Many Americans say they will have to work until they're 80

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kenyan
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Many Americans say they will have to work until they're 80

Post by kenyan » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:29 am

Ran across this article in the LA Times:

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/money_c ... atrick.net

A couple of excerpts:

"The average person has squirreled away a mere 7% of their hoped-for retirement savings -- a median of just $25,000 versus a desired goal of $350,000, according to the survey. Three in 10 people in their 60s have less than $25,000, suggesting they'll have no choice but to live on Social Security."

"But pessimism may be a sign of the times. A new survey by Yahoo Finance found that 41% of people ages 18 to 64 feel the American Dream is "out of reach." The poll found that 37% of people have no retirement savings, and more than half of them have socked away nothing for their children's college educations."


Nothing we haven't necessarily heard around here, but does show another window into how the other half (ok, other 95%) lives. Get the Boglehead word out!
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phoebus
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by phoebus » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:45 am

So, the main question in my mind, is it that the majority of Americans do not have enough money to reasonably save or is it that they simply choose to spend it all?

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by awval999 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:46 am

phoebus wrote:So, the main question in my mind, is it that the majority of Americans do not have enough money to reasonably save or is it that they simply choose to spend it all?
This imo

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by hicabob » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:55 am

They are keeping the Social Security program safe for all of us! Let's hope they don't means test it based on accumulation.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by FafnerMorell » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:56 am

I'm kind of curious who's going to be employing all these folks. Heck, if you've got a job like Warren Buffet's and you want to work until you're 90, go for it. But I don't think everyone's going to have that as an option.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by stoptothink » Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:03 am

awval999 wrote:
phoebus wrote:So, the main question in my mind, is it that the majority of Americans do not have enough money to reasonably save or is it that they simply choose to spend it all?
This imo
+1

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by bradshaw1965 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:06 am

So, the same people who haven't been able to formulate a long term plan are asked to forecast about an event far in the future with relative accuracy? It may be possible that some of these folks will have some desire to work or need to work at 80 to keep a minimal lifestyle afloat, but the likelihood that there will be a system to support those aspirations is virtually nil.

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kenyan
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by kenyan » Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:57 am

Count me in the camp of believing that most people just choose to spend and enjoy their money now, naively believing that retirement will just magically occur without planning and/or sacrificing for it.
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Fallible » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:06 pm

IMHO, probably too much is made of the "work till 80." According to the Wells Fargo release, a quarter of the 1500 surveyed by phone "fear they will have to work until they're at least 80 years old to afford a comfortable retirement..." Do they fear it or actually plan on it? And considering life expectancy, inevitable health problems, and the job market, which they would all be aware of, how serious are they about this? How many times have we read of or heard people who say at least partly in jest, "I'll have to work until 80, or 90 or even 100, or forever"? And it's unclear what's meant by "comfortable" retirement. "Comfortable" can mean many different things to different people, e.g., what's comfortable to some people could be extravagant to others.
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Midpack » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:06 pm

phoebus wrote:So, the main question in my mind, is it that the majority of Americans do not have enough money to reasonably save or is it that they simply choose to spend it all?
The latter. No matter how much most Americans make, there are millions and millions of families/individuals who make less, and yet get by - even save & invest significantly. Doesn't that suggest that they could save, but choose to 'spend it all?' They overcommit themselves on mortgages, car payments, credit card debt, student loans, etc. - and then conclude they don't make enough. :shock:

When I think of everyone I've known in my first 57 years on the planet, the correlation between income and net worth is pretty weak. I know people with lots of income living paycheck to paycheck, and I know people of modest means who are FI...more often than not it's in their choices.
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by beareconomy » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:24 pm

omg. I will have to work another 50 years. [political comment removed by Mod].

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by FabLab » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:37 pm

Fallible wrote:IMHO, probably too much is made of the "work till 80." According to the Wells Fargo release, a quarter of the 1500 surveyed by phone "fear they will have to work until they're at least 80 years old to afford a comfortable retirement..." Do they fear it or actually plan on it? And considering life expectancy, inevitable health problems, and the job market, which they would all be aware of, how serious are they about this? How many times have we read of or heard people who say at least partly in jest, "I'll have to work until 80, or 90 or even 100, or forever"? And it's unclear what's meant by "comfortable" retirement. "Comfortable" can mean many different things to different people, e.g., what's comfortable to some people could be extravagant to others.
These articles appear frequently, and yet when it comes to actually "hanging up the cleats" seems like more people cluster around the 62 time frame.
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jeffro
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by jeffro » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:52 pm

This is just being lazy haha . Im 21, in college and already have almost double the retirement savings as these people. This is really pathetic!

