|Title||Inequalities in Retirement Life Span in the United States.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2023|
|Authors||Shi, J, Dudel, C, Monden, C, van Raalte, A|
|Journal||J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci|
|Date Published||2023 May 11|
|Keywords||Aged, Educational Status, Employment, Female, Humans, Life Expectancy, Life Tables, Longevity, Male, Middle Aged, Retirement, United States|
OBJECTIVES: The length of retirement life may be highly unequal due to persistent and significant discrepancies in old-age mortality. This study assesses gender and educational differences in the average retirement life span and the variation in retirement life span, taking into account individual labor force exit and reentry dynamics.
METHODS: We used longitudinal data from the Health and Retirement Study from 1996 to 2016, focusing on respondents aged 50 and older (N = 32,228). Multistate life tables were estimated using discrete-time event history models. The average retirement life span, as well as absolute and relative variation in retirement life span, were calculated analytically.
RESULTS: Among women, we found a persistent educational gradient in average retirement life span over the whole period studied; among men, the relationship between education and retirement expectancy differed across periods. Women and the lower-educated had higher absolute variation in retirement life span than men and the higher-educated-yet these relationships were reversed when examined by relative variation.
DISCUSSION: Our multistate approach provides an accurate and comprehensive picture of the retirement life span of older Americans over the past two decades. Such findings should be considered in high-level discussions on Social Security. Potential reforms such as raising the eligibility age or cutting benefits may have unexpected implications for different social groups due to their differential effects on retirement initiation and reentry dynamics.
|PubMed Central ID||PMC10174282|
|Grant List||716323 / ERC_ / European Research Council / International|