The information I am about to share with you will make you absolutely livid.
What I'm going to explain to you today has already cost taxpayers in excess of $1 trillion over the past decade, according to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.
Now, that figure could double again…
… because of guaranteed pensions.
This is one of Wall Street's dirtiest, best-guarded secrets… but nobody ever talks about it outside the mahogany-lined hallways of their innermost sanctums.
They're the real reason why your local school district is cutting its budget, why there's never enough money to maintain our country's infrastructure, why healthcare costs so much, and why you're hit with one levy after another, year after year, to cover government "shortfalls."
The pension crisis is also the single BIGGEST risk to the world's stock markets today and, yes, to your wealth.
Rolling Stone calls this… a scam of almost unmatchable cruelty.
Forbes says it's a… "national crisis" of unprecedented proportions.
Bloomberg says… the writing appears to be on the wall.
I know I'm going out on a limb.
Things appear good. The economy is stronger than it's been in decades. Unemployment is near 50-year lows. Wages are expanding. Spending is up. Earnings are excellent.
What I have to say will be hard to believe.
But, here it goes…
U.S. pension assets were $25.17 trillion at the end of 2017.
That's a huge number.
So large, in fact, that many people can't wrap their heads around it.
But let's try anyway. That's double the shadow-banking system that brought this country to its knees in 2008, when securitized sub-prime mortgages blew up. And that's 9x the amount of capital that cratered Lehman Brothers.
Most folks are surprised to learn, however, that this is a double-edged sword…
… America's pensions owe retirees $6 trillion more than they can pay.
Put plainly, they don't have enough money.
So they're breaking promises they made to retirees by cutting their income substantially. In some cases, by 90% or more.
The pension industry is sitting on a massive, $6 trillion lie… and Congress won’t own up to the truth. Now, that lie has become a silent killer for the retirement dreams of millions of Americans. Here's what you need to know…
Adam Milton is a 75-year-old retired dockworker, for example. He was counting on a $2,300 monthly pension check and Social Security to keep him and his wife secure for the rest of his life. That's been cut 66.96% to $760 a month.
Ed Herman made ends meet with a monthly $2,422 pension check that's now been cut 62.76% to $902.
Sadly, neither of these men are exceptions.
More than 31 million Americans drawing a pension are directly at risk of default. Another 200 million investors are, too, even though they don't have a pension and never will.
Again, to put this in perspective, $6 trillion is 50% more than the amount of money Congress blows through in a year. It's 9x Washington's fiscal 2017 deficit of $666 billion.
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation – the agency Washington's political apparatchiks created to deal with a situation like this – can't help. The PBGC is already "broke"… and $80+ billion in the red.
How It Got This Way
About the Author
Keith Fitz-Gerald has been the Chief Investment Strategist for the Money Morning team since 2007. He's a seasoned market analyst with decades of experience, and a highly accurate track record. Keith regularly travels the world in search of investment opportunities others don't yet see or understand. In addition to heading The Money Map Report, Keith runs High Velocity Profits, which aims to get in, target gains, and get out clean. In his weekly Total Wealth, Keith has broken down his 30-plus years of success into three parts: Trends, Risk Assessment, and Tactics – meaning the exact techniques for making money. Sign up is free at totalwealthresearch.com.