Our daily roundup of retirement news your clients may be thinking about.
Was File-and-Suspend a Loophole?
A column called Why recent Social Security changes make sense by Alicia Munnell, director of Boston College Center for Retirement Research, argues that the recent changes to Social Security are a move in the right direction. "Social Security—the backbone of our retirement system—isn’t supposed to be a complicated program where those 'in the know' get a much better deal than the average guy," writes Munnell. "Now the rules are clear, and people will get their intended benefit. The program will also save billions of dollars." Meanwhile, a column called Why recent changes in Social Security are unfair by William Reichenstein, Powers Professor at Baylor University and head of research at socialsecuritysolutions.com, maintains that instead of closing a loophole, the changes are essentially a "further movement of Social Security toward an income-redistribution program." As a society, he says that "we should decide whether Social Security should primarily be an income-redistribution program or primarily a required-savings program. That would strongly influence the types of changes we should consider." --The Wall Street Journal
Social Security Q&A: Is misinformation costing widows thousands?
Many widows have been deprived of substantial amount in Social Security benefits as they were given wrong information by Social Security representatives on how to claim their widow and retirement benefits, according to this article in Forbes. "I’m hoping some enterprising lawyer starts a class action suit," Larry Kotlikoff says. "There are, presumably, millions of widows in the country that have been similarly treated by Social Security and have no knowledge that they could be receiving much higher benefits had they been properly treated by the Social Security staff." --Forbes
How debt and denial are reshaping retirement
A report from Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies shows that many seniors left the workplace carrying a mortgage or facing substantial credit card debt. Despite the alarming trend, the report states that most of the retirees express optimism, with 84% claiming they have a strong sense of purpose. The results suggest that retirees may not need a lot of savings to enjoy their retirement lives; but it also could be a case where they are simply in deep denial. --Time Money
These countries will have the best pensions for millennials
A study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development finds that millennial workers in the world's richest economies are likely to retire poor. It's because more countries face declining ability to sustain pension benefits as a result of longer life span, dwindling job security and fewer younger workers supporting pension plans. Retirement benefits for Americans are expected to drop to 35% of their pre-retirement income by 2054, while their British counterparts are likely to receive just 30%, the study finds. Millennial workers in Spain, Luxembourg and Turkey are expected to receive at least 75%, OECD says. --CNNMoney
The retirement generation gap
Two-thirds of workers who are 50 or older expect to continue working at least part-time past the age of 65, although the median age for current seniors who have retired was 62, according to s study by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. Two-thirds of retirees who have no current jobs said a buyout, a job loss or a work-related reason prompted them to leave the workforce, with only 5% of retirees having a job, the study says. "So many workers want to work longer, or transition into retirement, yet very few say their current employers have practices in place to facilitate this," said TCRS President Catherine Collinson. --CNBC
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