|Title||Trends in Retirement Satisfaction in the United States: Fewer Having a Great Time|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2016|
|Keywords||Health Conditions and Status, Net Worth and Assets, Pensions, Retirement Planning and Satisfaction|
Most of the existing research on overall retirement satisfaction of retirees uses single-year data and focuses on identifying and measuring the factors that may affect retirement satisfaction. However, the analysis presented in this paper uses data from the 1998-2012 rounds of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) to illustrate longer trends in retirement satisfaction and the relationships with various other factors. The cross-sectional results in this study show that the share of respondents reporting very satisfying retirements dropped from 60.5 percent in 1998 to 48.6 percent in 2012. On the other hand, the share of respondents reporting moderately satisfying and not at all satisfying retirements increased from 31.7 percent to 40.9 percent and from 7.9 percent to 10.5 percent, respectively. The longitudinal results from a fixed sample observed over the 15-year period from 1998 to 2012 show similar declines in the share of respondents reporting very satisfying retirements and similar increases in the share of respondents reporting moderately satisfying retirements. This is in contrast to some of the previous research, which shows that retirement satisfaction increases with age. These trends are not limited to particular economic groups: Both the highest- and lowest-asset quartiles show similar trends. Also, people with and without pension income show similar trends in retirement satisfaction levels. As might be expected, net worth and health status are strongly correlated with retirement satisfaction. Higher net worth is associated with higher levels of satisfaction, and poorer health is associated with lower levels of satisfaction. There is no significant difference in retirement satisfaction levels between men and women. Although this study does not investigate the reasons behind the changes in retirement satisfaction levels, the reported shift in the retirement satisfaction trends raises an important question: Why is the share of very satisfied retirees dropping? Further research to answer this question might provide some important answers.
|Endnote Keywords|| |
Health status/Household assets/Net worth/Pension income/Retireme/Retirement attitudes and opinions/Satisfaction
|Endnote ID|| |