Several important parameters affect Social
Security's Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) program and the
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program. We determine these parameters each
October by following formulas set by law. Two important parameters are the
national average wage index and the
cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).
COLAs and wage-indexed amounts for recent years
are summarized in a table.
The table's column headings provide links to more detailed data.
We use the national average wage index to "index" earnings for
initial benefit computations and to determine several
wage-indexed amounts that primarily
affect the OASDI program.
COLAs provide annual increases in payments from OASDI and SSI programs.
Automatically increased amounts, as described above, are published in the
in late October.