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dave66
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by dave66 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:07 pm

jeffro wrote:This is just being lazy haha . Im 21, in college and already have almost double the retirement savings as these people. This is really pathetic!
That's good, but life isn't always as simple as being lazy or not lazy. People accidentally have kids... Have health issues... Are burdened with debt from other people in their families...

Just have one failed marriage and then see how much money you have left to save. :-) Not everybody is blessed with a life that goes just the way they'd like.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by peter71 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:09 pm

This survey targeted the "middle class" in a weird way that itself capped investable assets! So even as these things go I'd be particularly hesitant to read too much into this study.
"To target the middle class, the survey included only respondents who fell within specified income and wealth brackets. Those age 25 to 29 had 2010 household income of $25,000 to $99,999 and household investable assets of $99,999 or less. Those age 30 to 75 had 2010 household income of $50,000 to $99,999 or household investable assets of $25,000 to $99,999. The lower limits for 20-somethings were used to reflect the early stage of their careers."

Wikipedia puts median US personal income at $32,148, so were it actually the case that the median (early 40's?) worker had socked away $25,000 in personal retirement money so far I'd say that'd be about as expected (particularly given recent market and economic conditions), but I don't think we can infer anything like that from this particular survey . . .

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Hector » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:21 pm

FafnerMorell wrote:I'm kind of curious who's going to be employing all these folks. Heck, if you've got a job like Warren Buffet's and you want to work until you're 90, go for it. But I don't think everyone's going to have that as an option.
I see seniors working at grocery stores filling customers begs. Unlike buffet, a lot of us don't have any choice, but to work till we can in order to survive. There is no other option! I hope, retirement social security wouldn't reduce or stop the program as it is the major source of income for many retirees.

I am sure that average household income of people in this forum is a lot more than national average household income of 50k and when one makes that much, its easy not to think about retirement as you hardly have enough money to pay the bills.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:28 pm

I want to know who they are interviewing. Think about it, if you are eligible to collect either Social Security, SSI/Disability, a pension, rent and/or are still working, the amount of capital available be it financial or human is much greater than the $25,000 noted in these articles. An annual income of $20,000 today would require much more than $25,000 in capital.

I'll give an example - I know teachers who claim they are unable to save, but when a pension is providing 60% of final average salary, I would argue their capital is far greater than $25,000. If you are a senior citizen and receiving assistance/working/social security, again your capital would be higher than the $25,000. Assume a person on social security disability - they would be eligible for disability, medicare/medicaid and/or other state benefits/public assistance - while the capital would not be easily accessible, it is still allocated to them in some fashion.

These surveys are highly flawed.
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by SamB » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:39 pm

hicabob wrote:Let's hope they don't means test it based on accumulation.
That is precisely what should be done. [political comments removed by Mod]
Sam

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by stoptothink » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:43 pm

Hector wrote:
FafnerMorell wrote:I'm kind of curious who's going to be employing all these folks. Heck, if you've got a job like Warren Buffet's and you want to work until you're 90, go for it. But I don't think everyone's going to have that as an option.
I see seniors working at grocery stores filling customers begs. Unlike buffet, a lot of us don't have any choice, but to work till we can in order to survive. There is no other option! I hope, retirement social security wouldn't reduce or stop the program as it is the major source of income for many retirees.

I am sure that average household income of people in this forum is a lot more than national average household income of 50k and when one makes that much, its easy not to think about retirement as you hardly have enough money to pay the bills.
I actually agree with the 21 year old. I make less than $50k/yr, about 1/4 of my take home goes directly to education costs, and I still manage to max out my 403b and Roth IRA. I cover the necessities of rent/food/insurance/gas/utilities/car maintenance/clothing off about 25% of my meager salary. Almost none of my financial resources are relegated to things that really are not necessities. It certainly will not always be like this as I will be done with school in less than a year and have a standing job offer, my costs should be cut in half and my salary will get a significant increase. It involves giving up a few immediate wants, but it is definitely possible. How do I at 30, having spent $150k+ on my education and making less than $50k/yr, have no debt and more retirement savings than these people?

