Part B Premiums Versus the COLA — Updated

Updated to include projected Part A 2022 deductibles  On August 30, trustees for Social Security and Medicare released their massive annual reports on how they fared in 2020, their financial footings, and the outlook for the nation’s primary retirement and health-care programs. The short answer…

Later-Life Money Issues Dominated by Health and Bequests

At some point, everyone fortunate enough to still be around as they enter their eighth or even ninth decade will begin to think about their financial needs and resources in a different way. Until then, a top concern is not running out of money in retirement, and having enough to pay the bills and…

Employee Benefits Set to Expand

Employers are planning to sweeten their mix of employee benefits, according to a recent survey from workplace consultants Willis Towers Watson. The survey was based on polling done a few months ago, and it cited the pandemic as the cause. Since then, of course, the attractiveness of expanded benefits…

Inflation, Volatility, and Liquidity

Price increases at the wholesale and retail level – check out the numbers here -- have rattled investment markets, and with good reason. The widely forecast U.S. economic boom was expected to be fueled by continued low interest rates. That assumed people would return to the job market as employers…

Real Health Reform Not on the Menu

Providing private and public health insurance to more people is a pale imitation of the kind of health reforms Americans need. Yet it is the focus of nearly all discussions in Washington about how to change the nation’s health care system. The rest of Capitol Hill’s bandwidth is devoted to rolling…

Setting the Table for Serious Healthcare Changes

President Biden’s address to Congress omitted little when it came to fundamentally changing the nation’s healthcare system. We heard about expanding enrollment and financial supports in the Affordable Care Act, affecting private insurance plans and state Medicaid participation. More child care and…

Billion Dollar Medicare Drugs Highlight Stakes in Price Fight

Congress talks a lot about high prescription drug prices but for the most part it’s all talk. Pharmaceutical companies continue to charge U.S. consumers prices much higher than they charge outside the U.S. Once all the rhetorical hot air has been blown from the room, the most compelling reason for…