Assessing Social Security Reform Alternatives

EBRI Policy Forum Proceedings, 1997
ISBN 0-86643-087-3
Paperback, 153 pp.
PDF, 1.3 mg
Employee Benefit Research Institute, © 1997


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Executive Summary

We stand at the crossroads in deciding the future of the Social Security System. However, we are ill-prepared to choose which path to take. The options proposed— large-scale government investment in the stock market, a new mandatory savings plan for individuals, or partial "privatization" of the current system—would lead us in profoundly different directions. Yet we understand only vaguely the impact each would have on our retirement security, social relationships, and the economy.

The papers in this book examine how we can better assess these and other Social Security reform alternatives, and they provide a preview of the forthcoming policy debate. To this end, some of the nation's leading authorities on Social Security take a first look at EBRI-SSASIM2, a state-of-the-art computer model that the Employee Benefit Research Institute is developing to clarify the web of demographic, economic, psychological, social, and political factors that lie behind various reform proposals.