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Old 09-06-2014, 06:19 PM
 
1,115 posts, read 2,007,979 times
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I'm a guy in my mid twenties. With social security going bankrupt and pensions disappearing from jobs left and right, I am dreadfully afraid of what life is going to look like once I get to retirement age. Sometimes I even wonder, will people even BE ABLE to retire anymore? The job market is bad today, and the middle class is falling lower and lower towards poverty lines. Most young people (even those with college degrees) are struggling to find work, and a traditional career path is a thing of the past, instead replaced by 3-5 year spurts of employment with different companies. Let's not forget plummeting wages as globalization grows and more jobs are off-shored. Having to actively save and invest for retirement is more important than ever, but it's so tough to do when finding well paying employment is often so far out of reach.

Am I crazy to be ridiculously worried about what things will be like when the twenty and thirty year olds of today reach retirement? I see a bleak future and many having to work till they are on their death beds. The only exception being the diminishing upper class and the 1%.
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Old 09-06-2014, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
16,429 posts, read 10,407,186 times
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I think you're reading too many gloomy-gus articles.


Every generation has their fear, partly at least fueled by media scare reports. They sell.

My generation was convinced the US and/or USSR was going to drop the bomb and none of us would be here. But here we are.


Start saving as soon as possible but don't spend your life hiding under the bed.
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Old 09-06-2014, 07:28 PM
mlb
 
Location: North Monterey County
3,237 posts, read 2,882,882 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PAhippo View Post


Start saving as soon as possible but don't spend your life hiding under the bed.
This. In Spades.
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Old 09-06-2014, 08:18 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,805,128 times
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To the OP: I am 70 and have one of those "disappearing" pensions. But no, I don't think you are "crazy" to be concerned. However I do think your fears are exaggerated. It is not accurate to say that Social Security is going bankrupt, for example. The WORST case scenario calls for the eventual payment of about 75% of promised benefits, and that's if no changes are ever made (unlikely). If it ever came to that it would be a serious situation, but when you say "bankrupt" it sounds like closing up shop, and that's not going to be the case - no where close.

Also, you see things in "all or nothing" terms. Yes, retirement will be more difficult for lots of folks, but that's not the same as impossible. Retirement on a less lavish scale will still be feasible. Don't forget the economy is continuing to improve at this moment, albeit with frustrating slowness.

I was fortunate, in the economic and financial sense, to have been born in 1944, because world-wide trends were favorable to the United States. Those trends are much less favorable now. My father (and his generation) never had trouble finding work, my mother never needed to work, I (and my generation) were able to get a college education with incurring debt to do so, and we were fortunate that pensions were still fairly common.

Therefore, recognizing the foregoing, I am not among those old people who accurse you of whining, although there is some whining on the part of some your age (not you personally).

Once one is used to a certain standard of living and a certain level of security, it is hard to go backwards. Yet the U.S. is forced by events to go backwards and your generation will bear much of the burden. And this is not a matter which could have been prevented by X President taking Y action. It is inevitable.
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Old 09-06-2014, 09:08 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 84,166,025 times
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Basically I would do something about it rather than look to programs. Going forward its all relative as to what you earn and save compared to others. The highest level retiree now do not make the majority from SS or pensions. Not mnay boomers depend on pensions or SS going forward if they pay attention.
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Old 09-06-2014, 11:34 PM
 
2,485 posts, read 1,853,289 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
To the OP: I am 70 and have one of those "disappearing" pensions. But no, I don't think you are "crazy" to be concerned. However I do think your fears are exaggerated. It is not accurate to say that Social Security is going bankrupt, for example. The WORST case scenario calls for the eventual payment of about 75% of promised benefits, and that's if no changes are ever made (unlikely). If it ever came to that it would be a serious situation, but when you say "bankrupt" it sounds like closing up shop, and that's not going to be the case - no where close.

Also, you see things in "all or nothing" terms. Yes, retirement will be more difficult for lots of folks, but that's not the same as impossible. Retirement on a less lavish scale will still be feasible. Don't forget the economy is continuing to improve at this moment, albeit with frustrating slowness.

