Michigan Workers and Retirees Are at Risk

Michigan has an especially strong incentive to favor fundamental reform to the existing Social Security system. The Heritage Foundation has done a state-by-state analysis of expected returns for future retirees. Projected benefits under Social Security were compared with what could be expected if workers were allowed to invest their payroll taxes privately in bond and equity markets. Due primarily to being a heavily urbanized state with a relatively high percentage of lower-wage workers, Michigan ranks 40th or below in expected Social Security returns among the 50 states. The lower returns amount to a net loss of almost $580,000 in retirement income per Michigan worker over a lifetime (Table 3 is not available in the online study. Please order the study for full content).