We as a culture, as a species, are living proof of the marhsmallow experiment.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by gofigure » Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:54 pm

What age group? My guess is that the average for someone in the age catagory 65 and up is likely higher than $27k. That's not to say that everyone is or will be able to fund a retirement.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by hsv_climber » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:07 pm

stoptothink wrote: I actually agree with the 21 year old. I make less than $50k/yr, about 1/4 of my take home goes directly to education costs, and I still manage to max out my 403b and Roth IRA. I cover the necessities of rent/food/insurance/gas/utilities/car maintenance/clothing off about 25% of my meager salary. Almost none of my financial resources are relegated to things that really are not necessities. It certainly will not always be like this as I will be done with school in less than a year and have a standing job offer, my costs should be cut in half and my salary will get a significant increase. It involves giving up a few immediate wants, but it is definitely possible. How do I at 30, having spent $150k+ on my education and making less than $50k/yr, have no debt and more retirement savings than these people?

We as a culture, as a species, are living proof of the marhsmallow experiment.
To be perfectly fair, lets imagine that you'd need to support wife & 2 kids. Don't forget that child birth costs ~$12,000+ (and that is an old number).

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by staythecourse » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:11 pm

Put me in the category of folks do not know how to manage their money. I can't say I feel sorry for any of them. Also, if these same folks think they can just keep working it will come as a surprise when they find out that won't be an option. As technology and innovation continues to improve and the coporation become increasingly globilized with cheap labor abroad there is nearly NO chance someone will be looking to employee folks in their 80's.

Here is my fearless call: You will see many of these folks "elect" to move out of the country to surrounding countries with lower costs of living for their retirements, i.e. Mexico, caribbeans, Costa Rica, etc...

Good luck.
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by sport » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:20 pm

If I remember correctly, the equal employment laws provide protection against age discrimination only up to age 70. After that, you're on your own.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by marylandcrab » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:26 pm

So the pp is saying that because someone who saved and did without during their working years shouldn't get social security and someone else who didn't save who made more money should get it?

I'd like to opt out and go it alone. I think I'd do better. I look at my mom at 77 and there is no way she could work. I know some could, look at Andy Rooney, but I wouldn't plan on it.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Manbaerpig » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:28 pm

no way anybodys hiring me @ 80, guaranteed

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Midpack » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:30 pm

SamB wrote:
hicabob wrote:Let's hope they don't means test it based on accumulation.
That is precisely what should be done. In fact, not more than 30% of the work force should ever even consider getting a penny of SS. Making SS a retirement scheme for 95% of the workforce was one of the biggest policy mistakes in the last 70 years.

Sam
Wouldn't means testing assets discourage saving, and therefore increase the burden on SS in time? Assuming two people with exactly the same lifetime earnings and SS contributions, the one who saved less is entitled to a greater SS retirement benefit than the individual who saved for retirement?

And wouldn't means testing retirement income further discourage private pensions, and therefore increase the SS liability in time? IMO there are better and fairer ways of reforming SS, the sooner we start the better...
Last edited by Midpack on Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by hicabob » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:32 pm

Midpack wrote:
SamB wrote:
hicabob wrote:Let's hope they don't means test it based on accumulation.
That is precisely what should be done. In fact, not more than 30% of the work force should ever even consider getting a penny of SS. Making SS a retirement scheme for 95% of the workforce was one of the biggest policy mistakes in the last 70 years.

Sam
Wouldn't means testing assets discourage saving, and therefore increase the burden on SS in time? And wouldn't means testing retirement income further discourage private pensions, and therefore increas the SS liability in time? IMO there are better and fairer ways of reforming SS, the sooner we start the better...
+1 .... I'm not sure there is an easy answer

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Hector » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:40 pm

stoptothink wrote:
Hector wrote:
FafnerMorell wrote:I'm kind of curious who's going to be employing all these folks. Heck, if you've got a job like Warren Buffet's and you want to work until you're 90, go for it. But I don't think everyone's going to have that as an option.
I see seniors working at grocery stores filling customers begs. Unlike buffet, a lot of us don't have any choice, but to work till we can in order to survive. There is no other option! I hope, retirement social security wouldn't reduce or stop the program as it is the major source of income for many retirees.

