Social (In)Security | How Do You Stack Up?

Dont’ count on government to save for your future…

empty pocketsThe U.S. government is threatening the financial future of todays youth. Like a group of dis-jointed heroin addicts, our apathetic congress has ignored record budget deficits, America’s spiraling debt and has effectively shunned an entire generation in favor of temporary, quick fixes. This article, Your free financial report card on MSN Money, provides provocative evidence for this thesis. For instance, the future of Social Security, remember that old debate? Liz Pulliam Weston, the author, has compiled some interesting numbers to help you sort through all the political banter surrounding this issue:

The farther out your retirement and the more money you make, the more you may want to discount the estimated benefits on Page 2. (Higher-income workers may see their benefits cut more than lower-income workers, if Congress decides to preserve the safety-net aspect of the retirement system.) What this means:

* If you’re in your 20s, you might not want to include the estimates at all when calculating how much you want to save. If you do include them, figure on getting 25% to 50% of the amounts on Page 2.

* If you’re in your 30s and 40s or make more than six figures annually, you might figure on getting 50% to 75% of the promised benefits.

* In your 50s, figure on receiving 75%.

Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion, just not their own numbers.

Liz also explains a very simple and easy way to get a snapshot of personal earnings growth over your entire working life – something the government is actually capable of providing us with. Read this article not only for eye-opening insights into our countries welfare system, but also benefit (or at least find some extra motivation…for you competitive types) by comparing your own finances with others in your demographic. Here’s a sample of the stats for those aged between 60-69:

Net worth by age
60-69 Age
$209,200 Median
$647,200 Top 25%
$1,429,500 Top 10%
5.8% Negative

Enjoy the read and if you’re among the younger generations (you’ve probably heard this before, but) remember, plan your own retirement – don’t be fooled into thinking the government will (or even can) do it for you.

Update (11.07.06):
Another article from the good folks at MSN to help you see how far behind (or ahead) you are of your peers; Your 20s: See how your wealth measures up

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