Chart Detail

Per capita Social Security expenditures and the elderly poverty rate, 1959–2012

Note: No formal data exist for 1960–1965. The dotted lines denote a linear extrapolation between 1959 and 1966. Shaded areas denote recessions.

Source: Authors' analysis of Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement Historical Poverty Tables (Tables 2 and 3) and Social Security Administration (2009, Table 4a)

Updated February 28, 2014

Documentation and methodology

Underlying data are from Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement Historical Poverty Tables, Table 2, “Poverty Status, by Family Relationship, Race, and Hispanic Origin,” and Table 3, “Poverty Status, by Age, Race, and Hispanic Origin.” Data are also from the Social Security Administration Trustees Report 2009: Annual Statistical Supplement, Table 4a, “Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund Expenditures”

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