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  • Archive for May, 2011

    Findings of the 2011 Trustees Report

    Wednesday, May 18th, 2011

    With so much debate and discussion about Social Security these days, the recent annual Trustees Report is getting a lot of attention.

    The Trustees Report is published by the Board of Trustees for the Social Security trust funds, which is made up of six members: the Secretaries of the Treasury, of Labor, and of Health and Human Services; the Commissioner of Social Security; and two trustees who represent the public from different political parties and are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. The report is produced annually to Congress on the financial and actuarial status of these funds. It is used as a tool for both Congress and the public to gauge the financial status of the Social Security system and to understand the scope of the program’s long-term commitments.

    According to the 2011 findings of the Trustees Report, as of January 2011, 54.2 million people, or about one in six U.S. residents, currently receive Social Security benefits. The report finds that Social Security’s annual surplus of $69 billion in 2010 is projected to continue into the next 12 years (2011-2022). By that point reserves are expected to grow to $3.7 trillion. Due to this continued surplus Social Security will be able to pay individuals their full benefits until 2036. After that time, even if no changes are made, the amount of money being paid into the program will still cover 77% of scheduled benefits and administrative costs.

    This important program continues to be a vital source of income for U.S. residents well into their retirement, and with some relatively modest changes this program can be brought back into long-term balance in the future.

    To learn more about the Social Security debate, check out the lead article in our Spring 2011 newsletter here.

    Source: Reno, Virginia, Lamme, Elizabeth, and Walker, Elisa.  “Social Security Finances: Findings of the 2011 Trustees Report”. National Academy of Social Insurance Brief, May 2011

    WISER

    About Us

    WISER is a nonprofit organization that works to help women, educators and policymakers understand the important issues surrounding women's retirement income. WISER creates a variety of consumer publications including fact sheets, booklets and a quarterly newsletter that explain in easy-to-understand language the complex issues surrounding Social Security, divorce, pay equity, pensions, savings and investments, banking, home-ownership, long-term care and disability insurance.

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