The trustees of the combined Old-Age and Survivors Insurance and Disability Insurance trust funds reported to Congress today that they project the funds will be depleted by 2034 (the same as projected last year), with the disability fund depleted by 2023, six years later than last year’s projection. “Social Security’s total income is projected to exceed its total cost through 2019, as it has since 1982,” the report said.
In addition, the trustees’ current estimate for a Social Security cost-of-living-adjustment will be 0.2% for 2017, followed by a 2.9% increase in 2018 and a 2.6% increase in 2019.
The Trustees project that the Medicare Hospital Insurance (HI) Trust Fund will be depleted in 2028, two years earlier than projected in last year’s report.
The report credits the six-year gain in solvency for the disability fund to the 2015 Bipartisan Budget Act, while Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said in a statement that the report “continues to reflect the positive impact of the Affordable Care Act on our nation’s health care system. Since the law was passed, increases to health care costs have slowed substantially.”
The report says that after 2019, “interest income and redemption of trust fund asset reserves from the General Fund of the Treasury will provide the resources needed to offset Social Security’s annual deficits until 2034, when the reserves will be depleted.” At that time, “tax income is projected to be sufficient to pay about three-quarters of scheduled benefits through the end of the projection period in 2090.”
Republicans were less sanguine about the reports, with House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) releasing a statement saying that “If the Obama administration continues its irresponsible inaction, Medicare and Social Security will fail to serve our children and grandchildren in the future.”