Through eight months of the count toward the January 2019 federal retiree COLA, the count stands at 2.6 percent, following an increase in May of 0.5 percentage points in the inflation index used to set the COLA.

Cost-of-living-adjustments (COLAs) are effective on December 1 of each year and are applied to the annuity payments made the following month. COLAs for those retired less than one year are prorated according to the date on which they retired. If you retire in January, your first adjustment will be made in January of the following year and will be for 11/12ths of the COLA amount. If you retire in February it will be 10/12ths, and so forth. Future COLAs will be for the full amount. The COLA is based on the change in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI/W) average of the third calendar quarter of one year to the next.

Read more on Federal Cost of Living Adjustments at ask.FEDweek.com