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At this event, retirement experts will discuss how proposed policy changes to Social Security or private pensions may be ill-considered.
Social Security can be claimed at any age between 62 and 70, with delayed claiming resulting in larger monthly payments. Claiming later increases the present value of lifetime benefits for most individuals. However, this has not always been the case. We find that the gains from delay increased substantially after 2000, with changes in the interest rate driving the increase.
One oft-cited reason to support immigration reform is to help Social Security's finances by introducing young workers into an aging system. Official figures bear out this presumption, but these figures are based on models that assume that legal immigrants are effectively identical to workers already in the U.S. But they are not.
With graduation season nearly finished, another cohort of young workers is set to enter the labor force. Members of this cohort confront an immense challenge in planning for retirement: There is a great deal of uncertainty about the Social Security taxes and benefits they will face.
But the chained CPI really isn't being proposed as a Social Security reform, as a way to make the program more solvent or better-functioning. True Social Security reforms think about ways to better protect the poor, or to encourage longer work lives, or increase retirement saving. The chained CPI, by contrast, is about producing savings within the 10-year budget scoring window.
But by eliminating the cap, a person earning $225,000 would pay roughly four times more in taxes than he'll receive in benefits. A growing resemblance to a welfare plan would be inescapable.
The narrative is already forming that President Obama only proposed using the chained CPI to appease congressional Republicans. But why should Republicans take the rap for a measure that weakens Social Security for the least well-off and institutes a large and regressive tax increase? Higher taxes and a less effective Social Security program - what's not to dislike?
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