Will Social Security be there for you?

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Will Social Security be there for you?

by | Jul 28, 2017

Social Security Status Report – We often have the concern raised in financial planning discussions on the viability of Social Security and should we be concerned that it will be around when those now eligible and the other millions that will retire in the next 5-10 years.  This is one of the entitlements that congress most likely will never let slip away but something dramatic will have to occur to maintain benefits.  Most likely, those who have the most means with the largest benefits will be affected if cuts need to occur.  
The latest report from the Social Security Administration reported that there were 61 million Americans who received Social Security benefits (retirement or disability) in 2016. Social Security’s total income (payroll taxes collected plus interest earnings) amounted to $957 billion last year, $35 billion more than the $922 billion of program expenditures and outlays. Social Security actuaries project the program will have just 5 more years (2017-2021) where total income will exceed expenditures and outlays (source: 2017 Social Security Trustees Report).  

Will you be a Caregiver?– An estimated 17% of American adults will provide some level of care to their aging parents (e.g., dressing, bathing, feeding or shopping) at some point in their lives (source: Health and Retirement Study).  Another point of discussion for clients about their needs and for their family, how will their care be provided.  Its typically too late to obtain Long Term Care Insurance for those old enough now who may need skilled nursing care or even in-home care.   So those family members near and dear will be required to do the heavy lifting and care giving. 

Interest rate update: The U.S. stocks made slight gains recently after the Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged and said it expected to start selling down its massive holdings of bonds “relatively soon” in a sign of confidence in the U.S. economy.

As expected by investors, the Fed maintained its benchmark, Federal Funds lending rate and said it was continuing the slow path of monetary tightening. In its statement following a two-day policy meeting, the Fed’s rate-setting committee reported that the economy was growing moderately and job gains had been solid. But it noted that both overall inflation and a measure of underlying price gains had declined and said it would “carefully monitor” price trends.

Rocky Mountain High – Colorado, which has legally sold marijuana since 2014, recorded $128 million of sales in May 2017 (flower, edibles and concentrate sales), the 10th consecutive month of sales of at least $100 million. The state has collected $96 million YTD in marijuana taxes and licensing fees (source: TheCannabist.com).  With states suffering from budget cuts and other revenue sources, we may wonder where this will take other states eager to cash in on the pot money pot.

The information contained in this report does not purport to be a complete description of the securities, markets, or developments referred to in this material. The information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete. Any information is not a complete summary or statement of all available data necessary for making an investment decision and does not constitute a recommendation. Any opinions are those of Thomas B. Fleishel and not necessarily those of RJFS or Raymond James. Each investor needs to review an investment strategy for his or her own particular situation before making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The information provided is for informational purposes only and is not a solicitation to buy or sell any position.


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