Social Security benefits face 20% cut but majority against Retirement Age rise

The majority of Americans oppose raising the Full Retirement Age (FRA), according to a new Quinnipiac poll.

Some 78 percent of respondents are against the proposal to hike the FRA for Social Security benefits from 67 to 70.

This opposition against an increase in the age threshold continued even when respondents were told that benefits would last longer as a result, with 62 percent opposed to the decision.

Trustees of Social Security and Medicare have warned that the surplus in the trust fund used to pay out a partial amount of benefits is set to run out by 2034.

Once this surplus is gone, revenue for benefits will still be brought in from payroll taxes but will see payments reduced by 20 percent.

Congress is being urged to come up with a solution to address this pending deficit with a rise to the Retirement Age being considered.

However, this recent survey of 1,800 adults suggests that Americans are reluctant to see any drastic changes to the eligibility for Social Security.

While it is possible to access partial benefits from the age of 62, the FRA for Social Security is 67.

The top financial concern for those polled between the ages of 55 and 64 was saving enough money for retirement.

Osman Kilic, a Quinnipiac professor of finance and business, highlighted that opposition to changing the Retirement Age is reflective of that concern.

He explained: “When it comes to the golden years, Americans young, old and in-between share the same worry.

“There’s a cloud of doubt hanging over the quality of life they’ll have when they retire, especially among those between 35 and 64 years of age.”

Experts have also highlighted that changing the Retirement Age will unlikely impact current and pending Social Security beneficiaries, but will affect younger generations the most.

Laurence Kotlikoff, a Boston University economics professor and Social Security expert, warned policymakers that a backlash from millennials and Generation Z could be on the horizon.

The Professor said: “All this stuff is coming back to haunt young people.

“This is a time for young people — millennials — to take to the street and rally down in Washington because this is generational expropriation.”

Back in 1983, the FRA was raised to 67 by the Social Security Amendments and has not been changed since.

Initially, when Social Security was first introduced, the Full Retirement Age was 65 years of age.

It should be noted that the FRA for individuals is still dependent on what year they were born.

  • Americans born between 1943 and 1954 reach the FRA at 66
  • Americans born in 1955 reach the FRA at 66 and 2 months
  • Americans born in 1956 reach the FRA at 66 and 4 months
  • Americans born in 1957 reach the FRA at 66 and 6 months
  • Americans born in 1958 reach the FRA at 66 and 8 months
  • Americans born in 1959 reach FRA is 66 and 10 months.
  • Americans born in 1960 or later reach the FRA at 67 years old.

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