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The Super Committee and Social Security: Should the Bowles-Simpson Proposals be on the Table?

September 19, 2011 Comments off

The Super Committee and Social Security: Should the Bowles-Simpson Proposals be on the Table?
Source: National Academy of Social Insurance

Cuts made to Social Security under the Bowles-Simpson proposals would lower Social Security benefits for 92 percent of all seniors in 2070, according to a new analysis released today by the nonpartisan National Academy of Social Insurance (NASI).

As the Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction – the “Super Committee” – begins its work, it has authority to consider the recommendations of Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, co-chairs of the fiscal commission created by President Obama in 2010. Although the full commission did not reach agreement, the co-chairs put forth a plan that would lower Social Security benefits in three ways: by increasing the full-benefit retirement age beyond 67; by lowering the cost-of-living adjustment for current and future beneficiaries; and by changing the formula for calculating benefits.

“What many people don’t realize is that Social Security benefits will already be less adequate going forward,” said Virginia Reno, NASI’s Vice President for Income Security. “Average benefits, expressed in today’s wage levels, will fall from about $1,110 a month today to $950 a month in 2070. The Bowles-Simpson plan would cut benefits further. ”

The brief, How Would Seniors Fare – by Age, Gender, Race and Ethnicity, and Income – Under the Bowles-Simpson Social Security Proposals by 2070?uses a micro-simulation model developed by the Social Security Administration to project how the co-chairs’ plan would affect Social Security benefits for future retirees. The results show that the plan, if enacted, would by 2070 impose large cuts – of 20 percent or more below benefits scheduled in current law – for:

  • One in three women and one in two men;
  • One in four black and Hispanic seniors and half of all white seniors; and
  • Nearly half (45 percent) of all middle-income seniors.

+ Full Document (PDF)

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Job Losses Cause Workers’ Compensation Coverage and Costs to Fall

August 19, 2011 Comments off

Job Losses Cause Workers’ Compensation Coverage and Costs to Fall
Source: National Academy of Social Insurance

The number of workers covered by workers’ compensation dropped by 4.4 percent in 2009, the biggest decrease in two decades, according to a report released today by the National Academy of Social Insurance. Employer costs for benefits fell by 7.6 percent to $73.9 billion in 2009 (the most recent year with complete data), reflecting the overall decline in employment.

“As one might expect, when the Great Recession hit, employers paid less in workers’ compensation costs because there were fewer workers to cover,” said John F. Burton, Jr., chair of the panel that oversees the report. “Although the drop in employer costs represents the biggest decrease in the last two decades, benefits increased slightly by 0.4 percent to $58.3 billion, reflecting in part benefits provided in 2009 to workers injured in prior years.”

+ Full Report (PDF)

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