Social Security Trustees Reports, 2009

Mon, 18 May 2009 19:47:02 +0000

The big news last week was that the annual Trustees Reports for Social Security and Medicare were released, and the financial condition of the programs worsened compared to the prior year's report. When I read the Trustees Report for Social Security, I go straight for Table IV.B7, which shows that the unfunded obligations for the program over the infinite horizon are projected to be $15.1 trillion, which is equivalent to 3.4% of taxable payroll or 1.2% of GDP in perpetuity. (Those numbers are up from 3.2% and 1.1% in last year's report.) For an excellent set of comments on the reports, see the handouts from this panel convened by the National Academy of Social Insurance.