A Few Social Security Stats
Short blog tonight. I know what you’re thinking…of course it’s a short blog, Sandy was watching beach volleyball. No, not the case. I was busy preparing a presentation that I’m giving later today. But, since you got me started, can I just mention that NBC showed an hour of beach volleyball (I think that was hour 847 of beach volleyball) and showed two minutes of highlights of the first five events of the decathlon? I know I’m crazy – I’d like to see the event in which we decide who is the world’s greatest athlete and I don’t appreciate seeing the great tradition of beach volleyball…
Since I’ve started to get myself worked up on this, I just googled “history of beach volleyball.” Here are my two favorite things I found out about the sport’s illustrious history:
1. After starting in the 1920s, it became the principal sport in a French nudist camp in 1927.
2. In the 1950s, “beach volleyball became an entertainment show and beauty contests were included in the official program.”
Of course, I’m not sure why NBC’s coverage surprises me. As I sit here typing, NBC has cut the final hour of Olympic prime time coverage to show some absurd show starring Matthew Perry (from Friends). Honestly, I’m surprised that they’re not showing me Matthew Perry playing beach volleyball.
Okay, now on to a short entry. I want to share five quick Social Security stats that I read today:
1. Approximately one quarter of married couples and just under half of single retirees rely on Social Security for 90% or more of their income.
2. The average monthly benefit is $1,235. This is less than $15K per year (which is pretty low for people who don’t have much more).
3. In 1960, there were 4.9 workers paying for every retiree. Today, there are 2.8 workers for every beneficiary. By 2035, there will only be 1.9 workers for each beneficiary.
4. For those turning 65 this year, women can expect to live 20 more years and men can expect to live 17.8 more years. (This will be significantly shorter for me if I keep watching NBC’s Olympic coverage.)
5. We are starting to see the first generation of middle-income retirees who will take less out of Social Security than they put in. The Urban Institute says that a married couple that retired last year and earned average wages would have paid $598K and they will take out approximately $556K. Higher income retirees have been in this negative situation since the 1990s. Lower income people still put less in than they take out.
Have a great weekend.
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