Social Security's Financial Outlook: The 2008 Update in Perspective

Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, 2008

Posted: 10 Mar 2010

See all articles by Alicia H. Munnell

Alicia H. Munnell

Boston College - Center for Retirement Research

Date Written: March 1, 2008

Abstract

The Trustees of the Social Security system have just issued the 2008 projections for the system over the next 75 years. The report contains two surprises. First, the 75-year deficit dropped to 1.70 percent of taxable payrolls from the roughly 2 percent it has been for the last 14 years. The decline was driven primarily by a change in the way Social Security projects immigration. Although the Trustees still project that the trust fund will be exhausted in 2041, the improved outlook enables scheduled payroll taxes to cover more than three-quarters of promised benefits after that point. The second noteworthy difference between this report and earlier ones is that it has not been signed by any public trustees. But this omission reflects a failure with the political process, not with the program itself.

Suggested Citation

Munnell, Alicia, Social Security's Financial Outlook: The 2008 Update in Perspective (March 1, 2008). Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1118949

Alicia Munnell (Contact Author)

Boston College - Center for Retirement Research ( email )

Fulton Hall 550
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States
617-552-1762 (Phone)

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