By The Numbers - June 2018Submitted by S. F. Ehrlich Associates, Inc. on July 6th, 2018
Source: Direxion Funds
June 30, 2018
- 28% of American jobs do not require any formal educational credential, i.e., not even a high school diploma.
- Over the last 20 years, i.e., 4/30/98 to 4/30/18, inflation in the United States (using the “Consumer Price Index”) has increased +54.2% or +2.2% annually. An individual living on a fixed-income who has not benefited from “cost-of-living” increases would have only 65% of the purchasing power as of 4/30/18 that he/she had 20 years earlier. The consumer price index (CPI) is a measure of inflation compiled by the US Bureau of Labor Studies.
- Only 36% of workers surveyed anticipate that their monthly Social Security benefit “will be a major source of income” during retirement. However, 67% of retirees surveyed have determined that their monthly Social Security benefit “is a major source of income” during retirement.
- China’s economy has grown tenfold since 2001, rising from $1.3 trillion (stated in terms of US dollars) to $13 trillion today.
- An estimated 45% of the 176.1 million tax returns projected to be filed next year for tax year 2018 will legally pay zero federal income tax.
- Prior to the 2007 global real estate crisis, 24% of the “housing wealth” in the United States (i.e., real estate equity) was owned by American seniors at least age 60. Today, 41% of the “housing wealth” in the United States is owned by American seniors.
- The top 0.1% of US taxpayers (i.e., top 1 out of every 1,000 taxpayers) paid 19.5% of all federal income tax that was collected nationwide for the 2015 tax year.
- There were 3.853 million births in the United States in 2017, the smallest number of births since 1987 or 30 years ago. The nation’s “general fertility rate,” defined as the number of births per 1,000 women between the ages of 15-44, was just 60.2 births, a record low rate for birth data that has been tracked nationally since 1909 or for the last 109 years.
- 7 out of 8 small businesses (88%) in the United States reported in early May 2018 that they were having “difficulties finding qualified candidates” for job openings.
- 21% of retirees currently receiving monthly Social Security retirement benefits did not begin taking that monthly benefit until at least age 66. 45% of retirees began taking their Social Security retirement benefit at age 62.
- 25% of Americans that reach age 65 will live at least another 25 years to age 90.
- Only 37% of American adults under the age of 35 are invested in the stock market today, down from 55% in 2002.
- 46% of Americans surveyed believe that future generations of retirees will be “worse off” financially than current American retirees.
- Social Security trustees announced on 6/05/18 that the trust fund backing the payment of Social Security benefits (OASI retirement benefits) would be zero in 2034. A zero “trust fund” does not mean the payment of Social Security benefits would also go to zero, but rather would drop to 77% of their originally promised levels through the year 2092. When the trustees released their report in 2008 (i.e., 10 years ago), the Social Security Trust Fund was projected to be depleted in 2042.
- The top 10% of taxpayers received 47% of the $10.1 trillion of adjusted gross income (AGI) earned nationwide in tax year 2015. The bottom 90% of taxpayers received the other 53% of AGI.
- 22% of Americans at least age 85 need help with “personal care” daily. The number of Americans at least age 85 is projected to more than double from 6.4 million in 2016 to 14.6 million in 2040.
- The S&P 500 has had 19 “corrections” (declines of at least 10% but less than 20%) and 7 “bears” (declines of at least 20%) in the last 50 years. The last “correction” ended on 2/08/18. The last “bear” ended on 3/09/09.
- Medicare covers the cost of 100 days of care at a “skilled nursing facility.” A new 100-day benefit clock begins if the patient has gone 60 days without requiring a “skilled level of care”.
- The capitalization of the US stock market was $29.2 trillion as of 3/31/18, or just 70% of the size of the US bond market as of the same date.
- For the last 35 years (1983-2017), the total income of our nation’s Social Security program (i.e., payroll taxes collected plus interest income) has exceeded the total cost of the program (i.e., benefits paid out plus administrative expenses), a streak that is projected to end in 2018.
- There are as many Americans with outstanding student loan debt (45 million) as there are retired American workers (45 million) who are receiving monthly Social Security retirement benefits.
- The population of the United States has doubled since 1950, while the number of Americans at least age 65 has quadrupled since 1950.