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Has Social Security Redistributed to Whites from People of Color?

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Document date: November 06, 2013
Released online: November 07, 2013
This brief considers how Social Security’s many benefit and tax features have redistributed across groups over time. Using Current Population Survey data from 1970 through 1994 and microsimulation projections from the Urban Institute’s DYNASIM3 model, we find that for many decades, Social Security redistributed from blacks, Hispanics, and other people of color, to whites. These transfers will likely to continue in future decades. Our findings suggest that future reforms that place the burden of Social Security reform solely on younger, more diverse generations may have undesired distributional consequences if the aim of the program is to provide greater relative protections to more vulnerable groups.


Topics/Tags: | Economy/Taxes | Race/Ethnicity/Gender | Retirement and Older Americans


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