ACADEMY IN THE NEWS

The following items contain links to news stories in which the Academy or Academy volunteers appear. Note: The Academy is not responsible for the content of these websites. Some sites may require registration or a subscription. Links may expire.


May 07, 2011
Wall Street Journal

The Academy's Pension Assistance List program was mentioned for providing free actuarial expertise to workers who need help checking pension calculations.

May 04, 2011
Reuters

The Academy said that the cost of living for single retirees is about 40 percent higher than for couples on a per person basis because of economies of scale.

May 03, 2011
Investor's Business Daily

The Academy was mentioned for its efforts to design a standards framework to provide all stakeholders with a clear understanding of the long-term costs of public pension benefits. The Academy's board asked the Actuarial Standards Board in October 2008 to develop standards for consistently measuring the economic value of pension plan assets and liabilities.

April 19, 2011
Bloomberg

The Academy's Public Plans Subcommittee Chairperson Bill Hallmark discussed early retirement incentives' affect on public pension financing. Hallmark said that most early retirement incentives are unlikely to have a "significant impact" on pension systems' fiscal health because costs tend to be spread over time.

April 13, 2011
Reuters

The Academy’s April 4 Capitol Hill briefing on retirement risks was cited. The Academy provided a hypothetical example to demonstrate “timing risk.” In the example, a worker who retired on Jan. 1, 2009 as opposed to Jan. 1, 2008 would have his or her annuity reduced by 26 percent because of declining investment account values and higher annuity purchase rates resulting from declining interest rates.

April 13, 2011
Employee Benefits Adviser

The Academy provided a list of policy options to strengthen the individual health insurance coverage mandate contained within the health reform law. Academy Senior Health Fellow Cori Uccello explained how these options also can serve as alternatives if the mandate is removed from the law.

April 11, 2011
Forbes

The Academy's Pension Assistance List program was mentioned for providing free actuarial expertise to workers who have questions regarding their pension plans.

April 05, 2011
Roll Call

Sen. John Thune cited the Academy's adverse selection and sustainability concerns regarding the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act in his op-ed about the CLASS program.

March 30, 2011
Washington Times

The Academy's adverse selection and sustainability concerns regarding the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act were cited, and the Academy's July 2009 analysis of the federal long-term care program was referenced.

March 30, 2011
National Underwriter Life & Health

The Academy provided several policy options to strengthen the individual health insurance coverage mandate contained with the health reform law. These options also can serve as alternatives if the mandate is removed from the law.

March 29, 2011
Hartford Courant

Academy Senior Health Fellow Cori Uccello discussed the importance of the individual health insurance coverage mandate contained within the health reform law. She said the mandate helps limit adverse selection by encouraging enrollment of low-risk individuals.

March 29, 2011
Insurance Journal

Academy Senior Health Fellow Cori Uccello discussed the importance of the individual health insurance coverage mandate contained within the health reform law. She said the mandate helps limit adverse selection by encouraging enrollment of low-risk individuals. Uccello also said that alternatives would be necessary if the mandate is removed from the law, but that these policy options should also be considered to strengthen the mandate if it is not removed.

March 15, 2011
National Underwriter Life & Health

Academy volunteer Al Schmitz's testimony during a congressional subcommittee hearing on the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) program was previewed and the Academy's FAQ on the CLASS Act was cited.

March 14, 2011
Politico

Academy meetings, where discussions have occurred about alternatives to the individual health insurance coverage mandate contained in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, were referenced.

March 03, 2011
Hartford Courant

Academy Health Practice Council Vice President Tom Wildsmith was the guest expert during a live web chat. Wildsmith answered a host of questions ranging from how health insurance companies determine premiums to how health care reform will affect insurance markets.

March 02, 2011
Stamford Advocate

An op-ed cited the Academy’s issue brief on The Value of Defined Benefit Plans. The brief states that the management of investments is more efficient in a defined benefit plan than in a defined contribution plan and this efficiency can often lead to higher returns. 

