Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Let the Wonkery Begin

New trustee estimates are in, and they pushed the insolvency date up to 2041. Time to dive in and see what nonsense they pulled to get there...

first pass - significantly lowered mortality rates from previous year, lowered the already ridiculously low immigration rates...

...increased near term inflation estimates...

Max says:

Some minor cookery in view: they bumped the two key years back one each, so they can say, look, things are gittin worse. The Trust Fund cash deficit is presumed to begin in 2017 instead of 2018, and the Fund's assets exhausted in 2041 instead of 2042. The actuarial imbalances get marginally larger, as predicted here this morning. The only question is how they jigger the assumptions, which evidently they do, albeit to minor effect.

It looks like the biggest jiggering is with the mortality tables. What I'd love is a model ran with last year's assumptions intact, with the 2004 actual data added, but that I'll never see...

...they do discuss how changes affect the long run actuarial balance, but not the solvency year.

Anyway, summing up, from what I can glean:

people live longer
teenagers work less
inflation higher
old people work less