Issue Brief posted April 18, 2014
Job Creation: Policies to Boost Employment and Economic Growth
Nearly five years since the official end of the great recession in June 2009, 10.5 million Americans are unemployed, and the labor force participation rate remains near a 35-year low. The weak labor market exists despite trillions of dollars in fiscal and monetary stimulus aimed at boosting employment and economic growth.
Rather than increase the size of the federal…
Issue Brief posted April 17, 2014
Paycheck Fairness Act Would Reduce Pay and Flexibility in the Workplace
In the name of protecting women from discrimination, the Paycheck Fairness Act (PFA) would allow employees to sue businesses that pay different workers different wages—even if those differences have nothing to do with the employees’ sex. These lawsuits can be brought for unlimited damages, giving a windfall to trial lawyers.
Any financial benefits they reap, however,…
Issue Brief posted February 28, 2014
Chairman Camp’s Tax Reform Plan a Milestone for Dynamic Analysis
House Ways and Means Committee chairman Dave Camp (R–MI) released a plan for comprehensive tax reform. Setting aside its merits, Camp’s proposal is noteworthy on two accounts: (1) It presents the most comprehensive tax reform proposal in decades, and (2) it includes a dynamic estimate from the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT).
The latter is a long overdue and welcome…
Issue Brief posted August 2, 2013
Detroit’s Bankruptcy Marks the Tip of the Iceberg
Detroit’s recent filing for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection would protect the city from its creditors while allowing it to restructure its debts. The proceedings that follow will, in many respects, set precedents for the swell of municipal bankruptcies that are likely to follow. Some of these precedents will be set through the courts, but federal policymakers have the…
Issue Brief posted June 27, 2013
History Suggests Social Security Insolvency Is Coming Sooner Than Projected
This year’s Social Security trustees report was released with little fanfare, as the projected date of Social Security’s financial insolvency held steady at 2033. Many analysts and lawmakers have pointed to 20 years of alleged solvency as an excuse to delay meaningful Social Security reform. However, if history is any guide to future solvency, the Social Security…
Issue Brief posted June 4, 2013
Social Security Analysis of Immigration Bill Opaque and Too Narrow
Proponents of the Senate immigration bill have been touting a recent analysis by the Social Security Chief Actuary which alleges a $4.6 trillion immigration boon for Social Security’s 75-year financial outlook. Despite a total lack of transparency in the actuarial analysis, a number of problems are quite clear—the largest being a failure to account for all future…
Issue Brief posted May 31, 2013
Social Security Trust Fund Reports Massive Deficits, Benefit Cuts by 2033
Social Security ran a $55 billion deficit in 2012, closing out three years of consecutive cash-flow deficits as the program’s unfunded obligations continue to grow.
The combined 75-year unfunded obligation of the Social Security and Disability trust funds (referred to as the OASDI trust fund) is $12.3 trillion. This is a $1 trillion increase from last year’s unfunded…
Backgrounder posted May 21, 2013
Social Security Benefits and the Impact of the Chained CPI
More than 57 million Americans draw on Social Security benefits for retirement, disability, or survivors’ benefits. Social Security benefits are indexed for inflation to protect beneficiaries against the loss of purchasing power as the prices of goods and services rise over time. However, the index used to calculate Social Security’s cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) each…