January 13, 2010
New GAO Reports: Loan Performance in Nonprime Mortgage Market, Social Security: Options to Protect Benefits
- Loan Performance and Negative Home Equity in the Nonprime Mortgage Market, GAO-10-146R, December 16, 2009: "This report (1) provides information on the performance of these nonprime loans as of June 30, 2009, and describes forecasts made by others of future loan performance; and (2) examines the extent of negative home equity among nonprime borrowers in selected metropolitan areas and nationwide. In addition, enclosure VI describes the preliminary results of our analysis of the demographic characteristics of nonprime borrowers—including race and ethnicity—whose loans originated in 2005.2 We identified these characteristics by merging loan-level records from two data sources. This report also provides supplemental information on the performance of nonprime mortgages by annual loan cohort, product type, Census division, state, and congressional district. This supplemental information is presented in enclosures I through IV."
- Social Security: Options to Protect Benefits for Vulnerable Groups When Addressing Program Solvency, GAO-10-101R, December 07, 2009: "For over 70 years, Social Security has been the foundation of retirement income for American workers and their families and has been instrumental in reducing poverty among the elderly. The Congressional Research Service estimates that if Social Security benefits did not exist, an estimated 44 percent of all elderly people would be poor today.1 Still, some people who receive Social Security retirement benefits remain vulnerable to poverty in old age. The elderly poverty rate in 2007 was 9.7 percent. In addition, the long-term financing shortfall currently facing the Social Security program is growing and has made reform of the program a priority for policy makers. Thus, the nation faces the challenge of improving long-term program solvency, while also ensuring benefit adequacy for economically vulnerable beneficiaries. Many Social Security reform proposals have suggested modifying the system to restore its financial balance by reducing benefits or increasing payroll or other taxes, and several also include options to address concerns about benefit adequacy for economically vulnerable groups of beneficiaries."
- Related postings on financial system