12/04/2019

Animated chart of the day: The rise over time of Social Security spending as a share of federal outlays

"Social Security payments were among the top five federal spending categories for the first time in 1951 at 3.3%. Starting in 1959, Social Security payments as a share of total spending exceeded 10% and rose above 20% for the first time in 1977. By 1993, spending on Social Security topped 21% of the federal outlays and overtook spending on National Defense for the first time as the largest spending category in the federal budget. For the last quarter century, spending on Social Security has claimed the largest share of federal outlays and is expected to exceed 24% for the first time in 2023 before rising above 25% five years from now in 2024."