Should Social Security Raise Its Retirement Age?

Social Security is an essential part of how people make ends meet in retirement. But some business leaders, including the CEOs of AT&T , Caesars Entertainment , and several other major corporations, believe raising retirement age would save the program from financial trouble in the future.

In the following video, Dan Caplinger, the Fool's director of investment planning, takes a closer look at the debate over raising Social Security's retirement age. He points out that life expectancies have risen, leading some to believe that raising the full retirement age from 67 to 70 is consistent with its original intended purpose. Moreover, he notes research that says that such a move could eliminate about a third of the program's expected financial shortfall. However, opponents of the move argue that the distributional impacts of raising the retirement age disproportionately affect the poor. Similar percentage reductions in benefits make a bigger impact on low-income recipients' standards of living than wealthier recipients.

Finally, Dan looks at the effect of such a move on other benefits, discussing research that shows survivors' and disability benefits wouldn't change much, but spousal benefits could be adversely affected by a rise in the retirement age.

Learn more about Social Security and your retirement
To protect yourself against politicians attacking your retirement, you really need to know the ins and outs of how Social Security works. You can get all the information you need in our brand-new free report, "Make Social Security Work Harder For You," in which our retirement experts give their insight on making the key decisions that will help ensure a more comfortable retirement for you and your family. Click here to get your copy today.


The article Should Social Security Raise Its Retirement Age? originally appeared on

Fool contributor Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned, and neither does The Motley Fool. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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The fix is so simple, it just requires a little backbone from Congress, (that's the biggest problem). Raise the withholding tax by 0.25%, (that's 25 cents per $100 of earned income), on employer and employee. Eliminate the income limit when the indivdual no longer has social security taxes withheld. On the day the law is passed anyone age 50 will collect full benefits at age 68, anyone age 40 will collect full benefits at age 69 and anyone age 30 will collect full benefits at age 70. Yes expections can be included for those who have very physically demanding jobs, but in general this plan will work. With the advances in health care someone age 30 today will, at age 70, be healthier than the average 65 year old is today.

October 07 2013 at 11:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

WHY SAVE ANYTHING? The minute any money is saved or accumalated the politicians will stealit and use for the 47%.

October 06 2013 at 1:19 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply