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 Post subject: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 10:07 am 

Joined: Fri May 04, 2007 8:14 pm
Posts: 1802
Does anybody here feel like retirement is receding beyond their reach? I'm lucky enough not to have this problem but all around me, I see people in the situations described in http://finance.yahoo.com/news/working-9-to-5----at-75.html?page=1.

Does anyone on this forum feel that they're going to be reverting back to the situation of only a few generations ago, when most folks worked until they were no longer able to do so? If so, what are you doing about it? Do you feel that there's anything you can do about it?


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 10:49 am 

Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 4:16 pm
Posts: 959
There are alot of things you can do about this situation.

I am so scared of the scenario from the article I make sure even if I blow money; I save for retirement and don't touch it.

I am not a high income earner and doubt I will ever be.

I have a job and compound interest on my side.

Everyone has to start saving and keep saving consistently.

Make economically sound day to day decisions.

Not spending more than you earn.

The general population as a whole have horrible personal finance habits, they need to change and wake up.

Better to regret saving too much in retirement.

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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:47 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:29 pm
Posts: 1605
Location: Seattle, WA
It may be that the era when people could retire is behind us.

They say that when social security was created, the average worker's life expectancy was lower than retirement age.

Slowly, life expectancy grew, and even slower, "full retirement age" grew. Furthermore people had pensions, the country was in a period of enormous growth, and productivity was in the toilet while everyone played Solitaire and checked their Facebook. Just kidding, productivity grew every year.

However, there began a shift away from pensions and towards 401(k)s. Workers spent less time at a single employer. Theoretically a self-funded retirement from a higher salary would be beneficial for the more mobile work force. In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, the average consumer is more like the grasshopper than the ant. They can't save a dollar for tomorrow because they "need" to spend that dollar today!

Perhaps this is a self limiting problem. For example, the person in the story, driving three hours a day in the middle of the night and fighting off a nap the whole way... well, she probably won't have to work much longer. And the rest of those grasshoppers, some day will run out of a way to get food. End of problem.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2012 5:29 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
Posts: 1717
Location: Ottawa, Canada
stannius wrote:
Perhaps this is a self limiting problem. [T]hose grasshoppers, some day will run out of a way to get food. End of problem.


Society will never let people literally starve to death. The workers will have the fruits of their own labour confiscated and redistributed to the lazy and profligate. This already happens (numerous different taxes) to a degree that would have provoked riots 100 years ago, but has been ratcheted up so gradually that people accept it as "normal" (frog-in-boiling-water style).


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2012 7:01 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:05 pm
Posts: 1328
Here in Canada, the government just bumped the age of eligibility for "old age security" (similar to Social Security in the US) to 67 from 65.

I don't think I'll be able to fully retire until my mid-70s, but that's okay with me, I like keeping busy and if I can earn money while keeping busy so much the better. A good friend of ours is 74; he recently went back to school to retrain for a new career, and he launched his own business. He loves it and is thriving. I have other friends and acquaintances who have continued to work full or part-time well in their 70s, in some cases because they have to but in most cases because they want to.

I think the key to a happy career in late life is to spend time while you're young building skills that you can use when you're older to allow yourself to earn the maximum amount of money while spending the least amount of time. I already work at home, so I'm learning skills like how to create e-books, design websites, etc., that I can do on a freelance basis from home or while traveling when I want to cut back from working 60-70 hours/week. Check out Andrea's (consultantjournal) website for ideas for how you can make money part-time as a consultant. There are lots of options.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:22 am 

Joined: Fri May 04, 2007 8:14 pm
Posts: 1802
I think the young have a better shot at retiring than the Boomers right now. At least they know that they have to prepare. I was lucky enough to start prepping at a relatively young age. I graduated from college with no debt and the company I worked for was gracious enough to pay for my post-graduate degree.

But when that same company eliminated retiree medical benefits, I realized that I'd better not count on any other entity to take care of me in my old age. Not the company, not the government, not anybody. And so for a good long time, my financial planning revolved around that scenario. At this point, my future pension and the majority of my Social Security could evaporate, and I'd still make out okay. I don't expect that to happen but if it does, I'm pretty much on track to be covered for that possibility.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:31 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Well my Dad at 80 still works part time, and my mom still holds down her part time job at 70, and is planning to until she can no longer work. Due to some poor financial decisions on both their parts they did not have anything saved for retirement. Dad makes around 1300 a month from socsec so he lives with my brother, and my mom makes 550/month soc sec, plus around 14-15K a year or so from her job. Since she cannot live on 550, she will have to keep on working until she literally drops. There WAS a point in time she could have sold her expensive suburban home and retired, but instead decided to hold onto it, defer maintenance, and take out a heloc on it for living expenses. So that's probably not an option anymore.
Although most of this fall-out occured with the most recent recession, I am not as sympathetic as I could be because for them, it was totally avoidable, in fact they could have had fine retirements, if they simply set aside any percentange of money for retirement during all the time they were doing well, and when things were bad did not borrow money from their personal residences to pay off business and/or personal loans.
I think the next generation are going to have it much worse. Unlike my parents generation there is far less job security, less pensions, less job mobility, and most likely less soc security at retirement. I wouldn't be surprised if the US becomes a land of the haves and (many more) have nots.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 3:57 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 6:33 pm
Posts: 1134
Location: Illinois
I think a lot (not all) of the problem is that many people spend everything they make and do not save anything (or very little) for retirement.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:42 pm 
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partgypsy1 wrote:
I think the next generation are going to have it much worse. Unlike my parents generation there is far less job security, less pensions, less job mobility, and most likely less soc security at retirement. I wouldn't be surprised if the US becomes a land of the haves and (many more) have nots.