I am sure that average household income of people in this forum is a lot more than national average household income of 50k and when one makes that much, its easy not to think about retirement as you hardly have enough money to pay the bills.
I actually agree with the 21 year old. I make less than $50k/yr, about 1/4 of my take home goes directly to education costs, and I still manage to max out my 403b and Roth IRA. I cover the necessities of rent/food/insurance/gas/utilities/car maintenance/clothing off about 25% of my meager salary. Almost none of my financial resources are relegated to things that really are not necessities. It certainly will not always be like this as I will be done with school in less than a year and have a standing job offer, my costs should be cut in half and my salary will get a significant increase. It involves giving up a few immediate wants, but it is definitely possible. How do I at 30, having spent $150k+ on my education and making less than $50k/yr, have no debt and more retirement savings than these people?

We as a culture, as a species, are living proof of the marhsmallow experiment.
You are doing great. Unfortunately a lot of us need to have everything right now.

But it doesn't work like this in a lot of cases.
I often hear that cost of education is lot and if you are not from wealthy family, student loans is the only option. If we see numbers, students spend more in living cost than tuition fees mostly. Why in the world a full time student want to live like someone else who is working full time? I don't see need to having your own apartment. In fact you don't even need your own room. Aren't you suppose to attain all the classes, spending most of your time in libraries and working part time? You just need a place to crash at night. You don't need to take vacations during summer and spring break. Wouldn't working full time be a logical thing to do during vacations? What is the purpose of fancy mac books, smart phones and expensive clothing? Why do you need an expensive car? Why even you need a car if you are living and working on or near campus?

When we are done with studies and start working full time, we go crazy and buy everything we can by using our credit cards because we worked so hard in school and now we deserve everything that our credit cards can give us.

Its an american dream to own a home and we make sure to get as much mortgage as we can as early as we can.

This is how reality works in lot of cases. Where did retirement come in pictures in all these? And it is not surprise that we wont have anything saved up for retirement and working forever would be the only option.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Hector » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:45 pm

hsv_climber wrote:
stoptothink wrote: I actually agree with the 21 year old. I make less than $50k/yr, about 1/4 of my take home goes directly to education costs, and I still manage to max out my 403b and Roth IRA. I cover the necessities of rent/food/insurance/gas/utilities/car maintenance/clothing off about 25% of my meager salary. Almost none of my financial resources are relegated to things that really are not necessities. It certainly will not always be like this as I will be done with school in less than a year and have a standing job offer, my costs should be cut in half and my salary will get a significant increase. It involves giving up a few immediate wants, but it is definitely possible. How do I at 30, having spent $150k+ on my education and making less than $50k/yr, have no debt and more retirement savings than these people?

We as a culture, as a species, are living proof of the marhsmallow experiment.
To be perfectly fair, lets imagine that you'd need to support wife & 2 kids. Don't forget that child birth costs ~$12,000+ (and that is an old number).
To be perfectly fair, why would one feels need to have a spouse and 2 kids while in the school?

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Rodc » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:53 pm

Four old people making $20K each in SS can go in on a rental house and live like a family of four making $80K, on the far side of median!

Health care might be above the average for a family, but hey, they ain't feeding teenage boys or saving for the kid's college education either.

Beats being lonely or working into your 80s!

:)
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Cut-Throat » Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:02 pm

Rodc wrote:Four old people making $20K each in SS can go in on a rental house and live like a family of four making $80K, on the far side of median!

Health care might be above the average for a family, but hey, they ain't feeding teenage boys or saving for the kid's college education either.

Beats being lonely or working into your 80s!

:)
Or 6 family's with 5 kids apiece can buy a house next door to you and all move in together. Just like they do in Mexico or China.

They can park their cars on the lawn too!

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Sunflower » Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:33 pm

staythecourse wrote:Here is my fearless call: You will see many of these folks "elect" to move out of the country to surrounding countries with lower costs of living for their retirements, i.e. Mexico, caribbeans, Costa Rica, etc...
You have a far brighter outlook than I do. I see a big spike in elderly suicide/murder-suicides, assisted suicides and a large part of the population going along with it because the elderly will be a big drain and there will be no hope. Soylent Green is people!

