Ready to Claim Social Security? Do These 5 Things First

Laveta Brigham

Social Security retirement benefits can start between age 62 and 70, but you have to make a decision about when to claim them.

Once you’ve filed for benefits, options for changing your mind are limited — so you don’t want to make the wrong decision. Before you ask the Social Security Administration to start sending your checks, there are five key tasks you should check off your to-do list.

Older couple looking at paperwork with financial advisor.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. Check your earnings record

The 35 years when you earned the most money are used to determine the amount of your Social Security benefit. The SSA reviews your earnings record, adjusts wages for inflation, determines your average monthly earnings, and gives you benefits equaling a percent of them. 

You don’t want your earnings history to be incorrect because your record has errors, nor do you want years of $0 wages included in your average because you

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Don’t Claim Social Security Benefits Until You Can Answer These 3 Questions

Laveta Brigham

If you’re thinking of claiming your Social Security benefits, you may want to take a moment to make certain you’re really ready to act. Your claiming choice can be hard to undo, and it affects the amount of money you’ll receive for the rest of your life. To ensure you don’t make a decision now that you’ll regret later, ask yourself these three key questions. 

1. How much money will I get?

First and most important, you need to know how much income Social Security will actually provide if you claim your benefits now. The amount you’ll receive will depend on your age when you start benefits, as well as the income earned over the course of your career.

You can use the Social Security Administration’s online calculators to estimate the amount of your benefits or sign in to your online account and get a personalized estimate based on your

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China’s piggy bank, the National Social Security Fund, set to be among Ant Group’s top IPO investors

Laveta Brigham

Ant Group is making room for China’s state pension fund, the National Social Security Fund (NSSF), to buy shares during the financial technology giant’s blockbuster initial public offering (IPO) in the coming weeks, according to people familiar with the matter.

The group is favouring long-term investors who backed the country’s biggest mobile payment operator in its infancy and are passive in their approach to management, they added. The Alipay operator is wading through emails and phone calls from a Who’s Who list of global investors clamouring for a share in what is likely to be the world’s largest-ever IPO.

The 2.63 trillion yuan (US$386 billion) fund, which has owned a stake in Hangzhou, Zhejiang-based Ant Group since 2015, will be a cornerstone investor in the home leg of its simultaneous stock offerings in Shanghai and in Hong Kong, the people added. NSSF spokespeople did not immediately reply to an email

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Are You Doomed To Work Forever? What You Can Do If Your Social Security Isn’t Enough

Laveta Brigham

Making wise financial plans for retirement is essential if you want to enjoy your golden years without having to worry about making ends meet. This is especially true if you will be relying heavily on Social Security and don’t have much in retirement savings to fall back on. Fortunately, there are ways to live cheaply and stretch your dollars now so that you can eventually leave the workforce.

Whether you’re close to retirement age or have a while to go, these are things you can do now to be financially successful in the future.

Last updated: Sept. 25, 2020

Spend Less Than You Earn

Although there is no one-size-fits-all strategy for financial success, there is one universal rule everyone should live by, said J.D. Roth, founder of Get Rich Slowly, a financial website.

“It’s hard to say that there’s one thing that everyone should do,” he said. “I believe that

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This online bootcamp teaches you how to succeed at social media

Laveta Brigham

This online bootcamp teaches you how to succeed at social media
This online bootcamp teaches you how to succeed at social media

TL;DR: The 2020 Social Media Marketing Bootcamp Certification Bundle is on sale for £23.56 as of Sept. 24, saving you 98% on list price.

You know what’s weird? Only ten years ago, Facebook was just starting to explode in popularity, Myspace was near death, and Instagram didn’t even exist. Fast forward to today and you can make a full-blown career out of managing content on social media. My how things have changed.

Businesses of all shapes and sizes are constantly searching for talented folks to market their products and services on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and more. Want to put your decade or more of digital savviness to good use and build a social empire? Take a break from TikTok and check out this 2020 Social Media Marketing Bootcamp Certification Bundle.

