While the Social Security cost-of-living adjustment is expected to be 6% in 2022, according to The Senior Citizens League, even that increase won’t fill the hole that inflation has eaten in the real value of benefits, the advocacy group says.
Since 2000, Social Security benefits have lost 32% of their buying power despite yearly inflation adjustments, the group found in a new study. While COLAs have increased Social Security benefits 55% in that time, the typical older adult’s expenses have increased by 104.8%, according to the study.
In other words: A Social Security benefit that grew to $1,262.40 per month in 2021 from $816 in 2000 should have grown to $1,671 to keep up with rising costs, according to the advocacy group.
In the past year, from July 2020 to July 2021, some cost increases are notable: gasoline up 48.3%, used cars and trucks up 41.7%, airline fares up 19%, bacon up 18.7%, beef up 12.3%, and home-based care up 9.6%.
TSCL supports legislation that would “provide a modest boost in benefits and base COLAs on the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly (CPI-E) or guarantee a COLA no lower than 3 percent.”
In the gallery above are the top 10 costs of older Americans that have risen the fastest since 2000.
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