March 02, 2011
Politico

Academy Health Practice Council Vice President Tom Wildsmith discussed Academy volunteers’ visit to Washington to confer with policymakers on health care reform implementation. He said one of the most frequently asked questions was about alternatives to the individual mandate. Wildsmith said that there is "no real silver bullet," but that a combination of things would have to be done, such as open enrollments, waiting periods, and penalties for late enrollment.

February 24, 2011
Reuters

The Academy's FAQ on the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act was linked, and co-contributor Steve Schoonveld discussed the actuaries' adverse selection and affordability concerns regarding the federal long-term care program.

February 21, 2011
New York Times

Academy leaders cited for their comments on the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act. The actuaries are concerned that the federal long-term care program, established by the health care reform law, will attract a disproportionate share of higher-risk individuals and will lead to adverse selection issues.

February 17, 2011
National Journal

Academy volunteer and long-term care expert Steve Schoonveld discussed changes proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services regarding the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act. He said the proposal would alleviate many of the actuaries' concerns with the health care reform provision that establishes a federal long-term care program. Schoonveld said that he remains concerned, however, about affordability issues that could limit participation.

February 08, 2011
Time

Academy volunteer Steve Schoonveld discussed the average costs of various long-term care services.

February 02, 2011
AOL's WalletPop

The Academy's Social Security Game was cited and linked. According to the Social Security Game, subjecting all incoming to Social Security tax without increasing benefits--as calculated under current law--would eliminate 100 percent of Social Security's long-term shortfall.

February 01, 2011
New York Times

Academy Health Practice Council Vice President Tom Wildsmith discussed lifetime limits on health coverage. Wildsmith said that the expense of eliminating lifetime limits is fairly modest.

January 31, 2011
Baltimore Sun

The Academy Public Plan Practices Task Force's report, "Risk Management and Public Retirement Systems," was cited in an op-ed. As described in the commentary, the report said that "states need to identify conflicts of interest within the system, clearly establish rules to ensure adequate funding and educate administration officials and unions about the economic consequences of policy."

January 31, 2011
Northeast Pennsylvania Business Journal

Steve Schoonveld, an Academy representative on long-term care issues, discussed the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act. Schoonveld said that adding eligibility restrictions might limit adverse selection, which is one of the primary concerns that actuaries have with the federal long-term care program.

January 31, 2011
The Citizen of Laconia

Rep. Frank Guinta explained a "defined contribution" approach to Medicare reform, as described in the Academy's Medicare Reform Options monograph. According to the Academy, a defined contribution approach means that Congress would define the level of Medicare funding provided to seniors rather than define the level of benefits provided to them. Seniors would receive a fixed dollar amount toward their health coverage, rather than receive guaranteed benefits. The individual would have to make up any difference in the cost of the private insurance plan they have chosen and the government contribution. 

January 30, 2011
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

The Academy Consumer-Driven Health Plans (CDHP) Work Group's analysis of CDHP research studies was cited in an op-ed. According to the work group's analysis, high-deductible plans reduce costs between 12 and 20 percent in the first year and between three to five percent annually in the subsequent years.

January 29, 2011
Deseret News

An Academy letter to congressional leaders on health care reform was cited in an op-ed. Regarding the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act, the Academy said that given the way the program is structured, "severe adverse selection would result in high premiums that are likely to be unaffordable for much of the intended population."

January 26, 2011
Watchdog.org

Academy President-elect David Sandberg discussed the Academy Public Plans Practices Task Force report on "Risk Management and Public Retirement Systems." Sandberg said that it is important for state and local officials to fully understand their risk exposure.

January 25, 2011
National Underwriter Life & Health

The Academy's "Actuarial State of the Union," in which the Academy recommended increasing the retirement age to restore Social Security's actuarial balance, was discussed. The Academy said that life expectancy improvements have lead to an expansion of lifetime benefits and system costs, and an increase in the retirement age would stem this cost growth. The Academy also said it hopes that policymakers will focus on new policies to better enable employees and retirees to manage longevity, inflation and investment risks.