The Social Security trust fund is now projected to be depleted in 2037. Back in February, the fund was supposed to last until 2041. Six months from now…who knows?
Ever since the 1990s, it’s been common knowledge that Social Security’s financial security was shaky. Someone who’s 50 now, with retirement on the far horizon, would have been in their late 20s/early 30s in the 1990s—old enough to know that SS’s future was on thin ice.
For those of us 50 or younger, we shouldn’t expect Social Security to be as robust for us as it was for our parents and grandparents. Apparently, some of us have gotten the word.
The journalist who wrote the Economist article linked above ran his own, unscientific poll on Twitter, asking this question to those under 40: “Are you counting on Social Security to be there when you’re older?” Here are some of the responses he got:
“I don’t expect Social Security to exist by the time I’m old enough to retire. I don’t expect to retire either.”
“NO.” (I tend to look at Social Security taxes as an mandatory enforced charitable donation to my well-meaning but wayward government.)
“Yes, but in a much different form. like in ‘Logan’s Run.’” (Note: “Logan’s Run” was a movie set in the future, where people over 30 were euthanized.)
So, here’s my basic question for this week. What should people aged 50 or younger expect to get out of Social Security?
Speaking for myself, I’ve told our financial planner to factor in 50% of our estimated SS benefit when he’s doing our retirement planning. I doubt SS will disappear entirely, but I do expect benefits to drop significantly by the time I retire.
What are your thoughts? What do you think Social Security will–or won’t—do for you?