RETIREMENT: Social Security recipients to receive 2.8% hike
Tens of millions of Social Security recipients and other retirees will get a 2.8 percent boost in benefits next year as inflation edges higher. It’s the biggest increase most retired baby boomers have gotten. Following a stretch of low inflation, the cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, for 2019 is the highest in seven years. It amounts to $39 a month for the average retired worker, according to estimates released Thursday by the Social Security Administration. The COLA affects household budgets for about one in five Americans, including Social Security beneficiaries, disabled veterans and federal retirees. That’s about 70 million people, enough to send ripples through the economy. With the COLA, the estimated average monthly Social Security payment for a retired worker will be $1,461 next year. “For more recent retirees, the 2019 COLA will be the largest increase they have gotten to date,” said policy analyst Mary Johnson of the nonpartisan Senior Citizens League. Nonetheless many retirees and their advocates say the annual adjustment is too meager.