I was fortunate, in the economic and financial sense, to have been born in 1944, because world-wide trends were favorable to the United States. Those trends are much less favorable now. My father (and his generation) never had trouble finding work, my mother never needed to work, I (and my generation) were able to get a college education with incurring debt to do so, and we were fortunate that pensions were still fairly common.

Therefore, recognizing the foregoing, I am not among those old people who accurse you of whining, although there is some whining on the part of some your age (not you personally).

Once one is used to a certain standard of living and a certain level of security, it is hard to go backwards. Yet the U.S. is forced by events to go backwards and your generation will bear much of the burden. And this is not a matter which could have been prevented by X President taking Y action. It is inevitable.
To retire comfortably even these days, you can't rely on social security. Not to mention in the future. My advice is that one should plan with the assumption that one should rely on its own money instead of welfare programs. Whatever there is left is probably not much.

But this isn't happening to everyone. In fact many millenials are doing well. If you are not from money backgrounds, you should choose A marketable trade and skills. Having a specialized knowledge and skills is always better than having something that anyone can do. You will face global competition both from within the US and from overseas. That is the inevitable reality of a global economy.

This does mean that you will have to work hard, save actively, live frugally, etc. I would caution young people against the attitude that if you are not going to get what baby boomers had, you are not even going to launch at all. It is a huge mistake to wait around, expect economic miracles, or expect other people to stay in the same boat. People I know are making the effort to better themselves. If you wait around and expect miracles, you would likely be utterly disappointed in the future, you would join the group of bitter, angry, and vicious people, who have missed the boat so to speak. At least now you have the time to get educated, develop your career, and save for retirement for many decades. Time is on your side. They say "this shall pass too." I believe our society will move on. Americans will adjust to the global economy. Those who plan well make smart decisions and live frugally will harvest the fruit and expect a good retirement. Those who are irresponsible to themselves, or feel entitled yet without any economic foundation to back up such entitlement, will have a bad time.

Is it possible that we will see big social movements in the future? Sure. However it still would not alter fundamentally the inevitable path of the global economy, economic model, and America's relative decline. It still would not change the fact that wealth and opportunities have long began their move to the Far East. Unfortunately, we are just in the middle of such a global shift, the shift of power, wealth, and opportunities.

I wish America's politicians and leaders were more honest about this to the American people. But then again, those politicians and leaders would not be elected. To sum it up, I echo some of the things other posters have sat here. You can expect a safe secure and even prosperous retirement if you make good decisions and be smart about life now. Things are not set in stone. Where America is going to be is probably set. However, where you as an individual are going to be is not set. Fight for it.
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Old 09-07-2014, 01:23 AM
 
72,312 posts, read 72,246,407 times
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in the 1970's when i got out of school it was worse than today. high inflation ,high unemployment, vietnam , high taxes. things couldn't have looked worse.

well went part time this year and retiring fully in 11 months and all turne4d out well despite the horrible start.

our parents generation fell right in to world war ii with the entire world facing destruction. the generation before ,they had the great depression.


it goes on and on and no one had it easy .
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:37 AM
 
14,300 posts, read 24,082,231 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
in the 1970's when i got out of school it was worse than today. high inflation ,high unemployment, vietnam , high taxes. things couldn't have looked worse.

well went part time this year and retiring fully in 11 months and all turne4d out well despite the horrible start.

our parents generation fell right in to world war ii with the entire world facing destruction. the generation before ,they had the great depression.


it goes on and on and no one had it easy .

Remember that "all the jobs were going to Japan."
All the GOOD jobs are going away ...
18% car loans IF your credit was very good AND had a cosigned.

Yes, the "good old days."
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:47 AM
 
29,946 posts, read 34,988,163 times
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If you have the smarts to go into the right professions and start out your career with a strategic retirement plan it is very possible to build a strong retirement for down the road. I read a good article the other day I will try to find and link.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:35 AM
 
52,203 posts, read 41,991,218 times
Reputation: 32578
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
Remember that "all the jobs were going to Japan."
All the GOOD jobs are going away ...
18% car loans IF your credit was very good AND had a cosigned.

Yes, the "good old days."
I remember my first house purchase in 1995 and interest rates were >9%.

My graduating class in a major that had previously seen nearly 100% job placement only had about 1/3 of us finding work. Several of my friends spent a few years working min. wage type jobs before getting an opportunity to start a career.
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