That's what I worry about. I think we have enough to retire and I know we have more than most people our age. But we "sacrificed" and lived beneath our means all of our lives and I just don't see people doing that now. My grandparent's generation were mostly immigrants and they were incredibly frugal, not just MY grandparents but almost everyone was that way in the 30s, 40s, 50s. My parents lived larger, always had retirement and social security to count on, and so forth. But they actually had/have that in most case. I just don't know about our and future generations that will have no safety net yet have learned to live large.

And they are the people who will be taking care of us! Even if you have plenty saved you'll still need the services of doctors, lawyers, nurses, etc.

And none of them will make enough to pay enough in taxes to maintain the country the way it is now. I think we are going to witness major declines in infrastructure, living standards, and stuff like that. We won't be living in squalor but I think everyone will look back on the last couple of decades as the golden age.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 9:35 am 

Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 4:16 pm
Posts: 959
Speaking of retirement, just found out my retirement contribution has been cut from 9% to 6% of gross salary.

The change is from full employer contribution to partial.

Now another cut will be in effect 7/01/12 the employers contribution portion from 6% to 3% of salary.

Employer is changing terms of employment at will, they've been challenged in court and the judge ruled for the employees; waiting on the appeal decision on the first change of employment contract.

There will probably be a second challenge in court to this current "addendum" to the employment contract.

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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 6:40 am 
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fantasma wrote:
Speaking of retirement, just found out my retirement contribution has been cut from 9% to 6% of gross salary.


I'm unclear from your message, is that good or bad? it sounds bad but if the ruling was in favor of the employees...

Can you explain? Don't you work for the State of Florida?


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 8:46 am 

Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 4:16 pm
Posts: 959
DoingHomework wrote:
fantasma wrote:
Speaking of retirement, just found out my retirement contribution has been cut from 9% to 6% of gross salary.


I'm unclear from your message, is that good or bad? it sounds bad but if the ruling was in favor of the employees...

Can you explain? Don't you work for the State of Florida?


I do, it is bad for me.

The states' plan has been changed.

The contract at the time of hire is the state would put in 9% of total salary per year.

Then it was changed July of 2011: I had to contribute 3% and they would contribute 6%.(Pending Appeal)
Here's what the Judge ruled and the gov is filing an appeal: The legislation, Fulford wrote, "constitutes an unconstitutional impairment of plaintiffs' contract with the state of Florida, an unconstitutional taking of private property without full compensation, and an abridgment of the rights of public employees to collectively bargain over conditions of employment."

Now they are trying to change it again for July 2012: I still contribute 3% and the state would now contribute 3%.

The amount of contribution changed from 9% to 6%, I am still contributing 3% of either amount.

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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 11:58 am 
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Fantasma, maybe I still don't completely understand. If the ruling was that the change was unconstitutional then they will probably have to undo the change. But that would be up to a trial court to decide how to "fix" the wrong. It sounds like, at worst, they'll have to fully fund their part.

My wife is in the Arizona state retirement system and our legislature has done something similar though not as bad. They have changed the funding proportion from 50% employee/50% state to 55% employee/45% state. This kind of thing is happening all over. I think it is unfortunate in many ways but government budgets are in such a mess that the alternative, letting them go broke and the pensions completely collapsing is even worse. That's what has happened in many private companies.

I'm not at all saying you should be happy with what you've got. I'm saying that it sounds like at least in your case they are going to have to pay you back for the wrong.


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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 12:10 pm 

Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 4:16 pm
Posts: 959
DoingHomework wrote:
Fantasma, maybe I still don't completely understand. If the ruling was that the change was unconstitutional then they will probably have to undo the change. But that would be up to a trial court to decide how to "fix" the wrong. It sounds like, at worst, they'll have to fully fund their part.

My wife is in the Arizona state retirement system and our legislature has done something similar though not as bad. They have changed the funding proportion from 50% employee/50% state to 55% employee/45% state. This kind of thing is happening all over. I think it is unfortunate in many ways but government budgets are in such a mess that the alternative, letting them go broke and the pensions completely collapsing is even worse. That's what has happened in many private companies.

I'm not at all saying you should be happy with what you've got. I'm saying that it sounds like at least in your case they are going to have to pay you back for the wrong.


The first decision was challenged in court. The judge ruled in favor of the employees. The governor appealed, currently waiting on a hearing for the appeal which is on 9/05/12.

The Florida houses passed a bill currently on its way to the governor to sign, the changes would be effective this july reducing the total amount going to retirement.

They will drag it out for a long time before they pay us back if the appeal is ruled in the employees favor.

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 Post subject: Re: Working 9 to 5 -- at 75
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 12:24 pm 
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fantasma wrote:
They will drag it out for a long time before they pay us back if the appeal is ruled in the employees favor.


Oh yeah, they certainly will!


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