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Thu Mar 29, 2012, 10:49 PM

Older Women Struggle to Make Ends Meet [View all]

http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/29/older-women-struggle-to-make-ends-meet/



The report compares income, not including food stamps or help with utility bills, to very basic monthly expenses for housing, food, transportation and health care. For a single person, this Elder Economic Security Standard Index, developed by Wider Opportunities for Women, estimates an annual income of $19,000 to $28,000, depending on whether they own their homes outright, rent or pay a mortgage. For married couples, the necessary income to cover basic expenses ranges from $29,500 to $39,000.

More than half the nation’s elderly do not make enough. But women, who typically outlive men, are more vulnerable. Nearly half of white women, 61 percent of Asian women and three-quarters of black and Hispanic women have incomes that fall below the Elder Index levels. Men 65 or older report incomes that are almost 75 percent higher than women’s.

“Occupational segregation, pay inequity and care-giving responsibilities all contribute to women’s reduced earnings during their working-age years and diminished capacity for saving,” the report says.

<snip>

“A staggering majority of older women in America can’t afford to cover their most basic expenses,” said Donna Addkison, the president of Wider Opportunities for Women. “This is the startling reality facing countless older women around the country and a harsh eye-opener for working women and families who are saving for retirement today.”




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Starry Messenger Mar 2012 OP
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