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How Many Struggle to Get By in Retirement?

Listed author(s):
  • Barbara A. Butrica
  • Dan Murphy
  • Sheila R. Zedlewski

The official poverty measure in the United States fails to reflect modern day economic resources and spending needs. The official measure is based only on cash income and does not include in-kind transfers, capital gains and losses, taxes, out-of-pocket health spending, the value of owner-occupied housing, or the potential income from financial assets. Also, the official poverty thresholds that define minimal needs, set back in 1963 and updated to changes in the CPI, do not capture current spending patterns. These shortcomings especially pertain to adults age 65 and older because their resources, needs, and health expenses differ most dramatically from the assumptions reflected in the official measure.

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Paper provided by Center for Retirement Research in its series Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College with number wp2007-27.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision: 2007
Handle: RePEc:crr:crrwps:wp2007-27
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