Actuarial Life Table

MoneyBestPal Team
A table that displays the probability that a person of a specific age will die before their next birthday.

An actuarial life table is a table that shows the likelihood that a person will pass away before their next birthday at a certain age. Also, it displays the remaining life expectancy for persons of various ages as well as the approximate number of survivors from a hypothetical cohort of people who were born at the same time.

An actuarial life table is based on a population's mortality experience during a specific time period, typically a year or ten years. It displays the actual or anticipated trends in the mortality rates for various age categories within that population. The Social Security Administration (SSA), for instance, offers cohort life tables, which forecast future mortality rates for those born in a specific year, and period life tables, which provide life expectancy estimates for the US population based on known death rates in a particular year. These tables are used by the SSA to calculate the benefits and expenses of the Social Security program.

An actuarial life table typically consists of several columns, such as:
  • Exact age: The age at the beginning of the interval.
  • Death probability: The probability that a person of a given age will die within one year.
  • Number of lives: The number of survivors at the beginning of the interval out of a hypothetical cohort of 100,000 individuals born at the same time.
  • Life expectancy: The average number of years remaining for a person of a given age.

Here is an example of an actuarial life table for the US population in 2019, as used in the 2022 Trustees Report by the SSA: