Should the U.S. follow France and up the retirement age?

Social Security’s full retirement age has only ever been changed one time in 1983, and by just two years.  Proposals to increase it further are often discussed, but they seem to go nowhere, despite the program’s financial troubles and looming insolvency.  Alessandra Malito writes in MarketWatch about the current change being proposed in France.  It’s modest, though protests are now ravaging the country.  France’s retirement age is increasing from 62 to 64, though only for those born after 1975.  The author compares the change to America’s Social Security program, noting folks can retire as early as 62, though for a much reduced benefit than waiting until full retirement age (between 66 and 67 depending on birth year).  Any increase in the full retirement age would mean a further reduced benefit for those claiming any time before that new age.  Americans may not be ready with their own savings, yet experts warn Social Security cannot continue to be the “third rail” of politics much longer.  Read Malito’s full piece here.

The Association of Mature American Citizens (AMAC) believes Social Security must be preserved and modernized.  This can be achieved by making modest changes in cost of living adjustments and the retirement age, with no additional taxes on workers.  AMAC advocates for a bipartisan compromise, “The Social Security Guarantee Act,” taking selected portions of bills introduced by former Rep. Johnson (R-TX) and current Rep. Larson (D-CT) and merging them with the Association’s own well researched ideas.  One component is Social Security PLUS, a new, voluntary plan that would allow all earners to have more income available at retirement.  This component is intended to appeal especially to younger workers.  AMAC is resolute in its mission that Social Security be preserved and modernized and has gotten the attention of lawmakers in DC, meeting with a great many congressional offices and their staffs over the past several years.  Read AMAC’s plan here.



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