It looks like there’ll be at least one silver lining to skyrocketing inflation.
Seniors will be getting a nice raise next year. The roughly 70 million people – retirees, disabled people and others – who rely on Social Security could receive an 8.6% cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, next year, according to an estimate from Mary Johnson, a policy analyst for the Senior Citizen League, an advocacy group.
For the average retiree who got a monthly check of $1,657 this year, the bump would mean an additional $142.50 a month in 2023, boosting the typical payment to $1,800. “It will be a lifesaver,” Johnson says. “It means they can buy an extra week of groceries. They’ll be able to afford to heat their home for the next month. People will be able to pay their electric bill.”
Of course, a healthy COLA increase would simply help retirees keep pace with soaring inflation. The consumer price index leaped 8.3% in April, easing slightly off 40-year highs for the first time in months but staying elevated. That means this year’s 5.9% increase in Social Security payments has fallen well short of the rise in costs faced by seniors, disabled people and other beneficiaries.