SEE ALSO: Stay in this weekend with this

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Can Celebrity Activism Campaigns on Social Media Actually Make a Difference? Here’s What an Expert Thinks

Laveta Brigham

Naomi Campbell And Benedikt Taschen Celebrate The Los Angeles Launch Of "Naomi" At Taschen Beverly Hills
Naomi Campbell And Benedikt Taschen Celebrate The Los Angeles Launch Of “Naomi” At Taschen Beverly Hills

TV personality Kim Kardashian and model Naomi Campbell take a selfie in 2016. Credit – Charley Gallay/Getty Images

The world of social media was a little quieter than usual on Wednesday: Celebrities ranging from Kim Kardashian West to Mark Ruffalo “froze” their Instagram accounts for 24 hours, to protest hate speech and misinformation being spread on Facebook, Instagram’s parent company.

“I can’t sit by and stay silent while these platforms continue to allow the spreading of hate, propaganda and misinformation,” wrote Kardashian West, who has 188 million Instagram followers, in a tweet on Tuesday, before encouraging her fans to join her.

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Semiconductors, Social Distancing & Scientific Stagnation

Laveta Brigham

Welcome to the Capital Note, a newsletter about business, finance and economics. On the menu today: semiconductors, social distancing & scientific stagnation.

Nvidia
Moore’s Law, according to which computing power doubles roughly every two years, has long been the backbone of technological innovation. Smartphones and lightweight laptops were made possible by the steady downsizing of microchips, and, more recently, computationally intensive artificial intelligence-algorithms have gained widespread use thanks to advances in computing power.

While Gordon Moore was referring to central processing units (CPUs), the growth in computing power over the past decade has been driven by graphics processing units (GPUs). Initially intended for graphics-intensive games, GPUs now have the processing power needed for a wide range of AI applications and have thus displaced older chip technologies.

Naturally, the two GPU producers — Nvidia and AMD — have profited handsomely.

Now, Nvidia has agreed to a $40 billion purchase of

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Online learning provider Everfi makes $100 million commitment for curriculum that pushes for social change

Laveta Brigham

Education has been a hot topic lately. There are questions about the impact remote learning will have on kids, and controversy swirling around President Donald Trump’s recent calls to end racial sensitivity training across federal agencies and clamp down on a New York Times initiative called the 1619 Project, used by some schools to teach the history of slavery and its far-reaching consequences. In short: There’s lots to talk and worry about. 

To be sure, this is also an opportunity to rethink and revamp how and what we teach, for those who seize it. Online learning platforms are seeing a boom, and technology in general is being incorporated in unprecedented ways, which is actually helping to broaden the reach of educators in some regions of the world. What’s more, despite the rhetoric from the White House, the current racial reckoning is leading many in the private sector to up their

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Bolsonaro Scraps Plans for Social Program Amid Budget Woes

Laveta Brigham

TipRanks

Oppenheimer: 3 Stocks That Could Surge Over 100% From Current Levels

So far, September has been a wild ride of ups and downs. Following the recent bout of volatility, stocks have ticked higher again. But as uncertainty regarding another rescue program and the presidential election continues to linger, where does the market go from here? Weighing in for Oppenheimer, Chief Investment Strategist John Stoltzfus argues that any market dips appear “relatively contained and orderly,” and present longer-term investors the chance to find “babies that got thrown out with the bathwater.” He noted, “For nervous investors the recent downdraft has presented opportunity to take some profits without FOMO (fear of missing out).”As for the tech heavyweights that powered the market’s five-month charge forward, the strategist believes “current expectations that technology stocks will remain under pressure for some time seem exaggerated.” Stoltzfus adds that the “core of technology stocks did not

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22 Awkward Social Situations You Might Experience During COVID-19 & How to Deal

Laveta Brigham

After months of stay-at-home orders, many places are reopening now, and more people are venturing outside. Depending on your state, county, and city, you might be able to dine out at restaurants, order drinks at a bar, get your hair cut, and even go to a theme park in a few weeks.

This reopening and loosening of restrictions can cause a lot of conflicting feelings. You could be firmly on the excited side, happy to visit your favorite neighborhood spots and see friends again. Or you could be in the anxious camp, unsure that these reopenings are wise and still worried about health and safety conditions at those favorite neighborhood spots. Or you could waffle between the two sides, depending on the day, what news you’ve read, and your desire to both see your friends and family but also keep them safe.

It’s okay to have those feelings. We are

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