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Cost-of-Living Adjustment

An increase to a wage, salary, or pension designed so that the real value remains the same. That is, a cost-of-living adjustment increases the underlying wage, salary, or pension so that it keeps pace with (but does not run ahead of) inflation. Federal pensions and Social Security include cost-of-living adjustments, though few other pensions do.

Cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).

A COLA results in a wage or benefit increase that is designed to help you keep pace with increased living costs that result from inflation.

COLAs are usually pegged to increases in the consumer price index (CPI). Federal government pensions, some state pensions, and Social Security are usually adjusted annually, but only a few private pensions provide COLAs.


(pronounced like the beverage) See cost-of-living adjustment.

References in periodicals archive ?
Keith, who founded the National Committee on Public Employee Pension Systems 15 years ago, says full COLAs on entire pension benefits are unnecessary, and he's right.
While few people bother to question it anymore, the illogic of COLAs is three-fold.
Big Cola es el producto de una compania peruana que entr6 discretamente a Mexico hace menos de dos anos, en Puebla y Guadalajara, y que acaba de llegar a la capital.
Caffeine is a mildly addictive stimulant drug that's added to most cola and "pepper" drinks and some other sodas.