Search “COLA” on this blog for latest updates on this topic. It is updated each month. See June 2015 update https://quinnscommentary.com/2015/06/18/no-2016-social-security-cola/
Figuring the next Social Security COLA is easy, projecting what it will be is not so easy. While it’s still quite early for a 2016 prediction, we can see an early trend. That trend shows declining inflation with the result of a lower COLA.
But don’t take my word for it, you can do the simple calculation. The COLA is based on the change in the CPI-W from one year to the next. The calculation uses the average CPI-W for the months of July, August and September each year. That means for 2016 those are the base months in 2014. (2015 over 2014 determines COLA for January 2016).
Those months are highlighted in yellow below. October and November of 2014 are highlighted in pink. As you can see, October and November CPI-W figures are already lower than the previous three months.
If, a big if, this trend continues, there will be little or no COLA in 2016. No need to panic, there is a long way to go and a lot can happen. But if you track this each month you won’t be surprised next October when the actual number is announced. You can find this chart update each month on SSA.gov
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From the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
On a seasonally adjusted basis, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers declined 0.4 percent in December after falling 0.3 percent in November. The index for all items less food and energy was unchanged in December after rising 0.1 percent in November.