Social Security: Mississippi Quick Facts
Mississippi’s aged population is expanding. In 2003, Mississippi’s population was about 2,881,000 with 12% being age 65 and older (349,000 residents).1 In 2015, the 65+ population will make up 15% of the state’s population, and in 2025, it will be 20%.2,3 Mississippi is the poorest U.S. state. The average personal income in Mississippi was $23,466 in 2003. Mississippi’s per capita income (51st) ranks lower than any other U.S. state.4 One in five Mississippi residents receives Social Security. The Social Security program not only provides monthly benefits to retired workers, but also to families when the worker retires, dies, or becomes disabled. In 2003, over 47 million Americans received Social Security benefits; of these, 537,070 live in Mississippi.5 In 2003, one in five Mississippi residents received Social Security. While 53% of beneficiaries are retirees, 47% are not: 98,230 are disabled workers; 70,730 are children; 58,280 are widows and widowers; and 25,500 are wives and husbands.
Social Security pumps almost 5 billion dollars into Mississippi’s economy. In 2003, Mississippi residents received 4.8 billion dollars from Social Security.6 The average yearly Social Security benefit for a Mississippi retiree in 2003 was $10,109—or about $842 a month.5 Nearly all Mississippi residents age 65 or older receive Social Security. Nationally, almost 16% of all people receive Social Security benefits; in Mississippi, 19% of residents do. However, older people are more likely to receive the benefit, with 91% of those over age 65 receiving it nationwide, and 92% of older Mississippians receiving it.1 Social Security lifts over half of Mississippi retirees from poverty. Nearly half (47%) of the nation’s older population would be living in poverty if they were not receiving Social Security. In Mississippi, 53% of the state’s 65+ population (120,000 people) would have incomes below the poverty line if they did not have Social Security.7 Social Security is the only source of income for over about three in ten Mississippians age 65+. Social Security makes up 50 percent or more of the income for over half of Mississippians age 65 and older. About three in ten older Mississippians rely on Social Security as their only source of income.
OASDI Beneficiaries by State and County, 2003. Social Security Administration: http://www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/statcomps/oasdi_sc/2003/tab le1.html
Projections of the Population, By Age and Sex, of States: 1995 to 2025. United States Census Bureau: http://www.census.gov/population/projections/state/stpjage.t xt Projections of the Total Population of States: 1995 to 2025. United States Census Bureau: http://www.census.gov/population/projections/state/stpjpop.txt Bureau of Economic Analysis, US Dept. of Commerce: http://www.bea.gov/bea/regional/bearfacts/statebf.cfm