Congress approves hike to new feds' pension contribution
The Federal Times Share
On Feb. 17, Congress passed legislation that calls for a sharp increase in future federal employees' retirement contributions to help pay for an extension in unemployment benefits. It's part of a bill to extend the payroll tax holiday for most Americans. Under the deal, federal employees who are newly hired or rehired with less than five years of service beginning in 2013 would pay 3.1 percent of each paycheck toward their Federal Employees Retirement System pensions. More
USPS announces 5-year business plan
Government Executive Share
The U.S. Postal Service unveiled a five-year business plan it hopes will reduce its annual costs by more than $22 billion by 2016. The agency recently reported it had lost $3.3 billion in the first quarter of fiscal 2012, $3.1 billion of which it attributed to payments toward the $5.5 billion mandate to pre-fund postal service retiree health benefits. More
Lack of financial literacy can hurt retirement
A survey to gauge Americans' financial literacy was recently released, and 70 percent of Americans think they have above the median level of financial knowledge. But if that's true, why is it that just 65 percent of the survey respondents were able to give a correct answer to the first question? More
9 in 10 US adults eat too much sodium
Nearly all Americans consume much more sodium than they should, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most of the sodium comes from common restaurant or grocery store items. The latest Vital Signs report finds that 10 types of foods are responsible for more than 40 percent of people's sodium intake. More
The potential — and pitfalls — of social media for personal branding
Digital Media Share
According to research from Mindflash.com in the United States, 45 percent of employers used social media services such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook to screen potential employees, while 18 percent found information in social media sites that facilitated their decision to hire a candidate. Now, a quick Google search can provide a potential employer with a set of references for a person it is considering as a potential hire. The implication is that you should be thinking about your personal brand and how you portray it online, even if you are not a public figure. More
Survey finds more mature workers plan to work post-retirement
CareerBuilder via DailyFinance Share
"Retirement" used to mean the end of one chapter in life spent working and the beginning of a new chapter spent with family and friends, traveling or focusing on hobbies. Yet for many of today's mature workers, their picture of retirement looks very different. It no longer means the end of their career; instead, they are either staying longer at their current jobs or getting new jobs once retired. More
10 places you never thought you could afford
Smarter Travel via USA Today Share
What's keeping you from embarking on that big dream vacation kicking around in the back of your imagination? If money is your answer, then here is a solution. Big-ticket trips can be had for unexpected cut-rate prices — that is, if you know where to go. Here are 10 thrilling destinations where fantastic bucket-list getaways can be bought for run-of-the-mill rates. More
5 sneaky coupon strategies consumers should watch out for
U.S. News & World Report Share
TLC's "Extreme Couponers" shows consumers expertly collecting and combining coupons to save hundreds of dollars at the grocery store checkout. Unfortunately, if not careful, coupons can also seduce consumers into spending money rather than saving it. Retailers are experts themselves at using coupons to lure customers into their store to part with their hard-earned money. More
How much of my Social Security benefit will be offset?
Question: I retired June 3, 2011, under the Civil Service Retirement System. I paid enough quarters under Social Security prior to working for the federal government to qualify for a benefit. I will turn 62 in June. I spoke with a Social Security representative and was told I may have an offset to my Social Security benefit check, but he could not tell me how much. Can you tell me how much of an offset it will be? More
NARFE says targeting of federal workers must stop
NARFE President Joseph A. Beaudoin reacted strongly to votes in the House and Senate the week of Feb. 13 to require newly hired federal employees to pay more for their retirement so that the payroll tax holiday could be extended. "Members of Congress must stop picking the pockets of America's middle-class federal workers every time they need more funds," Beaudoin insisted. In addition to financing the payroll tax holiday, Congress this year has proposed using federal worker paychecks to pay for the highway bill, to bail out the U.S. Postal Service, and to avoid cutting the Pentagon budget, he noted. "Ultimately, these attacks on federal workers will take a toll on public services that will take us decades to overcome." Prior to the vote, NARFE wrote a letter to every member of Congress, urging them to vote against the provision on federal employee retirement contributions.
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The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association is the only organization dedicated solely to protecting and enhancing the health care and retirement benefits of federal employees and their survivors.
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