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by stoptothink » Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:35 pm

Hector wrote:
hsv_climber wrote:
stoptothink wrote: I actually agree with the 21 year old. I make less than $50k/yr, about 1/4 of my take home goes directly to education costs, and I still manage to max out my 403b and Roth IRA. I cover the necessities of rent/food/insurance/gas/utilities/car maintenance/clothing off about 25% of my meager salary. Almost none of my financial resources are relegated to things that really are not necessities. It certainly will not always be like this as I will be done with school in less than a year and have a standing job offer, my costs should be cut in half and my salary will get a significant increase. It involves giving up a few immediate wants, but it is definitely possible. How do I at 30, having spent $150k+ on my education and making less than $50k/yr, have no debt and more retirement savings than these people?

We as a culture, as a species, are living proof of the marhsmallow experiment.
To be perfectly fair, lets imagine that you'd need to support wife & 2 kids. Don't forget that child birth costs ~$12,000+ (and that is an old number).
To be perfectly fair, why would one feels need to have a spouse and 2 kids while in the school?
I am recently divorced(final last month), my ex-wife was in dental school which is at least on par cost-wise with 2 children. Yes, making ~$47k/yr, I was able to pay for all of our combined education expenses(we both did receive grant and research money) which was about 60% of my income and still save(not a lot, but at least get my 403b match and some into my Roth) towards retirement. We lived in a 500sq ft. apartment, utilized public transportation, and went out very little. I was ok with it because it was temporary sacrifices for a long-term goal, she apparently was not. She wanted to take out loans for the sole purpose of eating out every day, "girls weekends", and a 10-day Disneyworld Christmas trip with her family...hence she is my ex-wife. It is all a choice; anybody who feels the need to be married and have a family while they are full-time students without income must pay the price, probably for the rest of their life. You choose to not wait to get married or start a family while in college over long-term financial stability. It is a conscious choice. It all comes down to that marshmallow.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by hsv_climber » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:00 pm

Hector wrote: To be perfectly fair, why would one feels need to have a spouse and 2 kids while in the school?

He wrote "30" in his post. People often forget that biological clock is ticking for men too. There are multiple studies on this subject that google search will return.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by jh » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:06 pm

.....
Last edited by jh on Fri May 04, 2012 10:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Fearnobeer21 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:11 pm

stoptothink wrote:I am recently divorced(final last month), my ex-wife was in dental school which is at least on par cost-wise with 2 children. Yes, making ~$47k/yr, I was able to pay for all of our combined education expenses(we both did receive grant and research money) which was about 60% of my income and still save(not a lot, but at least get my 403b match and some into my Roth) towards retirement. We lived in a 500sq ft. apartment, utilized public transportation, and went out very little. I was ok with it because it was temporary sacrifices for a long-term goal, she apparently was not. She wanted to take out loans for the sole purpose of eating out every day, "girls weekends", and a 10-day Disneyworld Christmas trip with her family...hence she is my ex-wife. It is all a choice; anybody who feels the need to be married and have a family while they are full-time students without income must pay the price, probably for the rest of their life. You choose to not wait to get married or start a family while in college over long-term financial stability. It is a conscious choice. It all comes down to that marshmallow.
I would divorce you too. You sound like you're pretty tight with money in an extreme sense. Balance is key and if you can't compromise in a relationship it is not going to work. I put a lot of value on experiences and memories, but it's all within a reasonable price tag. She probably sees you as someone who doesn't want to do anything and just sit on a pile of money.

hsv_climber
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by hsv_climber » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:14 pm

stoptothink wrote: I am recently divorced(final last month), my ex-wife was in dental school which is at least on par cost-wise with 2 children. Yes, making ~$47k/yr, I was able to pay for all of our combined education expenses(we both did receive grant and research money) which was about 60% of my income and still save(not a lot, but at least get my 403b match and some into my Roth) towards retirement. We lived in a 500sq ft. apartment, utilized public transportation, and went out very little. I was ok with it because it was temporary sacrifices for a long-term goal, she apparently was not. She wanted to take out loans for the sole purpose of eating out every day, "girls weekends", and a 10-day Disneyworld Christmas trip with her family...hence she is my ex-wife. It is all a choice; anybody who feels the need to be married and have a family while they are full-time students without income must pay the price, probably for the rest of their life. You choose to not wait to get married or start a family while in college over long-term financial stability. It is a conscious choice. It all comes down to that marshmallow.
Blah...Blah...Blah... I would've believed your post if you would not just posted in another thread that you've just bought a $3000+ bike. :wink:
Yeah, I understand that you could afford it, but the point is that someone who has stay-at-home wife and 2 kids might also want that kind of bike. My point is - don't judge other people.

