they are in demanding ones such as manufacturing and construction.
        ...
        Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
        TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
        Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

        Comment


        • Originally posted by G David Bock View Post
          America's millennials are waking up to a grim financial future

          ...
          Our capacity to fetishize youth never ceases to amaze. But while older Americans definitely want to look like younger folks, they certainly don’t want their finances. That’s because the wealth gap between generations keeps widening, and their children’s future is beginning to look ugly.

          Just two years ago, the median American born in the 1980s—the cradle of millennials—had family wealth that was 34 percent below what earlier generations held at the same age, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis reported last month. And all the data show it’s probably going to get worse.
          As affluent baby boomers thank years of soaring markets for their paid-off mortgages and plump portfolios, millennials and the next cohort, Generation Z, are weighed down by student debt and stagnant wages. They can only contribute the bare minimum to their retirement plans and struggle to find affordable homes within commuting distance of their jobs.

          Of course, it’s perfectly normal for people just starting out to have less in the bank. However, the St. Louis Fed warned that, even when taking that into account, young Americans are slipping dangerously behind. For a time, Generation X was also losing out, thanks to the 2008 financial crisis. But its members managed to make up most of the shortfall in the years since, tapping into the longest economic expansion in decades.
          For some reason that period of tremendous growth barely helped millennials. The St. Louis Fed called this anomaly “a missed opportunity because asset appreciation is unlikely to be as rapid in the near future.” That’s pretty bad news for twenty and thirtysomethings who may have been hoping to catch up. But it gets worse.

          By 2034, Social Security won’t be able to pay out full benefits, the program’s trustees estimated this month. Any solution that would rectify its finances will probably require more taxes and more benefit cuts—all coming out of the pockets of younger workers. Boomers, who are exiting the workforce in droves, will already be comfortably seated when the music stops, or out of the picture.
          I think a lot of this is that there is a different expectations and habits. When I started out, I was saving money every month, which continues to this day; even though I am retired and my wife is semi-retired, we average $2k a month added to savings.

          To accomplish this, I prioritized things very carefully. I drove old cars and repaired them myself to avoid car payments, avoided all sorts of credit card debt, and the like.

          Police work means a lot of time spent in strangers' homes, and I see twenty-somethings with new vehicles, big-screen TVs, iphones, and all the trimmings, purchased on varying types of credit.

          It's like smoking: the years you lose are at the end of your life. Well, those credit payments are coming out of your retirement.

          Even in the projects the infamous 'rent to own' places make sure that everyone has the latest toys.

          I know my method of driving beaters is no longer an option, but money management seems to be a dead art.
          Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post

            I think a lot of this is that there is a different expectations and habits. When I started out, I was saving money every month, which continues to this day; even though I am retired and my wife is semi-retired, we average $2k a month added to savings.

            To accomplish this, I prioritized things very carefully. I drove old cars and repaired them myself to avoid car payments, avoided all sorts of credit card debt, and the like.

            Police work means a lot of time spent in strangers' homes, and I see twenty-somethings with new vehicles, big-screen TVs, iphones, and all the trimmings, purchased on varying types of credit.

            It's like smoking: the years you lose are at the end of your life. Well, those credit payments are coming out of your retirement.

            Even in the projects the infamous 'rent to own' places make sure that everyone has the latest toys.

            I know my method of driving beaters is no longer an option, but money management seems to be a dead art.
            Not only that, in the past things were manufactured to last for as long as possible. Nowadays, things are manufactured cheaply to force customers to come back and replace these things all over again or have them fixed which isn't cheap at all. This will quickly deplete their savings.

            If there is one thing we need to reform our public education, it's to bring back basic life skills courses. Nowadays, when people see basic life skills course, they assume it's for special needs students and those with low intellectual abilities. This is a deadly mistake to make because while normal people might be able to adjust for the realities of world, if they make too many mistakes early on, it's going to be impossible to pull out and start afresh.

            I think we should just tack on an extra month of basic life skills to school year -- no homework at all, just learn basic skills like how to change tires, balance your checking account, where to look for good shopping deals, how to look for jobs and do mock job interviews. How to dress properly for job interviews, develop better work habits, work etiquette, etc need to be learned as well.

            In the past, it used to be that teenagers could find low paying jobs at fast food restaurants, local stores, etc. These jobs help teenagers to develop good work habits and force them to watch how they spend their paychecks. These same low paying jobs also help teenagers to develop some basic life skills as well.

            Nowadays, you can still find teenagers working these jobs, but they're more rare to see around. It's more likely you'll see twenty-something or even older workers still working at these jobs, and because of higher wages (still minimum wages but higher than in past) the managers will prefer more experienced workers over unproven commodity in teenagers who've never started a job before. In addition, the teenagers today have higher expectations and will loathe working these jobs even though such jobs will benefit them someday down the road.
            Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

            "Aim small, miss small."

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Cheetah772 View Post

              Not only that, in the past things were manufactured to last for as long as possible. Nowadays, things are manufactured cheaply to force customers to come back and replace these things all over again or have them fixed which isn't cheap at all. This will quickly deplete their savings.

              If there is one thing we need to reform our public education, it's to bring back basic life skills courses. Nowadays, when people see basic life skills course, they assume it's for special needs students and those with low intellectual abilities. This is a deadly mistake to make because while normal people might be able to adjust for the realities of world, if they make too many mistakes early on, it's going to be impossible to pull out and start afresh.

              I think we should just tack on an extra month of basic life skills to school year -- no homework at all, just learn basic skills like how to change tires, balance your checking account, where to look for good shopping deals, how to look for jobs and do mock job interviews. How to dress properly for job interviews, develop better work habits, work etiquette, etc need to be learned as well.

