More Americans Of Retirement Age Continue Working

Considering both the uncertainty of pensions, Social Security payments, or financial problems along with longer longevity, it's not really a surprise that more people are working past age 65.

Almost 20 percent of Americans 65 and older are now working, according to the latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s the most older people with a job since the early 1960s, before the U.S. enacted Medicare.

Because of the huge baby boom generation that is just now hitting retirement age, the U.S. has the largest number of older workers ever.

While the article goes on to detail a wide range of reasons people have given for working past 65, or in some cases, not planning to retire at all, one cause I did not see mentioned except briefly: some employers know they may not be able to find someone to replace the retiring employee so they offer incentives for them to stay on, even if only part time. I have seen this, with my employer having offered incentives to one employee and a family member having been convinced to continue working on a part time basis because there was no one available to replace them and their expertise.

Another set of reasons some choose not to retire, or after having retired, return to work: they really like what they're doing, miss what they used to do, or in some case, find retirement isn't all it's cracked up to be. While some of these will stay within the profession they they made their career for decades, some take the opportunity to make a career change, pursuing a new career or reviving an old interest that had to be put aside in order to provide for a family. I know more than a few friends and family who have said retirement was “the worst decision they ever made.”

I see no reason this trend will not continue to grow.