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Influencing retirement behavior: A key issue for social security


  • Joseph F. Quinn

    (Associate Professor of Economics, Boston College)

  • Richard V. Burkhauser

    (Associate Professor of Economics, Vanderbilt University)


Recent trends toward earlier retirement threaten future supplies of labor and the financial stability of many of our public and private pension systems. One of the few federal efforts now in place to reverse this trend has been the 1977 law outlawing mandatory retirement before age 70 for most American workers. This legislation by itself will have little effect on retirement patterns, because strong financial incentives to retire remain imbedded in the system. Changes in the Social Security Act enacted this year begin to recognize these incentives but are highly controversial and at best will not begin to go into effect until 1990. To be successful, efforts of policymakers to increase work at older ages must focus on the financial incentives at the heart of retirement plans rather than on merely attempting to weaken mandatory retirement constraints.

Suggested Citation

  • Joseph F. Quinn & Richard V. Burkhauser, 1983. "Influencing retirement behavior: A key issue for social security," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 3(1), pages 1-13.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:3:y:1983:i:1:p:1-13 DOI: 10.2307/3324001

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. David T. Ellwood, 1982. "Teenage Unemployment: Permanent Scars or Temporary Blemishes?," NBER Chapters,in: The Youth Labor Market Problem: Its Nature, Causes, and Consequences, pages 349-390 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Robin L. Lumsdaine & David A. Wise, 1994. "Aging and Labor Force Participation: A Review of Trends and Explanations," NBER Chapters,in: Aging in the United States and Japan: Economic Trends, pages 7-42 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Maite Blázquez Cuesta & Elena Cottini & Herrarte, A. (Ainhoa), 2012. "GINI DP 39: Socioeconomic Gradient in Health: How Important is Material Deprivation?," GINI Discussion Papers 39, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.

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