With the news that inflation was worse than expected in September, many voters worry about a long, hard winter. That could result in a “red wave” during the upcoming midterm elections.
But there’s an upside for senior citizens: they’re going to receive one of the biggest bumps in social security benefits in U.S. history.
And now, after months of waiting, the official number is in.
Inflation came in at 8.2 percent last month, which is a bad sign for the economy and potentially for Democrats as well. The general cost of living has skyrocketed across the board for most citizens.
This economic downturn can hit seniors very hard, as so many are on a fixed income. That’s where the COLA element comes into play.
The number is based on economic stats through the summer months and as a result, senior citizens are getting the largest increase in 40 years. Hopefully, this will help them keep up with their bills.
From Fox Business:
Social Security benefits are set to rise by 8.7% in 2023, the biggest bump in four decades as stubbornly high inflation erodes the buying power of retired Americans, the Social Security Administration said on Thursday.
The increase, known as a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), is the biggest since 1981, when recipients saw an 11.2% jump. It will increase the average monthly benefit by about $140.
Currently, over 64 million Americans collect Social Security and they’ll see their checks increase in January.
In addition to the soaring inflation, the country’s national debt broke $31 trillion for the first time in history, which is cause for serious concern among experts and economists.
As for the COLA increase, that’s based on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W), and that jumped 8.5% year-over-year. This drove the 8.7% social security bump.
Senior Citizens League policy analyst Mary Johnson said an 8.7% boost is rare so “enjoy it now” because it “may be the first and possibly last time that beneficiaries receive a COLA this high.”
There is a downside to the bump, though:
Because they get more money in their paychecks, it could mean that some seniors won’t be eligible for other assistance programs, like food stamps. The higher tax bracket can hurt in this way.
On top of which, recipients reportedly lost 48 percent of their buying power in August, and the larger COLA jump could move the Social Security insolvency date forward.
Many blame the Biden administration for this financial downturn, and it’s very possible that it could damage the President’s reelection chances in 2024. And the midterms are evidently shifting red due to these reports.
But at least senior citizens will get a bit more help in the New Year.
- The social security COLA increase has been announced for 2023: 8.7%.
- It’s the largest increase since 1981, when benefits jumped 11.2%.
- The boost is necessary, but seniors lost 48% of their purchasing power this summer and inflation remains a serious problem.
Source: Fox Business