5 Social Security myths, debunked

It's time to set the record straight. Millions of American retirees and future retirees depend on, or will depend on, income from Social Security to help provide a financially comfortable retirement, but there's so much misinformation out there about the program.

For example, it seems like every week that we see a headline somewhere claiming that Social Security is broke. Or have you heard that the government stole trillions from Social Security's reserves? Spoiler alert: These are 100% false.

Here are some of the most common Social Security myths, as well as the truth behind each one.

Myth 1: Social Security is broke

Don't let anyone tell you that Social Security is broke. In fact, Social Security has $2.85 trillion in reserves and ran a $35 billion surplus in 2016. What's more, the surplus is expected to continue to build the reserves for another five years.

After 2021, the picture is not so rosy. Thanks to the retirement of the Baby Boomer generation and longer life expectancies, Social Security is expected to swing to a deficit, which will continue for the foreseeable future. In 2034, the Social Security trust funds are expected to be completely depleted.


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