Seniors receiving monthly Social Security checks will continue to be squeezed as announcement this week of 2017's cost of living adjustment (COLA) is expected to be a slim 0.3 percent --- or even 0.2 percent --- lowest annual increase on record, forecasts Grumpy Editor.
Eating into that tiny raise, amounting to a few dollars a month (following no COLA for 2016), will be a boost in Medicare Part B premiums for about 39 million people 65 and up.
Medicare part B covers doctors' visits and outpatient services.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics averages consumer price indexes from July, August and September to determine next year’s COLA for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income recipients.
As comparison, the 2015 COLA was 1.7 percent. It followed increases of 1.5 percent for 2014, 1.7 percent for 2013 and 3.6 percent in 2012, after two years with no raises.
IN CASE YOUR FAVORITE NEWS OUTLETS MISSED THESE...
While media usually use the word "allegedly" in reporting an incident or event not confirmed, that word is missing in most of the vast coverage of Donald Trump and womens' claims of inappropriate behavior. "Let’s be clear on one thing, the corporate media in our country is no longer involved in journalism --- they are a political special interest no different from a lobbyist,” says Trump in a speech in West Palm Beach, Fla. “Their agenda is to elect crooked Hillary Clinton at any cost, at any price, no matter how many lives they destroy"...An Associated Press story out of Los Angeles reports on a fire at a 15-story home for seniors that left three elderly residents with burns and smoke-inhalation injuries --- but fails to pinpoint the exact location in the vast metropolitan area...A new Rasmussen Reports survey finds just 29 percent of likely U.S. voters trust media fact-checking of candidates’ comments while 62 percent believe news organizations skew the facts to help candidates they support...What are military commanders reading these days? A new 72-page volume via the Pentagon covers: “Transgender Service in the U.S. Military: An Implementation Handbook”…HP Inc. (the former Hewlett-Packard Co.) plans to cut 3,000 to 4,000 jobs within the next three years…In a Wall Street Journal newsroom overhaul to cut editorial flab, Editor-in-Chief Gerard Baker advises staffers that unnecessarily long stories would be trimmed amid a focus on digital journalism.
A headline over an Associated Press story in the no-kidding department from Washington:
Government says colder weather will boost winter heating bills