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Gold-Plated Retirement?

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In “The elderly are better off than advertisedWashington Post columnist Robert J. Samuelson attacks what he calls “selective and self-serving statistics” that have been cited by defenders of Social Security and Medicare. According to Samuelson, such statistics are used to oppose cuts in these vital programs and support an “outdated


A sobering thought on International Day of Older Persons

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October 1 is International Day of Older Persons, a day to raise awareness about issues affecting older people and to appreciate the contributions they make to society.

So it is fitting that today we look at how older Americans are faring in retirement. One way to measure the wellbeing of the elderly is to measure the degree to which they live in poverty. By measuring poverty, we are able to learn the extent to which a nation's retirement system provides adequate income. More...

"Wake Up, Washington!" on Women and Retirement

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As we approach the end of the second week of Retirement USA's "Wake Up, Washington!" Month" we have learned a great deal about the challenges women face in retirement. Women face special challenges because they make less than men and spend less time in the workforce.  Yet they typically live longer than men, requiring more retirement income.  As Retirement USA's Facts of the Day have shown, women have far less retirement security than men.  More...

When is a participant not a participant?

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As I was reading the most recent edition of the Private Pension Plan Bulletin Abstract of 2007 Form 5500 Annual Reports [PDF], published by the Labor Department's Employee Benefits Security Administration, I noticed something rather odd in one of the footnotes.  More...

Poverty and older Americans: A look behind the numbers

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New data released by the U.S. Census Bureau contains information that may come as a surprise: Of the age groups surveyed (ages 18 and under, ages 18-64 and individuals age 65 and older), it was the group of Americans age 65 and older who have the lowest rate of poverty at 9.7 percent. More...

A retirement reality check

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A new study released by the Ariel Education Initiative and Hewitt Associates and funded by the Rockefeller Foundation confirms what many researchers and retirement policy experts have known for a while now: When it comes to providing retirement income, 401(k) plans just aren't cutting it for many minorities. More...

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