In a recent presentation to Eurofound's "Income from Work after Retirement" expert workshop in Brussels, Belgium, Dr. Kevin E. Cahill, ECONorthwest senior economist, addressed recent research on the changing retirement income landscape in the United States. At the expert workshop, selected experts in the field discussed the findings of new research, in support of a report Eurofound plans to publish in the second half of 2012.
In his presentation, Dr. Cahill concluded that since the mid-1980s, the retirement income landscape in the United States has changed to favor work over leisure and that older Americans have responded to these changes by working later in life. As Dr. Cahill notes, the average retirement age of men has increased from 63 in the early 2000s to 65 today. What makes the change so dramatic is that this increase represents a reversal of a near-century-long trend toward earlier retirement. Dr. Cahill noted that these demographic shifts will likely force employers to increasingly hire older workers.
Dr. Cahill views all of these pro-work changes as essentially good news. Employees benefit through increased financial security in their retirement years; employers benefit by tapping into a valuable resource older workers and their lifetime of experience; and the country as a whole benefits as more goods and services are produced, to be distributed across an aging population.
Dr. Kevin E. Cahill specializes in the economics of aging, labor and health economics, and statistical methods. He is a senior economist and the managing director of ECONorthwest's new office in Boise, Idaho. Read more about ECONortwest's expanding presence in Idaho.