social security card nearly covered by money (Photo: Shutterstock)

Inflation is always a concern for retirees, which is why Social Security builds in cost of living adjustments each year. This past year, Social Security beneficiaries are facing an unusual situation: With Covid-19 lockdowns last spring and summer, economic activity in 2020 ground to a halt and as a result, COLA increases were just 1.3%, which for the typical retiree equaled just $20 a month.

But in the early months of 2021, as the pandemic is abating and economic activity is revving up, inflation is running higher than it has in years, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated to be about 5% in May, the highest rate since the 2008 to 2009 financial crisis.

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