CPI Change: 'More Accurate' or Another Method for Cutting Benefits?

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Written by CEPR   
Friday, 08 July 2011 13:30
According to the New York Times, Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn and other Republicans are concerned about the growth of programs like Social Security and support "the idea of an alternative measure of inflation, known as the chain-weighted version of the Consumer Price Index," because they believe it is "more accurate." On Beat the Press, Dean Baker points out we have no way of knowing what Coburn actually believes. As Dean noted this morning in a statement, unless the Bureau of Labor Statistics constructs a full elderly index that could take account of actual purchase substitution patterns among elderly consumers, "simply switching to the C-CPI-U without undertaking this research is consistent with a desire to cut Social Security, not make the [cost-of-living adjustment] more accurate."