What's New
Large Accounts and Small Cash Deficits: Increasing Personal Account Size within a Fiscally Responsible Social Security Reform Framework
Philosophical and fiscal-responsibility supporters of personal accounts have taken different approaches to reforming Social Security, but it is possible to meet both their concerns, says former Cato analyst Andrew Biggs. In his report, Biggs shows that by structuring individual accounts to incorporate existing government debt, it is possible to create much larger individual accounts without requiring significant subsidies from general revenues.
Failing by a Wide Margin: Methods and Findings in the 2003 Social Security Trustees Report
Contrary to press reports that highlight the extended solvency of the trust fund, former Cato Social Security analyst Andrew Biggs cites the worsened actuarial deficit and increased net annual cash shortfalls in this year's Trustees Report. Furthermore, according to Biggs, new methodology that projects funding shortfalls into perpetuity removes a substantial measurement bias against personal account proposals, revealing billions of dollars in benefits to the federal budget that would go unnoted using the 75-year cutoff.
Public Opinion and Private Accounts: Measuring Risk and Confidence in Rethinking Social Security
John Zogby, president and CEO of Zogby International, and several of his firm's senior researchers use data from numerous public opinion polls to demonstrate the public's continuing support for Social Security choice during a period of low stock market performance. The reason, the authors argue, is that the support for Social Security choice is based more on values than on monetary gain.
Personal Accounts in a Down Market Opponents of personal accounts for Social Security cite the recent bear market values as evidence of the dangers of private investment. Cato Social Security analyst Andrew Biggs shows that even today, personal accounts offering diversification, long-term accrual, and personal control can deliver superior benefits to the current pay-as-you-go Social Security program.
To view the 2002 Zogby Poll on Social Security sponsored by the Cato Institute and Zogby International, click here.

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Project Board

Peter Ackerman

Peter Ackerman is managing director of Rockport Capital Inc., a private investment firm based in London and Washington. Until 1990 Ackerman was director of capital markets at Drexel Burnham Lambert. In 1990 he was a visiting scholar at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London where he completed Strategic Nonviolent Conflict -- The Dynamics of People Power in the Twentieth Century, published January 1994. In addition to being a member of the Cato Institute's Board of Directors, Ackerman is chairman of the Board of Overseers of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and serves on the boards of CARE, Colgate University, and the Albert Einstein Institution. He is also an adviser to the Harvard Center for International Affairs. Ackerman holds a doctorate from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

Sam Beard
Sam Beard is founder and chairman of the National Development Council, a non-profit corporation whose programs have resulted in the investment of more than $25 billion in poor and rural areas and the creation of more than 500,000 private sector jobs over the last twenty-five years. Beard designed and implemented job creation programs for Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter, and Reagan. Beard also founded Economic Security 2000, a project of the National Development Council. In 1972 Beard established the American Institute for Public Service and the Jefferson Awards that recognize outstanding Americans in a broad range of fields. Beard is a graduate of Yale University and holds a master's degree in history from Columbia University.
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Gary Becker
Gary Becker is a professor of economics and sociology at the University of Chicago. He won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science in 1992. He has served as an officer of numerous professional and elected societies, including the American Economic Association (distinguished fellow 1988, and president 1987) and the Mont Pelérin Society (president 1990 to 1992). He is vice president of the Western Economic Association. In addition, Becker is a columnist for Business Week and a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is the author of numerous monographs and articles including A Treatise on the Family, The Economic Approach to Human Behavior, and "Fertility and the Economy." Becker graduated from Princeton University summa cum laude and holds a master’s degree and doctorate from the University of Chicago.
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Karl Borden
Karl Borden is a professor of financial economics at the University of Nebraska. He is currently editor of the Society for Case Research's Annual Advances journal. In 1993 he was awarded the National Small Business Forum's Outstanding Research Paper award. Borden is the author of numerous articles on corporate finance and, most recently, "Dismantling the Pyramid: The Why and How of Privatizing Social Security." He is a graduate of Colgate University and holds a doctoral degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Borden did postdoctoral work in corporate finance at the University of Cincinnati.