              In the past, it used to be that teenagers could find low paying jobs at fast food restaurants, local stores, etc. These jobs help teenagers to develop good work habits and force them to watch how they spend their paychecks. These same low paying jobs also help teenagers to develop some basic life skills as well.

              Nowadays, you can still find teenagers working these jobs, but they're more rare to see around. It's more likely you'll see twenty-something or even older workers still working at these jobs, and because of higher wages (still minimum wages but higher than in past) the managers will prefer more experienced workers over unproven commodity in teenagers who've never started a job before. In addition, the teenagers today have higher expectations and will loathe working these jobs even though such jobs will benefit them someday down the road.
              Very true.

              I didn't know schools stopped teaching that stuff; it is critical. One of the best things I learned in high school was how to prepare and conduct oneself in an interview situation.

              Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

              Comment


              • It's all been replaced by the "feel good" theory of education, and the "everyone's-a-winner" nonsense.

                Truthfully, from what I've seen kids in school need a lot more than one month of life skills. They need it every day throughout their lives, as it used to be done by grown-ups, parents, teachers and mentors.
                Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

                Comment


                • The 1 Retirement Danger No One Warns You About

                  https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/reti...tj2?li=BBnbfcL
                  Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
                  TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
                  Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by G David Bock View Post
                    The 1 Retirement Danger No One Warns You About

                    https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/reti...tj2?li=BBnbfcL
                    I'm only ten months in, but it hasn't been remotely a problem for me.
                    Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

                    Comment


                    • I retired in 2003 and I'm doing fine. All I need these days is the time to start my ultimate layout. (I'm slowly being buried by the Honey-do List!)
                      Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post
                        (I'm slowly being buried by the Honey-do List!)
                        Still can't get the Ignore feature to work, huh?

                        Comment


                        • Countdown to Retirement: A Five-Year Plan
                          ...
                          For most of your working life, it wasn’t exactly a pressing concern. You might have pondered it for a few minutes as you skimmed your company’s benefits handout, checking to see if your new glasses were covered or if you’ll be reimbursed for your gym membership. Retirement was more like a vague, distant concept rather than something that would actually happen one day.

                          Then, suddenly, you hit your late 50s or early 60s and you realize, almost without being aware of it, that you’ve begun paying closer attention to those commercials about annuities, reverse mortgages and Medicare Part B, and you’re no longer reflexively tossing those AARP mailings straight into the trash.

                          Now, retirement looms with terrifying urgency. Do you have enough savings? Is your money invested too aggressively — or not aggressively enough? Do you need long-term-care insurance? Do you have a will? What even is a reverse mortgage?

                          This abrupt awakening/panic attack often hits five years or so before retirement — and that can be a good thing, financial advisers agree. Because those years can be critical. You can make moves now that will substantially improve your life in retirement.
                          ...
                          https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/06/b...year-plan.html
                          Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
                          TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
                          Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

                          Comment


                          • This is a Social Security first for 154 million Americans

                            Are you expecting to be in some capacity reliant on Social Security when you retire? If so, don't worry, you're not alone. According to an April survey from national pollster Gallup, 84% of nonretirees anticipate leaning on Social Security in some capacity when they retire, with 54% expecting it to play a minor role, and 30% anticipating it'll be a major source of income.

                            For current retirees, Gallup found an even higher reliance on the program. In total, 90% of current retirees need Social Security to make ends meet, including 57% who lean on the program as a major source of income, and 33% who treat it as a minor income source.

                            But in spite of its well-known significance, the latest Trustees report clearly projects that America's most important social program is headed down the wrong path.

                            According to the latest report, Social Security's asset reserves, which currently total nearly $2.9 trillion and have been built up since the Reagan reforms were passed in 1983, are expected to be completely exhausted by 2034. Once this excess cash is completely gone, an estimated benefits cut of up to 21% may be needed to sustain payouts through the year 2092, without any further cuts. As a silver lining, if there is one to be found from such a prediction, Social Security isn't going bankrupt.

                            What's more, rather than 2022 being the first year where more is paid out in benefits than is generated in revenue by the program, as predicted by the Trustees in the 2017 report, the newest annual analysis expects this net cash outflow to begin this year! Even though the intermediate-cost model only expects $1.7 billion more to be paid out in benefits than is generated in revenue, it'll nonetheless be the first time Social Security has been on track to be cash-flow negative since 1982.
                            ...
                            https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/reti...85W?li=BBnbfcL
                            Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
                            TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
                            Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

                            Comment


                            • Similar to the above;

                              Big changes are underway for Social Security
                              https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/reti...2Pn?li=BBnbfcN
                              Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
                              TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
                              Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

                              Comment


                              • How Congress could cut Social Security benefits by $2,000 a year
                                ...
                                Few programs bear the burden of importance that Social Security does. Each and every month, more than 62 million people receive a benefit check, and approximately 7 out of 10 of these individuals are aged beneficiaries. Of these aged Americans, 62% lean on Social Security to provide at least half of their income during retirement.

                                But it's also a program with no shortage of issues.

                                According to the newest annual report from the Social Security Board of Trustees, the program will begin paying out more in benefits than it generates in revenue this year. This net cash outflow will accelerate with each passing year with the exception of 2019, resulting in the complete exhaustion of its $2.9 trillion in asset reserves by 2034. Should this excess cash be depleted, and assuming Congress enacts no new laws to raise revenue or cut expenditures, an across-the-board cut in benefits of up to 21% may be needed.
                                ...
                                https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/reti...WlX?li=BBnb7Kz
                                Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
                                TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
                                Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

                                Comment

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