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Hurricane Sandy update: No disruption in ETF annuity payments; OPM sets up emergency hotline
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NARFE advises federal annuitants and survivors who are concerned about adverse effects on annuity payments because of Hurricane Sandy to take heart. The Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department have confirmed there were no disruptions in EFT (electronic funds transfer) payments caused by the storm. For those annuitants who receive hard-copy checks, the U.S. Postal Service is posting updates on the website. The Office of Personnel Management has set up an emergency hotline number, 888-472-2967, to receive phone calls from current federal annuitants and survivors only. OPM's contractor will provide live support on this line from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.

For those who need assistance in coping with other disaster-related matters, use the following Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster contacts: 800-621-3362; 800-462-7585 (TTY);


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Postponing benefits
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Question: I have 23 years of federal service and am at my minimum retirement age. What happens if I postpone the MRA+10 annuity? More

After Sandy, feds deploy all-hands-on-deck approach
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VideoBriefAfter Superstorm Sandy, the government is putting all hands on deck in response to the storm, providing on-the-ground assistance and federal funding, and supplementing rescue and cleanup efforts. In a sign of the governmentwide response, President Barack Obama visited the Federal Emergency Management Agency headquarters in Washington, D.C., with a slew of cabinet and agency officials in tow. More

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Postmaster General urges quick action in lame-duck session
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VideoBriefPostmaster General Patrick Donahoe says his agency's losses for fiscal 2012 will be somewhere near $15 billion when fourth-quarter numbers are released in November — close to where the Postal Service projected they would be. The news comes a month after the USPS hit its $15 billion borrowing limit from the Department of the Treasury, which means it's now relying completely on its own cash flow to support operations. More

Treasury: Debt limit to be hit this year
The Hill    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. government will reach its $16.4 trillion debt limit at the end of the year, according to latest estimates from the Treasury Department. Congress will likely have until early 2013 to actually craft a deal to hike the limit before the government exhausts its ability to borrow. The Treasury said it can employ "extraordinary measures" that would free up cash and keep the government funded for a few more months. The nation's debt currently stands at $16.199 trillion. More

The politics of federal pay rates    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
There is little agreement on how much federal employees should be paid. If anything, the gap between those who think federal employees are overpaid and those who think the federal workforce is underpaid is growing wider. A new document that will stoke the fires of discontent and heat up the political discourse is the latest volley in what is essentially a political dispute disguised as a battle between salary experts. More

Federal Employees: Hearing aids as low as $10

Depending on your covered benefit your hearing aids could be as low as $10/pair when you purchase through TruHearing MemberPlus. Call 877-360-2446 for more details.

6 ways Social Security will change in 2013
U.S. News & World Report    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Social Security recipients will get slightly bigger checks in 2013. The Social Security Administration also recently announced several other ways the program will be tweaked in the coming year. Here's a look at the Social Security changes workers and retirees will experience next year. More

High-protein diet may help some people shed pounds
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Dieters who eat meals and snacks high in protein might lose a bit more weight than those who get less protein and more carbohydrates — all other things being equal, a new analysis of past studies suggests. Researchers found that over an average of 12 weeks, people assigned at random to a high-protein diet lost about 1.8 extra pounds, and more body fat, than those assigned to a standard-protein diet. More

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Retiring boomers: Are roommates in your future?
CBS MoneyWatch    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Many baby boomers are expecting their adult children or aging parents to move in with them, according to a recent survey conducted by the PulteGroup, a national homebuilder. Fourteen percent of homeowners with adult children already have such "boomerang" roommates, but more than twice as many expect at least one child to return home in the future. A common reason for this trend is finances. More

Career shift: Turn your hobby into a new job
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
How would you like to turn your hobby into a second career? That's exactly what Thomas MacEntee of Chicago, a former tech professional who's now a genealogist, did after unexpectedly losing his job in 2008. The transformation was neither fast nor easy, but MacEntee, 50, couldn't be happier. More

We're in the Business of Treating People
Like People

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Health costs for retirees decline
U.S. News & World Report    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A 65-year-old couple with median prescription drug expenses will need $227,000 to have a 75 percent chance of covering their Medicare premiums and other out-of-pocket medical costs after retirement in 2012, according to a recent Employee Benefit Research Institute report. People who retire in 2012 are estimated to need $4,000 less than the $231,000 new retirees required in 2011, largely because provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 reduced out-of-pocket prescription drug costs for retirees. More

Expert guide to savings on holiday airfare
ABC News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
If you're going to travel this Thanksgiving, read this now. It's loaded with handy travel tips and ticket pricing information, plus ways to save time or money or both. More

Tighten up your holiday spending
CNNMoney    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
This time of year, you're bombarded with the message that it's better to give than to receive. When the Visa bill comes in January, however, you may be wishing you were a little less generous. Blame the extra spending. More

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NARFE NewsWatch from the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association
Disclaimer: The articles that appear in NARFE NewsWatch are chosen from a variety of sources to reflect topics of interest to active and retired federal employees. With the exception of Federal Benefits Question of the Week and News From NARFE, an article's inclusion in NARFE NewsWatch does not imply that the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) endorses, supports or verifies its contents or expressed opinions. Factual errors are the responsibility of the listed publication.

Colby Horton, vice president of publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
Bianca Gibson, senior content editor, 469.420.2611   Contribute news
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