Welcome to the latest edition of This Week in Pensions! We have gathered the best stories about pensions and retirement security from the previous week. This is the news you need to know in the fight for a secure retirement.

Here are the top stories from this week:

Don’t bash pensions – learn the facts by Sherry Chan. In an opinion piece in Crain’s New York Business, New York City’s Chief Actuary Sherry Chan argues that pensions are an important contributor to the city’s economy. In the past few months,  anti-pension ideologues have tried to make pension systems look bad by focusing on outlier pension recipients. Chan says, “Pension dollars contributed from active workers’ paychecks are invested in various assets, spurring market activity, while pension payments to retirees are spent on all manner of goods and services. Discussions of their value should bear this in mind, especially when one reads recurring media stories about large payouts—which can be very misleading. Gleaned from open-data portals, these stories usually focus on individuals receiving pension benefits on the high end of the scale, represent a specific year, and focus on the benefits for those with a long career of service to the city.”

Social Security recipients will see a small increase in 2020 by Rachel Siegel. Although not directly related to public employee pensions, Social Security beneficiaries will see a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) of 1.6 percent in 2020. COLAs are an important part of retirement security. Readers of Defined Benefit know that NPPC is working with our state coalitions to pass COLAs for retired public employees across the country. Just this year, New Hampshire passed COLA legislation for some of their retirees and Texas provided a “13th check” to retired teachers in the state. Retired public employees rely on COLAs so they can keep up with inflation. As the price of food, medicine, and housing increases, many retired public employees are having trouble keeping up. Looking toward 2020, NPPC is ready to continue our push for COLAs in statehouses around the country. 

Be sure to check back next week for the latest news in the fight for a secure retirement!