Should the Budget Exclude the Cost of Individual Accounts?

Research Report

Should the Budget Exclude the Cost of Individual Accounts?

Abstract

Proposals to replace part of Social Security with individual accounts are now a focus of attention, with the President expressing a strong desire to push forward on creating individual accounts within Social Security. This paper considers the appropriate budgetary treatment of proposals to create such accounts. The paper concludes that borrowing to finance such accounts should count as part of the unified deficit and that the transfer of funds into such accounts should count as outlays.

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