Cohort Changes in Social Security Benefits and Pension Wealth

Published: 2016
Project ID: UM16-11


The Health and Retirement Study creates the potential to follow changes in retirement preparation through the introduction of new cohorts every six years. The most recent addition in 2010 also included an expansion of the minority sample. This new 2010 cohort coincides with the recent availability of pension plan descriptions, improving the linkage over what was available in previous cohorts. Linked Social Security data have also recently become available for the 2010 new cohort. We intend to use these new data sources to measure Social Security and pension wealth, and to conduct sensitivity analyses of cohort changes to key assumptions used in their construction. This new improved dataset can help shed light on Social Security and pension wealth across different demographic groups and on how well Americans from the middle of the baby boom are financially prepared for retirement.