Congratulations, I guess, young Americans: " In 2012, for the first time ever, one-third of the nation's 25- to 29-year-olds have completed at least a bachelor's degree." Most college grads ever! This valuable education will help prepare you for a lifetime in which work—if you can find some—never ends, and retirement is but a dream.
This Washington Post story is a pretty fair rundown of the basic problems facing young workers who may have thought that they could one day "retire," a quaint historic term for not working every day unto death: private employers can no longer afford pensions, 401k's are inadequate, and Social Security is likely to be financially disemboweled by the time youngsters are old enough to take advantage of it. Just forget it.
Fewer than one in three workers had defined-benefit coverage [WHAT USED TO BE CALLED A 'PENSION' IN ANCIENT TIMES] in 2010, down from 44 percent in 1995 and 88 percent in 1983, according to the Center for Retirement Research.
And then there's the 20% of new college grads who are unemployed. And the rest of you, with all that crushing student loan debt. But... let's not get into that now. This is your special day.