Comparing the Cost of Living When Retiring (or Moving)

Cost of Living Calculator

Most of us dream of the day we can retire and be free from the daily grind. Retirement offers us the opportunity to remake our lives and often we can choose to live almost anywhere. In years past that often meant moving to a a warmer climate like Florida or Arizona. One of the major considerations when choosing to relocate (whether for retirement or for a job) is the cost of living.  Will your pension (or paycheck) cover your daily expenses?  And that's where our Cost of Living Calculator comes in handy. It allows you to choose your starting location and your proposed destination and get a comparison between the two. For instance, suppose you are tired of the cold in Albany, N.Y. and … [Read more...]

Updated Inflation Adjusted Gasoline Price Chart

Inflation Adjusted Gasoline Prices

With the recent drop in gasoline prices perhaps you have begun to wonder exactly how close to historical lows  are we? If so we have updated our famous Inflation Adjusted Gasoline Price Chart. It shows where we stand on an inflation adjusted basis. Lowest Inflation Adjusted Price of Gasoline was  $1.46 in 1998 Back in 1918 gasoline was $0.25 a gallon and by 1932 prices had fallen to 18 cents a gallon! But as we all know over the last 100 years the purchasing power of the dollar has fallen drastically so in order to get the true picture we can’t just say that the lowest price of gas was 18 cents per gallon, we  need to adjust the price for inflation. When adjusting for inflation there are … [Read more...]

Gasoline Taxes by State

Gasoline and Highway Taxes

Yesterday we looked at the BLS' release of the July Inflation numbers and that lead to a discussion of gasoline prices and the correlation between high gas prices and  politics.  The first thing we looked at was the graphic of gasoline prices by state. And then we looked at the political landscape based on the percentage of the state that voted Democrat or Republican.  We looked at the following graphic and noted that "the more blue the more Democrat and the more red the more Republican (which by the way is backwards compared to the rest of the world) and incidentally almost exactly backwards for the gasoline chart as well.  There appears to be a very high correlation between high gas … [Read more...]

Living Longer: Health Care, Life Insurance and Retirement Costs for U.S. Citizens


At first glance, one would tend to assume that living longer is a blessing. One gets to spend more time enjoying the company of loved ones, see grandchildren grow up, etc.. However, it’s also worth wondering how current standards of longevity for U.S. citizens tie in with the hefty costs of medical care, the issue of purchasing life insurance, and the cost of retiring. Let's take a look at how much we’re actually spending on health care compared to other countries, how longer lives impact our life insurance premiums, and whether or not we should all just find a different country to retire to. Health Care Costs in the U.S. Obamacare was definitely not the first time the issue of health care … [Read more...]

How States Stack Up

If you have ever considered moving to improve your income or lifestyle the following info-graphic might help clarify your choices. It covers median household income by state ( the yellow states have the highest median income and the orange states have the lowest). It also covers Housing costs, number of millionaires, poverty rate, well being index, employment rate, tax burden, minimum wage and GDP. By clicking on an individual state you can see all its results at once in the right hand column.   See also: Cost of Living, State Employment and Unemployment Rates and Minimum Wages vs Unemployment. … [Read more...]

Inflation: America’s #1 Export

Sinking Dollar

What’s America’s No. 1 Export? by Bill Bonner In 1950 the typical working man was able to support a family. Today he can barely support himself because the costs of his main expenses have gone way up. He has to work about twice as long to pay for a new car and a new house. Health care is worse. In 1950 the cost per person per year was about $100. According to the government’s numbers, prices today are about 10 times higher. So health care should cost about $1,000. Not even close. It’s $9,000. In 1950 the typical father earned about $60 a week. For a family of four, he had to work fewer than seven weeks to cover the year’s health care expenses. Today how much does he earn? We’ve … [Read more...]

Highest Grossing Movies Adjusted for Inflation

Inflation Adjusted Movie Film

Traditionally, war films, musicals and historical dramas have been the most popular genres and Gone With the Wind held the record of highest-grossing film for 25 years but doesn't even make it into the top fifty in the modern market. But purchasing power varies widely over the time period since Gone With the Wind was first released in 1939. But the true key to determining how revenues really compare is when you adjust them for inflation. Highest-grossing films (Nominal) First we will look at nominal gross box office revenues. That is the actual number of dollars (not adjusted for inflation) earned strictly in the box office. Modern films have an advantage because in addition to box office … [Read more...]

Regarding Gas Inflation

Gas Price Inflation

Doug S. Says I'm full of It- Regarding Gas Inflation I just got the following comment from Doug S. I saw the chart on how gas prices haven't really risen when considered with inflation. I am 61 years old, and when I was working in the mid- to late-60s as a high school student, I made $1.60 an hour as minimum wage. Gas was only .25-.35 per gallon (with 'gas wars', much of the time cheaper) so with one hour of work I could purchase 5-6 gallons of gas. Now, with a minimum wage of $7.50 or so, you can only purchase a bit more than 2 gallons of gas, depending on the day of the week. Minimum wage has gone up, what, 4.6-5 times or so, but gas prices have gone up 10 times or more. Where am I … [Read more...]

What Does 8% Inflation Really Mean?


By Dennis Miller Eight percent is not good news. In my latest article I shared some reader feedback from our inflation survey, and in case you missed it, the Money Forever Reader Poll Inflation Rate is 8%. But what does that number really mean for us – seniors and savers trying to protect our buying power? It's time to read the tea leaves and find out. Up to Your Ass in Alligators You may remember the old poster that read, "When you are up to your ass in alligators, it's tough to remember the goal was to drain the swamp." You may have felt overwhelmed during the last few years, as the investment options for your retirement portfolio changed. You might read about the benefits of gold … [Read more...]

Cost of Living – Fish and Chips


Cost of Living Fish and Chips Fish and chips still remains the favorite take away meal in the UK despite fierce competition. The exact origins are unknown but it has been established that chips arrived from France during the 18th Century. There was also mention of fried fish and bread in ‘Oliver Twist’ by Dickens, published in the 1830s. The Oxford English Dictionary claims the earliest usage of "chips" in this sense was in Charles Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities (published in 1859). Fish and chips became standard fare among the working classes in Great Britain due to the efficiency of trawl fishing in the North Sea, and the development of railways which allowed fresh fish to be rapidly … [Read more...]