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greg24
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by greg24 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:15 pm

peter71 wrote:This survey targeted the "middle class" in a weird way that itself capped investable assets! So even as these things go I'd be particularly hesitant to read too much into this study.
"To target the middle class, the survey included only respondents who fell within specified income and wealth brackets. Those age 25 to 29 had 2010 household income of $25,000 to $99,999 and household investable assets of $99,999 or less. Those age 30 to 75 had 2010 household income of $50,000 to $99,999 or household investable assets of $25,000 to $99,999. The lower limits for 20-somethings were used to reflect the early stage of their careers."
So this survey has proved that people with assets between $25k and $99k have an average asset base between $25k and $99k. NICE.

S&L1940
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by S&L1940 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:24 pm

as a 72 year old who had a great part time telecommute job (actually two, first one crashed in '08), sometimes the desire to work till 80 does not always match reality or availability.

gruesome times ahead. if we do not outlive our money, we gotta worry about Alzheimer's and outliving our minds!

for me, SS & Medicare are a great boost to a comfortable glide path into old age. that is not going to be the case in the future and an "modest" retirement bucket like mine will mean a diminished standard of living for the next generation.
Don't it always seem to go * That you don't know what you've got * Till it's gone

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by unclemick » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:26 pm

Hmmm - perhaps outside the survey group but the people I know working past 65(a few in their 80's) are farmers or self employed businessmen/women. Most have family members involved.

heh heh heh - assets tied up in the business vary widely. 8-)

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Hector » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:27 pm

hsv_climber wrote:
Hector wrote: To be perfectly fair, why would one feels need to have a spouse and 2 kids while in the school?

He wrote "30" in his post. People often forget that biological clock is ticking for men too. There are multiple studies on this subject that google search will return.
Its a lot about choices, isn't it?
If I wanna have a couple of college degrees without living frugally, shiny cars, huge mortgage, a stay at home spouse, a couple of kids - all by 30, I cant complain about having debts, can I?

SamB
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by SamB » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:44 pm

Midpack wrote:
SamB wrote:
hicabob wrote:Let's hope they don't means test it based on accumulation.
That is precisely what should be done. In fact, not more than 30% of the work force should ever even consider getting a penny of SS. Making SS a retirement scheme for 95% of the workforce was one of the biggest policy mistakes in the last 70 years.

Sam
Wouldn't means testing assets discourage saving, and therefore increase the burden on SS in time?
If SS did not exist and life expectancy was what it is today, what would be the effect on savings rate? Presumably there would be enough horror stories about living in poverty in old age that the savings rate would climb for those still in the work force. Of course I am projecting the reaction I would have to there not being a SS check when I reached retirement age. I do not really know what the effect on the national savings rate would be.

I do know something about the history of SS, and its genesis did not lie in the goal of a total workforce retirement program. It was supposed to be a safety net for the few that actually lived past the age of 65 and had no assets. Given the data referenced in this topic on retirement savings and median retirement assets SS has had no effect or a very negative effect. Can you claim that the savings rate would be even lower without any SS program applied to the entire workforce?

At any rate choices will have to be made with entitlements in the future. Ever sense I could muster an extra dime of savings I applied it to the US capital markets, and that has gone on for 35 years. SS had absolutely nothing to do with that decision.

If I am asked to give up my SS so someone else can avoid the gutter in old age, then they can have it. Of course if the US economy never recovers and the value of the capital markets declines for the rest of my life then we will both be in the gutter.

Sam

Rodc
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by Rodc » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:47 pm

FWIW: Many seniors live ok on SS alone. Not great if you like to have a consumer lifestyle, but not so bad either.

My mother in law was one.

