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2013 COLA and Retirement Application Submission Clarification

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Recently, the Congressional Budget Office has suggested that a 1.3 percent cost-of-living adjustment [2] is pending for Dec. 1 that includes military, civilian, retired pay, and Social Security recipients. There was talk of an increase of as high as 1.9%. We will see the increase in our January annuity check.

Today, 1.3% doesn’t look that bad considering that we can’t get that on our CDs these days because government is funding their out-of-control spending and borrowing on the backs of retirees and those who have saved throughout their lives to ensure a comfortable retirement. My article titled Retiree Reflections – The Way it Was Then and Why [3] describes how the lack of sound money management principals and spending over 4 billion dollars a day that we don’t have is negatively impacting our economy and our wallets.

The Federal Reserve continues to print money which devalues our currency and there has been a major shift from China and other foreign countries that use to buy our debt to the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve doesn’t have money to buy anything; they simply print the money to buy the Treasury Bonds Uncle Sam auctions off regularly. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could do the same thing and just print money when we need it instead of having to scrimp and save to put food on the table and savings in the bank?

The impact on retirees is that savings, 401Ks, and cash will buy less and less with the potential for higher inflation down the road as the printed money makes its way from the bank values into the economy in general.  Essentially, the government is redistributing retiree’s wealth, actually anyone’s wealth from their savings, to the Federal Reserve so they can borrow money at artificially low interest rates! If this continues we could end up like Greece and the many other countries that have lived beyond their means for decades.

Retirement application Clarification

One of our readers asked if he needed to file two applications for retirement because he had both CSRS and FERS time [4].  You only need to file one retirement application for your most current retirement system. That would more than likely be a FERS application. The CSRS time will be computer as a CSRS component [5], but the FERS retirement eligibility rules [6] will apply if you are currently a FERS employee.

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The information provided may not cover all aspect of unique or special circumstances, federal regulations, and financial information is subject to change. To ensure the accuracy of this information, contact your benefits coordinator and ask them to review your official personnel file and circumstances concerning this issue. Retirees can contact the OPM retirement center. Our article is not intended nor should it be considered investment advice. Our articles and replies are time sensitive. Over time, various dynamic economic factors relied upon as a basis for this article may change.

Last 5 posts by Dennis Damp