|Title||In Debt and Approaching Retirement: Claim Social Security or Work Longer?|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2018|
|Authors||Butrica, BA, Karamcheva, NS|
|Journal||AEA Papers and Proceedings|
|Keywords||Debt, Retirement Planning and Satisfaction, Social Security|
Over the past couple of decades, older Americans have become considerably more leveraged. This paper considers whether household debt affects the timing of retirement and Social Security benefit claiming. Using data from the Health and Retirement Study, we find that older adults with debt are more likely to work and less likely to receive Social Security benefits than those who are debt-free. Indebted adults are also more likely to delay fully retiring from the labor force and claiming their benefits. Among the sources of debt, mortgages have a stronger impact on older adults' behavior than do other sources of debt.