No matter how old you are, chances are you’ve been hit in some way by the current economic hard times, and you may be feeling the repercussions for some time to come.
This week on Life Inc., we wrote about a government report noting that older workers could be especially hard-hit in retirement because they don’t have time to play catch up from the stock market drop and housing bust. In addition, it’s extremely tough for the 50-plus crowd to find a new job if they lose their current one.
The post prompted many readers to recount their own stories of hitting economic hard times just when they thought they’d be gearing up to enjoy their golden years.
“Lost 40% of my IRA in '08, laid off at 64, forced to sell my home for 35% less than 5 years ago. Good health and job skills, but no jobs,” one reader wrote.
More than 60 percent of our readers told us they’re worried about having enough money for retirement.
Another worry: Whether Social Security will be there to provide a safety net in old age.
In another post this week, we wrote about a study showing that 50 percent of young adults don’t think Social Security will exist at all by the time they reach retirement age.
Many readers share the same worries, and some fret that political gridlock will keep the government from making reforms that could bolster the fund.
“Changes that need to be made aren't going to happen because of all the political bickering. BOTH parties are to blame,” one reader argued.
Back to the here and now. The Occupy Wall Street protesters may get criticized for not having a clear vision, but there’s no doubt they’ve already accomplished one thing: They’ve gotten us talking about the haves and the have-nots in this country.
This week, we reported on a nifty tool that lets you see what percent you are when it comes to wealth. That prompted a heated discussion among our readers over how you make it to the wealthiest 1 percent.
One reader noted that for some, becoming wealthy may not be the ultimate goal.
“In other words, don't be a teacher, an artist, a policeman, a soldier, a minister, or a craftsman, and certainly don't waste your money on other people. Being a money-maker is the only goal worth while. And a money-maker is a taker, not giver. What a rotten prescription for a livable society!” the reader wrote.
No matter how wealthy you are, it’s nice to save some money here and there. This week, we offered some frugal food tips for getting protein in your diet without breaking your pocketbook.
Over on our Today Money Facebook page, many readers shared their own tips for reducing their grocery bill. They included cooking from scratch, reusing leftovers in other meals and planning out meals before you head to the store.