Yogi Berra has died at age 90. See Baseball Legend Yogi Berra Dies.
Among other things, Yogi taught us that we can 'observe a lot just by watching' and that 'it ain't over 'til it's over.'
We've become a nation of debtors. Burdensome personal indebtedness is a well established American way of life and a bad habit. Those simple facts are easily observed just by watching, and yet life ain't over 'til it's over.
As a result, we clearly are neither a nation of savers nor individual investors. Those are also easily seen well established facts and bad American habits.
People who fail to save and invest those savings adequately during their working years will fail to fully and comfortably enjoy their retirement years.
That simple common sense based fact is discussed in The simple reason you'll probably never retire comfortably:
"America: At the rate you’re going, you may never get to ditch your 9-to-5 job.
In the past year alone, 15% of Americans dipped into their retirement fund to pay for an emergency, according to a nationally representative survey of more than 1,000 adults in the U.S. by personal finance site Bankrate.com released Wednesday — that’s 30 million Americans, if you extrapolate the survey data onto the entire U.S. population.
Other studies reveal a similar predilection towards tapping into the retirement well too soon. Nearly one in four workers ages 20 to 60 have either taken a loan or early withdrawal from their retirement fund, according to the 16th annual Transamerica Retirement Survey of Workers, released in May. . . .
“Americans are woefully under-saved for emergencies — and lacking that cushion, they far too often resort to [tapping] their retirement accounts,” says Greg McBride, the chief financial analyst for Bankrate.com. . . .
It’s older people who are most likely to tap into their retirement savings for emergencies. McBride says that this may have to do with higher medical bills or persistent underemployment, among other reasons, but that whatever the reason, it’s “particularly troubling.”. . .
These ill-advised, costly money moves are further exacerbated by the fact that Americans are already vastly under-saved for retirement. Only about two in three workers have saved any money for retirement, according to a 2015 report from the Employee Benefit Research Institute.
And of those that have saved, for some, the amounts are paltry: Just 14% of American households say the value of their savings and investments (minus their primary home value) are more than $250,000 — and experts say most households will need more than $1 million to retire comfortably.
(Incidentally, just 10% of workers think they’ll need more than $1 million to retire comfortably, according to EBRI.)
Most workers don’t have enough money to retire
|Total savings and investments, 2015|
|Less than $1,000||28%|
|$1,000 - $9,999||17%|
|$10,000 - $24,999||12%|
|$25,000 - $49,999||9%|
|$50,000 - $99,999||10%|
|$100,000 - $249,999||10%|
|$250,000 or more||14%|
|Source: Employee Benefit Research Institute|
When Yogi Berra's wife once asked him where he wanted to be buried, he said in response, "I don't know. Why don't you surprise me?" That's a classic 'Yogi-ism.'
For those of us who came of age in the 1950s and 1960s, we'll miss Yogi the player. And all Americans, young and old alike, will remember his classic sayings about life.
But for those of us still living in the here and now, the retirement stats clearly reveal that 57% of workers have less than $25,000 in savings and investments. Hall of Fame savers and investors we're not.
Accordingly, the tendency to embrace socialism is very much alive and well in America.
If not based on ideology, widespread socialism has become a matter of necessity, if nothing else.
Personal habits are hard to change, and our poor habits regarding failing to save and invest adequately for our future financial needs are now long in place and well established.
And they're very selfish habits as well.
That's my take.