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How Much Do Retirees Really Depend on Social Security? Far Less Than You'd Think.
Forbes ^ | 03/29/2018 | Andrew Biggs

Posted on 03/29/2018 9:31:30 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

The Social Security Administration says that one-third of retirees receive nearly all their income from Social Security. The true figure is only around one-third that amount.

How much do Americans really rely on Social Security to get by in retirement. You can hear different numbers, some of which are truly scary. Writing for Marketwatch, Alicia Munnell of Boston College and the Center for Retirement Research cites a study that she hopes “will put the statistical debate to rest.” Sadly, I don’t see any rest for the weary on this issue. But looking at one additional study which uses the best data available could finally settle the question.

Let’s start at the beginning. The Social Security Administration, at which I in the past worked, has long published figures purporting to show how much retirees depend upon Social Security as part of their total income. According to the latest SSA figures I could find, SSA states that 34% of retirees receive 90% or more of their income from Social Security. These figures are used by outside groups to argue that Social Security’s funding shortfall should be resolved by raising taxes rather than reducing benefits for retirees. But, as we’ll see, the true figure isn’t 34% but closer to one-third that amount.

The problem comes that the data source these figures come from – the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey – is very weak at measuring retirement income other than Social Security. In particular, the CPS undercounts the benefits retirees receive from both traditional pensions and retirement accounts such as IRAs and 401(k)s. If you undercount non-Social Security sources of income, retirees look both poorest and more dependent on Social Security than they really.

(Excerpt) Read more at forbes.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Society
KEYWORDS: retirement; socialsecurity
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1 posted on 03/29/2018 9:31:30 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Their SS income must be augmented by their lottery winnings, based on the number of tickets I see them buying.


2 posted on 03/29/2018 9:32:32 AM PDT by relictele
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To: SeekAndFind

That article is bullshite

I know plenty of older folks who live off their Social Security

I visited my 82 year old aunt and uncle in Texas three days ago and they told me specifically they eat and pay living expenses from social security

Farm income keeps the farm going basically


3 posted on 03/29/2018 9:34:50 AM PDT by wardaddy (As a southerner I've never trusted the Grand Old Party.....any questions?)
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To: relictele

What’s the point of this article? To pave the way for cuts in Social Security? The government can afford trillions in overseas spending, including pointless wars - Afghanistan still billions a month- but there’s no money for social security?


4 posted on 03/29/2018 9:36:38 AM PDT by WilliamIII
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To: SeekAndFind

I know of no retirees that don’t need every penny of they SS.

Hands off trial balloon floaters!


5 posted on 03/29/2018 9:37:20 AM PDT by Blogger (The causes are the left are never about caring about an issue. It’s always about power.)
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To: SeekAndFind
I know a lot of people that SS is their only retirement means. And if they have IRAs and such it is in the 10’s of thousands which is sad.

I have helped a lot of US Expats get Thailand visas and I am amazed when SS is all they have. I know one 70 that gets right at 1000 a month SS and has no other source of income.

However, the leftist view will be that there are so many people other there that don't need SS and should be denied it so the more deserving can get a livable retirement.

6 posted on 03/29/2018 9:39:10 AM PDT by where's_the_Outrage? (Drain the Swamp. Build the Wall.)
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To: wardaddy

Just because there are people living off nothing but SS doesn’t mean the article is BS. 10% is still a lot of old people living off nothing but SS and that still lives a ton more that live predominantly off SS.


7 posted on 03/29/2018 9:39:22 AM PDT by rb22982
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To: wardaddy

I AM on Social Security,as are all of my friends and many neighbors and NONE of us relies on just Social Security-———I could not even pay rent if I did.

.


8 posted on 03/29/2018 9:39:30 AM PDT by Mears
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To: SeekAndFind
shortfall should be resolved by raising taxes rather than reducing benefits for retirees.

get 'yer' sticky fingers off my social security. I paid for it, the government kept and used the money taxfree for decades, and I intend to collect it.

9 posted on 03/29/2018 9:41:15 AM PDT by blueplum ( "...this moment is your moment: it belongs to you... " President Donald J. Trump, Jan 20, 2017)
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To: SeekAndFind

SS is mostly it for me. I used my 401k to pay of the car and some other bills. Banked what was left. House is almost paid off.
I found that my spendable dollars from SS was almost the same as my work salary after tax spendable dollars.
My better angel is still working, but she wants to retire in a year and things will definitely change big time.


10 posted on 03/29/2018 9:43:23 AM PDT by stylin19a (Best.Election.of.All-Times.Ever.In.The.History.Of.Ever)
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To: SeekAndFind

For crying out loud, investigate the thievery in government.

Start hanging the thieves.

The amount of money saved would be astounding.


11 posted on 03/29/2018 9:43:30 AM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: blueplum

Technically, that money was spent as soon as it was collected.


12 posted on 03/29/2018 9:45:46 AM PDT by rb22982
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To: blueplum

but if you want to reform SS, then pay women the same as the average man. Women having to stay home and raise kids, nurse parents (and sometimes grandparents), and work part-time, i.e., low wage jobs to boot, means they get less in SS than men for more hours spent working, since SS is based on wages earned.


13 posted on 03/29/2018 9:46:33 AM PDT by blueplum ( "...this moment is your moment: it belongs to you... " President Donald J. Trump, Jan 20, 2017)
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To: SeekAndFind

It would be interesting to see a breakdown by age, i.e. do older retirees who worked in the time of pensions rely less on Social Security than younger retirees who never had access to corporate pension plans?


14 posted on 03/29/2018 9:48:47 AM PDT by DoodleDawg
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To: SeekAndFind

In my case I have to work AND use SS income in order to make ends meet. I lost most of my 401k in the crash after years of scrimping. I think more are dependent on it than this guy realizes. My utilities are higher than my house payment used to be and they keep going up.

I think the only people who actually have secure retirement are government workers.


15 posted on 03/29/2018 9:50:06 AM PDT by McGavin999 ("The press is impotent when it abandons itself to falsehood."Thomas Jefferson)
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To: SeekAndFind

Means Testing trial balloon.


16 posted on 03/29/2018 9:51:40 AM PDT by TADSLOS (Alex Jones isn’t quite the wing nut now, all things considered.)
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To: SeekAndFind

I work until I die or they take the keys from me. SS isn’t enough and savings need to go to my wife who will likely live on another 30 years after I die.


17 posted on 03/29/2018 9:52:02 AM PDT by dangerdoc
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To: blueunicorn6

Hey! You aren’t supposed to be looking over there...

Muckraker.


18 posted on 03/29/2018 9:53:37 AM PDT by TADSLOS (Alex Jones isn’t quite the wing nut now, all things considered.)
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To: blueunicorn6
Start hanging the thieves. The amount of money saved would be astounding.

Would save even more if they reuse the rope.

19 posted on 03/29/2018 9:54:22 AM PDT by Bitman
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To: WilliamIII
What’s the point of this article? To pave the way for cuts in Social Security?

NeverTrump Conservatives just can't find ways to commit political suicide fast enough, it seems.


20 posted on 03/29/2018 9:56:47 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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