Many of us remember President Obama’s statement that if we liked our health care plans we could keep them. Unfortunately, many of us found out the hard way after Obamacare passed that we couldn’t actually keep our plans. And many who were able to keep their plans found out that the costs to keep their plans just kept going up, while benefits kept decreasing. That should have made it clear that, despite the good intentions of reformers, government attempts to reform key aspects of daily life are almost always bound to fail.
One aspect of the Obama era that never fully came to fruition was discussion about reforming the American retirement system. Trial balloons were floated about the possibility of seizing private retirement accounts and forcibly converting their assets into government bonds.
The thinking was twofold. First, seizing those assets would give the government an immediate and enormous source of funds with which to do whatever it wanted. Second, seizing private retirement accounts would supposedly provide retirees with greater financial stability because their potentially volatile stock and bond investments would be replaced with rock solid US Treasury debt, backed by the full faith and credit of the US government.
If the idea of the government seizing your retirement savings frightens you, you’re not alone. And the public backlash against even the thought of seizing retirement assets was enough to drive that discussion underground.
But now that Joe Biden is President, some of the same people who floated those ideas over a decade ago are back in the news, and they’re trying to push their agenda. Retirement accounts seem to be one of the flash pan issues in upcoming legislation, and there’s every reason to believe that the government may try to exert greater control over retirement accounts or make reforms to the retirement system, ostensibly to secure the future of your retirement. Do you trust the government to fix your retirement?
The Push to “Fix” Your Retirement
If you paid attention the last time Democrats sought to reform the retirement system, you might remember the name Teresa Ghilarducci. The now 64-year-old professor at the New School was at the forefront of efforts to reform the US retirement system during the early years of the Obama administration. And while she disappeared into the background for a while, she’s popped back up again.
Millions of Americans participate in employer-sponsored retirement plans such as 401(k) plans. And they’ve managed to amass trillions of dollars worth of retirement savings in those 401(k) accounts. But Ghilarducci sees that as a problem.
In her mind, it’s more important to focus on the millions of Americans who don’t participate in workplace-sponsored 401(k) plans. And her solution to that problem is to advocate for forcing everyone into a government-created and -managed retirement system.
The details of such a system are of course subject to change, but some of the things Ghilarducci envisions are pushing people into a TSP-style retirement system and offering a government match of $2 for every $1 invested, something that’s supposed to entice people to invest more money. Other proposals for such a system have included features such as forcing workers to contribute a certain percentage of their paychecks into a retirement system, with the minimum requirement gradually increased to 10% each pay period.
People like Ghilarducci see no problems with such a system being run by the government. In fact, Ghilarducci sees such a system as being analogous to Social Security, which she unironically calls “one of the more successful government programs we have.”
Of course, the problems with Social Security are numerous and well-known. And the entire Social Security system could end up running out of money and being unable to pay expected benefits in just over a decade. That’s the type of system we’re supposed to trust with our retirement savings?
Protect Your Savings
If nothing else, proposals like Ghilarducci’s should make you realize that Democrats see your 401(k) as nothing more than a cash cow to plunder. If you like your 401(k), you’re probably not going to be able to keep it if proposals like this make it into law. And that’s why it’s perhaps more important than ever to protect the savings and investments you’ve worked so hard to accumulate.
Protecting your 401(k) is about much more than just keeping your money out of the hands of government officials who want to treat your retirement savings as a piggy bank, however. It’s also about protecting your assets against the possibility of a stock market crash, against high inflation, and against currency devaluation.
We’re living in a time in which inflation is reaching highs that haven’t been seen in decades, in which the possibility of stagflation grows by the day, and in which investors are going to have to be extra vigilant about protecting their assets and not losing money. And that could mean getting creative about how you protect your wealth.
Assets such as stocks and bonds may be convenient for most people to invest in, but they may not always be the best choices to preserve your wealth. There’s a reason that investors have trusted precious metals like gold and silver for centuries and a reason that more and more investors are turning to them once again for protection.
That reason is the fact that precious metals provide double protection. On the one hand, they are a physical asset, allowing you to hold the asset in your hands. That’s especially true if you buy gold and silver for storage at home.
The second reason gold and silver are so prized is because of their ability to gain value even during times of high inflation and economic turmoil. During the 1970s stagflation, gold and silver’s average annualized gains were over 30%. Many investors are betting that gold and silver will provide similar performance in the future if inflation remains high.
Gold and silver can also play a role in diversifying and protecting your portfolio, particularly if you have assets in a 401(k), 403(b), TSP, IRA or similar retirement account. You can transfer or roll over assets from those accounts into a precious metals IRA, allowing you to reap the benefits of owning precious metals while maintaining the same tax advantages as your current retirement accounts. And a precious metals IRA could also keep your assets out of the hands of those who would raid your 401(k) or try to convert your 401(k) assets into government debt.
If you’re worried about the government setting its sights on your 401(k), you’re not alone. And you may want to consider gold and silver for protecting your assets. The precious metals experts at Goldco have helped thousands of people just like you with the 401(k) to precious metals IRA rollover process. And they’re standing by to help you today.
Don’t let your hard-earned wealth fall victim to government do-gooders, rising inflation, or a market crash. Give Goldco a call today and learn more about how gold and silver can help protect your retirement savings.