2016 Social Security COLA? Don’t Bet on It

Nearly 60 million Social Security recipients will probably not get a cost-of-living increase next year, according to projections in the 2015 Social Security and Medicare trustees reports. This would be the third time Social Security beneficiaries have gone without a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) since 1975, when automatic raises were put into place. The COLA this year was 1.7 percent, making the average monthly check for retired workers $1,334 as of May. Increases in benefits are tied to the third-quarter average …

Social Security Outlook Improves, but Disability Needs Urgent Action

The financial health of Social Security has improved slightly in the past year, with the system expected to exhaust its reserves to pay benefits in 2034, a year later than previously projected, according to the 2015 Social Security Trustees Report, released July 22. At that time, if Congress has taken no action, Social Security will have enough payroll taxes coming in to cover 79 percent of promised benefits for another 56 years, the report said. The annual report forecasts the …

Trends Favor Hiring Older Workers

Workers 50 and older face a hurdle that younger peers don’t: how to overcome negative stereotypes that paint them as much more expensive, out of touch with technology and less productive. An AARP report released Monday dispels these myths. The report, “A Business Case for Workers Age 50+: A Look at the Value of Experience 2015,” was conducted by Aon Hewitt and based primarily on data from large employers. A similar report, which confirmed the value of older employees, was done …

AARP Study Finds the Road to Reemployment Is Bumpy for Many

Older job seekers who were out of work at some point in the last five years found that tapping their network of contacts, reaching out to employers directly and starting their job search immediately rather than taking a break tended to be more successful in landing a job, according to a new report entitled “The Long Road Back: Struggling to Find Work After Unemployment,” by the AARP Public Policy Institute. Yet for many others, the study found that a substantial number …

Life Lessons From GM’s Mary Barra

At an auto assembly plant in Pontiac, Mich., back in 1980, 18-year-old Mary Makela got a hands-on education about what life was like on the factory floor. It was noisy and dirty and rough. And then there were the catcalls. “Every time I turned this one corner,” she says, “this guy would kind of yell. Finally, I walked over and asked him, ‘Why do you do that?’” and he said, ‘I don’t know.’” She laughs at the recollection. Challenging him …

One Older Worker’s Job-Hunting Saga

The following post is by an AARP member who wanted to share his experience in finding a new position. He requested anonymity for himself and his current and former employers. One hundred job applications submitted. Forty-two phone interviews logged. Eighteen face-to-face job interviews. And finally, after 7½ months, a job offered and accepted. My journey began last March, when I was unceremoniously fired as a software engineering manager after 22 years. It wasn’t a complete surprise. The company had been …