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Economic Security Reports


The Center for Social and Demographic Research on Aging's reports on economic security and older adults.

Living Below the Line: Insecurity in Massachusetts, 2022

New estimates from the 2022 Elder Index reveal that the cost of living in Massachusetts has increased substantially in recent years for older adults, especially for renters. Findings suggest that nearly 300,000 Massachusetts single or coupled residents aged 65 or older live with incomes below what it takes to cover essentials.
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Living Below the Line: Economic Insecurity and Older Americans, Insecurity in the States, 2022

New estimates find that millions of older adults, especially those living alone, continue to live on incomes that fall below the Elder Index, a county-by-county measure of the income needed by adults aged 65 or older to meet their basic needs and age in place. Comparisons are presented by state, and for singles as well as couples.
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Social Security Benefits Continue to Fall Short of Covering Cost of Basic Needs for Older Americans, 2021

New estimates from the 2021 Elder Index show that Social Security benefits fall short of the Elder Index in every county in the U.S.
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The Elder Index at Work

How a Data Resource is Making a Difference in Service and Advocacy for Older Adults
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Late-life Gender Disparities in Economic Security in the Context of Geography, Race and Ethnicity, and Age: Evidence from the 2020 Elder Index

New estimates from the 2020 Elder Index illustrate the elevated risk of economic insecurity experienced by older women.
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Aging in the 100 Largest Metropolitan Areas: How Do Older Adults Fare?

New estimates from the 2020 Elder Index show that living expenses are high in metropolitan areas across the U.S., and many older singles and couples lack the resources needed to get by in their communities. Focusing on the 100 largest metropolitan areas, we compare the 2020 Elder Index to household incomes among adults aged 65 years or older living in one- and two-person households.
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The Gap Remains: Social Security Benefits Continue to Fall Short of Covering Basic Cost of Living for Older Americans, 2015-2020

In this report, we document spatial and temporal aspects of Social Security benefits’ coverage of older Americans’ cost of living by comparing average Social Security benefits to the Elder Index in 2015 and 2020.
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Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Economic Security among Older Americans 2020

New estimates from the 2019 Elder IndexTM highlight the risk of economic insecurity experienced by older adults, a risk that is especially high for persons of color. The Gerontology Institute compares the household incomes for adults age 65 and above living in one- and two-person households to the 2019 Elder Index for each state and Washington, DC to calculate Elder Economic Insecurity Rates (EEIRs), the percentage of independent older adults age 65 or older living in households with annual incomes that do not support economic security.
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