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Expectations and Realizations of Work after Retirement

  • Nicole Maestas
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    This paper analyzes a puzzling aspect of retirement behavior known as "unretirement." Nearly 50 percent of retirees follow a nontraditional retirement path that involves partial retirement or unretirement, and at least 26 percent of retirees later unretire. I explore two possible explanations: (1) unretirement transitions result from failures in planning or financial shocks; and (2) unretirement transitions are anticipated prior to retirement, reflecting a more complex retirement process. I show that unretirement was anticipated for the vast majority of those returning to work, and is not a result of financial shocks, poor planning or low wealth accumulation.

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    File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/45/3/718
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    Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

    Volume (Year): 45 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages:

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    Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:45:y:2010:iii:1:p718-748
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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    1. Michael Hurd & Susann Rohwedder, 2003. "The Retirement-Consumption Puzzle: Anticipated and Actual Declines in Spending at Retirement," Working Papers 03-12, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
    2. John Rust & Christopher Phelan, 1997. "How Social Security and Medicare Affect Retirement Behavior in a World of Incomplete Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(4), pages 781-832, July.
    3. John Ameriks & Andrew Caplin & John Leahy, 2007. "Retirement Consumption: Insights from a Survey," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 265-274, May.
    4. Reimers, Cordelia & Honig, Marjorie, 1993. "The Perceived Budget Constraint under Social Security: Evidence from Reentry Behavior," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages 184-204, January.
    5. Steven J. Haider & Melvin Stephens, 2007. "Is There a Retirement-Consumption Puzzle? Evidence Using Subjective Retirement Expectations," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 247-264, May.
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