Why It’s So Hard to Know How Much Retirement Savings Is Enough

Online financial-planning tools have a habit of spitting out terrifying numbers when people use them to figure out how much to save for retirement. Most tools, from the AARP’s to the Social Security Administration’s, yield similar answers when one enters spending estimates, expected salary increases, and assets: They tend to advise their users (most of […]

More Protection for a Nest Egg Has Some Brokers Upset

A DOZEN or so new victims file into Joseph Peiffer’s law offices each month. There was the 51-year-old woman who worked at BellSouth, he recounted, who was told to invest her retirementmoney into nontradable real estate securities. He has also worked with retirees who were advised to put theirI.R.A. savings into pricey variableannuities or other […]

Attacks on Social Security and Medicare Are Based On the Phoney Politics of Intergenerational Conflict

It’s not surprising that this midterm election season has seen its share of critics of our publicly supported system of retirement security. After all, Republicans and others have spent the past 30 years attacking Social Security and Medicare. But any reasonable analysis shows that the attacks are based on the phoney politics of intergenerational conflict. […]

The Disconnect Between Corporate Borrowing and Investment

This paper provides evidence that the strong empirical relationship of corporate cash flow and borrowing to productive corporate investment has disappeared in the last 30 years and has been replaced with corporate funds and shareholder payouts. Whereas firms once borrowed to invest and improve their long-term performance, they now borrow to enrich their investors in […]