Last week's post made the point that Social Security isn't simply an entitlement program and is instead a deferred income annuity ("DIA") payable for life. As discussed, the primary difference between Social Security and a commercial DIA is the organization from which the investment is purchased and payments are guaranteed. In the case of Social Security, it's the federal government while DIA's are purchased from, and payments guaranteed by, individual life insurance companies.
It turns out that in today's low-interest rate environment, Social Security is inarguably the ultimate DIA. To illustrate this, I will use my current Social Security benefits statement that includes the following information about my projected monthly retirement benefit beginning at various ages: