Pennsylvania sweeps the top five as Harrisburg, PA, rises to No. 1 this year.
WASHINGTON /PRNewswire/ — U.S. News & World Report, the global authority in rankings and consumer advice, today unveiled the 2024 Best Places to Retire in the United States. This year’s list evaluated the country’s 150 most populous metropolitan areas based on how well they meet Americans’ expectations for retirement, with measures including Affordability, Health Care, Desirability, Retiree Taxes, Job Market and Overall Happiness. The results are three new places in the top five.
Pennsylvania dominated the top five in this year’s list and secured seven placements in the top 10. Harrisburg rose one spot to take the No. 1 rank due to its scores on health care for seniors, retiree tax rates and overall happiness of its residents. Reading moved up six positions to the No. 2 spot, and Lancaster fell from No. 1 last year to No. 3. Scranton saw the sole double-digit jump into the top five, rising 13 positions to No. 4, and Allentown climbed four positions to No. 5.
“Over the last year, Americans have observed record-high interest rates in the housing market, steadily increasing cost of goods and extreme weather patterns impacting the living conditions of our nation,” says Beverly Harzog, personal finance expert at U.S. News. “As retirees consider where to spend their golden years, they want areas that not only give them the best bang for their buck, but places where they can live a happy, healthy life. This is why Pennsylvania dominated the Best Places to Retire ranking’s top positions, taking seven of the top 10 spots on the list.”
Florida scored highly as a desirable place to retire, with six places appearing in the top 25. The 2024 ranking’s adjustments made for affordability and retiree taxes allowed Winston-Salem, North Carolina, to soar 19 spots to No. 17. Other notable top 25 increases include Trenton, New Jersey, which moved up 25 positions to No. 20, and Rochester, New York, which rose 29 positions to No. 21.
Affordability is the most heavily weighted of the six factors in the 2024 Best Places to Retire methodology, which also includes happiness, health care quality, retiree taxes, desirability and job market ratings. U.S. News expanded its data points in this edition to better encapsulate a place’s strengths and weaknesses. In addition to a survey to determine whether people want to retire in a given metro area, the Desirability Index now includes weather temperateness, which evaluates the number of days annually with moderate temperatures and minimal precipitation. It also includes an establishment-to-population ratio, which assesses the number of restaurants, bars and activities per 1,000 residents. The Affordability Index – which previously focused solely on housing affordability – now factors in price parity, a Bureau of Economic Analysis data point on the general cost of goods within an area.
The six measures factored into this year’s rankings were weighted based on a public survey of individuals across the U.S. who are at or approaching retirement age (45 and older) to find out what matters most to people when they’re considering where to retire. Data sources include the U.S. Census Bureau, FEMA National Risk Index, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Sharecare and U.S. News’ Best Hospitals rankings.
Best Places to Retire is part of U.S. News’ expanding Real Estate section, which provides rankings, tools and advice to help individuals navigate the housing market, from finding the right neighborhood and home value estimate to working with an agent and buying and selling a home.
2024 U.S. News Best Places to Retire – Top 10
*See the full rankings here.
- Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
- Reading, Pennsylvania
- Lancaster, Pennsylvania
- Scranton, Pennsylvania
- Allentown, Pennsylvania
- New York City, New York
- York, Pennsylvania
- Daytona Beach, Florida
- Youngstown, Ohio
- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
About U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report is the global leader in quality rankings that empower consumers, business leaders and policy officials to make better, more informed decisions about important issues affecting their lives and communities. A multifaceted digital media company with Education, Health, Money, Travel, Cars, News, Real Estate, Careers and 360 Reviews platforms, U.S. News provides rankings, independent reporting, data journalism, consumer advice and U.S. News Live events. More than 40 million people visit USNews.com each month for research and guidance. Founded in 1933, U.S. News is headquartered in Washington, D.C.
SOURCE U.S. News & World Report, L.P.
McDonald’s and Google Cloud Announce Strategic Partnership to Connect Latest Cloud Technology and Apply Generative AI Solutions Across its Restaurants Worldwide
CHICAGO and SUNNYVALE, Calif. /PRNewswire/ — McDonald’s Corporation and Google today announced plans for a new multi-year, global partnership to connect Google Cloud technology across thousands of its restaurants worldwide. This partnership is a significant step for McDonald’s in advancing its restaurant technology platform to become the most sophisticated and productive in the industry. McDonald’s plans to leverage a wide range of Google Cloud’s hardware, data, and AI technologies to implement innovation faster and create even better experiences for its customers, restaurant teams, and employees.
“We see tremendous opportunity for growth in our digital business and our partnership with Google Cloud allows us to capitalize on this by leveraging our size and scale to build capabilities and implement solutions at unmatched speeds,” said Brian Rice, McDonald’s Executive Vice President and Global Chief Information Officer. “Connecting our restaurants worldwide to millions of datapoints across our digital ecosystem means tools get sharper, models get smarter, restaurants become easier to operate, and most importantly, the overall experience for our customers and crew gets even better.”
As part of this partnership, McDonald’s will roll out significant advancements to its restaurant and customer platforms – from its popular mobile app that serves as the gateway for its 150 million member-strong and quickly expanding loyalty program, to its thousands of self-service kiosks in restaurants worldwide. With a consistent approach, McDonald’s expects to deploy innovations with much greater speed and agility. McDonald’s will use edge computing from Google Cloud to power these new platforms, bringing information storage and high powered computing into individual restaurants.
Google Distributed Cloud, a combined hardware and software offering, is planned to be deployed to thousands of McDonald’s restaurants so they can leverage both cloud-based software applications and their own software and AI solutions locally on-site, as needed. With Google Cloud edge computing capabilities, McDonald’s will be able to draw new insights into how equipment is performing, enact solutions that reduce business disruptions, and diminish complexity for crew so restaurant teams can focus on delivering amazing hospitality to customers. McDonald’s will be the largest global foodservice retailer to use Google Distributed Cloud’s new capabilities, with plans for thousands of restaurants to begin receiving their hardware and software upgrades next year.
Through this new partnership, a dedicated Google Cloud team in Chicago will work in close proximity to McDonald’s global innovation center, known as Speedee Labs. Together, they’ll focus on applying generative AI across a number of key business priorities to power exciting new experiences for crew and customers, with McDonald’s unmatched convenience and value.
“Through this wide-ranging partnership, Google Cloud will help McDonald’s seize on new opportunities to transform its business and customer experiences, empowering restaurants worldwide with the latest technologies for near-term impact,” said Thomas Kurian, Google Cloud’s Chief Executive Officer. “Pairing the iconic brand, size and scale of McDonald’s with Google Cloud’s deep history in AI and technology innovation will redefine how this industry works and what people expect when they dine out.”
About Google Cloud
Google Cloud accelerates every organization’s ability to digitally transform its business and industry. We deliver enterprise-grade solutions that leverage Google’s cutting-edge technology, and tools that help developers build more sustainably. Customers in more than 200 countries and territories turn to Google Cloud as their trusted partner to enable growth and solve their most critical business problems.
McDonald’s is the world’s leading global foodservice retailer with over 40,000 locations in over 100 countries. Approximately 95% of McDonald’s restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by independent local business owners.
SOURCE Google Cloud
Survey Finds Inflation Still Top of Mind For Holiday Shoppers
Debt.com’s latest Holiday Spending Survey shows many will spend more due to inflation and will use credit cards to cover costs.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. /PRNewswire/ — Inflation is still driving prices on everything from groceries to holiday gifts, but a new Debt.com survey shows many Americans aren’t as concerned about sticker shock as they were last year.
Debt.com polled 1,000 U.S. adults about their holiday shopping plans. More respondents (60%) than last year (54%) feel they will spend more on holiday shopping this year because of inflation. Among those respondents, 3 in 5 (54%) say they will use credit cards to cover the cost of holiday shopping.
It’s an American tradition to go into debt over the holidays. Higher prices and FOMO can lead to more credit card use.Tweet
It’s almost an American tradition to go into debt for the holidays. Leading up to the holidays the fear of high prices and ‘FOMO’ (the fear of missing out) runs deep,” says Howard Dvorkin, CPA and Debt.com chairman.
Two-thirds (66%) of respondents are shopping earlier than last year. More than 1 in 3 (34%) started in November, and 15% started over the summer when inflation briefly dropped for the first time in two years.
Still, credit card debt increased 16.6% from just a year ago and Americans now owe over a trillion on their credit cards.
With average interest rates of more than 26% on major credit cards, and retail store cards at over 30% Dvorkin asserts, “Shoppers should ask themselves if they really need to buy gifts for everyone or instead, to buy gifts for a small core group of family and friends.”
About Debt.com: Debt.com is a consumer website where people can find help with credit card debt, student loan debt, tax debt, credit repair, bankruptcy, and more. Debt.com works with vetted and certified providers that give the best advice and solutions for consumers ‘when life happens.’
USDA and the U.S. Small Business Administration Strengthen Partnership to Create Jobs and Economic Growth in Rural America
RENO, Nev. – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Secretary Xochitl Torres Small announced today that USDA is strengthening its longstanding partnership with the Small Business Administration (SBA) to create jobs and expand access to new and better market opportunities for people in rural America.
“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to a whole-of-government approach to rebuild the economy for the American people from the bottom up and middle out, especially in the nation’s most underserved and rural communities,” Torres Small said. “At USDA, we are redoubling our commitment to drive economic security and prosperity for people in rural America, so they can find opportunities to succeed right in the places they call home. Strengthening our collaboration with the SBA helps us expand these opportunities for people to build brighter futures for generations to come.”
“Rural small businesses strengthen local economies – creating jobs and serving communities,” SBA Administrator Isabel Casillas Guzman said. “SBA’s partnership with USDA will build upon the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to investing in underserved rural Americans and providing the needed resources to help them start and grow their businesses to advance our economy and global competitiveness.”
Through a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed today, USDA and SBA are committing to increase investments in small and underserved communities to help grow the rural economy and create good-paying jobs for people nationwide.
The agencies are also committing to expand opportunities for rural technical assistance providers, entrepreneurs, cooperatives, and small business owners. They will also provide resources to help rural businesses compete in both domestic and international markets.
As part of the MOU, the agencies may work together to:
- Provide joint trainings, technical assistance and mentorship opportunities for rural small business owners and entrepreneurs.
- Help agricultural producers and small businesses identify ways to export their products around the world.
- Expand collaboration between USDA’s Rural Partners Network and SBA’s Resource Partners Network.
- Cross-promote programs that support rural businesses and socially disadvantaged communities, and more.
For more information, see the full MOU.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean-energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
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