Washington, DC – Today, the Social Security Administration announced that its approximately 65 million Social Security beneficiaries will see a 5.9% increase in their monthly benefit payments in 2022, known as the program’s automatic cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). The following is a statement from Jason Fichtner, vice president and chief economist at the Bipartisan Policy Center:
“Come January, beneficiaries can expect to see one of the largest increases in monthly benefits not only in their time on the program, but in the program’s past 40 years. While this increase will help current beneficiaries weather today’s inflation, we must remember that seniors’ long-term retirement security depends on lawmakers’ willingness to act now to shore up Social Security’s finances to avoid a potential across the board reduction in benefits if the trust funds become depleted.”
The 2021 Trustees Report for Social Security that was released in August projected that Social Security’s primary trust fund that pays retirement benefits, the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance trust fund, will be depleted in 2033. If policymakers fail to address Social Security’s financial challenges by that point, benefits could immediately be cut by 24% across the board.
BPC and the Funding Our Future initiative will host a virtual event at 10AM EST today featuring Jason Fichtner, Stephen Goss, chief actuary for the Social Security Administration, and Chantel Boyens of the Urban Institute to break down implications of the program’s automatic COLA for 2022 and what current and future beneficiaries should know about the future of Social Security.