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Old 01-04-2015, 08:02 PM
 
673 posts, read 2,028,657 times
Reputation: 875

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Quote:
Originally Posted by zugor View Post
I wish I were misinterpreting but here is the calculator. I currently get $6,350 a month and have 27 years of covered service. This was actually a raise of a couple of hundred bucks a year over my base, hourly wage without any overtime. Yes, it is a fabulous pension and it was a primary reason that in all the years that I worked there only one person ever quit the job (and we had over 140 people when I started) and people who were laid off came back when there was a recall, even if they had been gone for several years. There were a number of years when the plan was so flush that they were required, by law, to give those already retired a 13th payment at the end of the year because the plan had too much money!

There is not and never has been any COLA.

Our contract was negotiated every 3 years and we generally opted to have about half go in to our pension plan for the future and the rest we took in current wages, ie, if the offer was 0.75 an hour raise for each of the three years we might agree to take 0.40 in our pay and the other 0.35 toward our pension.

Sea-land Service was a great company to work for from the time I started in 1977 until the end of 1999 when it was sold to Maersk. Many of the higher ups in management that I met had started on the shop floor just as I had and they had a good understanding of the operation. Maersk did not want the maintenance garage portion of the overall operation and so a new, stand alone company was formed and it was no longer an in-house expense but now had to make a profit.

Once a year there would be a meeting at the union hall with representatives from the plan administrators. In the the last couple of years before I retired at the end of 2004 we were told that the plan was fully funded through 2049. I recall that date because I would turn 100 that year and so had no reason to suspect that things would change so drastically after the financial meltdown of 2008. The most recent annual projection shows that the plan will be in critical condition through at least 2023.

Multiemployer Retiree Cutback Calculator | Pension Rights Center
The word GREED comes to mind.
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Old 01-04-2015, 08:20 PM
 
143 posts, read 132,634 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nausikaa View Post
The word GREED comes to mind.
As does the word ENVY, and perhaps some other of the seven deadly sins.. I myself am having a serious attack of SLOTH since I retired.
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Old 01-04-2015, 08:41 PM
 
10,813 posts, read 8,059,843 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nausikaa View Post
The word GREED comes to mind.
More like incompetence and malfeasance.
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Old 01-04-2015, 08:47 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
21,538 posts, read 44,002,416 times
Reputation: 15135
That OP, with a salary of about $75k, could retire after 27 years with a $70k++ lifetime annual benefit is, as OP says, quite fabulous.

Before my former employer froze its defined benefit plan in 1993, it used the following multipliers:

1.2% - years 1-10
1.6% - thereafter

Calculation was done on earnings year by year, not three highest years.

Ex: Start at $15k; retire after 25 yrs @ $60k, lifetime defined benefit (in this case WITHOUT a COLA) - approximately $14-$15k/year, or about $1,200/mo. A 45-year retiree, of course, could do a whole lot better than that.

Seems to me, the people running the endangered multi-employer plans were living in lala land - and steps should have been taken long ago to get these benefits down to much more reasonable levels - without doing anything as potentially drastic as has been legislated.
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Old 01-04-2015, 08:55 PM
 
673 posts, read 2,028,657 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by northwesty View Post
As does the word ENVY, and perhaps some other of the seven deadly sins.. I myself am having a serious attack of SLOTH since I retired.
Certainly not envious - husband and I have a very comfotable retirement. We enjoy life immensely.

What do you think caused the financial crisis? Greed - from many different sources. Why do you think people are pouring out of NY and NJ? People are tired of paying the inflated retirement of police, nurses. teachers, public employees from prop taxes. When enough people have moved out of state, how will they finance these inflated pensions? Pensions will go bust. All caused by greed.
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Old 01-04-2015, 09:00 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
21,538 posts, read 44,002,416 times
Reputation: 15135
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
Best pay attention to what is going on in DC else you might wake up one morning to see that Congress has cut your SS by 30% via some bill passed in the middle of the night.
Hopefully, not on in the middle of the night - but a 25% cut is a very real possibility within the next 18 years or thereabouts, if fixes aren't made in the near future. One of many sources:
Quote:
2033 - Even in a worst-case scenario, the SSA believes that it will be able to keep paying about 77% of all benefits due after that date, using Social Security tax revenue to fund payments.

3 Social Security myths debunked

Last edited by Ariadne22; 01-04-2015 at 09:14 PM..
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Old 01-04-2015, 09:16 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,922,814 times
Reputation: 18050
Congress wouldn't even have to act on SS; its in the law already what happens when there is a short fall. SS is stand alone programs ;not a general fund program. If you want a best estimate SS trustees make a report each year. As required by law they have warned the last few presidents. The president must act which is why they form commissions then it reports to congress. Congress tho does not have to act. Thye last one had a estimate of when and what amount best they can project. I remember it was 30% cut but date escapes me.
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Old 01-04-2015, 10:38 PM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,498,448 times
Reputation: 27565
Quote:
Originally Posted by texdav View Post
Congress wouldn't even have to act on SS; its in the law already what happens when there is a short fall. SS is stand alone programs ;not a general fund program. If you want a best estimate SS trustees make a report each year. As required by law they have warned the last few presidents. The president must act which is why they form commissions then it reports to congress. Congress tho does not have to act. Thye last one had a estimate of when and what amount best they can project. I remember it was 30% cut but date escapes me.
And the entire process you just described for SS also occurs with pensions and the PBGC doing the reporting to Congress. And the PBGC has asked Congress for years to let them raise premiums that the employers pay. And the PBGC has been reporting for years the inadequate funding.
And Congress has ignored them for years and kicked the can down the road.

Now that some are facing insolvency they can't kick it any more.

This is the same path SS is going down.
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:36 PM
 
Location: Staten Island
1,653 posts, read 1,794,074 times
Reputation: 2353
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
Seems a lot of folks didn't know about this pension change that flew under the radar.

Best pay attention to what is going on in DC else you might wake up one morning to see that Congress has cut your SS by 30% via some bill passed in the middle of the night.
I drew a small pension last year in a lump sum after the company went out of business a few years ago and it was in limbo for 8 years. I didn't even know I was getting it. One day a check came in the mail and the next day the letter that it was being issued followed.
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Old 01-06-2015, 06:52 AM
 
Location: NC
6,549 posts, read 7,970,518 times
Reputation: 13460
The problem with pension funds is always in the management of funds, and the accuracy of predicitions of future yield for the funds.

All funds are invested. Not all investments turn out to have been good. In fact, due to no fault of most managers, some investments this past decade were based on shoddy information or faith rather than fact. It is no wonder there is chaos in the funds at this point.

Now the problem is how to distribute the remaining funds most equitably. And how to keep this from happening going forward through transparency and perhaps regulation of entities providing data to investors. You can't change the past, unfortunately.
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