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Jesse B. BrownJesse B. Brown
Jesse B. Brown is the author of Investing in the Dream: Personal Wealth-Building Strategies for African Americans in Search of Financial Freedom, and Pay Yourself First: The Family Guide to Success and Prosperity. He has been a contributing analyst for NBC News and writes a monthly electronic newsletter called "Pay Yourself First." His syndicated personal finance column is seen each weekend in the Chicago Defender and 240 other newspapers across the country. Mr. Brown is also the monthly financial makeover contributor for the ABC News website Money Scope. As President of Krystal Investment Management in Chicago, Illinois, Mr. Brown oversees millions of dollars in mutual funds, stocks and bonds for his investor clients. Mr. Brown is a past President of the National Association of Securities Professionals Chicago Chapter. He is a general securities principal and a licensed, registered representative of securities broker selling stocks, bonds and mutual funds and giving investment advice.
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Edgar Browning
Edgar Browning is the Alfred F. Chalk Professor in Economics at Texas A&M University in College Station. He has served on the Texas A&M faculty since 1984 and focuses his research efforts on public finance. Browning served at the University of Virginia from 1969 to 1984. In addition to coauthoring two popular economics textbooks, he frequently contributes to economic journals. Browning holds his doctorate from Princeton University.
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Robert Genetski
Robert Genetski is senior managing director of Chicago Capital Inc. Genetski served as chief economist at Chicago's Harris Bank for more than seventeen years. He is the author of several books, including Taking the Voodoo Out of Economics and A Nation of Millionaires. He is also a regular contributor to the Nikkei Financial Daily He has twice (1989 and 1994) been listed as the number-one interest rate forecaster by Institutional Investor magazine and Blue Chip Financial Forecasts. Genetski holds a doctorate in economics from New York University.
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Daniel Gressel
Daniel Gressel is president of Teleos Asset Management, the trading advisor for two international hedge funds sponsored by Citibank. He has been an economic advisor to Indonesia, Costa Rica, and Chile. While in Chile, he advised the government on its efforts to privatize pensions. He has taught at Moscow State University, Baruch College in New York, and the Catholic University in Santiago, Chile. Gressel received a bachelor's degree in business administration from Ohio State University in 1976, a master's degree in 1978, and a doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago in 1984.
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Arnold Harberger
Arnold Harberger is a professor of economics at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is also the Gustavus F. and Ann M. Swift Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago. He has been with the U.S. Departments of State, Treasury, Commerce, and Interior; the Council of Economic Advisers; the Agency for International Development; and the White House. Harberger has also consulted major corporations and governments, including the government of Chile during social security privatization. Harberger holds a doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago.
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Dorcas R. Hardy
Dorcas R. Hardy is chairman, president, and CEO of Work Recovery Inc., a rehabilitation technology firm in Tucson, Arizona. After serving as U.S. Commissioner of Social Security from 1986 to 1989, Hardy founded Dorcas R. Hardy & Associates, a government relations and public policy consulting firm. Hardy has hosted The Senior American, an NET political magazine for older Americans and Financing Your Future, a prime time program of CNN. She is the author of Social Insecurity: The Crisis in America's Social Security System and How to Plan Now for Your Own Financial Survival Hardy received her bachelor's degree from Connecticut College and her master's degree in business administration from Pepperdine University. She also completed the Executive Program in Health Policy and Financial Management at Harvard University.
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Laurence Kotlikoff
Laurence Kotlikoff is a professor of economics at Boston University, a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a fellow of the Econometric Society. He served as senior economist on President Reagan's Council of Economic Advisers. He has also served as consultant to the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, foreign governments, and major U.S. corporations. Kotlikoff is the author of numerous books and articles on fiscal policy issues including Social Security and pensions. He is also associate editor of the Japanese Economic Review. Kotlikoff is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and holds a doctorate in economics from Harvard University.
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Richard McKenzie
Richard McKenzie holds the Walter B. Gerkin Chair in Enterprise and Society at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author of numerous books and articles including "The New World of Economics" and frequently contributes to The Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, the Christian Science Monitor, the National Review, and Forbes. McKenzie is an adjunct fellow at the Center for the Study of American Business at Washington University in St. Louis. He holds a doctorate from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
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Deroy Murdock
Deroy Murdock is cofounder and a member of the national board of Third Millennium, a New York-based educational and political advocacy group launched by concerned Americans born after 1960. He frequently contributes to the Washington Times, The Wall Street Journal, the New York Post, the Orange County Register, the Chicago Tribune, and the Miami Herald. As an adjunct fellow of the Virginia-based Atlas Economic Research Foundation, Murdock has lectured on economics and politics in Colombia and Venezuela. He is a graduate of Georgetown University.
