Exposing the Social Security Solvency Hype

From the MarketWatch web site comes respected expert Andy Landis with this detailed analysis in readable Q+A format:

The Social Security Board of Trustees recently released its Annual Report to Congress on Social Security’s long-term finances. Minus the hype, the report is both significant and surprising.

I keep hearing that Social Security is about to go broke. What do the numbers show?

The Trustees’ Report presents these data:

  • Social Security has $2.73 Trillion in trust fund reserves.
  • Social Security reserves are still growing and will continue to grow through 2020.
  • Beginning in 2021, program costs are projected to exceed income, shrinking the trust funds.
  • The trust funds will be exhausted in 2033, the same year projected in the 2012 report.After 2033, income will cover 77% of scheduled payments.
  • That can’t be right. I’ve heard that Social Security has been losing money since 2010.

    Read the fine print. Starting in 2010, Social Security expenses exceeded “non-interest” income — primarily payroll taxes. But that ignores the interest Social Security earns on invested funds. If you take all income into account, Social Security had a surplus of $54 Billion in 2012 operations.

  • Much more here: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/exposing-the-social-security-solvency-hype-2013-06-12?pagenumber=1