Volume 9 Issue 2 - May 2008
In late March, the Social Security Board of Trustees released its annual report on the financial health of the Social Security Trust Funds. Many projections remain unchanged from last year’s report. However, the projected long-term status shows some improvement, based largely on methodological changes for projecting aspects of immigration. A key difference is that the projected actuarial deficit over the 75-year long-range period is 1.70 percent of taxable payroll, which is down from 1.95 percent in last year’s report. Despite the slightly improved outlook, clearly reform remains an important public policy matter for current and future lawmakers.
Concerns for overall federal fiscal imbalance loom. There will be greater pressures for government agencies to show that they are efficient. In that light, it is worth noting that the Trustees also report that the cost of $5.5 billion to administer the program in 2007 was a very low 0.9 percent of total expenditures.