after working 33 years at bethlehem steel, james roberts expected to retire with a secure pension. a member of steelworkers local 1688 in harrisburg, pa., roberts retired in november 2000 with full pension and health care benefits. about a year after bethlehem declared bankruptcy in december 2001, the pension benefit guaranty corp. (pbgc), the federal agency that insures pensions, took over the company's pension plan. the pbgc cut roberts's monthly pension
payments by more than one-third, leaving him financially devastated.
"it's not like i was making $60,000 or $80,000 a year on my pension and could afford to take a cut," he says. before the pbgc cut his payments, roberts received $1,888 a month or $22,656 a year. now he receives $1,243 a month--$14,916 a year. he struggles to buy the daily medications he needs for a degenerative bone disease, high blood pressure and cholesterol.
the above quote was from the aflcio website. you cannot depend on pensions, social security, or any other "guaranteed retirement." 401b or 401k are good, but you need further retirement planning/savings. seek and use a good cfp.