No Runny Eggs

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The FY2010 Social Security primary deficit now projected to be $34 billion

by @ 18:38 on February 22, 2010. Filed under Social Security crater.

I could have also titled this Part 2 – I already reported that between February 2009 and January 2010 (or the first full 12 months of the Obama administration), Social Security posted a 12-month primary deficit in its combined OASDI “Trust Funds”. As part of a look into the numbers, I came across the Social Security appendix to the proposed FY2011 budget prepared by the White House Office of Budget and Management.

I draw your attention to the pair of tables titled “Status of Funds”, one found under the “Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund” section (pages 1214-1215 of the document) and the other found under the “Federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund” section (page 1216).

Last month, the Congressional Budget Office estimated the FY2010 Social Security primary deficit to be $28 billion, with the FY2011 primary deficit at $20 billion. The bad news is the OMB now predicts a primary deficit of $33.754 billion on total revenues of $793 billion, total outlays of $708.35 billion, and $118.404 billion of interest.

Given that the administration had planned on taking $21.028 billion from the “Trust Funds” to pay for the rest of government for FY2010, that represents a $54.782 billion unplanned addition to the deficit. At least they’re not counting on Social Security to run in the black for FY2011 – they project a $19.136 billion primary deficit in the combined funds, so the first $19 billion or so in deficits next year will be “accounted for”.

The ugly news is that the OASI “Trust Fund”, which has been running 12-month primary surpluses for all except one 12-month period (due to an unexplained crediting of payments to the DI fund in November 1994) since 1988, is expected to run a $2.934 billion deficit in FY2010 before (hopefully) recovering to a $12.152 billion primary surplus in FY2011. The DI fund began running 12-month primary deficits full-time in October 2005, and transitioned to an overall 12-month deficit in February 2009.

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