Yes no fancy nights out, fancy trips, etc.

Most older folks just do not have the drive to buy stuff, or energy to do a lot of stuff.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.

mptfan
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by mptfan » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:03 pm

Rodc wrote: Most older folks just do not have the drive to buy stuff, or energy to do a lot of stuff.
:thumbsup

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empb
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by empb » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:09 pm

STT can hardly be called cheap if he didn't have money! He acknowledged the fact and acted accordingly, something his ex-wife clearly couldn't manage. I think people are surprised what they can actually do without if they have to. STT should be admired for actually making those sacrifices.

The "imagine you have a wife and two kids" proposition is completely ludicrous.

rokidtoo
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by rokidtoo » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:19 pm

SamB wrote:Making SS a retirement scheme for 95% of the workforce was one of the biggest policy mistakes in the last 70 years.
SamB wrote:I do know something about the history of SS, and its genesis did not lie in the goal of a total workforce retirement program. It was supposed to be a safety net for the few that actually lived past the age of 65 and had no assets.
These two statements seem contradictory.

Social Security is the most successful social program ever implemented in the U.S. Thanks to Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neill, it's fully paid for until 2036 - as long as its bonds continue to be backed by the full faith and credit of the federal government. After 2036, it's 75% paid for (better than your average federal program). By extending the wage cap (31% of payroll) and/or modestly increasing the payroll tax it can be fully paid for over the next 75 years. Therefore, it is something that can be reasonably counted on in retirement - regardless of your current age.

In addition, Social Security was never sold as a lottery program, i.e. you got it if you were one of the lucky few to live past 65. It was sold as social insurance that would be received by all who paid into it. Means testing it would be a huge political mistake and turn it into welfare. ----Jim

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by stoptothink » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:41 pm

hsv_climber wrote:
stoptothink wrote: I am recently divorced(final last month), my ex-wife was in dental school which is at least on par cost-wise with 2 children. Yes, making ~$47k/yr, I was able to pay for all of our combined education expenses(we both did receive grant and research money) which was about 60% of my income and still save(not a lot, but at least get my 403b match and some into my Roth) towards retirement. We lived in a 500sq ft. apartment, utilized public transportation, and went out very little. I was ok with it because it was temporary sacrifices for a long-term goal, she apparently was not. She wanted to take out loans for the sole purpose of eating out every day, "girls weekends", and a 10-day Disneyworld Christmas trip with her family...hence she is my ex-wife. It is all a choice; anybody who feels the need to be married and have a family while they are full-time students without income must pay the price, probably for the rest of their life. You choose to not wait to get married or start a family while in college over long-term financial stability. It is a conscious choice. It all comes down to that marshmallow.
Blah...Blah...Blah... I would've believed your post if you would not just posted in another thread that you've just bought a $3000+ bike. :wink:
Yeah, I understand that you could afford it, but the point is that someone who has stay-at-home wife and 2 kids might also want that kind of bike. My point is - don't judge other people.
...then they can buy it, but don't complain that you have to work until the age of 80. When I hit my savings goal this year and about a week after my ex-wife's attempt to get my retirement savings was thrown out of court, I bought myself a completely irrational gift. I am not going to complain to anybody in 30 years that there is $3k less in my retirement, because I chose to treat myself instead. We are all free to make our own decisions, do not sit and whine about the consequences of those decisions as if you were forced into them. What irritates me is that they are making these statements as if it is impossible to save for retirement; no it isn't, you prioritize other things above it. You aren't willing to put forth the effort to save, that is fine, but don't blame the 1% or "the system." Look in the mirror.

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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by joe8d » Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:20 pm

mtf wrote:
Rodc wrote: Most older folks just do not have the drive to buy stuff, or energy to do a lot of stuff.
:thumbs up
True and I speak as someone in that category.
All the Best, | Joe

RedJones
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by RedJones » Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:30 pm

To those who call for means testing for SS benefits, why stop there? Think of the savings if Treasury Bond coupon payments were also means-tested. What, you say that the govt would then be reneging on its agreements??

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HardKnocker
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Re: Many Americans say they will have to work until they're

Post by HardKnocker » Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:05 pm

Most of them won't live to be 80.

Did anyone think of that?
“Gold gets dug out of the ground, then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility.”--Warren Buffett

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