By the Numbers

UP TEN OVER TEN – The national debt of the US government rose from $6.783 trillion on 9/30/03 to $16.738 trillion on 9/30/13, an increase of $9.955 trillion over the last 10 fiscal years (source: Treasury Department

AUTOPILOT — Some of the spending by the US government increases automatically year-after-year with no required input from Congress. These “automatic stabilizers” increased federal spending by $422 billion during the recently completed fiscal year 2013 (i.e., the 12 months ending 9/30/13). That’s equal to 12 per cent of all federal spending during the fiscal year, i.e., 12 per cent of $3.45 trillion (source: Congressional Budget Office).

DEFICIT FOR THE YEAR – The US government collected $2.77 trillion of tax revenue in fiscal year 2013 (i.e., the 12 months ending 9/30/13) and spent $3.45 trillion, resulting in a $680 billion deficit for the fiscal year.  That is equivalent to collecting 80 cents in tax revenue and spending $1 (source: Treasury Department).

JUST A FEW — Just 5 per cent of Americans covered by Medicaid account for 54 per cent of all Medicaid expenditures (source: Medicaid).

LATER FOR YOU – The average age at which currently retired Americans were able to retire is 58.6 years.  The average age at which currently working Americans expect to retire is 68.4 years.  1,546 Americans were surveyed in January 2013 for this statistic (source: Northwestern Mutual).

RETIREES – The maximum retirement benefit paid by Social Security to an individual retiring in 2014 at the full retirement age of 66 will be $2,642 per month or $31,704 per year (source: Social Security).