The coming of Independence Day is an opportunity to assess the American Dream of equal opportunity and middle-class status. Unfortunately, for more than four decades, the middle class has been squeezed. Today, too many hard-working Americans find themselves financially treading water or falling behind. And the increased pressure on the middle class has taken more than a financial toll. According to the nonpartisan Brookings Institution, “Even the physical and mental health of the American middle class is getting progressively worse.”
When to claim Social Security retirement benefits is one of the most crucial financial decisions facing older workers. But not everyone makes informed choices. The timing of the claim is key. The earlier a worker files to receive Social Security, the lower the monthly payment for the rest of that worker’s life.