Want to Buy Happiness? Indulge in an Experience

Want to buy happiness? Then spend your money on an experience, like concert tickets or a trip to the U.S. Open, instead of buying new clothes or a big-screen TV. New research from Cornell University finds that using your money to do something makes you happier than purchasing material goods. In fact, just thinking about making vacation plans or going to the symphony raises your level of happiness more than anticipating a purchase like furniture or a computer. What if …

Fed Report Paints Dreary Retirement for Some

Five years after the Great Recession, many Americans say they’re still struggling to get by financially. Nineteen percent of adults ages 55 to 64 say they have no retirement savings or pensions to fall back on, according to a survey by the Federal Reserve. Also troubling was that an additional 20 percent of people age 60 and older say they’ve given no thought at all to planning for their retirement. That was also the case for about 19 percent of …

Your New Retirement Number: $58,000

En español | Financial experts seem to speculate endlessly about boomers’ projected lifestyle in retirement based on their savings and spending patterns. Now a new survey that polled recent retirees about their standard of living has found that, for some, you don’t need a lot of money each year to retire comfortably and live happily. According to the survey by Baltimore-based investment firm T. Rowe Price, recent retirees report living on 66 percent of their pre-retirement income on average – $58,000 …

How to Retire the Cheapskate Way

Jeff Yeager – aka “the Ultimate Cheapskate” – is AARP’s savings expert and host of the weekly Web show The Cheap Life, produced by AARP and airing on YouTube. He’s also the author of four popular books about frugal living, including his most recent, How to Retire the Cheapskate Way. Jeff will be a guest on AARP Live on Thursday, June 19, so we sat down with him in advance to chat about retirement planning and living, cheapskate-style. What does it mean …

Low-Value Health Services Cost Medicare Billions

Medical services that provide little or no health benefit to older Americans cost Medicare at least $1.9 billion a year, according to a landmark new study. Researchers at Harvard University’s department of health care policy found that at least 25 percent of the more than 1.3 million Medicare beneficiaries had one or more of 26 tests and procedures that have been shown to provide scant medical value. The study is thought to be the first to measure wasteful spending by …

What the $1.1 Trillion Spending Bill Means for Older Americans

The $1.1 trillion bipartisan spending bill passed by Congress funds federal agencies through the rest of the fiscal year, eases the sharp budget cuts known as the sequester and ends the lingering threat of another government shutdown. It also affects a number of programs especially important to older Americans. Here’s how, according to an AARP analysis: Increases spending by $41 million on nutrition programs for older Americans, including Meals on Wheels. This replaces across-the-board spending cuts, called sequestration, that took hold …