- News media widely reported that a 2.2% increase in Social Security benefits is likely in January 2018.
- How is the COLA determined and how could anyone project it in early July?
- We need three months of data – inflation for July, August and September – to know the answer.
My wife and I were on vacation last week, eating breakfast at an Interstate hotel in southern Wisconsin. She read me a line from a USA Today story: “Social Security benefits projected to rise 2.2% in 2018.”
“What?” I nearly spit out my artificially-processed scrambled eggs. “How can that be? Inflation is running at 1.6% and we’re only halfway into the year. Wouldn’t this number come out in October or December? How can it be 2.2%?”