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Krzysztof M. Ostaszewski
Krzysztof M. Ostaszewski is a professor and actuarial program director at the University of Louisville. Ostaszewski is an associate of the Society of Actuaries and a member of its Social Security committee. He is also a Chartered Financial Analyst and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries. His works have been published by the Society of Actuaries, the American Mathematical Society, and the American Economic Review. Ostaszewski is a Fulbright Research Fellow and holds a doctorate in mathematics from the University of Washington.
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Star Parker
Star Parker is President and Founder of the Coalition on Urban Renewal and Education (CURE), a non-profit research center that provides national dialogue on how social policies impact America's inner cities and the poor. Parker received her BS degree in marketing from Woodbury University and launched an urban Christian magazine. Parker lectures at colleges and churches, conducts goal-setting workshops in housing projects, and sponsors legislative briefings and empowerment conferences for inner city pastors. Major accomplishments include speaking at the 1996 Republican National Convention, co-producing a documentary on welfare reform with the BBC in London, and broadcasting a message of freedom from government throughout the entire nation of Peru. As a social policy consultant and media commentator, Parker gives regular testimony before the United States Congress, and is a national expert on major television and radio shows across the country. Simon & Schuster's Pocket Books released Parker's autobiography "Pimps, Whores & Welfare Brats" in 1997.
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Timothy J. Penny
Timothy J. Penny is senior counselor to the Minnesota-based public relations firm Himle-Horner and coauthor of Common Cents. As a member of Congress from 1982 to 1994, Penny established himself as a budget watchdog and received awards for his deficit reduction efforts. Currently, Penny is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, serves on the board of directors of the Concord Coalition, chairs the Minnesota chapter of the Democratic Leadership Council, and is actively involved with the University of Minnesota Humphrey School. He is a graduate of Winona State University.
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Charles E. Rounds, Jr.Charles E. Rounds, Jr.
Charles E. Rounds, Jr. is a member of the Massachusetts bar and a tenured professor at Suffolk University Law School in Boston. He is an academic fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC); and author of the last nine editions of the Loring A Trustee's Handbook (Panel Publishers), which first appeared in 1898. Professor Rounds is also former outside counsel to The Franklin Foundation, by statute sole managing agent of a now-terminated 200 year accumulation trust established under the will of Benjamin Franklin. He has testified before the Joint Economic Committee and the House Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law. Rounds is the author of "Property Rights: The Hidden Issue of Social Security Reform" (Cato, SSP No. 19, April 19, 2000) and "IOLTA, Interest without Principle" (Cato, No. 291 Policy Analysis, Dec. 18, 1997). He is co-author (with Prof. Karl J. Borden) of "A Proposed Legal, Regulatory, and Operational Structure for an Investment-Based Social Security System" (Cato, SSP No. 25, Feb. 19, 2002). Rounds holds a BA from Columbia University and JD from Suffolk University Law School. He serves as an expert litigation witness in numerous trust-related matters.
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Bruce Schobel
Bruce Schobel is corporate vice president and actuary for New York Life Insurance Company. He is a founding member of the National Academy of Social Insurance, a fellow of the Society of Actuaries and the Conference of Consulting Actuaries, and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries. He served as senior adviser for policy to the commissioner of the Social Security Administration and as staff actuary for the National Commission on Social Security Reform. Schobel is the author of numerous articles on social insurance. He is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
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Thomas Siems
Thomas F. Siems is senior economist and policy advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. He also serves as a professor for LeTourneau University and Southern Methodist University. Siems is the author of many articles that combine efficiency research with the principles of free-enterprise, including Reengineering Social Security in the New Economy. He is an engineering graduate of The University of Michigan and holds a doctorate in operations research from Southern Methodist University.
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Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is founder and principal of Capitol Analysts Network, a Washington, D.C.-based political risk management firm. During his time on Capitol Hill, Sweet served as senior legislative assistant to several members of Congress. He served in the Reagan administration and was a vice president of the prominent lobbying firm of Black, Manafort, Stone & Kelly. Sweet has testified on Social Security reform before the Senate Finance Committee and the Ways and Means Committee and has written guest editorials for The Wall Street Journal. He holds a master's degree in business administration from the University of Chicago.
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