Since 1992, we have prepared long-term fiscal simulations to show federal deficits and debt under different sets of policy assumptions. Our latest update shows that the federal government continues to face a long-term fiscal sustainability challenge. Specifically, all of our simulations show that
- a fundamental imbalance between revenue and spending over the long term leads to continuous growth in debt as a share of gross domestic product, which is unsustainable;
- an aging population and rising health care costs largely drive increases in federal spending; and
- delaying action to address these problems increases the risk that the eventual changes will be disruptive and destabilizing to the economy and individuals.