Actuarial Organizations Update Tool Helpful in Evaluating a Critical Retirement Security Risk
Improvements to the Actuaries Longevity Illustrator Include Data, Methodology Updates
WASHINGTON and SCHAUMBURG, IL (October 22, 2019)—The American Academy of Actuaries and the Society of Actuaries (SOA) have updated the jointly developed Actuaries Longevity Illustrator (longevityillustrator.org), a web-based tool that allows users to quickly generate an estimate of how long they might live in a few simple steps.
“With the Actuaries Longevity Illustrator, users can generate interesting results about the probabilities of living to different ages, which is particularly useful for understanding the risk of outliving income, or longevity risk, when planning for retirement,” said Academy Senior Pension Fellow Linda K. Stone, MAAA, FSA. “The updates improve the user experience.”
Language on the illustrator website has been clarified to help users effectively use and understand its results, and back-end data and methodologies used to calculate results have been updated. The mortality tables used to generate the illustrator’s results have been updated from the U.S. Social Security’s 2010 to 2016 tables, and the mortality improvement scale has been updated from SOA MP-2015 to MP-2018. Changes have also been made to the factors used to adjust for smoking and health status.
“The Actuaries Longevity Illustrator adds an important perspective to the retirement planning conversation—namely, longevity risk,” said Lisa Schilling, FSA, EA, FCA, MAAA, SOA retirement research actuary. “It’s very risky to consider just one point in time for how long you’ll live. Instead, individuals and couples should look at the potential for either one or both of them to live to a variety of points and the associated risks they face.”
To use the Actuaries Longevity Illustrator, an individual or a couple enters some basic information about themselves—including their age, gender, and general health status—and the tool generates easy-to-read charts showing the likelihood of living to certain ages. For instance, a couple can determine the chance of living a given number of years together as well as the likelihood that one or the other will survive additional years. The Actuaries Longevity Illustrator does not provide financial advice but the results can be useful for individuals or couples in understanding their financial needs in retirement. Access the tool at www.longevityillustrator.org.
The American Academy of Actuaries is a 19,500-member professional association whose mission is to serve the public and the U.S. actuarial profession. For more than 50 years, the Academy has assisted public policymakers on all levels by providing leadership, objective expertise, and actuarial advice on risk and financial security issues. The Academy also sets qualification, practice, and professionalism standards for actuaries in the United States.
With roots dating back to 1889, the Society of Actuaries (SOA) is the world’s largest actuarial professional organization with more than 32,000 actuaries as members. Through research and education, the SOA’s mission is to advance actuarial knowledge and to enhance the ability of actuaries to provide expert advice and relevant solutions for financial, business and societal challenges. The SOA’s vision is for actuaries to be the leading professionals in the measurement and management of risk.