retirement

Will My Social Security Check Get Bigger in 2017?

The answer is yes, but not by much.

If you’re a retired worker counting on Social Security to make ends meet, there’s good news and bad news about the size of your check in 2017.

Take the Quiz: How Well Do You Know Social Security?

First, the good news: Benefits are going up.

Now, for the bad news: They aren’t going up by much.

Social Security benefits will increase just 0.3% in 2017. For the average retired worker, that means a raise of $5 a month – about enough to buy a grande latte at Starbucks.

Why so little? It all boils down to inflation. Or, more accurately, the lack thereof. The cost-of-living adjustment for Social Security is tied to the government’s Consumer Price Index, which tracks changes in how much Americans are paying for items ranging from food to fuel. The CPI has been depressed for some time. There was no COLA for Social Security benefits in 2016, and the inflation adjustments for the two years before that were small – 1.7% in 2015 and 1.5% in 2014.

Check out nine more things you need to know about Social Security.

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